Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Sourdough Chronicles, Part Deux

Welcome back.  I promised an update on my sourdough adventures after I posted The Sourdough Chronicles last week.  A refresher: we had 3 starters.  One that used yeast, one that was more water than flour and used honey, and one that was a thick mass of whole wheat flour and water.

From left to right: yeast ("cheating") starter, honey starter, flour and water ("old school") starter.

A lot has happened... and not happened.  Well, after using the yeast starter (aka the "cheating starter") I nevertheless fed it and then refrigerated it.  As I mentioned, this led to a fridge explosion, starter dripping on Betsi's head, and a curious Lupa exploring the fridge as I scraped starter from the bottom of the vegetable drawer.  Loads of fun there.  I probably will throw the stuff away, but I fed it again and am giving it a chance to fix its cheating ways.

Starter number 2, the honey starter really failed to do anything.  I lost patience on Sunday and dumped it.

But oh baby did the old school starter get started!  I can't believe that ball started doing stuff.  On Friday I started to see bubbles and now I am feeding it regularly and it is, as predicted, doubling in size between feedings.  I fed it just whole wheat flour (always a 1:2 ratio of water:flour) for the first 2 feedings, then switched to half whole wheat and half unbleached all purpose flour for 4 more feedings, and then entirely to all purpose flour.  It has a yeasty sour smell!  It is exciting!

My sister is coming tomorrow from Philadelphia and in her honor I will bake my first loaf of true sourdough.  I am using a no knead recipe I found online here.  It looks similar to Jim Lahey's no knead method.  I think it will be delicious but stay tuned for the next episode of The Sourdough Chronicles to find out!

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