I still haven't "perfected" my sourdough yet. :/
Recently, my grandfather stumbled across an old, OLD cookbook that belonged to HIS grandmother. He knows that I've been dabbling with breads/baking, so he offered me the cookbook (he also knows I'm an archivist, so he knew I'd preserve it!). :) Anyway... I've been browsing through the recipes (trying to translate MANY of them, as this particular gr. gr. grandmother was Pennsylvania Dutch/Amish and spoke a hybrid German). I took four years of German in high school and this is taxing. LOL!
BUT- I'm learning some wonderful recipes and techniques for breads and sweets. Essentially, because of the technology available to her, my gr. gr. grandmother's cookbook is a lesson in patience.
I started my starter on Tuesday and have been following the instructions found on the link in one of the lessons. This morning, I went out to find my jar of starter had an inch thick layer of "hooch". I poured some of it off before I fed my starter (whom I've named Earl).
I used whole wheat flour and warm water as the basis of my starter. It's very bubbly and is starting to smell rather sour. When I observe Earl, he will bubble and foam before my very eyes.
This is an outstanding sourdough banana bread that I would like to pass on. This came from Don and Myrtle Holm's Sourdough Cookbook in 1972. I have used it many times with excellent results.
1/3 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup mashed banana
1 cup sourdough starter
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp vanilla or 1 tsp grated orange rind
My first sourdough article generated a fair number of questions from readers and acquaintances of mine. I thought it would be a good idea to answer some of these questions in a place where everyone can read them.
I've baked with my starter a couple of times now. I've learned a few things worth passing on, some of which may be of interest to bakers of yeasted breads too.
You know the routine: click "Read More" to read the full story.
The ambitious home baker inevitably gets the urge to try baking Sourdough. It's like... like... well, I'm not sure what it is like, but it brings a whole new level of of experimentation to the baking process. It's fun. And it tastes amazing.
I've tried it once before, a few years ago, but ended up abandoning my starter when my son was born. There were only so many organisms I had the time to nurture, and, alas, my starter did not make the cut.
I tried creating another starter a few weeks ago. This time I had more luck.
I'm sharing my experience, some pictures, and a bit of background on sourdough below.