Reposting – Trying to make sourdough

Reposting this post from Caught MIdway because I want to talk about trying to make sourdough. It hasn’t been easy. I know that many may have seen this there, still, I want to talk about making bread and didn’t see the point in repeating this. This was written back in April and many things have changed, and in future posts I will update you.

Everywhere I read it says it isn’t easy, but that has never stopped me from trying anything in the past. It is just bread, how hard can it be?

Reposting - Trying to make sourdough

Yeah, that is the question and it is a good one really.

When people came up with all these methods on how to do this they weren’t thinking coronavirus and flour shortages.

Not getting the flour you need

All the methods, well most of the ones I’ve read, have said to use rye flour to start with. Sounds easy, except I haven’t seen any rye flour in the supermarkets for weeks now.

I have used all the unbleached flour that I first bought for making flour, so I am left with very little choices as to what to use.

Light rye

I figured this would have to be okay, it must have rye in it, so it would work, wouldn’t it?

So I decided I would start with that.

How to make a sourdough starter

One of the things I found was that so many information places on the internet say to go to a baker and see if they will give you some of their starter. Great idea, but we aren’t allowed to do that sort of thing right now, remember lockdown.

With that not being a possibility, I had to find somewhere where I could start my sourdough starter from scratch. Make my own. New beginnings.

If you go looking you can find places where they tell you exactly what to do. That is among all the places that just tell you how to feed it and so on.

Method 1

After my searching, I decided I would try the method laid out in this next video.

It seems a bit scientific or something, but hey I can follow instructions so I started my first one last Friday. I couldn’t use the flour he said, remember no rye, so I decided to keep going with the light rye.

He does use different combinations of flours, but I don’t have the unbleached, so I have stuck with the light rye. More on that later.

Method 2 in trying to make a sourdough starter

I thought it might be a good idea to try another method as well, that way if one doesn’t work, I would, potentially, have a second one that would.

I went to Simply No Knead for the second one. The link to it is here.

It didn’t seem as complicated, but again, I didn’t have the right flours, so I made do with the light rye.

So far, I think the second one is working better than the first. The second one is growing, but the first one just doesn’t seem to do anything.

Light rye flour for the starter

So it turns out that it may not have been a good idea to use that flour. Seems it is a bread mix and might have other things in it. I do have some Wholemeal flour, which is pure flour, so today I started using it instead. I should have started with it from the beginning. Now it is looking like neither of my sourdough starters are going to work.

Looks like I might have to start over again, but since I’m into day 5 for method one, and day 4 for the second one, I’m going to stick with them to see if they can be saved. What else have I got to do?

I will keep going and see what I end up, and I’m sure you will be hearing a lot more about it.

What are you doing during this time of self-isolation?

Moving on to now

So there have been changes, but I will talk about them in my next post.

Reposting – Trying to make sourdough

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  1. I have this on my list of projects to attempt during the summer since we cannot go anywhere and do much of anything. I have a long list of DIY and reorganization projects but also wanted to challenge myself with some new baking techniques and, since I love sourdough, this seemed like a good plan. I have not started yet and I am not much of a baker (I am a pretty great cook but my baking is very basic) so I may need a few attempts to get the starter right since I have to make it from scratch.

    1. Well, if you want some of my sourdough starter let me know and I will send you some dried for you to use. Apparently it is a good way to go. I just started my own, but that was also because I started doing it during lockdown, so I didn’t really have a choice. The bread is so amazing, I love sourdough bread.
      I am the opposite, I love baking and think I’m an okay baker, but cook, not so much. Good luck Laura and let me know if you have any questions.

  2. I have never made sourdough, didn’t want the commitment, but don’t you have to leave the starter open to the air so the yeast can get in?

    1. It isn’t as big a commitment as you might think. If you are only baking once a week you can keep the starter in the fridge until the day before you need it. I have the first two living in the fridge at the moment. I am baking more than I thought I would, but that is mainly because my husband is home working. When and if he goes back to the office, that might change.
      I don’t know about the who wild yeast thing. Everyone says to cover it, so I don’t know. It still works. Thank you RJ.

  3. I have tried sourdough baking on and off. The one thing that got me hung up was throwing some of it away every time you feed it. I never read this part in all I’ve read about sourdough. I kept wondering what am I going to do with all this sourdough starter? It never occurred to me to throw some of it out. So thanks for posting this youtube video. It was helpful. Looking forward to your next post.

    1. Oh yes, it can seem like a waste. I know one guy who cooks it each day, and I tried doing that, but didn’t like the taste of the pancake. So into the bin it goes. Yeah, you could end up with way too much. I keep a small amount each day and throw the rest out. Thank you Lena.

    2. If it was the only leavening available I can how it could be used everyday. But we have other means such as yeast, baking soda and baking powder. And who bakes that much today? Not me! 😊

    3. Haha, I have to say I love the flavour of sourdough and while commercial yeast is available I do think that it doesn’t taste as good. I will be doing a post on baking the bread and my whole experience with sourdough, but I think it is easier to make and not really that complicated.

  4. Leanne, I am baking sourdough bread since many years, though I got a sourdough starter from a blogging friend in Australia, she mailed it to me in an envelope. Yet, in this Corona Virus time it’s difficult to get the right flour and so on, at least the good and organic one. I totally recommend you the greatest book of all, Amazon used books , written by Emilie Raffa, ” Artisan Sourdough made simple”, it is my sourdough bread baking bible, she also has a great blog. Hope that helps. Happy bread baking.

    1. I think I know exactly which blog you got it from Cornelia. I have seen that, but I had to start from scratch. I did have a lot of trouble, and in future posts will talk more about overcoming that. I have that book too, it is a great one. Thanks Cornelia.

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