I'm sure I'll be asked in the future about my bread. I've been asked in the past. So, to avoid writing it up, yet again, I thought I'd make a post here with how I do it and can just link to it here. So, here we go...
But first...there's no commercial yeast in this bread. It raises itself using a starter. I used this recipie as a starting point for my bread...I forget where I figured out how to make my starter.
Starting the Starter:
You'll need about a week to make this and get this going. To start the starter, you'll be better off using organic type flour. I've had really really good luck with rye flour. The first time, my starter was 100% rye...this time, I started it to day 3 with rye flour and then switched to ordinary white flour.
- Day 1 am - 1/3 cup flour and 1/3 cup water. Mix.
- Day 1 pm - mix
- Day 2 am - 1/3 cup flour and 1/3 cup water. Mix.
- Day 2 pm - mix
- Day 3 am - 1/3 cup flour and 1/3 cup water. Mix.
- Day 3 pm - mix
By this point you ought to see some bubbling in the starter. If not, keep going.
- Day 4 am - 1/3 cup flour and 1/3 cup water. Mix.
- Day 4 pm - mix
- Day 5 am - 1/3 cup flour and 1/3 cup water. Mix.
- Day 5 pm - mix
By this time, it ought to be really going. If it is, time to switch to maintenance mode. The stiffer you keep your starter, the stronger the bread will be. You can leave out the water if it starts to feel too liquidy. I'd say you want to shoot for something about like cake mix.
Maintaining the starter:
What you do here depends on how often you want to make bread. I usually feed my starter 2x per week. When I feed it, I give it 1/3 cup flour and 1/3 cup water. Like with creating it, if you want it stiffer, just leave off some of the water. I'd keep this in the fridge. You can even stretch the feeding to 1x per week or more.
Making the bread:
There's two steps to this: getting the starter ready and then making the bread. You'll need to do this in two steps.
Step 1 - get the starter ready:
- mix 1 cup starter, 1 cup water, 1 cup flour together
- feed your remaining starter (1/3 c flour and 1/3 cup water) and return to the fridge
- Let sit overnight
Step 2 - make the bread
- Take the mixture from step 1
- add 1 tbsp salt
- add flour to make a bread dough consistancy (dunno...about 2-4 cups more)
- Put into loaf pans (or you can let it rise in an oiled bowl lined with cornmeal)
- Bake until done (about 30 min @ 350F or so)
You'll know it is done because it sounds hollow. Let it cool and eat.