WINE & DINE
Sourdough starter is very easy to do – anyone can manage it, with no extra equipment needed. I personally like the extra tang that the wholewheat flour contributes, but if you don’t have any, you can also use 100 percent bread flour.
Ingredients • 200g bread flour • 50g wholewheat flour
Instructions Day 1 #1 In a container or wide-mouth jar, hand mix 50g of flour blend with 50ml of room temperature water into a smooth paste. #2 Using a rubber spatula or plastic scraper, scrape the sides clean, making sure there’s no thin dough or dry flour that might crust up. #3 Cover loosely with a clean cloth and let it sit for 24 hours. The temperature should ideally be around 26°C to 28°C. Days 2 and 3 #1 Remove the cover. If there are small bubbles appearing on the surface, your starter is becoming active. #2 Discard half of the starter and hand mix in another 100g of flour blend and 100g of water. #3 Cover loosely with a clean cloth and let it sit for another 24 hours. #4 Repeat this process on the third day. Days 4, 5 and 6 Start feeding the starter twice a day with more flour and water, and monitor its activity by checking how bubbly and active it becomes. Continue to feed the starter until it passes the following float test.
Float test: Take a spoonful of ripe starter and put it in a bowl with water. If it easily floats, that means the starter is active and ready to be used. Signs of a healthy starter: A healthy starter is light, bubbly and should have a tangy acidic aroma – but not one that is unpleasant or overpowering. No liquid should form on top. “Hooch” is the liquid that collects on the surface of the starter when it hasn’t been fed in a while. The appearance of hooch indicates that the starter is hungry and needs to be fed. Signs of a dead starter: If the starter doesn’t respond to regular feeding, you might need to start over. If you see a pink or orange streak in your starter, that means your starter has gone bad and should be discarded.
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