Sunday, January 13, 2013

A First for Me: Sourdough

I have always loved sourdough bread.  Mainly because it is bread.  I also love the rich flavor and its texture.  It always seemed too much of a hassle to make though.  It takes several days to make the starter itself.  Then like a pet or a child you have to feed it and take care of it.  Fortunately you don't have to clean its room or pick up after it.  Hopefully it won't talk back.  Anyway,  after one friend made English muffins this week and another sent me a sour dough English muffin recipe, I decided to give it a whirl.  Hopefully I can get somewhere before we leave next weekend to snowboard.

I am going to post a daily progress on how it all goes.  If it goes well, I'll put them all together into one easy-to-read post.

Day One:

Here is the easy part!

In a large glass or ceramic bowl add equal parts, by weight or volume, warm water and flour.  Since I am new to this I went small.

250 grams filtered water
125 grams whole wheat flour
125 grams unbleached all purpose flour

Mix this together and cover with plastic wrap.  Set on the counter for a couple of days.  The natural yeast in the air, flour, and all around will be all you need to get started.

**The science behind sourdough starter?  "Sourdough starter is used in baked goods because it contains an organism that is able to produce the gasses that give baked goods their lightness. This organism is a type of yeast, and is alive (until killed by the heat of baking). It feeds on carbohydrates (such as flour or sugar) and produces gas and alcohol (which the old "sourdough" miners called "hooch") as byproducts. It must be fed and protected from extremes of temperature and anything else which might kill it. Given proper care and conditions, it will live and reproduce itself for years." -  by Richard Packham

Here is his entire article post.

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