Blog: Otter Lodge Baking

Martin’s first Skye sourdough bread has recently been added to the breakfast menu. Things have been pretty busy now summer is here at Otter Lodge. For us this means a bit less time around and about Skye and a bit more time at home –  and what better place to be than the kitchen.

One of Martin's tasty sourdough loaves.

One of Martin’s tasty sourdough loaves.

Martin served a traditional baker’s apprenticeship in Aberfeldy in the early nineteen eighties. He then spent twenty years working in various parts of Scotland, picking up local knowledge and exploring the nation’s rich baking heritage. He also put in a huge amount of hours working nights; which is why he’s now working the day-shift at Otter Lodge.

Having lived less than a year here on Skye and being busy with other things at the B&B, Martin hasn’t had a great deal of time to bake regularly. However, he is now developing an Otter Lodge ‘Scottish-Continental’ breakfast. Homemade oatcakes have become a regular thing, as well as homemade potato scones. The sourdough bread that’s now appeared started as a Perthshire leaven, probably full of natural yeasts from the local raspberry fields, and has slept peacefully in our fridge since we moved here.

Martin's hands speedily 'chaffing up' the dough prior to making oatcakes

Martin’s hands speedily ‘chaffing up’ the dough prior to making oatcakes

The rest obviously did it some good, because it produced a tasty loaf even when baked in our somewhat temperamental domestic oven. Long-term, we’re planning to build a proper wood fired oven like the one we had in the garden of our previous home. We had made it from locally dug clay and firebricks; this one will be a bit more robust to cope with island weather. Eventually.

Our previous oven, made in Perthshire from local clay. Good for baking bread and cooking.

Our previous oven, made in Perthshire from local clay. Good for baking bread and cooking.