baking with natural yeast – a basic sourdough recipe

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So I should have known that each of us growing our own natural yeast starter would be too much…even though we are baking everyday and learning so much for school in our #bergbakery.  Alas, too much.  So local friends, text/email me/or leave a comment below if you’re interested in a mild french natural yeast starter of your own.  I’ll let you know when I have one for you wahoo!  So far we’ve made a San Francisco sourdough, baguettes, spelt sourdough and baguettes, pizza dough, pancakes, oatmeal bread, cinnamon rolls, and i’m prepping for german pancakes for tomorrow as well as another set of baguettes for lunch.

Resources we are enjoying:
The Art of Baking with Natural Yeast
Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads

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It’s been way fun for all of us, tastes so good (truly a mild sourdough), and everyone has been so good to try everything!

I’ll have the kiddos make a video of how to feed your starter,
but till then here are the very basics to caring for your starter:

  1. Feed your starter every 3 to 4 days
  2. To feed mix 1 cup start, 1 cup water, and 1 cup flour
  3. Keep in a wide mouthed jar…plastic lids are great or anything that can breath a little.
  4. When feeding, pour off extra liquid then use 1 cup and feed the other cup.

San Francisco sourdough

1/4 cup starter
2 1/2 cups water
2 tsp sea salt
2 cups whole wheat flour
4 1/2 cups white bread flour

  1. Combine water with starter and mix lightly in mixer with dough hook
  2. Add remaining ingredients, flour 2 cups at a time, knead in mixer 10 minutes
  3. Turn onto lightly floured surface and knead till dough is uniform
  4. Place in a lightly greased bowl, cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise 6-12 hours (not in fridge)
  5. Preheat oven with dutch oven within to 500 degrees or 450 if you have convection. (you can also use a baking stone or baking sheet (don’t worry about preheating baking sheet…you can lower temp to 375)
  6. Once oven is preheated, place dough within and bake 30 minutes with lid on top.  (if using stone or sheet, also place a pie tin with water below to keep moisture in oven).
  7. After 30 minutes, if dough is browned you are done, if not, remove lid and allow to brown (a few more minutes)
  8. Led bread rest/cool on a baking rack.  Enjoy!

this recipe makes 2 boules/loaves

For baguettes simply divide dough into 2 and form long skinny dough…each loaf makes 2 baguettes. Bake at 375 for 20 min.

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Have you used natural yeast? What are your favorite things to make? Link recipes below if you like…we’d love to try them in our bakery! xo ~ katrina

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