Sourdough rye chocolate cake

My new chocolate cake recipe is from my new favorite baking
book, 100% °F
Rye by Shannon Stonger

I believe there are actually health benefits to cooking with
sourdough and whole grain flour and maybe even rye versus
wheat. But the reason I’ve adopted it over my previous bread
machine sprouted wheat chocolate cake is that it’s so moist.

The picture is of the version I baked for the twentieth
anniversary of the West
Gallery Quire
. People said it was good, and most of it disappeared.



  • 2 cups rye flour
  • ½ cup starter
  • 1 cup milk (I used almond milk)
  • 1 cup honey, softened to a pourable consistency
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup melted butter or coconut oil (I have coconut oil
    somewhere, but I can’t find it, so I used almond oil, which I
    keep on hand for oiling musical instruments.)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt


Whisk together the flour, starter, milk, and honey in a medium bowl until just combined. Cover tightly and set aside to ferment for 6-12 hours, or longer if desired.

Preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare a 9×13” pan (I
have one somewhere, but I can only find a 10×14″ pan, so it bakes
a little faster) by buttering and flouring it. Add the eggs,
melted butter, and vanilla to the fermented dough and just begin
to stir it together. Sprinkle over the cocoa, baking powder,
baking soda, and salt and finish mixing until all ingredients are

Scrape batter into prepared pan and place pan into the preheated
oven. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until a cake tester inserted
into the center of the cake comes out clean. (I use an
instant-read thermometer, and it’s done when the probe comes out
clean, but just to check I make sure it’s in the 190-200°F

Allow to cool before slicing and serving.


I’ve only baked it twice. The first time I baked it plain, and
I loved the texture but thought the flavor was a little boring.
For the pictured version, I made a chocolate ganache frosting, and
used almond slivers and dried apricot pieces for decoration. Next
time I’ll try doing what I did with the bread machine cake, which
was add chocolate chips and dried cherries.

First Crocus of Spring

I know lots of people already have lots of more impressive flowers than this. But these bulbs were only planted last fall, and it’s been a difficult March.

My downstairs neighbor and I cleared the weeds out of this part of the front yard last October, and I ordered bulbs. They arrived a couple of days after I broke the ankle, so she and her husband put them in.

I ordered a cheap assortment, because I wasn’t sure whether they would all get eaten by squirrels or rabbits, but they seem to have come up pretty well. There are other buds, so there will be better pictures in a couple of weeks.

Two things hospitals do that you would think they wouldn’t

[broken ankle]

I’m not saying there isn’t lots of evidence that many or even
most of the staffs of the hospitals I’ve been in are
intelligent, caring, dedicated people. But these seem like
issues that someone like that would be able to fix.

My most recent stay was overnight after surgery for a broken
ankle, and my previous stays have not involved a lot of bedpans,
but they have all involved surgeons who think they’ve told me

Surgeon’s and communication

This one I’m sure is common, because it’s happened every time
I’ve had general anaesthesia. Apparently, when you’re coming out
of it, there’s a period when you look awake, but you don’t really
remember anything that happens then.

This is when surgeons all come over and tell you how the
surgery went.

The nurses all know about this problem, so if you think of it,
and can ask the nurse who was there when the surgeon told you
stuff, she can tell you what you want to know.

Unfortunately, this most recent time, I didn’t think to ask
until I was in my room, and the nurse there said that she thought
it had gone well, but I’d have to ask the doctor for more


I had to use one all night, because they wouldn’t let me get up
until I was cleared by Physical Therapy.

The bedpans are the right size for someone with a normal
bladder who is evacuating some of what they have drunk. They are
way too small for someone who’s getting iv fluids.


If you have keiłbasa, sauerkraut, and mushrooms, you can make bigos. Put them in a pot and simmer until you want to eat them. I sometimes do this in a frying pan for only a few minutes, and call it lazy man’s bigos.
The story is that the hunters left a cauldron of this simmering, and when they caught anything, they added it to the pot.
Above is my grandmother’s recipe, which she contributed to her church cookbook. You notice she adds quite a few things to the basic recipe. The apples are good, and when I have it, I usually use cider instead of the wine and beef broth in her recipe. Notice that she also used cabbage in addition to the sauerkraut.