If you are a bread hater or simply sick and tired of me talking about bread 3 months in a row, let me assure you that this bread saga will end in this month’s issue. I promise I won’t talk about it again, or at least for a while. I just want to share the recipe for the pre-ferment (or sourdough starter) as I promised last month.
Sourdough Starter Recipe:
1st day: Put 1/3 cup of unbleached all purpose flour, 1 teaspoon of rye flour and water (1/3 cup + 1tsp) in a bowl (ideally glass or ceramic, you don’t have to use fancy glass jar). If you choose not to use rye flour, use just 1/3 cup of water instead. Stir it vigorously and cover with plastic wrap.
2nd day: After 24 hours, add the same amount of flour and water to the mixture from the 1st day. Stir well and cover.
3rd day: Again add the same amount of ingredients to the mixture from the 2nd day.
4th day: You will probably start seeing bubbles in the mixture. It is the sign that the mixture has began the fermentation process, but not quite complete yet. So you need to feed the dough by adding equal amount of water and flour (by volume) every day until the yeast and the flavor has fully developed. In this case 1 cup + 1 tablespoon (1 tbs=3 tsp) of water and 1 cup of regular flour and 1 tablespoon of rye flour will be added every 24 hours. However, you have to discard about half of the mixture before adding. If you are like me, who hates wasting things, you may chose to use it for pizza dough or even bread, though flavor is not as good. If you repeat this process 3-4 more days, your mixture will have mild sweet and sour flavor. At this point, the mixture (pre-ferment or sourdough) is ready to be used for baking bread.
It may take many practice to get it right, but once you learn how to bake bread with your own pre-ferment, you will never want to buy bread again. I am aware this recipe needs more detailed instruction( sorry. So, I will try post updated version on the blog at www.hensenlfestyle.com along with baking instructions soon.
Happy baking, Kaz Isogai