Thursday, February 25, 2010

Sourdough Bread, Take 2

Visiting Bob's Redmill inspired me to do a little baking today. Even though I've gone gluten-free, my family has not, so baking bread for them will not go unnoticed.

Especially by me. While I'm choking on my special bread. Good thing butter is gluten-free!

Back to sourdough. I've lost several starters over the last 3 or 4 months. The good part of this is that because of this, I'm able to try different starters. This time I used this one. Specifically, The House Around the Corner-Bobbi Jo-Starter. It uses wheat and since I haven't had the best of luck with wheat starters, I was anxious to give this one a try.

A funny thing happened. I received a frantic call from my Mister, who informed me that my starter had turned into an alien life form and was currently creeping across the counter and down onto the floor. He was afraid for the children's lives. He asked me what to do.

I reminded him that we do have larger glass bowls.

Oh. That was it. Just, oh.

At least I knew that it was working!

Now what to do with this alien?

Here's the recipe that I used. Next time I will replace the sugar (even though I used organic) with honey. It also has added yeast to it. The bread turned out a beautiful color and has a nice texture, so maybe I will just leave it alone.

I'm not sure where I got this recipe as it was hand-written by yours truly, on the back of an envelope. So if this is yours, I am sorry for not giving you the credit. Truly.

But thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Sourdough Bread

1-1/3 cup starter
2-2/3 cup warm water (lukewarm)
1 Tb. yeast
1 t. sea salt
1/4 cup organic sugar
1/2 t. baking soda
7-8 cups organic, white flour

Combine starter, water, yeast, salt and sugar in bowl. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Let proof for about 5 minutes. Add baking soda to 1 cup of the flour and stir. Add to sponge. Add another 6 cups of flour. Using a dough hook, mix on low setting. Gradually add the last cup of flour until dough begins to pull away from side of the bowl.

Put the dough in a greased, glass bowl and cover with a damp towel. Let rise until doubled.

When dough is doubled, dump onto floured board or counter and cut into 3 equal pieces. I do a quick-knead to get out the air bubbles and then form the loaf. Cover and let loaves rise in greased loaf pans until the dough is slightly above the top of the pan. Don't worry, it will continue to rise in the oven.

Bake at 350F. for 25 minutes, or until loaves sound hollow when thumped. Take out of oven and let sit for a couple of minutes before removing from pans to cool on wire rack. To keep the tops soft, I like to brush melted, unsalted butter on top. Because butter makes everything better.

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