SourDough Challenge — Phase 1

(Neighbor Nancy holds out a warm pan of Philadelphia Sticky Buns to any cook with some hints for our little neighborhood learning challenge.)

Ok, so my dehydrated sourdough starter came in the mail today. I headed back over to the site to get the re-hydration instructions

Click here for re-hydration instructions

Oh, you didn’t know about the free sour dough starter? Click here to get yours and join the fun.

Although any starter recipe you want to try is welcome. We are all learning here.

At the suggestion of a friend, I used a ceramic bean pot. I measured the 3/4c flour and 1 t. sugar into the bean pot. Then dissolved the stuff in the 3/4c of 90 degree water.

Well, it didn’t completely dissolve. I stirred and stirred and ended up just dumping it into the bean pot. Then stirred it until it was smooth.

I covered it with a warm damp rag to begin, because I can’t find just the right place to put it in my house. I don’t have a gas stove so, no pilot light and my oven doesn’t have a light.

I ended up placing next to my tomato seedlings that are on a table in a sunny window above the baseboard heater.

I guess we shall see what we shall see.

Maybe, I should have left this up to the “peanut.” He could have used it for the science fair.


Stepping outside of my kitchen comfort zone is very nerve racking.

If you have any advice for our little neighborhood of bakers please comment, email me ( or look for the green “available” in the Meebo instant messanger at the right.

Same is true for questions and concerns. We’ll share the experience.

Remember, it doesn’t have to be the freebie starter… that was really for the fun and history of it. Please join us with any starter recipe you can find. I know there is one in the Encyclopedia of Country Living. In the comments below Kaela references a recipe from Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads cookbook. Poke around your favorite recipe site.

Join me Friday afternoon for the 1st edition of the Neighborly Advice weekend magazine.  A few neighbors and I have gotten together to share some beginner articles on backyard livestock, preserving, cooking, baking, knitting, etc.  Join the fun as we challenge you to learn a new skill.

Let’s get sour dough started.

Did you start it?

How’s it going?


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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Good idea.
    Hey, why don’t you start the recipe you have and fill us in.
    I now realize I never encouraged anyone to grab any starter recipe they could find.
    Oops, sorry folks.

  2. Funny, I didn’t know about the freebie (until now!) but I’ve been thinking it’s about time I attempted my own sourdough starter. There are pretty thorough instructions in Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads cookbook; he says just to store the started at “room temperature” between feedings, until you get to the refrigeration stage. Since my house is generally around 65 degrees all winter, and most people consider “room temp” to be around 75 degrees, I tend to store things that need fementing on top of the kitchen cabinets (above the stove, which is often toasty warm) or in the loft at the top of our cottage; it’s dark, but the warmest spot. If you’re really concerned, you could always leave it under an incandescent light somehwere; those give off enough heat to warm up the immediate area a few degrees. From what I understand, things will just happen more slowly if it is colder; doesn’t mean that they won’t happen at all.

    Good luck! Keep us all updated!


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