Sunday, September 5, 2010
Did you know you don't need store bought yeast to rise your bread. Their are many naturally occurring yeasts floating around in the air around us. It is possible to capture and grow these yeast in a starter. This process was used to rise bread for much of human history. The starter is called sourdough because lactic acid bacteria inhabit the starter and create a sour taste.
A simple way to make sour dough starter at home is to set a jar of organic whole wheat flour, all purpose flour, and plenty of sugar with enough pure water to make a thick pancake batter consistency. Cover this with a paper towel held on with a rubber band and let it sit at room temperature for a few days until it stars to bubble. Now remove half of it and replace it with fresh all purpose flour, sugar, and water mixture (keep it thick). Do this every 24 hrs for a week. After that the starter should be good and strong. It will not rise bread fast. It will take at least 12hrs, but the flavor will be phenomenal. Always save a little of the starter to keep it going and it can be stored in the refrigerator and cared for like the regular dough starter I wrote about in a much earlier post.