Baking bread in a bread maker. Baking a recipe from Artisan Bread in 5. Baking a sourdough. The biggest difference is in the time taken for each.
Time is a crucial ingredient.
And what do we do with that time? We let the bacteria and wild yeast do their work.
The sourdough starter begins with just 2 simple ingredients: flour and water. And of course time. Oh, and patience is a prerequisite. But the magic that occurs inside that mix is well worth it. Inside this unappetising mulch microorganisms are starting their work. Within the first 14 days approximately 45-55 strains of microorganisms converge for a flour and water party. At the end of this period of time the winner emerges. The strongest few strands of yeast stays, and they are the loyal few that will help you with your bread. This is my Mother (sorry Mum).
This Mother is ready to be used; all active and bubbly. Strong and young!
To make the story less scientific (and thus boring for some), when the sourdough is fermenting the wild yeast and bacteria are happily hacking away at the starch and other nutrients, breaking them down so our digestive systems can easily absorb the goodness. Without the long fermentation process, which can take anything from 24-48 hours or more depending on the baker’s preference, minerals are cannot be easily absorbed by us.
Therefore, quick breads, store bought or otherwise, yield very little nutritional value. Furthermore, they are usually chock full of chemicals ranging from preservatives to other enhancers. These chemical compounds, together with those present in our environment, are some of the culprits responsible for the degradation of our bodies.
I’ll go more inept into the science of sourdoughs in further posts. Meanwhile, just enjoy the wonderful natural flavours of a naturally leavened bread!
Bake Bake Bake!