I want to produce sourdough for myself! How do I make it?

Unlike yeast, sourdough can’t be bought in supermarkets easily, even the organic ones.
(In the latter you might occasionally find extracts of dried sourdough that “look” like sourdough, but which in reality are “dead” (meaning that the lactobacillus culture and the Saccharomyces are not alive).

Those dried products might give our homemade bread the aroma of a good sourdough bread made with yeast, however, it will require the use of “beer yeast” to make it rise, since these products are not capable, if used alone, to trigger the fermentation process.)
The easiest way to reconstitute the sourdough is get starter from someone who already has it. You can ask your friends or an illuminated baker to give you a bit of theirs, or you can refer to the page on this website that is dedicated to our supporters: the “spacciatori”!

But, surely the greatest satisfaction is to give birth to your own sourdough, by creating your own living starter in just over a week with a little flour and water.First of all, it is proper to understand this premise: sourdough is a collection of many yeasts and bacteria, a concentration of biodiversity which is vibrant, more vital and stronger than you think.
Within that context, then, we find very different types of sourdoughs: solid based, liquid based, wheat-based, rye-based, and those produced using a starter of apple peel, yogurt, or dried fruit.
What I will try to give here, then, is a brief example of how to make the sourdough at home the easy way, without the pretense of being exhaustive.

How do I make it? 
If you are already an avid reader of this blog, then you already understand the underlying concepts related to the preparation of sourdough: what you need to do is make a paste of flour and water and then let yeast and lactic acid bacteria to “attack it”, and then ensure that they thrive.
(what better for them to live well than to give them something to eat and help them stay warm?)

Step 1:
200 grams (7 ounces) of organic type “0” flour (artisan flour)
Note: if you don’t find type “0”, you can substitute any high quality organic flour
100 grams (3.5 ounces) of warm water
1 teaspoon of organic honey (the honey in this case serves to lend a hand in starting the fermentation, since it is composed of simple sugars which are more easily “attacked” by microorganisms)

Mix all ingredients well, until a small ball forms that is soft and smooth. Store this mixture in a bowl covered with a damp cloth and let it rest at room temperature (between 18 and 25 degrees Celsius or 65 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit) for 48 hours.
During these 48 hours you will notice that something has already started happening: the dough is slightly inflated and the first fermentation bubbles will have appeared.

Step 2:
200 grams (7 ounces) of the dough from the previous step
200 grams (7 ounces) of organic type “0” flour ( as in previous step you can substitute any organic flour)
100 grams (3.5 ounces) of warm water

Soften the dough in warm water and then once softened, then you can more easily add the flour. Then you can proceed until the dough forms a ball as described in the last step. You have just performed what is called “refreshing”, i.e. you have fed new simple and complex sugars to your yeast. Cover the dough and let it rest for another 48 hours.

Next Steps:
Continue this process of “refreshing” for at least one / two weeks, until your dough no longer doubles its volume in about 4 hours. After this process, your dough is ready to be used to make your bread. The dough should be preserved in a refrigerator in a glass container for more than a week, and also between “refreshments”.

Congratulations! You are now ready to make sourdough bread!

[Thanks to Lynn Delatorre for the translation]

Una risposta a “I want to produce sourdough for myself! How do I make it?

  1. Sono felicissima di dirvi che ieri una gentile signora mi ha regalato un pò di pasta madre ed io l'ho rinnovata! Che emozione! Ho scoperto questo blog e spero di non farlo morire, seguirò tutti i consigli! Vi ho anche aggiunti al mio blogroll ^_^


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