Monday, November 2, 2009

Sourdough Bread and Starter

1 cup Sourdough starter
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups warm water (105-115*)
3-3/4 to 4-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 T sugar
1 t. salt
1/4 t. baking soda
3 T vegetable oil
Mix 1 cup Sourdough starter, 2-1/2 cups flour and 2 cups warm water in 3-quart glass bowl with wooden spoon until smooth. Cover; let stand in warm, draft free place 8 hours.
Add 3-3/4 cups of the flour, the sugar, salt, baking soda and oil to mixture in bowl. Stir with wooden spoon until smooth and flour is completely absorbed. Dough should be just firm enough to gather into a ball. If necessary, add remaining 1/2 cup flour gradually, stirring until all flour is absorbed.
Turn dough onto heavily floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place in greased bowl; turn greased side up. Cover; let rise in warm place until double, about 1-1/2 hours. Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.
Punch down dough; divide into halves. Shape each half into a round, slightly flat loaf. Do not tear dough by pulling. Place loaves in opposite corners of greased cookie sheet. Make three 1/4 inch deep slashed in each loaf. Let rise until double, about 45 minutes.
Heat oven to 375*. Brush loaves with cold water. Place cookie sheet in center of oven. Cookie sheet should not touch sides of oven. Bake, brushing occasionally with water, until loaves sound hollow when tapped, about 50 minutes. Remove from cookie sheet; cool on wire racks.

Starter - if you need it

1 t. active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (105 - 115*)
3/4 cup milk
1 cup all-purpose flour

Dissolve yeast in warm water in 3-quart glass bowl. Stir in milk. Stir in flour gradually. Beat until smooth. Cover with towel or cheesecloth; let stand in warm, draft-free place until starter begins to ferment, about 24 hours (bubbles will appear on surface of starter). If starter has not begun fermentation after 24 hours, discard and begin again. If fermentation has begun, stir well; cover tightly with plastic wrap and return to warm, draft-free place. Let stand until foamy, 2 to 3 days.

When starter has become foamy, stir well; pour into 1-quart crock or glass jar with tightly fitting cover. Store in refrigerator. Starter is ready to use when a clear liquid has risen to top. Stir before using. Use 1 cup starter in recipe; reserve remaining starter. Add 3/4 cup milk and 3/4 cup flour to reserved starter. Store covered at room temperature until bubbles appear, about 12 hours; refrigerate.

Use starter regularly, every week to 10 days. If the volume of the breads you bake begins to decrease, dissolve 1 t active dry yeast in 1/4 cup warm water. Stir in 1/2 cup milk, 3/4 cup flour and the remaining starter.

by:Kathy via Betty Crocker!

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