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Simple Sourdough Bread, Step by Step

Sourdough has my heart --- the dense chewy texture inside and the crispy crusty outside...what's not to love?!? As with half of America, I think, I started my sourdough journey during quarantine. We have been big fans for a long time -- Matt and all our girls love it too -- but we just purchased loaves or hoped his mom would bring some when she came to visit! Then, during quarantine when I was trying out lots of bread recipes I started to try my own starters as well. (They didn't go well for me -- I'm blaming the lack of unbleached flour in the stores and not the baker!) I might revisit this and start a batch again from a recipe a homesteader I follow uses --- just haven't quite committed yet. Because it is a commitment! Eventually, I made all other things bread -- threw out the starters and waited. After things settled down, I ordered starter from King Aurthur Baking and tried again. It was love at first bite. LOL --- ok, so the first ones weren't very "sourdough-y" at all and we kept up on it and increased the flavor...but man -- it was the texture that we crave!

Word on the street ( ok, from my daughter whose friends have mastered sourdough) is that I don't tend to my starter enough and knead the dough enough to develop the perfect flavor. And, they are probably right! But knowing that and fixing that are two different things -- and I love things a little easier than raising a sourdough starter as a beloved child. Hahaha --- but for real! Enter the flavor enhancer ( picture shared) that I also purchased from King Arthur recently. All the flavor and scent that we were craving to go with the texture that we already loved! Yep -- it's cheating. Yep -- my tastebuds don't care that I'm cheating! Yep -- my kitchen smells AMAZING on baking day! ️

So -- here are a couple of pictures -- starter, dough mixed, bread ready to bake and bread right out of the oven. And, of course, bread made into grilled cheese sandwiches for mom and I's lunch! I like to bake the bread in one of my Pampered Chef Pie Stones --- love the shape of the loaves -- and it is so stinking pretty! And sometimes the joy in the kitchen can be found not only in the finished product but in the little pretty things along the way!

Let me know what you think -- and if you have a "perfect starter" and want to share with a gal --- I'm all in!


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