Isn't She Lovely: A Sourdough Is Born

Isn't She Lovely: A Sourdough Is Born
Photo by Robb Walsh

The sourdough I started on Monday is bubbling like crazy now. I fed it three times so far. You usually have to wait a while before your starter develops a good sour aroma, but not when you inoculate it outside with wild yeast. My starter smells like a brewery already. So now what?

Cooking with Sourdough:

If you store your sourdough starter on the kitchen counter, you need to remove a cup and a half or so every day and feed the sourdough by adding a cup of flour and a cup of water, stirring to mix well. (Change bowls for clean-up every couple of days.)

If you store your sourdough covered with plastic in the refrigerator you can slow it down and feed it every three or four days. You can put it in a glass jar with a lid for easier storage.

Sourdough starter keeps indefinitely if you keep feeding it, and it improves with age. Its sort of like having a pet, though--you have to have somebody feed it if you go out of town. Maybe that's why its customary to name your sourdough. (Suggestions?)

Sourdough Pancakes (from The Texas Cowboy Cookbook)

So what do you do with the cup and a half of sourdough starter you have to remove everyday? Try this recipe for sourdough pancakes.

2 cups flour 2 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon baking powder 2 eggs, lightly beaten 2 cups milk 4 tablespoons butter, melted 1 and a half cups sourdough starter 2 teaspoons vanilla

Combine the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder in a large mixing bowl and stir well. In another bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients. Gradually add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture, using a whisk to blend just until smooth.

Lightly oil a frying pan or griddle and turn the heat to medium-high. When a drop of water sizzles on the pan or griddle, pour on batter and cook until bubbles appear on the top. Flip the pancake and cook until both sides are golden brown, about 3 minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter.

Makes 12-18 pancakes.

Variation: Easy Sourdough Pancakes. Prepare your favorite pancake mix according to directions on the box. Then add a cup and a half of sourdough starter and mix well before making the pancakes.


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