How to Make Delicious Sourdough Bread at Home
My husband brought me home this recipe from a co-worker and I could not be more pleased with the outcome! This is a two-part recipe: one creates a sourdough starter and the other part shows you how to make the bread with the starter. I think this can be kept going indefinitely, sort of like friendship bread. Anyway, do not let the 10 day preparation time scare you, it is easy to do and so worth it! I hope you enjoy this delicious sourdough bread like my family does. I honestly think I will try to make pretzels with this in the future.
- For Sourdough Starter:
- 1 pkg active dry yeast
- 2 1/2 cups warm water
- 2 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp sugar or honey, this time I used sugar
- For Sourdough Bread:
- 1 cup sourdough starter, above
- 5 - 6 cups flour
- 1 pkg active dry yeast
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 3 Tbsp sugar or honey
- 3 Tbsp butter
- For the sourdough starter: Dissolve the yeast in 1/2 cup warm water in medium bowl. Stir in the remaining warm water, flour, and sugar. Using a wooden spoon, beat mixture until it is smooth. It will be very liquidy. Cover with cheesecloth and let stand at room temperature for 5 - 10 days. Stir 2 - 3 times a day and scrape sides of bowl well. It will be ready to refrigerate or use after it has stopped bubbling, mine went for the whole 10 days. In a warmer room, it will ferment more quickly and you can smell it.
- To store, transfer the sourdough starter to a one quart, covered plastic container. Refrigerate starter. To use, stir starter and measure one cup out and let it warm up to room temperature, about 30 min. Replenish remaining starter with 3/4 cup flour, 3/4 cup water and 1 tsp sugar or honey. Stir, cover with cheesecloth and let sit out one day at room temp. Then refrigerate and use remaining starter within 10 days. If not used within 10 days, stir in 1 tsp sugar or honey. Continue this if the starter is not replenished every 10 days.
- To make the bread: Measure out one cup of starter and let stand at room temp for 30 minutes. In mixing bowl, combine 2 1/2 cups flour, and the yeast, set aside. In a saucepan, heat the water, sugar and butter until butter is almost all melted. Add to the flour/yeast mixture. Add the sourdough starter to this in an electric mixer and beat on low for 30 seconds until combined. Scrape bowl well, then beat on high for 3 minutes. Add 2 1/2 cups of flour to this mixture. Stir until combined. Add up to 1 cup more flour if needed. Mixer should be starting to have a tough time mixing, you want it to be a stiff dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and add any more flour as needed, mine did not need any more. Knead bread by hand for 6 - 8 minutes, until it is a nice, stiff consistancy. Form the dough into a ball, place in a greased bowl, turn once so it is covered, and let it raise, covered, in a warm place for 30 minutes. It should about double in size.
- Punch the dough down, divide into two parts and cover again for 10 minutes to let it rest. While the dough is resting, lightly grease the bread pans, or you can form these into circles instead of loaves and cook on a cookie sheet. Once they have rested, place each into a loaf pan, score the tops diagonally and let raise for 30 minutes more, covered. Preheat oven to 375° F and then cook loaves for 30 - 35 minutes. They are done if you tap them and they sound "hollow". Pull out of oven, and turn onto a wire rack to cool immediately. They will fall out of the pans easily. Let cool, a little, thinly slice and enjoy! I love this bread toasted or grilled. I am also going to make some of it into garlic toast.