The Sour Dough Story

My second sour dough loaf

The humble sour dough loaf. Quite impressive don’t you think?

Something, and I don’t really know what, prompted me to start a sour dough starter. In essence it is really simple. Put bread flour in a container, add water and leave it to grow. Easy, peasy. And it is really easy but there seems to be a ‘knack’ as we would say in Lancashire. An art which gradually I am acquring. I have now made 4 sour dough loaves. All appear to be rock like. All taste quite sour but the satifsfaction there is in making the load is quite remarkable.
Just to recap sour dough is an unlevened bread that uses a sour dough starter as a replacement for the conventional yeast. I haven’t unil now made any bread by hand but instead used a bread maker. Which I hasten to add I will not be getting rid of. It is my workhorse and gives me tasty bread in just 4 hours.

Another baby sour dough has been born!! Isn't she beautiful?

Another baby sour dough has been born!! Isn’t she beautiful?

Anyway, to continue the story I began by following a sour dough starter recipe by Paul Hollywood (a well know master baker who was a judge on a BBC series called The Great British Off). His recipe stated using organic grated apple. So I did and surprisingly it worked. I admit the first loaf was slightly hard but my lovely husband ate it and said he enjoyed it. He is my most honest critic. And there the obsession began. I had unwittingly created a new baby that I had to ‘feed’. It is actually not too bad. Basically you feed prior to making your bread, up to 12 hours before. Then you always leave enough starter to feed again ready for you next loaf. So natural and so amazing. I really love the whole concept. If you don’t want it to be alive just put it in the fridge. If you use it regularly keep it at room temperature.

A close up of my first starter. Bubbles mean it is alive and kicking!!

A close up of my first starter. Bubbles mean it is alive and kicking!!

I will without a doubt be posting much more on my sour dough baby. I would recommend it and hope to make some alternative starters just so my first baby has a sibling to keep it company!!


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