Tuesday, January 1, 2013
Sourdough Starting the New Year - Corn Bread
If you're going into the New Year and your familiarity with sourdough is the occasional store bought bread, you owe it to yourself to try the real thing. There are as many starter recipes as there are cooks. One that is popular is a sourdough starter made with mashed potatoes and potato water from a well known celebrity chef. A great recipe to be sure, but also much more labor intensive.
A number of other starters require one to constantly "feed" the starter, which results in a really distinct taste over time, but for those that may not bake regularly, or get all distracted out in the shop, your sourdough starter will end up as dead as your house plants and if you've used a recipe that takes a lot of time, you're not likely to start another one.
1 package (or cake) active dry yeast (not the instant)
4 cups warm spring water or quality tap water (my tap water tastes like someone soaked a deep sea diving suit in it).
3 tablespoons sugar
4 cups unbleached all purpose flour (I'm a fan of King Arthur' flour for general baking)
Dissolve the yeast in the warm (not hot) water (about 3 minutes), then stir in the sugar and the flour. To help feed the fermenting yeast I add one medium sized Idaho potato, washed, peeled and cut into quarters. Place mixture in a pottery bowl, cover with a clean kitchen towel and let stand 8-12 hours in a warm place, free from drafts, stirring occasionally. Then keep lightly covered and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use. If you do wish to "feed" the starter, rather than start the recipe over each time, replace used starter by adding equal parts flour and warm water with a couple teaspoons of sugar (i.e. for each two cups starter used, add in one cup flour, one cup warm water and the sugar).
Sourdough is obviously good for baked bread and biscuits, but it has other uses, a great batter for chicken fried steak (that recipe another day), waffles and corn bread.
Yes cornbread. Sourdough Cornbread
King Ranch Chicken made with lime marinaded chicken, Penzey's Chili 9000 and Indiana's own Scoville Brothers Singing Smoke Hot Sauce.
Brigid and Barkley at Home on the Range