Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Monday through Friday our mornings start with a nice bowl of hot oatmeal. It’s the best oatmeal ever invented but it is still oatmeal. Come Saturday morning we treat ourselves to sourdough pancakes. In the summer I cook them on a cast iron griddle heated on the grill but this time of year it’s on the wood cookstove.
The pancake recipe is started the day before by mixing together ¾ cup of whole wheat flour, 2 tablespoons of ground flax seed, 1 cup of sourdough starter, 4 ounces of almond milk and 2 ounces of water. This concoction sits on the counter to “fester” until Saturday morning when I add a mixture of 1 egg, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of honey, 1 teaspoon of baking soda and a pinch of salt. The interaction of the sourdough acidity and the baking soda causes the whole thing to grow a couple of inches which is my signal to start cooking on the hot griddle. Then we drown the cakes in real maple syrup and enjoy a great breakfast.
Our sourdough starter has been with us for nearly 20 years so it is more of a family member than just a crock living in the back of the refrigerator. To start your own batch is easy. Soak a ½ cup of organic raisins in 1 cup of warm water for 15 minutes at room temperature. The yeast on the outside of the raisins is the basis of the sourdough. Strain the water off the raisins and follow these instructions:
Day 1 – Add the cup of raisin water to 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1 tablespoon of malt (Bob’s Red Mill malted barley flour), 1 teaspoon of honey. Stir well and keep at room temperature.
Day 2 – Add to the mixture 1 cup of whole wheat flour, ½ teaspoon of malt, 1 teaspoon of honey, ¾ cup of water. Stir well and keep at room temperature.
Day 3 – Add to the mixture 2 cups of whole wheat flour, ½ teaspoon of malt, 1.5 cups of water. Stir well and keep at room temperature.
Day 4 – Add 2 cups of whole wheat flour and 1.5 cups of water to the mix. Stir well and keep at room temperature.
Day 5 – Add 4 cups of flour and 3 cups of water to the mixture. Stir well and keep at room temperature for 4 hours then refrigerate covered. I use plastic wrap secured by a rubber band.
You may want to keep your crock of sourdough starter in a pan (I use a round cake pan) because it occasionally gets carried away and grows out of the crock.
As you use the starter, you will need to re-feed it. Start by adding 4 parts of flour to 3 parts of water. You’ll get used to using the starter and learn when to feed it and how to adjust the amounts depending on the condition of the starter. Too runny – add more flour; too stiff – add more water.
Of course there are lots more ways to use your starter – biscuits, cakes……… Enjoy!
From Fleur Creek Farm (check out the new website!)