Friday, April 30, 2010

Making The Melrose Family Sourdough Starter

We decided to make our own sourdough bread starter. After Pam, Greg and I had been to our artisan breadmaking course we felt we were well equipped and knowledgable to make our own bread. However, as it turns out, there is a point where you just cant read books ro be shown anymore, you have to experiment yourself. With your oven, with your bowl, with your kneading style (I'm a potter so my bread is sometimes too heavy because I like to knead it!).

So here it is:
200g Wholewheat Organic Plain Flour
200ml lukewarm pristine river water (I used water from a creek in the Blue Mountains with a pristine catchment - you can use any mineral water that has no chlorine content).
1 tsp honey
1 bunch of organic grapes
1. Mix flour and water together till fully combined.
2. Lay in the bunch of grapes and cover with muslin cloth (a triangular bandage works well), and leave somewhere in a stable temperature, such as the kitchen pantry or benchtop.
3. Monitor for the next couple of days - when small bubbles form and the mixture appears a little frothy and has a strong sour smell, it is ready for more action.
4. Remove grapes and discard. Mix and then remove 1/4 of the mixture.
5. Add 100g flour, 100ml warm water and stir in well. Make sure you use the same flour.
Each day check on the starter and feed every 2-3 days with the same amounts of flour and water. After a week or so it should be ready. It should have a slightly sour smell but kind of pleasant rather than pungent. Store in fridge until ready to make bread. Feed intermittently approx once a week.

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