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A Healthy Sourdough Obsession

*THIS POST IS IN PROGRESS.. I AM GOING AGAINST EVERYTHING IN ME TO RELEASE THIS EARLY, BUT I WANT IT OUT THERE EVEN IN PIECES. KEEP CHECKING BACK SOON FOR MORE*


My love of sourdough started a few years ago, but never really came to fruition because I had no idea what I was doing. And before you think "oh great, count me out," I am going to make sure you're successful from the start! Because. fast forward to July & August or 2022 when my sourdough starter - Doughlene - came to life I have been sourdough'n since & continue to become more and more obsessed.


I feel like sourdough making requires a community. It's fun and exciting but also confusing to start and sometimes mind boggling along the way. You can't learn sourdough from just anyone - you truly need a sourdough community! My sourdough Adventure never would have happened if it weren't for these people and/or Instagram accounts. If you want to go down the lovely (and highly recommended) sourdough rabbit hole, you will want to follow these fabulous women.


The Food Nanny - Lizzi is absolutely amazing and will offer you so much more than just Sourdough. She is also responsible for my obsession with Kamut flour & her dough hook is a must if you're into baking!


Ashley from Turner Farms - She is queen of Sourdough & so many other recipes!


And actually, Lizzi (The Food Nanny) & Ashley (from Turner Farms) teamed up and created the book "For the Love of Sourdough" which I highly recommend. And! And! And! If you're really interested in sourdough, they have a monthly subscription which has recipes to die for!


We cannot forget Julie, or The Kneady Mama. She is the one responsible for creating Chuck! You can always message her on Insta or reach out to her via e-mail, thekneadymama@gmail.com


Here are some of my other favorite Instagram accounts: BallerinaFarm, FarmhouseonBoone


Before we get started - It's super important to note what you are going to need to be successful


First and foremost, unbleached bread flour - organic is best. Why bread flour? It has a higher protein content which is the "food" that your starter will need to grow! If you're in a pinch, you can try and go with an organic unbleached all-purpose flour, but I personally swear by bread flour!


Water, I am not picky here - I have personally had great success with using our regular kitchen sink water. If you're iffy about your sink water - you can definitely use filtered water.


Next, a couple of mason jars! You will need a clean mason jar every day. So, at bare minimum you will want two mason jars to alternate for daily feedings - and eventually you will want a mason jar to keep in the fridge with your discard.


Lastly, a kitchen scale. I would love to tell you that it's not necessary - because it truly is not. But I will also tell you that my starter really took off only after I was doing accurate measurements. Note, a kitchen scale does not need to be an investment - there are plenty of them out there that are reasonably priced like this one on Amazon.


Okay, while this isn't a must - It's my favorite tool so I feel obligated to share it. This dough hook by Lizzi (TheFoodnanny) is my favorite kitchen tool when it comes to all things sourdough and baking! And,

she has so many other fun things on her site!


Ok, wait.... we also need to cover some basic sourdough terms!


Sourdough Starter - a mixture of water and flour, that when continually fed will ferment and will be considered the sourdough aspect of any dish!

Feeding - the daily act of taking fresh water & flour and combining it with a little scoop of yesterday's starter (or discard from the fridge). The fresh flour and water are food for your starter which will allow it to rise & grow again day after day!

Mature starter - You will know your starter is ready to bake with once it rises (doubles+ in volume), gets nice and bubbly and then falls flat day after day.

Leaven - Remember, when you have a mature starter, it will rise and fall every day. When you're ready to get baking you're going to make essentially a large "starter" which you will use when it is at its peak rise. This leaven will replace the need for actual yeast!!

Discard - Again remember, when you have a mature starter, it will rise and fall every day. When it falls, it will no longer act as a leaven and instead will be considered discard. This term is tricky though because, you don't actually throw it away!! You store it in the fridge for delicious recipes that don't necessarily need to rise and/or you want to add a little sourdough to! Also, the discard in the fridge can brought back to life (used in a daily feeding with water and flour) to bring your starter back to life!


Now... let's get started - Follow these instructions if you are starting from scratch!

  1. Place your mason jar on the scale and tare it to zero.

    1. If you are not using a scale - check the approximate measurements after he step

  2. Add 50g of lukewarm water to the jar (50g is equal to ~1/4 c)

  3. Add 50g of flour (50g is equal to ~1/4 c)

  4. Give the flour and water a really good mix. You want it to be on the thicker side. Remember, the flour is the food - don't short it! Make sure it's nice and thick! Plus, if it's too runny, you'll run the chance of mold.

  5. Screw lid on loosely - you want some air in and out!

  6. Place jar in a cozy spot - somewhere it's not too drafty!

  7. After ~ 24 hours, your starter will be ready for it's feeding!

  8. When you're ready to feed your starter, you will want to grab you second clean mason jar.

  9. Add 50g of lukewarm water to your clean mason jar (again, equal to ~ 1/4 cup)

  10. Mix in 10g of previous days starter (10g of starter is equal to ~ one big spoonful)

  11. Add 50g of flour (again, equal to ~1/4 cup)

  12. Mix together, and continue to repeat steps 7 - 14.

  13. Important note regarding the remaining starter - when you just get started, you can toss the remaining mixture from yesterday's starter. However!! when your starter starts to rise and fall daily - you will start to keep the discard. You will pour the discard into your third mason jar (with a lid) and keep it in the fridge. Everday, after each feeding you will continue to add yesterday's remainder to this jar.

Favorite Tip when starting from scratch - have faith! Keep going. Keep going. Keep Going. You may be feeding your starter for a few days, or a few weeks or even a month before you see some action. Keep going. You may see some action on day two & then go days without any bubbly/rising action. This is normal. I promise you, just keep going. One day it will rise and fall & do the same the next day!


Follow these instructions if you are kicking off your sourdough journey with Chuck.

Questions regarding Chuck, you reach Julie on Insta or e-mail her at thekneadymama@gmail.com

  1. Place your mason jar on the scale and tare it to zero. If you are not using a scale - please see "No Scale" note at the bottom.

  2. Add 10g (or half of the packet) of dried starter into a clean jar. (the remaining starter can be stored in a cabinet or fridge for a backup)

  3. Add 10g of lukewarm water into the jar.

  4. Mix until milky white

    1. Let sit to help break apart dried pieces (10 to 30 minutes)

  5. Once starter has sat, add 40g of lukewarm water to the jar.

    1. Note, your total current weight of the water and starter should equal 6https://www.instagram.com/the.kneady.mama/0g.

  6. Add 50g of flour and give it a good mix - if you're not using a scale, 50g is about a quarter cup.

    1. You're aiming for a thicker pancake consistency. If it does not seem thick enough, add little spoons of flour into the jar until you have achieved a thick like batter.

  7. Place lid on lightly - not air tight

  8. Place jar on something that will hold warmth (such as a potholder)

  9. After ~ 24 hours, your starter will be ready for it's feeding!

  10. When you're ready to feed your starter, you will want to grab you second clean mason jar.

  11. Add 50g of lukewarm water (~ 1/4 cup)

  12. Mix in 10g of previous days starter (~ one big spoonful)

  13. Add 50g of flour (~1/4 cup)

  14. Mix together, and continue to repeat steps 7 - 14.

  15. Important note regarding the remaining starter - you can toss the remaining mixture from yesterday's starter. However!! when your starter starts to rise and fall daily - you will start to keep this the discard. You will pour the discard into your third mason jar and keep it in the fridge. Everday, after each feeding you will continue to add yesterdays remainder to this jar.

Your starter will be ready to bake with when it continues to rise and fall for a day or two. Because Chuck is dehydrated from a mature starter - this may only take a couple of days!


Did you know whether you are starter from scratch or starting with Chuck there are so many factors that play into your starter and bread making. The temperature of your house is one! If it's too cold, your starter will slow down and be sluggish. If it's too warm - your sourdough will be crazy active! The moisture or dryness of the air. Your elevation. Everything plays a roll and the best part about learning sourdough is learning what your starter and bread like. Some days will be great and other days will be a flop. That's all normal and quite honestly the fun part about sourdough.


Ok, my starter is mature, what do I do now?


Coming soon...



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