Gratitude: Sourdough

Monday, April 18, 2016 – Filed under: Uncategorized ::

 

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A friend first gave me a jam jar filled with her sourdough culture about 5 years ago. It has been bubbling for us ever since, and sourdough is part of our daily routine now. As Sam Sifton wrote in the New York Times last month, “A sourdough starter comes into your life the way a turtle might: as a pet you maybe didn’t know you wanted until someone hands it to you or you find yourself holding the terrarium after an impulse purchase you couldn’t explain if you tried. You get it or you make it or you buy it, and now you have a sourdough starter. It needs to be fed. It asks to be used. There are holes in our lives. They are filled for us by circumstance, or we fill them ourselves.”

Now we sourdough everything – pretzels, chocolate cake, coffee cake, dinner rolls, pasta and even pie crust.  I can’t imagine doing anything else. We are finding it much easier on our digestion, especially when we use lower gluten flour like einkorn, kamut and spelt (Jovial einkorn is our absolute favorite).  I’m finding that lots of recipes can be adpated to preparation the evening before bake day and left to sour overnight.  For us, it means we can still include gluten in our diet, and I’m so used to the schedule and planning of our homegrown bakery that it no longer feels onerous at all.  It’s a joy to be able to make fresh, organic and healthy bread products for our family to enjoy.

So today I’m grateful to my friend, to the wonderful science of wild yeast, and to the organic grains that are helping us eat better.  And to all my great, great, great grandmothers who made sourdough as part of their daily routine.  Sometimes fantastic things skip generations. I’m pretty happy to have rediscovered a great family tradition.