Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Rye Bread Experiment - Part 1

My mom is coming for an extended visit in a couple of weeks and has some issues with wheat (and yeast) - not a gluten allergy per se, but something along those lines.
At home she has been able to find a 100% sourdough rye bread at her local store but, even though I haven't really searched too much, I have a feeling it's going to be a little harder to find here in Iowa.
So...I decided to have a go at baking my own.

I have to confess that this is not really "Part 1", since there were 3 or 4 failed attempts at making a starter before I actually got this thing to grow. Operator error - water too cold, room too cold.
When I finally decided to use a thermometer and a scale, things went a lot more smoothly. I used a combination of instructions (and some of my own ideas) for this. We'll see how that works out.

This morning, after a couple of weeks of trial and error, I finally have a starter that seems ready to go.
One last feeding this morning. Tonight I'll start the bread making process.

This is the starter before the feeding. There are two lines on the jar. The bottom line marks where it started at the last feeding and the top line how it doubled since then.
Rye Starter
After this morning's feeding we are at the bottom line again and will, hopefully, be at the top line by tonight. I have two starters going right now because I'm worried that I'll ruin one and have to start over.
Rye Starter
If you're interested in the whole process, there a tons of websites out there explaining it all. It's a, quite confusing, multi-step adventure but, even though I haven't actually gotten to the point of baking a loaf of bread successfully, I feel like I'm getting the hang of the starter part.
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