Sourdough: General Info
What is Sourdough?
Sourdough is an American term for a natural leaven of "wild" or natural yeast and lactobacilli. Don’t mistake this with today’s modernized yeast, it is not. Sourdough is created from a sourdough starter.
A sourdough starter, is a starter or culture of wild/natural yeast and lactobacilli in a medium of flour and liquid which is propagated through ongoing refreshments (or " feedings" ) for the purpose of leavening bread dough, is ongoing and is continued on from one bake or activation to the next.
A Sourdough culture can last hundreds of years, even indefinitely.
When making the bread, the starter is mixed into flour/water/salt and the lactobacilli bacteria feed on the flour, producing gases that are trapped causing the bread to rise.
Resources to get you started:
*www.Breadtopia.com-a great website to help you learn the ins and outs of baking your own bread.
He is an excellent teacher, and has many great recipes. He does very helpful videos which I recommend you
watching so that you can learn techniques that will help make sourdough a love, and not a chore.
*Cultures for health-a website featuring helpful books and videos. You can also order a culture here if you don’t have one!
*www.Takebackthebread.com : great videos and information.
*www.traditionalcookingschool.com : Traditional cooking school by GNOWFGLINS-This lady has tons and tons of videos and helpful information on all things traditional foods!
“If thou tastest a crust of bread, thou tastest all the stars and all the heavens.” – Robert Browning
“The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable
in its evocation of innocence and delight.” – M.F.K. Fischer
Artisan No-knead Sourdough Bread Recipe
3 ½ cups flour
1 ½ tsp. salt
1 ½ cups of water (lukewarm and filtered)
¼ cup sourdough starter
Instructions: Mix together the flour and salt. Dissolve the starter in to the water. Add water/starter into the flour and salt mixture. Stir until mixed well (no metal spoons). Cover with plastic wrap and sit overnight or 10-14 hours at room temperature.
Dump onto floured surface and press and fold. Cover with plastic and rest for 10 minutes.
In the meantime, get a shallow bowl or proofing basket and oil it. When the rest time is over, spritz some oil on your hands and shape the dough and drop in bowl. Cover with plastic again and let rise 45-90 minutes depending upon temperature of the room, or if you have a proof setting on your oven, you can use that.
Bake in covered Dutch oven preheated to 425 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove lid and reduce heat to 375 degrees for another 15 minutes. Remove the bread from pan and cool on rack.
Watch this video: https://breadtopia.com/sourdough-no-knead-bread/
If you purchase a starter and place it in your refrigerator, you'll have to feed it once a week to keep it healthy, until you decide to bake your bread. To feed your starter, remove from the fridge, and leave out at room temperature for approximately 1 hour, then measure your starter and add equal parts of flour and water. You’ll want to leave the starter out until it bubbles then place it back in the fridge. Here's a great example of what it should look like after sitting out.
Tip: If you have a tiny bit of starter left at the bottom of your jar preserve a sample of your starter in case you ever need to start again! Take a spatula and smear the leftovers onto a piece of parchment paper. Wait for the smear to dry completely (until it breaks apart). Then, place the pieces into a Ziploc freezer bag and store in your freezer.
Here is a peek at the delicious bread we sampled at Beth Deitzel's home at the end of our class. Happy Baking!!!
Have an abundance of starter?
Once you've fed your starter several times, you will find that you will have an abundance of starter.
Here are a few recipes for your extra starter:
Sourdough Chocolate Chip Muffins
Sourdough Pizza Crust
Sourdough Pizza Crust:
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups starter
1-3 Tbsp. water
2 Tbsp. olive oil
Instructions: Mix flour and salt. Add starter and mix together. Add water only enough to bring it together. Add oil. Then, knead with oiled hands by folding in on itself until elastic and smooth. Cut in half and place each half in an oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and sit at room temperature until nice and raised.
Roll out and place toppings as desired!
I preheat my baking stones at 425 degrees and roll out my crust onto parchment paper. Then once toppings are on my pizza, I place a thin baking sheet underneath and scoop up the pizza. Then, transfer the pizza onto the hot stone in the oven. Once the crust sets, you can slip the paper from underneath the pizza and finish cooking it.
Reviving Live and Dried Sourdough Culture from Freezer
Additional Sourdough Resources:
Cultures for Health
Weston A. Price Foundation
Heather Brooks, Marketing Manager & Blog and Administrative Assistant
None of these posts have been evaluated by the FDA. They are not intended to cure, treat, or diagnose any disease. As with any medical concerns, always consult your medical professional before trying any of the ideas presented on this blog. All information has been obtained from various sources and personal experiences.