how to make sourdough

So,you want to learn how to make a sourdough starter?  Spoiler alert…it’s VERY easy.

Before I tell you how lets discuss why you should.

First, the health benefits are great.  Here is an article about sourdough benefits from Healthline.

In a nutshell the benefits are GREAT.  It seems that our ancestors continue to prove themselves correct in the way they did things.  We modern folks have tried over and over again to reinvent the wheel, yet we find ourselves getting back to our roots and going a more “artisan” and heritage path, no matter the convenience the new ways bring.

I decided to implement more fermented foods into our diet to heal our guts, help us absorb pre and probiotics, enjoy the flavor and save money.  That’s right.  Money is always tight here.  Making bread is a great way to save mullah.

Homemade bread just tastes better too.

Okay, we have briefly touched on why. Now let’s hit on the making of a sourdough starter.

All that you need to begin a sour dough starter is flour and water.

That’s it.

I used equal parts.  One cup flour and one cup water.

You can use any flour that you want.  Water needs to be filtered if you are using treated water from the city.  The reason for this is because the chlorine and chemicals do not allow for the bacteria and yeasts in your starter to form correctly.

You do not want to make or store a sourdough starter in plastic or metal.  Chemicals leech and reactions are not formed.  I picked this glass jar.

Day 1

1 cup flour, 1cup water, stir.  Cover with a towel to allow air flow. Let this set for 12-24 hours on the counter.

Day 2-5

Take out half the mix and again add 1 cup water and 1 cup flour, stir.  Let set 12-24 hours.

“Feeding” the starter refers to adding to the mix the flour and water.

By the third day you can start using the starter if you see lots of pretty bubbles.  After the fifth day you can either continue to let your starter set out, if you plan to use it often, or you can place an airtight lid on it and keep it in the frig.  Take care to “feed” your starter daily if if have it on the counter, and weekly if you have it in the frig.

After the starter is bubbly you have made a successful starter.  I choose to not discard any starter once it is established.  I drain off the yellowish liquid that floats to the surface and “feed” that starter equal parts water and flour.

I keep mine on the counter right now since I’m using it nearly everyday.  For a list of great recipes check out Farmhouse On Boone’s list.

For the bread above I used King Arthur Flour’s Bread Machine Sour Dough.  I have the Zojirushi Home Bakery Supreme. I have had this for almost 10 years. It is an amazing investment.  You can make breads, cakes ect. in it.  Before I had this bread a machine I made bread by hand kneading for six months. After I knew I was committed to making bread, I received the bread machine as a gift.

That’s all there is to making a starter.  It’s a simple way to feed your family a healthy heritage food.  I hope you decide to try it out for yourself.

Comment below and share what you do with your starter.

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how-to prepare freezer meals

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It’s no secret that activities increase when school starts.  We get up earlier, have homework, jobs, meals, cleaning to accomplish, events to attend…things get real busy real fast.  I attempt to bring a slight amount of order to the chaos,  by preparing.

I’m sure many of you have seen make-ahead meal ideas floating around on the internet.

I had a wild hair yesterday and decided to stock-pile some meals. It’s always nice to have an easy out when something unexpected comes up.  It’s also nice to be able to have someone else throw something in the crock pot when I’m not around to explain how.

So I spent about an hour an a half slapping together some casserole and crock pot meals yesterday.  I came up with 11.

You can find some inspiration on my Pinterest board here and here.

I basically threw together as many meals as I could think of.  I didn’t stick to meals that were specifically for “make ahead”.  I made whatever looked good and I had the ingredients.  You can make just about any casserole or crock pot meal into a freezer meal.

Some of the exact meals I made from the board were:

Meatball Sub Casserole

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Cilantro and Lime Chicken Tacos I skipped the pesto this time and we’re serving over rice.

Chicken Mushroom Stroganoff

I did some impromptu bags for the crock as well.  What ever we had left with BBQ sauce, veggies, soy sauce ect.

I write the instructions for cooking and what to serve the meal with (rice, pasta, salad ect.) on the bag.

If you want to make more meals in the same time, cut the casseroles.  Layering eats up time.

How do you prepare for the back-to-school frenzy?

Being primed for the tumultuous days ahead give me rest.

farmhouse breakfast

My dear little Isabel has been volunteering, and practically begging to make breakfast lately.  She’s taken a keen interest in cooking over the last few months.  I’m trying to use this interest to reinforce math skills such as measuring and fractions, as well as basic science (baking powder, salt and baking soda, sugar reactions ect).  She is growing up so fast!  What a great helper.

And those boots…she’s gone country.