Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Sourdough Saga Continues

I'm actually getting into a real routine with the sourdough bread.  Every other morning, while the kids are eating breakfast, I mix some kefir and oat and brown rice flour in with some of my starter--and a little flax meal.  I add one egg, a little baking powder, a little sugar, a little bit of salt (I know, measurements will come one day, really, I'm just not a very measury person and have been lucking out with not measuring).  I stopped adding a drizzle of olive oil because it's just so moist that I don't need to.  And I stopped adding xanthum gum because I forgot once and couldn't tell the difference.

Then I let it rise.  Some days I let it rise once, sometimes twice.  It depends when I want to bake it and whether I remembered to transfer it to the loaf pan or let it rise in the bowl (if it rose in the bowl it needs to rise again when I transfer it).  Today I let it rise twice and it took until about 4:00 until it was nice and high and ready to bake.  My dough is about doubling in size now when it rises, which is a huge improvement from my initial attempts.  It really improved exponentially when I added sugar to the starter and when I started covering the loaf pan with a lid while baking it at 450 degrees for the first half hour before baking it uncovered at 350 the second half hour. 

I'm about at the point where I think I'm going to stop buying any bread, for anyone (including the gluten eaters) because this tastes so good, is easier on digestion (the yeasts added to breads are much harder on the stomach than the natural yeasts "caught" in sourdough starters or kefir, and Micah complains of his stomach hurting if I give him too much wheat), is healthier (I'm grinding all the steel cut oats and sweet brown rice myself in the coffee grinder so it's all whole grain flour--plus I add flax meal), and does not require me to drive to the store.  Just trying to pitch the sourdough bread to any who might consider doing it, it's really good!  I can't imagine how good it would taste with wheat flour, yum!

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