A warm kitchen filled with the smell of freshly baked bread. Delicious! But kneading has become a painful chore rather than a therapeutic pleasure, as arthritis ravages my joints. A bread making machine bakes a close second loaf, but measuring ingredients and pressing start doesn’t quite bring the same joy. I have however found a wonderful alternative. Sourdough replaces traditional yeast with a fermented flour starter, and the physical exertion of kneading with time.
A sourdough starter or levain is made with flour and water left to ferment, developing the naturally occurring lactobacilli and yeasts. The bubbles produced enable sourdough to rise. And the lactic acid produced from the lactobacilli give the bread its unique mildly sour flavour. There are many variations of sourdough starter, using different flours and ratios of flour and water. Rye flour is a popular choice for sourdough. I am making a basic white starter.Continue reading “Sourdough: No more Kneading”