A revolutionary ingredient simply from flour and water.
How to make sourdough starter?
Follow these simple instructions:
Day 1: Using a kitchen scale, mix together 50 grams of all-purpose or bread flour and 50 grams of filtered water at room temperature. Transfer the mixture into a jar with a lid and securely close it. Place the sourdough jar in an environment around 70°F for 24 hours.
Day 2: Scoop 50 grams of the sourdough starter from Day 1 into a bowl (discard the remainder). Feed the sourdough starter by adding the following: 50 grams of all-purpose or bread flour, and 50 grams of filtered water at room temperature. Stir to combine. Place the fed sourdough starter back into the empty jar. Cover and set aside in an environment around 70°F for 24 hours.
Day 3: By now, it may begin to smell a little sour and have a few bubbles (that’s good!). Repeat ALL steps from Day 2 starting with scooping 50 grams of the sourdough out (discard the remainder).
Day 4: Repeat ALL steps from Day 2.
Day 5: Repeat ALL steps from Day 2.
Day 6: Congratulations, you did it! The starter should be very bubbly, a little funky smelling (a good sour smell) and doubled in volume.
How to maintain sourdough starter?
Your sourdough starter is alive and hungry when at room temperature or about 70°F; however, it can become expensive to constantly feed. The best method is to place your recently fed sourdough starter in the fridge, taking it out once every 4-5 days to feed it.
Feeding Process: Take your sourdough starter out of the fridge one hour before feeding it. Using a kitchen scale, measure out the amount of grams of your sourdough starter. Then, simply feed the sourdough starter by adding equal parts of flour and filtered water at room temperature. For example, if the sourdough starter is 125 grams, stir in equal parts by stirring in 125 grams water and 125 grams of flour. Allow it to get active once again for 1-2 hours before using.
How do you know when your starter is active and ready to use? Fill a small cup with water. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of starter to the water. If the starter floats on top, then it is good to go! If the starter sinks, then allow it to activate a little longer.
How to make the best use of sourdough discard?
After your fourth day of feeding your sourdough starter, you will no longer need to waste the sourdough discard. Use the portion of the discarded sourdough starter for pizza crusts, pancakes and more. Adding sourdough starter to your recipes not only helps them become more digestible, but tallies on the live cultures, making your recipes more nutrient-dense.
Did you know that sourdough starters can be passed down through generations? Started before the rotary dial and living through two centuries of wars, Lucille Clarke Dumbrill of Newcastle can trace her sourdough starter back to 1889. Her secret to maintaining a 131-year-old starter? Keeping it stored in a ceramic jar with a lid. And her favorite sourdough recipe to make for her guests? Pancakes!
Sourdough Discard Pancakes
Servings: 6 pancakes
Total Time: 20 minutes
1 cup All-Purpose Flour or Bread Flour
1/2 c. Sourdough Starter
3/4 c. Milk
1 large Egg
1 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tbsp. Honey
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 tbsp. Olive Oil
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- Create a well in the center, then add the sourdough starter, egg, milk, and olive oil. Mix until well combined.
- Grease and heat a griddle to about 300-350 F.
- Pour the pancake batter on the hot griddle, using 1/4 cup batter per pancake. Once the pancake starts to bubble on top, then flip the pancake to cook an additional 1-2 minutes.
- Serve warm with maple syrup and fresh berries.
You have added to your professional skills in the kitchen with the countless microorganisms active throughout sourdough, and the layers of aromas it adds to your recipe.