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Traditional Sourdough Bread recipe

October 17, 2007

For the live yeast culture:

1 cup organic wheat flour
1/2 cup water

For the starter:

3/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups nonbromated flour

For the dough:

1 1/2 to 2 cups starter mixture
2/3 cup warm water
2 1/2 cups nonbromated flour
2 teaspoons of salt

Take the ingredients for the live yeast culture and mix into a paste. Let sit at room temperature for 2 to 3 days. Check on it daily for mold. A sour smell is a good sign. The mixture will bubble; when it settles, it's ready.

Mix together the live yeast culture with the ingredients for the starter until it forms a sticky paste. Set aside for 4 to 6 hours. You'll know it's ready when it starts to bubble and becomes stringy.

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To make the dough, place 1 1/2 to 2 cups of the starter mixture in a large mixing bowl and add 2/3 cup warm water. Mix until the starter mixture has dissolved. Add flour and salt and mix to a doughy consistency.

Sprinkle flour on a counter top. Knead dough by hand for 10 to 15 minutes.

Place the dough in a bowl sealed with plastic wrap and allow it to rise for 3 hours or until the dough has doubled in size and rebounds slowly if pressed with a finger.

Next, take out the dough and press gently to flatten. Fold the edges into the center. Turn it over and form it into a ball using the heel your hands.

Line basket or colander with dish towel lightly sprinkled with flour. Place the shaped dough on top of the towel. Fold the edges of the dish towel over the dough so that it's not exposed to air.

Allow to rise at room temperature for another 3 hours. The dough will again double in size.

Uncover the dough. Place on baking sheet or baking stone and bake for 55 minutes at 425 degrees.

Yields a 2-pound loaf.

Cook's note: To reuse the roughly 1/4 cup of starter mixture you'll have left over, add 1/4 cup of water and 1/2 cup of flour and mix together. Allow to sit on counter top for 2 hours before putting in a sealed container in the refrigerator. This can be used next time you bake bread.

- Courtesy of Peter Burr Bread Bakers Guild

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