Ever since last autumn, when I managed to get sourdough starter going, we have been eating homemade whole wheat sourdough bread. The starter has matured to a distinct tanginess. It makes a rather heavy, firm loaf, perfect for cold weather, but now that summer’s here, my palate longs for the lighter texture of bread made with commercial yeast.
I had thought that sourdough starter belonged in the use it or lose it category, but maybe, I thought, it could be suspended and then revived when cold weather comes around again. There were two options– freezing and drying. I decided to try both.
Yesterday, after baking a loaf of sourdough, I fed the starter water and flour as usual. Once it was bubbling nicely, I poured about 2/3 of a cup of starter into a one-cup Tupperware container, labeled it, and stuck it in the freezer.
Later in the afternoon, I spread a thin layer of starter on a sheet of parchment paper and put it in the oven with the light on.
This morning it was shrunken and dried.
The dried starter flaked off the parchment paper in sheets.
The rolling pin and a little elbow grease reduced the big flakes to tiny flakes.
The end result is a tiny bag of desiccated starter that I hope to revive next October when the first frost comes.
In the meantime, we’re going light, taking a break from sourdough.
Copyright 2014 by Shirley Domer