Yippee! Baking a loaf of sourdough bread- risen without commercial yeast- always seemed so intimidating to me. Such a complicated process, even though I feel like I'm a pretty experienced baker. I knew it was a better way, as far as nutrition and health go. I wanted to find a way to become independant of purchased yeast; especially if I didn't have access to it. I wanted to have connection to the traditional way my foremothers baked throughout most of the world's history.
As I've studied and found some very inspiring resources and a friend who so kindly shared her already established and flourishing starter, I finally built up the confidence and desire to give it a go. I'm not a huge fan of the overly sour, fermented taste that I've sometimes encountered, and the recipe I found sounded like it would be a good fit for me.
Well, I'm pretty satisfied. (I guess we'll know for sure tonight.) I originally wanted to mix up my dough late last night, but sleep took precedence. I got up early (my body rhythm and now this new clock change made it all the easier) and had my dough ready to rise by 5:45 this morning. No mixer. Just a wooden spoon, a strong arm, a little hope, some freshly ground wheat flour, a little salt, a little starter, and some water.
I wanted a good 7-9 hour rising time. If you are a baker, you might relate when I tell you what a thrill, an amazing thrill, it was for me to see that mass in the bowl "magically" rise to the top. It was working! It was alive!
What a beautiful, soft workable dough to handle and form. Four loaves baked all at once, too, in that hot oven. (Which I'll freeze. Looks like it may last us a while.) Hearty, 100% whole wheat healthy wonder bread that will be perfect with a big casserole of from-scratch baked beans. Those white northerns are cooking away happily in the pressure cooker as I write. Another new incredible habit that's saved me time and money.
Here's to frugality! Here's to going out of your comfort zone! Here's to one nutritious meal costing pennies!