My first sour dough - yummy, if a little stodgy, date loaf

Slow Living Essentials very kindly gave me a jar of creamy coloured liquid last week and I have been nurturing it ever since.  The 'mother' is such a strange thing and I am a bit nervous when handling it.  It's quite demanding, wanting only cooled boiled water and flour preferably organic and rye.  Fortunately it is quite forgiving and has still bubbled peacefully when given  a half a cup of el cheapo  non-organic white flower and wholemeal plain.  It has grown, and grown, and grown, and I decided that I'd better start using it not just feeding it or I'd soon have a mountain of goo taking over the kitchen. So with much trepidation I followed Christine's recipe for Date and Nut Sourdough Loaves.

The mother - bubbling.  My little one likes to add the flour and water to this and give it a stir, she also swiped a taste, that might teach my ever present helper to ask before licking.

Mixing the bread - eventually got my hands in that sticky mess
did some of this watching Gardening Australia.  Yes a little late in the day to start making sour dough but I figured better late than never.  I folded the dough a couple of times as instructed but at midnight decided I'd leave the dough to deal with in the morning

 What I woke up to, that mother had been doing her job!

 Fashioned it into two big loaves, waited about an hour (hmmm on re-reading this might have been a bit quick).  Perhaps the leaving overnight also not a great idea?

 Attempted to score, and then put fat looking loaves in the oven.  Next mistake, my nasty el cheapo oven runs hotter than it says and is hotter on one side but I didn't make any allowances for this.  Think this may have prematurely darkened the loaves as I followed all the times Christine suggested - checking at lower time intervals to be on the safe side.

 The end result was overly dark loaves that are very moist in the middle. We and the neighbours kids didn't mind and gave it a good munching hot from the oven. Still very edible and has made a lovely treat as toast the last couple of days.  Twas lunch for three today with snotty one home sick.  looking forward to finishing it off tomorrow, toasted with lashings of butter as Christine recommended.

Datey pecan goodness.