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I have had yeast that I started with nothing more then lour, water and sugar sitting on my counter for years.

 

There are several ways of getting the yeasties into your mix, one is from the Air, another is from any dark skinned

fruit such as grapes, plumbs, elderberries and so on (the yeast can be seen in the white film that covers the fruit),

getting a start from someone else and of course store bought yeast.

 

It should have started to bubble and smelled sort of yucky after about the third day. Then in a week it starts to

smell like the familiar yeast we are so accustomed to smelling. If is sort of smells yestie and no real activity is going on...give it sugar or honey. Yeast needs food. Pour out half of what you have, adding more flour and sugar or

honey (which ever you are using) and water to a pancake batter consistency. By tomorrow the yeast will have multiplied and started to really bubble and get yeastie smelling and in 2 days or 3 you will have to give your yeast

a name! Take the grape out if it is still in there as I said earlier that was to give it some yeast to start with. Keep

your yeast covered so the bugs stay out but not with a tight lid. I use fabric over my crock.

 

If you have any Rye flour available, use that in your starter to help give it that really sour dough flavor.

 

Refrigeration is to slow down the yeasties division but you must take it out of the refrigerator about once a month,

let it warm up, pour out half and feed it again with more flour, water and sugar. Placing it back into the

refrigerator.

 

To share your yeast, smear some on a piece of muslin or wax paper, letting it dry out. Then when you share it give

instructions on how to start it. (Flour, water and sugar and the dried yeast you sent), In a dark cool space your

dried yeast will last 6 months (but I have been able to revive it at 1 year)

Great gift is, basket with home made bread, butter and jelly along with some dried yeast started and instructions.

 

If you are making cheese and bread, you need to let your kitchen air out about 3 days before making one or the

other as the yeasts are different and one will contaminate the other.

 

If you have a really great starter from someone and you leave it on your counter eventually it will be taken over by

the wild yeast in your area and it will change the flavor (why most keep it in the refrigerator to maintain the yeast

they desire). Wild yeast is different in different parts of the world, so my wild yeast starter will taste different then your wild yeast starter. This is why many people have 5 or 6 different starters in their refrigerators.

Wanting an outside kitchen to bake bread cause it 105 today and I still have to can peaches and apples today.

 

Name your Yeasties!!! they are alive.

 

 

 

here is what I did, some of this (flour) some of that (sugar) add water and mix pretty easy huh! stir it every day for 3 days don't add anything else and then on day 4, pour out half and add more of this and that and water! you

are feeding your new found yeasties! yes you can start it without sugar/honey the yeast will feed off the natural

sugar (carbs) in the flour. Sugar I think, just helps it get going.

 

If a pinkish color forms on top, throw out and start over. Or if it really stinks...though I have had some smell like

vomit by day 3 and turn out to be great yeast.

 

You don't have to bake everyday but you might have to feed everyday! (why people put it in refrigerator...slows

down the growth). In cooler temps on the counter the yeast will slow down and in hot temps it really grows like

crazy. The faster it multiplies the more it eats the more often you have to feed it. As to how much? some of this

and some of that and water!

The separation is called "hooch" it is the by-product of the yeast. Ok, carbon dioxide is also a by-product which

is what gives the bread its bubbles, but what remains in the container is alcohol 'hooch' (just don't let anyone

catching you drinking it ) you can stir it back in and it won't hurt a think. If the hooch is becoming less it needs

feeding because you are starving you little yeasties! oh my! (hummm, wondering if one could get in trouble for

yeastie abuse!?)

 

If you have a lid on that is fine, but do not tighten the lid down if it is in a warm place, you see when the yeast

grows it gives off carbon dioxide and it has to go somewhere...if the lid is tight, I don't want be around when you open it up!!! KaPlowie!!!!!!!! Remember the A/C (lucky you that you have A/C) just slows down the process

which if you are not baking bread every day that is great!

 

If you put it in the refrigerator, it greatly slows down its

growth rate so yes you can put the lid on tight. When you go to use, take it out, pour out half or just feed it if you

have space in the jar, or pour half into another container, then feed it, put it in a warm place and make bread.

Baking bread with this kind of yeast is very slow to rise, make at night before going to bed, let rise (sometimes this

can take 12 hours to rise), in the morning, punch down, form and let rise again and bake!

 

 

Flour

 

If you are using freshly ground wheat flour you need to add ascorbic acid to it. Ascorbic acid (crushed Vit. C

tablet) conditions the flour and helps make the dough rise. I am sure some of you have tried homemade bread and

had it not rise with the big air bubbles rather it was heavy and tiny holes. The flour wasn't conditioned (aged).

 

Another way to condition the wheat is to grind it and let it sit for about 30 days to age. Try it!

I have never researched the process of separating the bran from the flour after grinding mostly because I knew I

that would be a fairly sophisticated process and another gadget on my counter I did not need! I shift as best as I

can and then let the flour sit. (save the bran to bake muffins and make cereal with)

 

If I put the flour in sacks and let the sun get to it, in time the flour will turn white! The sun bleaches out the color!!!

 

Now they found this out when the flour was shipped from the mills to its final destination it had the bran removed.

Transporting milled flour could take months by the mode of transportation available during the 19th century. Not

everyone could afford to buy already ground flour and when it arrived at the homestead it was whiter then what

was being ground fresh. Then they found that is rose higher and was more tender and fluffy because it had aged.

 

I wrote this in 2001… I have since rewritten it and add more. I will see if I can find it. But this is a start.

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a newer version with information I had left out of the older version.. Some of this information will be a repeat.. sorry. I need to combine both and one day I will. I have more somewhere and will post it when I find it.

 

 

 

"There are several ways of getting yeast started, one is from the Air. Another is from any dark skinned fruit such as grapes, plums, elderberries and so on (the yeast can be seen in the white film that covers the fruit). Getting a start from someone else, potato water, flour and sugar or honey or even maple syrup, and of course store bought yeast.

 

Yeast are living organisms and live all around us, they are called wild yeast. Wild yeast is what you are gathering when you use this recipe:

 

Flour, I like using 1/2 rye (Rye flour helps give it that really sourdough flavor) and 1/2 whole wheat, though I have used all whole wheat. Water, but not water from a municipal water company as it will contain chemicals such as chlorine and yeast does not like this, it is best to use bottled water. If you don’t have bottled water on hand then let your tap water sit out 24 hours. And finally sugar or honey; though this is not necessary. You can start yeast without sugar or honey, the yeast will feed off the natural sugar (carbs) in the flour. Sugar I think, just helps it get going faster. Using a glass container that has been washed in hot water to sterilize it and a lid or covering of some sort.

 

Mix 1 cup flour and water to the consistency of Pancake batter, add about ½ cup of sugar or honey if desired and mix. Place a cloth or a loose fitting lid over the top of the jar/container so the carbon dioxide can escape. Stir once a day for 3 days. Your yeast starter should start to smell yeasty and have started to bubble. If it turns pink it has been contaminated and you will need to start over, or if it really stinks throw it away...though I have had some smell really bad by day 3 and turn out to be great yeast.

 

On the forth day, pour out half of this mixture and add more flour water and sugar or honey. You are now feeding your new found yeasties! If you are using any fruit to promote yeast growth, now is the time take it out.

 

You will notice a clear liquid starting to separate with your starter mixture. This is called "hooch" it is normal and a by-product of the yeast. Carbon dioxide is also a by-product which is what gives the bread its bubbles, but what remains in the container is alcohol 'hooch' (just don't let anyone catching you drinking it ) you can stir it back in and it won't hurt a thing or pour it off. If you notice less hooch then normal, it needs feeding, you are starving your little yeasties! oh my! (wondering if one could get in trouble for yeast abuse!?)

 

Your yeast will be ready in a week to 10 days depending on the temperature of its environment. If no real activity is going on, try giving your yeast a boost with a little sugar or honey. Yeast needs food to grow and multiply. If you leave your yeast out on a counter you need to feed it once a day. Pour out half of what you have out, adding more flour and sugar or honey (which ever you are using) and water to a pancake batter consistency. Be sure to keep your yeast loosely covered.

 

Since your yeast is a living organism, you should probably give your yeast a name!

 

You can keep this on your counter and depending on how warm your kitchen is depends on how fast the yeast will grow. The faster it grows the more frequently you will have to feed it. If you have a lid on that is fine, but do not tighten the lid down if it is in a warm place, you see when the yeast grows it gives off carbon dioxide and it has to go somewhere. A tight lid could be very dangerous as the carbon dioxide will have no way of escaping and build up pressure. Upon opening the jar the lid could be launched.

 

You don't have to bake everyday but you may have to feed everyday depending upon the temperature of your kitchen.

To slow down the growth, place it in the refrigerator. If you decide to place your jar in the refrigerator, you can tighten the lid. Take it out once a month, loosen the lid, and let it come to room temperature and feed it. Pour half out and put in back in the refrigerator for another month. Periodically you will need to sterilize the container the yeast is in.

 

Have you given it a name yet?

 

To use this starter also called a sponge, take 1-2 cups of starter for your recipe. Keep 1-2 cups of starter, feed it and set aside for your next bread baking day or put it back in the refrigerator. Understand that this yeast is slow to grow, so it may take 12 hours for your bread to rise. I make bread in the evening and let it rise all night long, first thing in the morning I bake it. I don't let it rise a second time, but you can.

I form my bread and let it rise once. I also have to make a slash in the bread so it won't explode. In villages where there was a community oven and the recipe being used this type of bread needed to be cut. Each family had its own slash marks for identifying their own bread from another’s.

 

 

To share your yeast with a friend, smear some on a piece of muslin or wax paper, letting it dry out. Then when you share it give instructions on how to start it. Store your yeast in a dark cool place. Your dried yeast will last 6 months (but I have been able to revive it at 1 year)

 

A wonderful gift is a basket with home made bread, home made butter and home made preserves along with some dried yeast started and instructions for making everything you have given them.

 

If you have a really great starter from someone and you leave it on your counter eventually it will be taken over by the wild yeast in your area and it will change the flavor. This why most people keep their yeasts in the refrigerator to maintain the yeast they desire. Wild yeast is different in different parts of the world, so my wild yeast starter will taste different then your wild yeast starter. Many people have 5 or 6 different starters in their refrigerators to make different flavored breads.

 

If you make cheese, wait at least 3 days before making bread in the same room, if you keep your yeast on the counter, put it away in Ref. then make cheese. You will need to wait 3 days before putting yeast back on the counter.

Cheese making yeast will contaminate your bread yeast!

 

Have you named your Yeasties yet?

 

Flour

 

If you are using freshly ground wheat flour you need to add ascorbic acid to it. Ascorbic acid (crushed Vit. C tablet) conditions the flour and helps make the dough rise. I am sure some of you have tried homemade bread and had it not rise with the big air bubbles rather it was heavy and tiny holes. The flour wasn't conditioned (aged).

 

Another way to condition the wheat is to grind it and let it sit for about 30 days to age. Try it!

 

I have never researched the process of separating the bran from the flour after grinding mostly because I knew I that would be a fairly sophisticated process and another gadget on my counter I did not need! I shift as best as I can and then let the flour sit (save the bran to bake muffins and to make cereal with).

 

If I put the flour in sacks and let the sun get to it, in time the flour will turn white, well almost. The sun bleaches the color out. Millers found this out when the flour was shipped from the mills to its final destination. Transporting milled flour could take months by the mode of transportation available during the 19th century. When this ground flour arrived at the homestead it was whiter then what was being ground fresh. Then they found that is rose higher and was more tender and fluffy because it had aged. Not everyone could afford to buy already ground flour and the stigma of having ‘white’ flour became one of affluence.”

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I have some on the counter righ now, but, it was Old Pine who did it. I have never started it myself.

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Thanks BiscuitMaker, I surely check that out.

 

And Snowmom, please do ask your dh to share his secrets.

 

My main hesitancy at this point is the daily feedings that most require. I did seem some that said you don't have to, but not sure they'd be really good.

 

If I must feed every day, I'll wait until after our Thanksgiving trip to start mine...don't want to find a baby sitter!

 

Stephanie

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I have not done a sourdough starter, but my DM used to have some-the same one for years (don't know if she made it herself, though). My sis has one that a friend gave her-so no help there...but....I DO make my own wine, which involves alot of the same principals and those little yeastie beasties.

 

My take on this:

 

You can make sourdough with just flour and water.

If you let this sit it will attract wild yeast. Here you take a chance-good yeasties or bad beasties. No way to tell what you have captured. If you add your own yeast-VOILA-you get exactly what you want.

Adding sugar (or some other sweetner-honey, molasses, syrup, jelly, etc.) would speed up the yeast multiplying process.

Warmth speeds up yeast (but too hot will kill it-shouldn't get over 100 f), cold will slow it (IMO-40 to 50 would seem to be optimal for storage, thus the fridge). For long term storage you could dry it like Westie described or toss it in the deep freeze.

Once ya get them little yeastie beasties in there ya don't want to let it sit uncovered. One of the byproducts (like Westie described also) is alcohol-winemaking, remember? Well, alcohol attracts other bad beasties-mainly the dreaded vinegar fly-YUCK! So keep it covered-but not tightly, cuz the other byproduct-carbon dioxide-will blow the lid off! A piece of cloth and a rubber band are perfect.

Feeding the starter? If it's in the fridge it should need fed very little. The freezer or dried-not at all-until you're gonna use it. Sitting out-depends on the temp and how fast the fermentation is going. A fast fermentation will produce more alcohol and at too high an alcohol content yeast die. Basically, the thing they produce kills them-nobody said they were very smart. Therefore ya have to remove some and add some to lower the alcohol content.

 

I'm sure I forgot something or another. If anything isn't clear just ask away.

 

Hope this helps.

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Westy has it right, I used 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of water 2 tablespoons of sugar and a little yeast.

 

a total of 2 cups and a little sugar dosn't sound like much but a 1/2 gallon container is none to large (I ended up with the ragged end of a disaster and sour dough starter all over the counter).

 

You might go to http://www.fooddownunder.com and do a search for sourdough, lots of recipes and advice.

 

Canadian Sourdough Oatmeal Bread, this is a good one, I've made it.

 

be sure to use ether a crock or plastic container and wood or plastic spoon to stir metal can cause problems.

 

You can also find English muffins and more here.

 

Best of luck.

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I tend to think it smells more like a sour yeasty smell, not unpleasant when compared to the contents of the container stuck in the back of the 'fridge for 2 months...

 

*****************

 

theyd

 

I hate to bother and sound but is something gone wrong with my starter?? It still smells, it's a dirty whitest color, but instead of being spongy it is all liguidy. And today is the day I am suppose to be able to use it. can I??

 

*****************

 

Cat

 

Yes, exactly right, theyd!!

 

That's how it gets. (I think that's a rather primitive alcohol... )

 

Just stir it in and try something.

 

Remember, after you take out what you need for a recipe, add equal amounts of flour and water to the starter & let it ferment again.

 

Sounds like you did it right!!

 

*****************

 

theyd

 

now I am going to go check out those recipes and give one a try. it is a little chilly here this evening and this will help take the chill off.

thank you for getting back so fast

 

*****************

 

theyd

 

well the bread didn't turn out

I can never get bread to turn out. unless I wear gloves, so need to get some so i can try again.

 

*****************

 

debbielee

 

AT LEAST you gave it a try Theyd!!

 

*****************

 

westbrook

 

http://www.nyx.net/~dgreenw/sourdoughfaqs.html

 

*****************

 

Lois

 

This one uses a small amount of yeast to get it started.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Sourdough Starter

 

1-1/2 cups lukewarm milk

1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast

1 teaspoon honey

2 cups unbleached white flour

1/4 cup spring water

 

1. To prepare the starter, place the milk in a mixing bowl.

2. Sprinkle the yeast over the milk.

3. Whisk in the honey and 1-1/2 cups of the flour.

4. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature (72 to 76 degrees F.) for 72 hours (3 days).

5. After 72 hours, stir in the 1/4 cup water and whisk in the remaining 1/2 cup flour.

6. Cover again with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 2 hours; the mixture should be bubbly and have a sour, tangy aroma and taste.

7. Remove the amount of starter the recipe calls for and set aside.

8. Transfer the remaining starter to a sterile' glass jar and replenish it by mixing in 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup flour. Cover tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

 

*****************

 

Teaberry

 

This is a good link with tons of information on sourdough: http://www.nyx.net/~dgreenw/sourdoughfaqs.html

 

Cat, thanks for this thread! I'm planning to start a sourdough soon.

 

So tell me gals, what type of container do you keep your sourdough in all the time?

 

A crock? If so, what size?

 

*****************

 

Cat

 

I use a jar that's about a half gallon size, and I tie an old dish towel over the top so that it can "breathe" without anything getting in.

 

I suppose if I had company I'd use something "prettier" or put it away.

 

*****************

 

Amber

 

I just started mine up a week ago, and it is in a gallon glass cookie jar with lid; The kind you can get from Walmart that looks like the candy jars on old drug store counters, the upright ones, not the tilted ones. It is a regular recipe, bread flour and water, although I did cheat and add a little sugar to the yeast/flour/water start to give it a boost.

 

I have fed it maybe three times and it is about 1/3 full. The hooch liquid is maybe an inch floating on top till I feed it again and mix it up.

 

I tried one recipe for pancakes this past Sunday from the downunder site, but they were too thick and not the ones I wanted. I will find my recipe for flapjacks sooner or later, depending on how hard I want to clean up piles of books and magazines to find it.

 

*****************

 

westbrook

 

Quote:

________________________________________

 

So tell me gals, what type of container do you keep your sourdough in all the time?

 

A crock? If so, what size? ________________________________________

 

I have a crock with a loose fitting lid. It is dark green to match my kitchen but sits in a dark corner so you don't actually notice it. My crock is small, not including the lid it measures 7 inches tall and 6 inches in diameter.

 

I did not use a starter to create my sourdough, I used flour, water and honey and attracted the wild yeast from the air.

 

Had I used a San Fran. Sourdough starter and left it out on the counter, in time the wild yeast from the air will take over the yeast in the container. To maintain that original flavor the yeast needs to be kept in the refrigerator.

 

If you bake bread, you need to wait about 3 days or longer before you make cheese as the bread yeast will alter the flavor of the yeast used to inoculate your milk.

 

This means that you can't leave yeast on the counter and make cheese too.

 

I have a pretty cookie jar it could just as easily be put into.

 

*****************

 

Teaberry

 

 

So it doesn't take anything large at all. That's good to know then. How often do you make bread with your starter?

 

A few years ago I found a couple of those large pickle and kraut crocks from an estate sale. There was a thread here a while back about using sauerkraut to do battle with flu. If anyone has done that before and feels a hankering to do a thread, I'd be interested in hearing how you made it. Unless it's already here and I just missed it.

 

*****************

 

Cat

 

QUICK SOURDOUGH BREAD

(good for beginners)

 

1 tsp dry yeast

3 Tbsp warm water

2 c sourdough starter

3 Tbsp sugar

1 1/2 tsp salt

3 Tbsp dry milk powder

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

3 to 4 c flour

 

Generously grease a 9”x5” loaf pan.

 

In a cup, sprinkle yeast over warm water, let soften 5 minutes. In a large bowl, combine next 5 ingredients and yeast mixture; beat until blended. Gradually beat in enough flour to make a medium-stiff dough.

 

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead dough 8-10 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Add more flour if necessary. Shape dough into a loaf and place in prepared pan. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free from drafts. Let rise 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in size.

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake bread for 50 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped with your fingers. (After 30 minutes, if loaf is golden brown, cover with a tent of aluminum foil to slow further browning.) Remove from pan, cool on rack.

 

~~~~~~~

 

SOURDOUGH BREAD

 

STARTER MIX: (do the night before)

1 c sourdough starter

2 c warm water

2 1/2 c flour

 

Mix together in a large bowl; cover with a cloth and let stand in a warm place overnight.

 

BREAD:

 

1 c milk

3 Tbsp butter or margarine

3 Tbsp sugar

2 tsp salt

1 envelope dry yeast (1 Tbsp)

1/4 c warm water

starter mix (see above)

6 to 7 c flour

vegetable oil for tops of loaves

 

Pour milk into a small pan; heat until *almost a boil* over medium heat, remove from heat. Stir in butter, sugar, and salt. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.

 

Sprinkle yeast over warm water; set aside to soften for 5 minutes.

 

Stir milk and yeast mixtures into starter mix, beat until blended. Beat in 3 c flour until batter is smooth, cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free from drafts. Let rise 30-40 minutes, until nearly doubled in size.

 

Stir down dough, gradually stir in enough remaining flour to make a medium-stiff dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead dough 8-10 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Add more flour if necessary. Divide dough in half, cover and let rest 10 minutes.

 

Grease two 9”x5” loaf pans. Shape dough into loaves and place in loaf pans, brush tops lightly with oil. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free from drafts. Let rise one hour, or until dough reaches tops of pans.

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake bread for 45-50 minutes or until loaves sound hollow when tapped with your fingers. (After 30 minutes, if loaves are golden brown, cover with a tent of aluminum foil to slow further browning.) Remove from pans, cool on rack. Makes 2 loaves.

 

~~~~~~~

 

COTTAGE CHEESE BREAD

 

2 c warm water

2 envelopes dry yeast (2 Tbsp)

1 c sourdough starter

2 c creamy cottage cheese

2 c shredded Cheddar or Colby cheese

1/2 tsp baking powder

2 Tbsp dill seeds

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

2 Tbsp sugar

2-3 tsp salt

6 1/2 to 7 1/2 c flour

 

Warm a large bowl, pour warm water into bowl and sprinkle yeast over water. Set aside to soften 5 minutes. Stir in next eight ingredients. Add the flour about 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition, to make a stiff dough.

 

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Clean and then grease bowl, set aside. Knead dough 8-10 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Add more flour if necessary. Place dough in greased bowl, turning to grease all sides. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free from drafts. Let rise about 2 hours, until doubled in size. Generously grease two 9”x5” loaf pans.

 

Punch down dough, shape into 2 loaves and place in loaf pans. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free from drafts. Let rise about 2 hours, until doubled in size.

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake bread for 40 minutes or until loaves sound hollow when tapped with your fingers. (After 30 minutes, if loaves are golden brown, cover with a tent of aluminum foil to slow further browning.) Remove from pans, cool on rack. Makes 2 loaves.

 

*****************

 

Grubby

 

Here is the sourdough bread recipe that I use. I don't use

his method for making the starter, but I do for the bread.

I like this recipe because it doesn't require any additional

yeast.--Shannon

 

Here is the link. http://www.io.com/~sjohn/sour.htm

 

Sourdough Baking Step One: Proofing the Sponge

 

Several hours before you plan to make your dough (recipe below), you need to make a sponge. A "sponge" is just another word for a bowl of warm, fermented batter. This is how you make your sponge.

 

Take your starter out of the fridge. Pour it into a large glass or plastic bowl. Meanwhile, wash the jar and dry it. You may also wish to pour boiling water over it, since you don't want other things growing in there with your pet!

Add a cup of warm water and a cup of flour to the bowl. Stir well, and set it in a warm place for several hours. This is called "proofing," another word for fermenting. Sourdough bakers have their own language; use it to impress your friends

Watch for Froth and and Sniff. When your sponge is bubbly and has a white froth, and it smells a little sour, it is ready. The longer you let the sponge sit, the more sour flavor you will get.

The proofing-time varies. Some starters can proof up to frothiness in an hour or two. Some take 6-8 hours! Just experiment and see how long yours takes. If you're going to bake in the morning, set your sponge out to proof overnight.

 

Sourdough Bread

 

2 Cups of sponge (proofed starter)

3 Cups of unbleached flour

2 tablespoons of olive oil or softened margarine

4 teaspoons of sugar

2 teaspoons of salt

 

First, let's talk about leftover sponge. You should have some. The leftover sponge is your starter for next time: Put it into the jar, and give it a fresh feed of a half-cup each of flour and warm water. Keep it in the fridge as above; you'll have starter again next time.

 

Now, for the recipe: To the sponge, add the sugar, salt, and oil (the oil is optional - you can use softened butter instead, or no oil at all). Mix well, then knead in the flour a half-cup at a time. Knead in enough flour to make a good, flexible bread dough. You can do this with an electric mixer, a bread machine on "dough cycle," or a food processor. You can also do it with a big bowl and your bare hands.

 

Keep in mind that flour amounts are approximate; flour varies in absorbency, and your sponge can vary in wetness. Use your judgement; treat it like ordinary white or french bread dough.

 

Let the dough rise in a warm place, in a bowl covered loosely with a towel (if you're using a bread machine's dough cycle, let it rise in the machine). Note that sourdough rises more slowly than yeast bread; my starter takes about an hour or so, but some starters take much longer. Let the dough double in bulk, just like yeast-bread dough. When a finger poked into the top of the dough creates a pit that doesn't "heal" (spring back), you've got a risen dough.

 

Punch the dough down and knead it a little more. Make a loaf and place it on a baking sheet (lightly greased or sprinkled with cornmeal). Slit the top if you like, and cover the loaf with a paper towel and place it in a warm place to rise again, until doubled in bulk.

 

Place the pan with the loaf in your oven, and then turn your oven to 350o Farenheit and bake the bread for 30-45 minutes. Do not preheat the oven. The loaf is done when the crust is brown and the bottom sounds hollow when thumped with a wooden spoon. Turn the loaf out onto a cooling rack or a towel and let it cool for an hour before slicing.

 

And that's that. If you double the recipe for two big two-pound loaves of bread, the total price tag will be less than a dollar

 

*****************

 

JoanN

 

Thanks for this. I have done this before and it works wonderful

 

Welcome to Mrs Survival too!

 

*****************

 

Cat

 

Great, Shannon! Thanks for the link and the recipe!!

 

Here's more:

 

Potato-Bacon Bread

 

2 envelopes dry yeast (2 Tbsp)

1/2 c warm water

1 c sourdough starter

2 c water

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

2 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp salt

3 bacon strips, fried crisp & crumbled (1/2 c)

2 c shredded Cheddar or Colby cheese

2 c mashed cooked potatoes

7 1/2 to 9 c flour

 

**Plan ahead to save mashed potatoes for this bread. Amount of flour depends on the moisture of your mashed potatoes.

 

Sprinkle yeast over warm water; let soften 5 minutes.

 

In large bowl, mix next eight ingredients, then add yeast mixture. Stir in flour about 1 cup at a time, mixing after each addition, until it makes a medium-stiff dough. Turn out onto a lightly-floured surface.

 

Clean and grease bowl; set aside. Knead dough 8-10 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Add flour as needed. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease all sides. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free of drafts. Let rise 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until doubled in size.

 

Grease 3 9x5” loaf pans; set aside. Punch down dough, shape into 3 loaves and place in prepared pans. Cover with a cloth and set in a warm place free of drafts. Let rise about 2 hours or until doubled in size.

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake 40 minutes until loaves sound hollow when tapped. (After 30 minutes, if loaves are golden brown, cover with a tent of aluminum foil to prevent further browning.) Turn bread out of pans, let cool. Makes 3 loaves.

 

~~~~~~~

 

Quick Sourdough Pancakes

 

1 1/4 c flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbsp sugar

1 egg

1 c sourdough starter

1 c milk

3 Tbsp vegetable oil

 

In a large bowl, stir together dry ingredients; set aside. In a medium bowl, beat egg, then stir in starter, milk and oil. Pour into dry ingredients and stir just until moistened.

 

Grease griddle, use about 1/4 to 1/2 c batter and cook until golden brown.

 

Variations:

 

Add pecans, blueberries, bacon, or stir in about a cup of mashed banana, crushed pineapple, applesauce with cinnamon, or creamy cottage cheese.

 

~~~~~~~

 

Basic Sourdough Waffles

 

1 1/4 c flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbsp sugar

1 egg

1 c sourdough starter

3/4 c milk

1/4 c vegetable oil

 

In a large bowl, stir together dry ingredients; set aside. In a medium bowl, beat egg, then stir in starter, milk and oil. Pour into dry ingredients and stir just until moistened.

 

Preheat waffle iron. Use about 1/4 to 1/2 c batter and cook until golden brown.

 

 

Oatmeal Muffins

 

1 c rolled oats

1 c milk

1/2 c sourdough starter

1/3 c vegetable oil

1 egg, beaten

1/2 c raisins, if desired

1 c flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c brown sugar, packed

 

In a medium bowl, combine oats and milk; set aside to soak for 1 hour. Grease muffin pans or line with paper liners. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

 

Stir starter, oil, egg and raisins into soaked oats; set aside. In a large bowl, stir together dry ingredients. Add oats mixture. Stir with a fork until dry ingredients are just moistened. Fill muffin cups 2/3 to 3/4 full. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm. Makes 12 to 14 muffins.

 

~~~~~~~

 

The Doctor’s Sourdough Bread

 

1 c sourdough starter

2 c warm water

2 c warm milk

1 Tbsp butter

1 pkg dry yeast (1 Tbsp)

1/4 c honey

7 c flour

1/4 c wheat germ

2 Tbsp sugar

2 tsp salt

2 tsp baking soda

 

The night before, mix starter, 2 1/2 c flour, and water. Cover loosely and let sit.

 

Next morning, mix butter with warm milk, then stir in dry yeast until dissolved. Mix into starter mixture with honey, mix well. Add 2 more cups flour and wheat germ. Sprinkle sugar, salt and baking soda over the mixture; gently press into dough and mix lightly. Allow to stand from 30 to 50 minutes until mixture is bubbly.

 

Add flour until dough cannot be stirred, then place on floured board and knead 100 times or until silky mixture is developed. Form into 4 one-pound loaves, place in well-greased loaf pans, and let rise until double (2 or 3 hours in a warm room).

 

Bake at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 325 degrees and bake 20 minutes longer until done. Remove from pans; brush tops with butter for less “crustiness”.

 

~~~~~~~

 

BUTTERMILK BISCUITS

 

2 c flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1/2 c butter or margarine

1 c sourdough starter

1/2 buttermilk

2 Tbsp butter or margarine, melted

 

Lightly grease a large cookie sheet; set aside. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

 

In a large bowl, stir together dry ingredients. Use a pastry blender or two knives to cut in the 1/2 c butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; set aside.

 

Combine starter and buttermilk, then stir into flour mixture until thoroughly combined. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface; gently knead dough for about 30 seconds. Roll out dough to 1/2 inch thick, cut with 2 1/2-3 inch biscuit cutter (or a similarly-sized glass).

 

Arrange biscuits with sides touching, brush tops with melted butter. Bake 12 to 15 minutes until tops are golden brown. Serve warm.

 

~~~~~~~

 

REFRIGERATOR BISCUITS

 

1 pkg dry yeast (1 Tbsp)

1/2 c warm water

6 c flour

1 Tbsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp salt

3 Tbsp sugar

1 c shortening

1 c sourdough starter

2 c buttermilk

melted butter or margarine

 

Grease a 10-cup plastic container with a tight-fitting lid; set aside.

 

Sprinkle yeast over water and let soften 5 minutes. In a large bowl, stir dry ingredients together. Use a pastry blender or two knives to cut in the 1/2 c butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; set aside.

 

Combine starter, buttermilk, and yeast mixture; stir into dry ingredients until just moistened. Turn into prepared bowl, cover tightly. Store in refrigerator 4 or 5 days, making biscuits as desired.

 

TO MAKE BISCUITS: Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking pan, set aside.

 

Take out about 1/4 c dough for each biscuit. On a generously floured surface, roll or pat out dough 1/2 inch thick. Cut with 2 1/2-3 inch biscuit cutter (or a similarly-sized glass).

 

Arrange biscuits with sides touching; let stand 5 minutes. Brush tops with melted butter. Bake 15 to 18 minutes until tops are golden brown. Serve warm.

 

*****************

 

Darlene

 

Here's an article I found at Countryside Magazine on sourdough that I'm gonna try:

 

Doc Salsbury makes Sourdough

D. L. Salsbury, DVm

3492 Stafford

Wellsville KS 66092

 

 

An article on sourdough by Stan and Judy Payne of Licking, missouri, appeared adjacent to one I had written on making hams and bacons, back in the Nov./Dec. 1991 COUNTRYSIDE. The subject really caught my fancy, but it remained an itch I didn't scratch until some months ago. Now I'm hooked. It is so delightfully easy and fun, I can't imagine why I didn't get into sourdough years ago.

 

Just what is "sourdough"?

 

Basic sourdough had its beginnings before recorded history. The "leavened" vs. "unleavened" bread mentioned biblically was sourdough. Flour and water were mixed together and set aside to do "something." That "something" was a fortuitous catch of a naturally-occurring "friendly" yeast present on the grain and in the flour. Sometimes they would catch a wild mold that wasn't so friendly and the mixture would spoil, rendering it unusable. It was a tricky procedure. Starting over each time was fraught with disaster. People learned centuries ago that if they "caught" a good starter, they should take care of it.

 

That was the beginning of our concept of sourdough, and that friendly yeast is now known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae, which has the ability to ferment sugars and starches common in cereal grains. It is more commonly known as "bakers' yeast," which was not commonly available in stores until sometime after the turn of the century. Many immigrants to the U.S., especially European bakers, brought their bread starter cultures with them.

 

Unfortunately, modern bakers' yeast is not an efficient fermenter of starch. Although it will do so weakly, it gets its kicks from sugar.

 

So, what is the difference between sourdough, with its unique flavor and aroma, and common fresh bread, if both utilize the same yeast?

 

It's the strain of yeast that's different. Bakers' yeast, and the endless varieties of lager beer, ale, and wine yeasts, are all strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, but that's where the similarity ends. It's these unique strains, containing their peculiar physiological traits, that makes them unique for their particular purpose.

 

All modern homemade sourdough starter recipes begin with common bakers' yeast - and they are flat! But over time, they will slowly begin to develop that characteristic sourdough flavor. How does this happen?

 

By beginning with a culture of bakers' yeast, the rapidly developing acid pH and partially anaerobic conditions that develop in the flour and water media are rendered favorable to the culture of the friendly wild yeast in the grain to the detriment of undesirable organisms, especially molds. Over time, with the constant re-inoculation of fresh flour, the strain of yeast in the culture begins to attenuate and/by natural selection, bring out those individual yeast cells with unique genetic traits that are most efficient in fermenting starch. You will notice that, over a period of weeks or months, your sourdough starter will begin to ferment more quickly and more aggressively after each feeding. My starter is now 3-4 times more aggressive than it was at the outset. Whereas it required 3-4 days to complete its fermentation in the beginning, the ferment after feeding is now almost complete in 24 hours! The "sourdough" flavor it imparts to the breads has also increased several-fold.

 

Preparing the sourdough starter

 

Variety may be the spice of life, but it is also apparently the key to success. There are literally dozens of recipes for sourdough starters, presumably handed down because "Grandmother did it that way."

 

Well, all the grandmothers but one couldn't be wrong. They probably used what they had on hand, guided by experience and superstition, so one must assume that there isn't any single "best" recipe.

 

The singular factor that caught my eye in perusing dozens of these old recipes was the combined variety of flours used, particularly rye and unbleached wheat flour, plus numerous references to the initial use of potato water (which is highly fermentable) and of all things, many references in German recipes to the use of fresh hops in the pollen stage. If it make das bier gut, maybe geputten der hops in das pot maken das brot gut also, ja? Begin with a large-mouthed container, sufficient to easily accept a one-cup measure and to hold a total volume of 5-6 cups. It can be plastic or glass, but if it has a screw-on lid, be sure to poke a small hole in the lid with an ice pick or small nail. If the lid is tight the container could explode. An old cookie jar with a smooth interior or an old ice bucket are ideal.

 

I began using non-bleached wheat flour, assuming it might contain more "natural" yeast than the bleached variety (but I don't know this for a fact). Once things began working, I substituted small amounts of rye, black rye, and semolina (durum) flour during my regular feedings.

 

Recipe for starter

 

2 cups flour

1 cup water

1 cup cooled potato water (this really gets things going)

1 package bread yeast

 

 

Mix well and allow to stand in a warm area until there are no more signs of fermentation. (The solution will separate and no more bubbles are present.) Stir well, remove 1 cup of the contents and stir in another cup of flour or flour mix and a cup of water. Do not use "self-rising" flour!

 

Initially, the new starter is ready to use after 2-3 days, but it will not have that typical sourdough flavor until it has acquired some weeks or months of age.

 

After the first fermentation is established, you can use it anytime, even if it has gone "flat." Do not refrigerate! Leave it on the counter.

 

Many have told me that they mixed up a sourdough starter and used it once, but it didn't have a good sourdough flavor and then it "spoiled," i.e., it looked and smelled "yuckie."

 

"Well dummy," I thought. "It's supposed to look and smell yuckie!"

 

Sourdough will not spoil due to its highly acid pH, and because of its acid pH, it doesn't require refrigeration. Think about it. Covered wagons were the 19th century version of the RV, but they weren't equipped with refrigerators to hold the pioneers' sourdough starter! It bumped along experiencing all the elements of heat and cold in a small crock or wrapped in a leather pouch! Just remember to feed the little critter about once a week if you are not using it. To speed things up on baking day, you can feed the culture the day before and it will have little "yeasties" growing like mad at the time of use.

 

My culture is now about six months old, the container has never been washed, and there are no signs of mold. Most likely because its pH measures 2.0!

 

English muffins

 

Patience is not only a virtue: it's an essential ingredient in sourdough breads.

 

The thing that really caught my eye in the Payne's article was the recipe for English muffins. My first attempts were extremely disappointing! They were hockey pucks! Over time they began to improve slightly and by the 4th or 5th try they were somewhat edible, but they were still hockey pucks! Recipes simply cannot convey the art of cooking or baking gained by experience. Analyzing my problem, it occurred to me that I might not be giving them enough time to rise. Since the yeast must do its thing primarily on starch, as opposed to sugar, and starch is less fermentable than sugar, it stands to reason that it will require more time. However, as my starter became more aggressive, the time required for the dough to rise has been drastically reduced.

 

Then it occurred to me. I have a perfectly good jerky dryer that maintains an internal temperature of about 105 degrees. That cut the rising time down to three hours for the initial sponge and two hours for the rising of the cut muffins. This is also how I learned not to allow them to over-rise. (See below.)

 

Basic recipe for English muffins

 

1 cup unbleached white flour

1 cup semolina (durum) flour (This is used for pasta and can usually be found in larger supermarkets. It really improves the muffins, but if you can't find it, use 2 cups white flour.)

1 cup sourdough starter

1 cup buttermilk (or plain milk, but buttermilk is a lot better.)

 

 

Mix the above thoroughly. It will form a wet, sticky dough. Cover tightly or enclose entire bowl in a 2-gallon Zip-loc bag which retains the moisture. Allow to rise overnight or until its volume has at least doubled. It takes only three hours in a 105 degree environment. When ready, the dough (sponge) will be almost frothy and easily stirred.

 

Add:

2 level tablespoons sugar, honey, molasses or syrup

2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon (rounded) baking soda

 

 

Add variations, if wanted (see below, and I'll guarantee you'll want them once you've tried them!)

 

Mix the above ingredients thoroughly into the sponge, then add an additional 3/4 to 1 cup white flour and mix. Knead with additional flour until a dough has formed that will hold a fairly good ball that only slightly sags. It may also have minor kneading "overlaps" that do not immediately reseal.

 

Thoroughly sprinkle your work surface with white corn meal, and spread dough. Flip dough so it is covered with corn meal on both sides. Roll to approximately 1/2 inch thick. (I cheat by using two strips of wood cut 7/16 inch thick as rolling guides for uniformity. I also have a commercial 24 inch baker's rolling pin.)

 

Cut into biscuits with a large biscuit cutter or small tuna can (preferred). If the thickness of the dough is right, the small tuna can will produce 12-13 large muffins.

 

Allow to rise on a non-stick surface or cookie sheet sprinkled with white corn meal until they have about doubled in thickness. This will again require 3-4 hours at warm room temperature or 1-3/4 to two hours at 105 degrees. Don't allow them to over-rise or they will very rapidly crash into wet, sticky blobs. If they start to sag a bit, i.e., mushroom at the base and begin to lose their firm domed appearance on top, cook immediately, as they are getting ready to crash!

 

Bake in a tightly covered electric skillet at 325 degrees (if you're cooking on a wood or gas stove use your best guess) for exactly 10 minutes on each side, and then an additional 5 minutes on each side. A timer is very helpful, if not essential, at this step. They should be a nice medium-brown on both sides.

 

Cool exactly 30 minutes at room temperature, place in a two-gallon Zip-loc bag, and allow to "sweat" overnight to evenly moisturize.

 

Variations:

 

Onion dill: Add 2 heaping teaspoons dried chopped onions and 1 heaping teaspoon of dill weed. Great buttered and/or with a slice of good cheese. (I was eating one of these the other night with a slice of stink bier kase. Not paying attention to what I was doing, my wife sniffed the air and then asked me if I had left some old trash moldering.)

Black rye: Use 1 cup white flour and 1 cup black rye flour. This is pumpernickel flour, not the regular rye flour found in stores. It is almost impossible to find in supermarkets. Check with your local bakery.

Black onion rye: Add 2 heaping teaspoons dried chopped onions to the above.

Raisin: Add 1/2 cup raisins and 2 teaspoons cinnamon to basic recipe.

Orange raisin nut: Wonderful! Add 1/2 cup raisins, grated peel from 1 orange, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, and 1-2 teaspoons cinnamon. This is a real winner!

Blueberry: Add 1/2 cup blueberries to basic recipe.

Cranberry nut: This is everyone's favorite, including mine! Take 1/2 heaping cup fresh cranberries and cut them in half (or 1-1/2 oz. dried cranberries), grated peel from 1 orange and 1/2 cup chopped black walnuts.

Cinnamon apple: Add 1/2 cup apple pie filling and 2 teaspoons cinnamon.

Cheese ranch: Another excellent recipe. Add 1 tablespoon ranch salad dressing mix plus 1/2 cup grated sharp cheese, the sharper the better. No, these don't taste like salad dressing, nor are they that cheesy. The two ingredients synergize with one another to produce a truly unique taste.

Jalapeño: Add 1/2 cup grated Swiss cheese, or mozzarella, or 1/4 cup each, and 1-2 finely chopped fresh jalapeño peppers. Or for a third variation, add 1-2 chopped jalapeño peppers to the cheese ranch recipe.

Sourdough doughnuts

 

1 cup starter

1 cup milk

2 cups bleached or unbleached flour

 

Mix well and allow to rise overnight. Then add:

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup melted or liquid shortening

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs (beaten)

2-3 cups flour

1-2 teaspoons cinnamon (optional)

 

 

Knead well on floured surface and allow to rise until doubled. Knead again and allow to rise until doubled. Roll dough about 1/2 inch thick and cut with doughnut cutter. Allow them to rise in a warm place for 30-60 minutes. Cook in hot oil (375 degrees) on each side until golden brown. Use a spatula to introduce them to the oil. A small wooden dowel works best to remove them from the hot oil. Drain for a few minutes on absorbent toweling, then shake in a paper bag with sugar until well coated.

 

The following recipes for pancakes, waffles and bread are reproduced verbatim from the Payne article:

 

Sourdough bread

 

 

2 cups starter

1 cup milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup sugar or honey

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons baking soda

5-7 cups flour

1 tablespoon yeast (optional)

1/2 cup wheat germ (optional - add with flour)

 

 

Stir butter, sugar and salt into milk and cool to lukewarm. Add sourdough starter. Dissolve soda (and yeast if used) in a little warm water and stir in. Add flour until dough is kneadable. Knead well. Let rise three hours - or about one hour if yeast is used. When doubled, punch down and shape into two loaves. Place in greased loaf pans and let rise until the hump is above edges of pans. Bake at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

 

Sourdough pancakes

 

(Note: Remember to feed your starter the day before, or let the batter set several hours.)

 

1 cup sourdough starter

1 cup flour

1 tablespoon honey or sugar

1 egg, beaten

2 tablespoons oil or melted butter

1/2 cup milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda dissolved in 1 tablespoon water

 

 

Mix all ingredients except soda with starter. Heat a griddle or skillet to 375 degrees. Just before cooking, fold dissolved soda into batter. If batter seems too thick, dilute with lukewarm water. Bake as for ordinary pancakes.

 

 

Sourdough waffles Use the above recipe with 4 tablespoons oil or melted butter.

 

 

Using sourdough in other recipes

 

Sourdough can be used in almost any recipe for quick breads, cakes, cookies, etc., by this simple substitution formula:

 

For recipes using 2 cups of liquid, substitute 1 cup sourdough starter for 3/4 cup of the liquid and add 1 teaspoon baking soda for each cup of starter.

 

Example:

For each 2 cups liquid required in recipe, use:

1 cup sourdough starter

1-1/4 cup liquid (water, milk, etc.)

1 teaspoon baking soda

 

For each 1 cup liquid required in recipe, use:

1/2 cup sourdough starter

5/8 cup liquid

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

 

 

Preserving a starter culture

 

Did you ever wonder how immigrants sailing in the cramped quarters of steerage managed to protect their starter culture during the weeks at sea? It is highly doubtful that they did it with a liquid culture in a loose-topped container! Neither did they have the convenience of modern dried yeast. . . or did they?

 

Although I can't say for sure, they might have used one of the many methods I uncovered while researching old cookbooks. The following seems to combine all the essential elements of preserving starter cultures by drying.

 

Dried yeast patties

 

2 cups starter

5 cups warm water

5 tablespoons shortening

5 tablespoons sugar, honey, molasses or syrup

1 tablespoon salt

4 cups rye flour, light or dark (There's that reference to rye again)

1/4 teaspoon ginger (Old wives' tale?)

 

 

In a warm crock, mix everything but ginger into a thin batter. Let rise overnight in a warm place. Reserve 1 cup for future starter or current baking. Add ginger (?) and enough white corn meal to make a stiff dough. Stir well.

 

Knead on corn meal-covered surface if necessary until dough can be worked. Roll and cut with cookie cutter or pat into small round patties (cookie style). Place on corn meal covered cookie sheet and turn daily until thoroughly dried. Keep in a cool dry place, but not the refrigerator!

 

*****************

 

Cat

 

Sourdough Fruit Cake

 

I found this and I think it looks interesting. (sourdough?? )

 

When I make fruitcake at Christmas, I only use candied cherries and pineapple, no citron, which is the bitter stuff. I also like pecans in mine for the nuts. I'll try to find the recipe I use and post it later.

 

*****************

 

ALASKAN SOURDOUGH FRUITCAKE

 

1 1/2 c golden and dark raisins, combined

4 c flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 c dried currants

1 tsp salt

1 c + 2 Tbsp blackberry cordial (or other wine)

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp cloves

1 tsp allspice

1 c Alaskan sourdough starter

1/2 tsp mace

6 Tbsp butter

3 c candied fruit: green and red cherries, pineapple, orange, citron and ginger (to taste)

1 c sugar

1 c brown sugar

3 eggs, well beaten

1 c chopped nuts

2 Tbsp grated lemon rind

 

Soak raisins and currants in 1 cup wine overnight. Remove starter from refrigerator and set, tightly covered, in warm place overnight. (It should be in at least a two cup container as it will just about double its volume overnight.)

 

In the morning, cream butter with sugar and beat in eggs and lemon rind. Drain wine from raisins into creamed mixture. Sift 3 cups of the flour with the soda, salt and spices. Stir in starter and flour mixture. Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of flour over the fruit and nuts in a large bowl. Toss and shake until well-coated. Add to batter and mix thoroughly.

 

Turn into loaf pans which have been generously buttered. Let stand in warm place for 30 minutes. Bake in oven preheated to 300 degrees F, with a pan of water on floor of oven and rack as near as possible in middle of oven. Bake about 2 1/2 hours for medium-sized loaves, watching carefully to see that they do not brown to quickly. Test with toothpick.

 

Remove from oven, turn pans on sides and allow to sit for a few minutes before taking from pans. When cold, drip 2 Tbsp of wine over each cake. As soon as it is absorbed, wrap tightly in cellophane freezer paper and store in refrigerator or freezer. They improve with age.

 

*****************

 

Peaceful

 

I like the sound of your fruitcake, Cat.

Fruitcake can be really expensive with all the dried fruits. What in the heck is citron anyway?

 

*****************

 

Cat

 

 

Are you sure you want to know???

 

 

Sounds like it's a bitter/sweet chunk of plastic...

 

*************

 

Citron

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

 

The Citron Citrus medica is a species of citrus fruit. It is characterized by its thick rind and small sections. Generally, it is eaten preserved or in bakery goods, such as fruitcakes. (The candied peel rather than the fruit is often used in cooking.)

 

The citron was the first of the citrus known to the Romans. Pliny's Natural History gives an account of the tree (HN xii.7) that some called the Assyrian, others the Median "apple" (the generic Greco-Roman name for globose fruits). In Pliny's time the fruit was never eaten (it began to be used in cooking by the early 2nd century), but its intense perfume was used, penetrating clothes to repel noxious insects (compare Citronella). According to Pliny, attempts to grow the Citron in pots for its medicinal properties were unsuccessful.

 

The citron is known as the etrog by religious Jews, who use it in a ceremony on their Sukkot holiday each fall.

 

In many non-English languages, a normal lemon is called a "citron" and a lime is called a "limon", so there is a high chance for getting things mixed up during translations.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citron

 

*************

 

Citron is a fruit grown for its peel which is candied.

 

Citron: A citrus fruit from the Orient.

A large fruit with a rough, uneven, thin yellowish-green rind. The edible part of the fruit is small and surrounded with a thick white inner rind. The juice is used in beverages, but citron is best known in its candied or preserved rind form, generally available in jars or packages and used extensively in fruit cakes.

 

citron- a true citrus derivative which doesn't taste like one, at least in the processed form we find it packaged at market.

 

From Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery:

Citron--yellow-green and oval-shape, it is 6 to 9 inches long with rough skin and a small amount of acid pulp. It is grown for its peel, which is candied.

 

Here in the U.S. it is hard to find except around the Christmas holiday. It is most often sold in a small dice in a small plastic container. It is often part of a premixed candied fruit mix intended for use in fruit cake. It lasts quite a long time in storage.

 

http://food4.epicurious.com/HyperNews/get/...00/13113/2.html

 

*************

 

Soooo... I learned something new, too. I always thought it was a generic term for any citrus peel that was candied.

 

I *STILL* don't like it!!!

 

In my opinion, it's the reason most people don't like fruitcake. Keep to the cherries & pineapple & try your Grandma's recipe.

 

*****************

 

Lois

 

Dried sourdough starter?

 

Saving sourdough starter may be possible by soaking a square of muslin in your starter and then allowing it to dry. Store the starter in a covered jar or tin in your pantry. Restore the starter by soaking the muslin in a little water for 2 or 3 hours and then feed with flour and water just as if it was an established starter.

I have read that this has been allowed to sit for up 6 months and it is still viable. How much longer it will store has not been tested as they used it and dried a new one at least this often.

This apparently was adapted from the reports that immigrant women saved yogurt cultures this way and sewed it into the hems of their dresses, so it would not be taken from them on Ellis Island. You may also be able to keep yogurt culture viable the same way.

This could be a good way to store sourdough starter that is not used regularly, or for your BOB. (Bug Out Bag)

 

*****************

 

Darlene

 

This is SO kewl Lois!

 

*****************

 

Amber

 

A Great Idea!

 

Are there other ways to store and recover starter? I remember reading about pioneers crossing in covered wagons keeping a starter in the flour barrels, but never read how they kept the starter, i.e., in a crock, in a leather pouch, dried, or ??

 

Does anyone know or have a family story or recipe??

 

*****************

 

ma & pa steel

 

 

I have been wanting to do sourdough bread. Now all I need to do is find someone to get a starter. I read some place that sourdough from different places have a slightly different flavor, maybe we could do a sourdough starter exchange. Have it go along with a seed swap, kinda like a little bonus.

Ma Steel

 

*****************

 

Granny

 

Instructions for making yeast patties. Dry on cookie sheet and store at room temp. Sorry couldn't get it to copy and post info so have to link. LAST ARTICLE ON PAGE

 

http://www.msnusers.com/asinglestandingtee...ughhowmake.msnw

 

*****************

 

Lois

 

It copies but, it copies white, so copied and selected black in my word document and here is part of it.....

 

Recipe for starter

 

2 cups flour

1 cup water

1 cup cooled potato water (this really gets things going)

1 package bread yeast

 

 

Mix well and allow to stand in a warm area until there are no more signs of fermentation. (The solution will separate and no more bubbles are present.) Stir well, remove 1 cup of the contents and stir in another cup of flour or flour mix and a cup of water. Do not use "self-rising" flour!

 

Initially, the new starter is ready to use after 2-3 days, but it will not have that typical sourdough flavor until it has acquired some weeks or months of age.

 

After the first fermentation is established, you can use it anytime, even if it has gone "flat." Do not refrigerate! Leave it on the counter.

 

Many have told me that they mixed up a sourdough starter and used it once, but it didn't have a good sourdough flavor and then it "spoiled," i.e., it looked and smelled "yuckie."

 

"Well dummy," I thought. "It's supposed to look and smell yuckie!"

 

Sourdough will not spoil due to its highly acid pH, and because of its acid pH, it doesn't require refrigeration. Think about it. Covered wagons were the 19th century version of the RV, but they weren't equipped with refrigerators to hold the pioneers' sourdough starter! It bumped along experiencing all the elements of heat and cold in a small crock or wrapped in a leather pouch! Just remember to feed the little critter about once a week if you are not using it. To speed things up on baking day, you can feed the culture the day before and it will have little "yeasties" growing like mad at the time of use.

 

My culture is now about six months old, the container has never been washed, and there are no signs of mold. Most likely because its pH measures 2.0!

 

English muffins

 

Patience is not only a virtue: it's an essential ingredient in sourdough breads.

 

Basic recipe for English muffins

 

1 cup unbleached white flour

1 cup semolina (durum) flour (This is used for pasta and can usually be found in larger supermarkets. It really improves the muffins, but if you can't find it, use 2 cups white flour.)

1 cup sourdough starter

1 cup buttermilk (or plain milk, but buttermilk is a lot better.)

 

Mix the above thoroughly. It will form a wet, sticky dough. Cover tightly or enclose entire bowl in a 2-gallon Zip-loc bag which retains the moisture. Allow to rise overnight or until its volume has at least doubled. It takes only three hours in a 105 degree environment. When ready, the dough (sponge) will be almost frothy and easily stirred.

 

Add:

2 level tablespoons sugar, honey, molasses or syrup

2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon (rounded) baking soda

 

Add variations, if wanted

 

Mix the above ingredients thoroughly into the sponge, then add an additional 3/4 to 1 cup white flour and mix. Knead with additional flour until a dough has formed that will hold a fairly good ball that only slightly sags. It may also have minor kneading "overlaps" that do not immediately reseal.

 

Thoroughly sprinkle your work surface with white corn meal, and spread dough. Flip dough so it is covered with corn meal on both sides. Roll to approximately 1/2 inch thick. use two strips of wood cut 7/16 inch thick as rolling guides for uniformity.

Cut into biscuits with a large biscuit cutter or small tuna can [preferred]. If the thickness of the dough is right, the small tuna can will produce 12-13 large muffins.

 

Allow to rise on a non-stick surface or cookie sheet sprinkled with white corn meal until they have about doubled in thickness. This will again require 3-4 hours at warm room temperature or 1-3/4 to two hours at 105 degrees. Don't allow them to over-rise or they will very rapidly crash into wet, sticky blobs. If they start to sag a bit, i.e., mushroom at the base and begin to lose their firm domed appearance on top, cook immediately, as they are getting ready to crash!

 

Ba

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Bumping this up so that I can find it again. I need to use some of these recipes. Since we are down on income it is back to poverty cooking. No more fancy store bread. Actually we don't eat enough to warrant spending the money on a loaf of bread. It usually ruins before we finish it.

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Oh goodness, Mommato3......how did you FIND this?  Last bumped by Westie in 2008?  Stephanie.  Lois.  Ma/Pa Steel. Granny. Theyd. Necie and her dratted bug-on-the-screen. ....someone named "Darlene"????  :engel-smilies-10-1:  

 

Hey..."fancy" bread is HOMEMADE bread!!!  I'm making a copy of these!!

 

Note:  The Fresh Loaf and Food Down Under links are still good.  The Walton Food link is not.  {Food Down Under ....site is for sale tho....might not be good link after a sale???]

 

MtRider  :yum3:

Edited by Mt_Rider
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@mommato3boys sourdough is super healthy, though cheaper. This is a great old thread! Thanks for bumping it.

 

About 30 years ago, my dad gave me a little 2 quart Dutch oven. It was really too small for most things, but I hung onto it through several moves. Recently I have gotten into sourdough. And then I saw references to baking in the Dutch oven as the bread pan, which helps with the crust. Most recipes I saw called for preheating the larger Dutch oven and then transferring the risen bread loaf to the hot oven very carefully. No, I am too much of a klutz to pull that off! But then I came across a suggestion to let my bread do its final rise in the Dutch oven and I remembered my little Dutch oven, which is a perfect round, covered bread pan. And so I have used that a few times. Nice crust!

 

If you like to make wet, no knead loaves, a pan like that is nice, giving the loaf more form. I have been pre-heating the cooking oven to 450 while my bread is doing the final rise in the Dutch oven. I put the dough into the well-oiled Dutch oven and put on the lid, setting it in a warm place for the final rise (lately that is the front porch). After the 1 hour rise, I put the Dutch oven into the pre-heated cooking oven with the lid on. I reduce the heat to 400 and bake for 20 minutes. Then I take the lid off and bake for another 40 minutes. Nice crust. Nice texture of bread.

 

 

Edited by Cowgirl
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Oh my goodness, I have been looking for this, thank you mommato3boys. 

I’ve got old fashioned pasta recipes , if you are interested...

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1 hour ago, Annarchy said:

Oh my goodness, I have been looking for this, thank you mommato3boys. 

I’ve got old fashioned pasta recipes , if you are interested...

Oh yes. Hubby loves pasta. Please do share.

 

 

Believe it or not I just searched sour dough starter on here and it let me to this thread.

 

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17 minutes ago, mommato3boys said:

Oh yes. Hubby loves pasta. Please do share.

 

 

Believe it or not I just searched sour dough starter on here and it let me to this thread.

 

Cool!  

I’ll post a few in the morning. Long day.  Watching Live PD, ‘till I pass out. Been up since 3am. :blink:

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I have a few questions;  

Potato water?  Is it just the water that the potatoes are boiled in?

When you pour out 1/2 the mixture, throw it out? Mulch it?  Or, can it be used?

 

I have a gallon jar to use for my starter....  hoping to get some growing...  it would save us money we need.  

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I can’t answer potato water. 

 

I keep my starter in a quart canning jar. Every day I add 1/4 cup flour and 1/4 cup water and shake it vigorously. I then loosen the lid a little to allow fermentation gas escape. Every 2 days or so I take 1 cup starter for bread. I *NEVER* throw starter away. There are many things you can do with the starter if you don’t want to make bread. I used it in muffins, pancakes, etc. If I need a break, I can refrigerate it. But mostly it is in use.

 

When my chicks arrived, I used the starter to jumpstart fermented chick feed. And, by the way, fermenting chicken feed saves lots of money on feed!

261EFB01-D56C-484E-83E8-BA2015841876.jpeg

Edited by Cowgirl
Added photo of starter
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I made my starter sort of by accident. I started to make a deep dish pizza, with regular yeast. But life happened and I didn’t get it made. A couple of days went by. My pizza dough was soured. I pondered what to do. 

 

Well, I had always wanted to get into sourdough. But for whatever reason, I had been somewhat intimidated by it. But here I had a clearly soured dough. So, I made bread. It was SOUR. But I also set aside a little of the dough, added water and a bit of flour, and began to feed and water my new pet daily. And in playing with it and experimenting a bit, I have gotten to where I can make some really tasty bread. 

 

So, if you want to get a starter and you have a bit of yeast, my advice is to start to make bread, and ... don’t. :lol:

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40 minutes ago, Cowgirl said:

began to feed and water my new pet daily.

:lol:

 

Yes, potato water is the water you boiled potatoes in, Annarchy.  At least that's the understanding of DH's Bohemian relatives and their kolachie (sp) recipe.  DH...more baker than me, uses potato water to make bread dough.  His cinnamon rolls are unbelievable, especially considering our altitude.  They raise up huge and are thoroughly done in the middle.  :yum3: 

 

Obviously the percent of potato 'melted' into the water will vary.  Up here in high altitude, the potatoes disintegrate into little marbles if you aren't watching.  Hard to get potatoes done in the middle up here so we have 'rich' potato water.

 

MtRider  :cook:  

Edited by Mt_Rider
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Interesting about the rich potato water, @Mt_Rider! Years ago I made potato bread. It was good. Now you have me thinking about how that might interact with the sourdough. Hmmmmm.

Edited by Cowgirl
Autocorrect is mysterious
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Ok, I think I messed up my starter. I used water instead of milk this morning. It doubled in size and fell flat. The bottom portion has less bubbles than the top. 

 

 

Help please....

 

 

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