Two years ago I went on a baking adventure with 100 other food bloggers from around the world. We all baked breads from The Bread Breaker’s Apprentice by Peter Reinhardt. The impetus and inspiration for this blogging and baking adventure was a blogger from San Diego, Nicole Emmert Hamaker who has the fabulous food blog Pinch My Salt. Nicole is revisiting sourdough and inviting us to join along, and I in turn am asking my blog followers to do the same. Let’s jump on the fermentation wagon together and see what works together.
During the BBA days I did the sourdough starter and kept it going for over a year. And then partly because I live in a warm tropical climate where bread baking is not always conducive, and partly because my business was taking up more of my baking time, I finally threw out the starter.
There are several links on my blog to those baked goods. This is one of my Sourdough Posts from the BBA Days in 2009.
Here is how I made my starter. Today is “Day One”. It will be a few days till I will be baking with it, but I will have some to share in three days.
Day One: In a medium sized bowl, add one cup of whole wheat or whole rye flour (I use organic dark rye) with 3/4 cup (6 oz/small can) canned pineapple juice (at room temperature) until all of the flour is hydrated. Spoon all of the mixture into a quart-size wide mouth glass container, such as a jar or glass measuring cup with plenty of head space, as this will eventually grow. Mark the level of the starter with a piece of tape or rubber band. Cover the container with some kind of breathable fabric; paper towel, cheesecloth, or coffee filter and tie or secure with a rubber band. Allow to rest at room temperature for 24 hours.
Day Two: You may not notice much change at this point. Pour the contents of the jar into a mixing bowl and add 1 cup of bread flour plus 1/2 cup of room temperature pineapple juice. Mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed. Wash and dry your glass container and then scrape the mixture into the container. Mark and cover the container just like day one. Allow it to rest at room temperature for 24 hours.
Day Three: You might see some changes by now. The dough may have raised some and there might be bubbles. Regardless of whether you notice any fermentation or not, discard half of the mixture (or better yet, give it to a friend to cultivate), and mix the remaining half with 1 cup of bread flour and 1/2 cup room temperature filtered water (chlorine may kill some of the yeast). Wash and dry the glass container and scrape the mixture into the container. Mark and cover as before. Allow to rest at room temperature for 24 hours.
Day Four: The mixture should have at least doubled in size at this point. If it seems to be sluggish and hasn’t doubled in size, allow it to sit at room temperature for another 12 to 24 hours. You could stir in a teaspoon of raw sugar if it seems to be sluggish. Otherwise, repeat instructions for Day three.
When we get to day five, we will continue together!