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Ode to my Sourdough Starter Recipe

Ok.....So I wrote this out for my awesome friend, Blake. Who I trust 100% to respect the sourdough starter process and recipe details. She has since become an amazing sourdough bread baker using this recipe (with her notes in pen).

After a bunch of other people asked me how to make sourdough bread, I had to get my hands on a copy of the recipe AGAIN, so I didn't have to re-write it every time.

This COVID hobby is a definite keeper-hobby. Probably...Until I find something else. (knitting -see below for a quick digression, or running-but it's getting cold out here, or blogging-but sometimes I don't know what to write about..... You get the idea)

COVID knitting projects, so far:

1 Boys size 8 Montrealer Sweater for C

1 Women's small Sunday Cardigan for me

1 Women's small Ranunculous Sweater for me

1 Pair of Mittens for Trish

1 Crazy Stephen West Shawl for me

1 Cute shawl for Caleb's teacher

1 Baby size Antler Toque for friend's baby

1 Ballerina Wrap Sweater for me

1 Women's Hat for me

1 Baby Mosaic Afghan for J

(writing this out makes it look like I have a serious situation with knitting. Not sure if I should be proud or worried)

If you are still reading.............

The photo below is a loaf that I baked last night.

My Sourdough started from 1 TB of starter from my neighbor Dave. Thank you, Dave. Dave loves the science behind the sourdough. His recipes have notes in the margin with very specific information. Mine clearly don't.

I just like the process and the outcome. I like that you can do just a little bit of work with just a few ingredients, and wait for awhile, and something spectacular happens.

So here is how it goes. There are a lot of different tricks to this. Read some blogs or don't. You can just look at the photo of the paper that I originally made for Blake. I also hooked our amazing neighbor, Donna (same technique). Tried to get our other neighbor on board....but he's not yet grown his starter (I gave it to him in April.....It is probably rotting in the back of his fridge). Working with my son's teacher to maintain her starter. And if anyone else near us needs some starter, you can always just ask me.

Before you start, you really need a kitchen scale. A lot of people who don't trust me and/or my sourdough technique tell me that kitchen scales are just for measuring weed (in college) or meth (gross)....But they come in handy for sourdough bread baking, I promise.

This "how-to" is VERY unofficial. But it's also VERY effective and efficient, if you want VERY delicious sourdough bread.


Part 1:

Start at 12 PM. Grow the starter that I gave you from the refrigerator.

Equal parts starter, flour, water. Use your kitchen scale.

(It should be ugly and look like yellow-y glue or boogers, according to my boys)

It needs to pass the FLOAT TEST after growing for 6ish hours.

FLOAT TEST: Put 1 tsp starter in a cup of water.

If it floats, you are ready to make some dough-proceed to Part 2.

If it's doesn't....Feed the starter again (equal starter, water, flour).

It's like a "choose your own adventure."

Part 2:

At 6 PM. Use a large kitchen bowl. Figure out how to zero out your kitchen scale.

Mix 100 grams starter, 300 grams water, 10 grams salt, 400 grams flour.

(Use your clean hands, spoon, or a kneading doesn't really matter)

Cover bowl with a towel.

Don't look at the dough for 12 hours.

Part 3: 12 hours later or 6 AM-ish....(let's be real, people....please don't set an alarm to check your dough. It doesn't matter that much)

Look at the dough. It should have doubled in size.

Stretch and fold the dough over itself to shape a loaf. Not too much motchkee-ing (that's Yiddish for "messing with")

Cover bowl with a towel.

Don't look at the dough for 12 hours.

Part 4: (6 PM-ish)

Shape dough into a nice looking loaf. Not too much motchkee-ing.

Pre-heat oven to 450.

Put pans in oven, while oven is pre-heating.

When oven is at 450, use oven mitts (PLEASE) to remove hot pans from oven.

Place shaped loaf on parchment paper in pan.

Cover pan.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Remove cover.

Bake for 20 minutes.

Let loaf rest for 1 hour.


Should I become a food blogger?

If you are still reading, please don't answer that!

And don't leave any weird comments about whether or not you can make this gluten-free.

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Looks delicious. I might be inspired, especially if I don't have to get up at 6am to take care of the next step. I'm impressed by your knitting, I've made a pair of socks and am working on a sweater...

And, I agree with Evon, enjoyed the humor in the post.


I love the humor in this post...maybe not everyone finds the humor, but I certainly did in the storytelling! I love the layers of how different friends embrace the sourdough journey. It is a more than an ode to sourdough as hobby, it is also a testament to exploring the importance of process and rolling with it! And, of course, I like to eat it!


So yummy!

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