What is Sourdough?
Sourdough is naturally leavened bread, meaning it does not contain ANY commercial yeast. Instead, it uses a "sourdough starter" which is a mixture of flour, water and all-natural wild yeasts (lactobacillus) and bacteria that live in the air. The lactobacillus produce lactic acid, which in turn gives your bread that slight sour taste. The sour taste can be adjusted by feeding different types of flours and by even extending feeding times. Just remember, sourdough DOESN'T have to taste sour. The role of the sourdough starter is to give your breads and doughs spring, taste and texture!
What ingredients does your Sourdough Starter contain?
The ingredients our starter contains are: Flour, Water, wild yeast from the air. MAY CONTAIN traces of RYE flour, barley, oat, mustard, soy as per the bread flour we use to maintain our heirloom starter.
Will the starter only make 1 recipe?
No! Your starter, if maintained with our instructions will last you for years to come, creating a plethora of goods. The key to sourdough starter is to always have some left in the jar to feed again, to start the process over. You'll be able to create breads, cookies, cakes, biscuits, pancakes, waffles, cinnamon buns and more. The sky is the limit.
How do I rehydrate the Summit Sourdough culture?
When you order our starter, you'll receive detailed instructions on how to rehydrate the starter. To start the process you'll need a 1L jar, flour, water and a kitchen scale (for day 7 and on). The process will take you 7 or 8 days to have a fully functioning and active starter to bake with.
Do I have to feed it everyday?
Yes, your starter will perform it's best if you feed it every 24-36 hours, once it's been rehydrated. During the rehydrating process you will be required to do small tasks everyday. As such, we know that is not always possible especially when life gets in the way. We have included in our instructions a way to safely put your starter in the fridge so that it will be ready for you on your next baking project. Please see page 2 under step 2 on how to maintain your starter for further details.
Do you have a gluten free Sourdough Starter?
At this time, Summit Sourdough is not gluten free. We could feed it with a gluten free flour, but we could never guarantee after 500 discard and feeds that it would ever be considered fully gluten free. As such, it's been eating gluten for over 100 years.
I made my own Sourdough Starter, what is the advantage to using your 125 year old one instead?
Using a starter that is mature is a wonderful way to jump right into baking success. Homemade starters do not have the activity or strength to reliably raise your breads, they also lack flavor. When making your own starter, it often takes months of work before you can expect to see sub-par results. When purchasing an established culture all you need to do is rehydrate it, and you're on your way to making amazing bread. No waiting - our starter is active and full of flavour!
I'm working through the rehydrating process and my starter is about to blow over my jar. What should I do?
If your starter is close to exploding over the top of the jar feel free to use a rubber spatula to mix it down. Stirring it to knock the air out will cause the starter to deflate down to about where the elastic is. Keep in mind, that your starter will continue to grow until it's done feeding on the flour. This can typically last anywhere from 6 to 12 hours depending on the environment in your house. I only suggest doing this during the rehydration process, as when this happens after your starter is fully rehydrated, it means you need to get mixing your recipe! Because so, I suggest you keep your starter jar on a plate to catch any overflow. This though, is a coveted right of passage in the sourdough world, to have a starter so active it blows over the top of your jar. Expect that with Summit Sourdough.