Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Learning Sourdough

I LOVE to bake bread, but making my own sourdough starter has always kind of intimidated me. A few weeks ago, I started looking up recipes for starters and turns out, they are as simple as can be! I found myself a large jar with a tight fitting lid, nailed a small hole in the top, and dumped 1 cup of warm filtered water and 1 cup of whole wheat flour into it. After mixing it with my wooden spoon (metal is apparently bad for making yeast!), I set the jar on my counter. For 2 weeks, I dumped half of it out (next time I am going to dump half of it into other jars and give them to friends. I hate waste.), then mixed in 1 cup of flour and 1 cup of water (this is called feeding), and put it back on top of my fridge. After noticing that my starter had developed a bubbly froth, I knew it was done. So, I stuck it into the fridge and reminded myself to feed it once a week until I was ready to use it. Well, yesterday I put it to use. I stuck it into a bowl to proof it and after a few hours, it was ready. I found a couple of different recipes and decided on 2. The first one required only 1/2 cup of the starter and also for me to leave it out over night mixed with flour and and water - I'll update you when that bread is done. The second required 2 cups and was a basic yeasted bread recipe - it did not turn out well. I got impatient and baked it before it was done rising. Oops. The good news is that I had some starter leftover. So, I fed it and stuck it on top of my fridge to ferment for a day.

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