Sourdough Bread – In the Beginning

The gear.

In the beginning – there was a girl who loved her mama’s homemade honey wheat bread. Girl grows up and begins making the bread. Then she branches out into making French bread, pizza dough, and now…that which she’d never had the guts to try because she heard it was so temperamental…sourdough bread.

I have written about quite a few topics on this blog – parenting, boating, surfing, outdoor activities and coastal living, but one of my favorite and first loves has been sadly left out: food.

Fortunately, I married not only a “foodie” but a pretty amazing chef. He isn’t a chef by trade, but he could be. My husband started cooking in restaurants when he was a teenager. He has since taught me to cook beyond my “southern style” I grew up learning. I have always been a baker, however.

So, sourdough. Yum! My knowledge of sourdough didn’t extend beyond having this doughy alien in your fridge that you had to run home and “feed” to eventually turn into a magical slice of warm, soft bread with a distinct flavor and crispy crust. My friends and I in high school all had delicious sandwiches for lunch made out of sourdough bread, for our moms all shared the starter.

Fast forward to a neighborhood party a month ago, where our hosts served gorgeous artisan sourdough bread. It was delectable. My kind neighbor gave me the starter, and here I am, feeding the alien.

The scale I ordered from Amazon. It’s amazing!

Beginners tips:

1. Get a kitchen scale that measures dry goods and liquids. It’s more accurate. I thought I could do without and convert measurements. Now that I have my scale, I’ll never go back!

2. Name your starter! Very important. Name the alien. Ours is Little Joe. We smoke and Grill on our Kamada Joe a lot, and we refer to him as “Joe,” so, our starter is “Little Joe.”

3. Don’t give up! Follow your directions and if something goes awry, keep at it, research, read, check out YouTube. My starter first just bubbled, but it didn’t rise. How disappointing! However, I read that I could add more flour. So, I did. That’s exactly what it needed.

Day 2: my first dough batch after my first round of folds.

I will bake later today and will post pics from the day 3 process. Wish me luck!

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