Sourdough part IV

Food & drink
Sourdough starter
I normally have some sort of slightly weird cooking project on the go, but these experiments don’t often stretch over four weeks. The saga of the sourdough starter continues, having entered a new and exciting phase last week…the grapes are gone and I’m now carefully feeding the starter up to give it enough strength to make some bread. 

The feeding stage lasts for two weeks. It started out in an unpromising way – I ditched the bag of grapes that were used as an initial source of wild yeast and bacteria, leaving behind a foul looking sludge, with a distinct pink tinge and an unpleasant smell that seemed to haunt the kitchen. It looked like a lost cause, but I decided to carry on, discarding 200ml of starter and replacing it with 150ml of water and 100g of organic flour, repeated twice a day. The regular addition of new flour feeds and strengthens the yeast, helping it to grow and multiply.

For the first couple of days, nothing happened, then the bowl erupted into life, with bubbles (actual bubbles!) starting to appear on the surface. After a couple more feeds, the starter seemed to be waiting for it’s flour. Now, it seems to be hungry and knows that there’s more food to be had.

The feeding process has to last another week, so making the starter will have taken a month from start to finish, quite a journey.

The bread had better be good.