It’s Good for You! What we like about sourdough is the long ferment that is better for your health. Did you know that in the long slow fermentation that produces sourdough bread, important nutrients such as iron, zinc and magnesium, antioxidants, folic acid and other B vitamins become easier for our bodies to absorb?
What You Need
Sterilized glass container – 1 quart is a good size
Spatula – rubber or plastic
1 cup (4 oz) rye or whole wheat flour
Warm (but not hot) water between 65-80 degrees F – filtered or water without chlorine
Unbleached all-purpose or bread flour for feeding the starter – 12% protein content is best
DAY 1 – Make the Starter
1. Add 1 cup whole-wheat or rye flour to a sterilized 1 quart glass container plus 1/2 cup warm tap water (65-80 degrees F.
2. Stir well until dough is a thick paste
3. Cover loosely with lid or plastic wrap
4. Place somewhere that will maintain 75-80 degrees F for 24 hours
DAY 2 – Feed the Starter
1. Use spatula to measure 2/3 cup of starter and place in stainless or glass bowl. Discard the rest of the starter in the glass container
2. Add 1 cup all purpose bread flour and 1/2 cup warm water (65-80 degrees F)
3. Stir well, return to glass container.
4. Cover loosely with lid or plastic wrap
5. Place somewhere that will maintain 75-80 degrees F for 24 hours
DAYS 3-5 – Two Feedings a Day
Mixture should look bubbly and start to have a tangy scent
Feed starter every 12 hours for 3 days
1. Stir starter
2. Remove 1/2 cup starter from container and put into glass or stainless bowl, discard the rest
3. Add 1 cup all purpose bread flour and 1/2 cup warm water (65-80 degrees F)
4. Stir well, return to glass container.
5. Cover loosely with lid or plastic wrap
6. Place somewhere that will maintain 75-80 degrees F for 12 hours
Repeat process steps 1-5 every 12 hours for 3 days
Starter should get bubbly and have a yeasty scent
DAY 6 – Starter Ready to Use
If starter is almost doubling in size every 12 hours and is bubbly and foamy, it is ready to use. If it doesn’t’t seem ready after 5 days, keep up the every 12 hours feeding schedule.
Maintaining Your Starter
If you use your starter every day, you can keep it at cool room temperature (50-65 degrees F) and feed every 24 hours.
If you use your starter occasionally but at least once a week, slow the starter by keeping it in the refrigerator. Put it in the fridg after feeding when it is active and bubbly. Check it regularly and feed it every other day, letting it activate before returning to the fridge. Watery liquid or an alcohol odor is a sign that your starter needs feeding.
instructions adapted from Food Network’s How to Make Sourdough Starter