Once upon a time, I owned a bread machine. I also had 3 little mouths to feed besides my own. I worked long hours and my bread machine came in handy. Back then, they had the best sourdough box mixes to add to the bread machine but those days are long gone. These days, the kids are grown and have their own kids and as someone who lives with chronic pain, 24/7, I’m always trying to find ways to fill my time to try to get my mind onto something besides pain. Baking bread is one of the hobbies I seem to enjoy. The smell of sourdough bread baking is ahhhhhmazing. And it’s really therapeutic. I use my KitchenAid mixer to mix the dough most of the time because of arthritis in my hands, but I still love to knead bread from time to time.
To make good sourdough bread you need a really good sourdough starter. I’ve tried every kind of sourdough starter imaginable that I could find on the internet but in the end, after many trial and error oopsie daisy’s, I’ve got the starter recipe down to perfection. There is very possibly the same recipe lurking somewhere on the world wide web and if so, I wish I had found it years ago when I was trying to create a starter that worked quickly instead of the dreaded 10 days as I started out with. This recipe is not meant to copy anyone else’s and if it’s on the web, kudos to whoever created it before I was able to.
To make the sourdough starter, you need to start with …
- a glass bowl
- measuring cups
- a wooden spoon
- 1 cup of milk
- 1 cup of ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR
- 1 packet of active dry yeast (or 2 1/4 teaspoons if using from a jar)
That’s easy enough, isn’t it? Now on to the 3 steps you need to remember to make the sourdough starter.
1. Add a cup of fresh milk in the glass bowl.
2. Add a cup of all-purpose flour in the glass bowl.
3. Add a packet of yeast in the glass bowl.
Stir. Set in a warm place for 48 hours. By all means peek at it.
- After the 48 hours are up, stir the starter mix because chances are, there is a liquid forming on top. This is normal. Don’t panic. Unless it has an awful smell to it, it’s fine. It’s doing what it’s supposed to.
- Now, at this point, I add my starter mix to a clean dry glass bowl. I just don’t like the look of the bowl after the first stir.
- Then, I remove 1/4 of the mixture. You can put it in the fridge or give it away if you know someone who likes to bake bread. I generally throw mine out.
One thing to remember is everytime you remove any of the sourdough starter for any reason, be it to feed it or to use in a recipe, you need to replace the same amount with all-purpose flour and water. So at this point, I added 1/4 cup of all purpose flour and 1/4 cup of water. I stirred it and put it back in my glass cupboard where it stays out of the way of the draft. This is called feeding your starter. I do it the day before I am going to bake my bread. So, on the 4th day, after starting my starter, I bake bread.
Here is a video just recapping what I just said. If you can follow directions, and I’m sure you can, you can make amazing sourdough bread or rolls. If you lived by me, I’d share my sourdough starter with you.
My bread rises perfectly every time. Even on this dreadful rainy day.