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Sourdough Bread (using homemade starter)
Making sourdough bread is long term commitment but the great flavor is the pay-back!
1 hour, 45 minutes
35 to 40 minutes
1-1/2 cups sourdough starter
4 to 5-1/4 cups bread OR all-purpose flour* (may also substitute up to 2 cups with whole wheat flour)
1 (2-1/4 tsp.) envelope Fleischmann's® Active Dry Yeast
OR Fleischmann's® RapidRise Yeast
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup water
Stir sourdough starter before measuring. Measure out 1-1/2 cups sourdough starter and bring to room temperature.
Active Dry Yeast method: Combine 2 cups flour and salt in a large mixer bowl. Combine yeast and 1 cup warm water (100° to 110°F) in a small bowl for 10 minutes. Add yeast and starter to flour mixture, beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat 2 minutes at high speed. With spoon, stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth, about 8 to 10 minutes. Place in greased bowl, turning once to coat top. Cover; let rise in warm draft-free place until doubled in size, 30 to 60 minutes. Punch dough down. Proceed with shaping and baking directions below.
RapidRise Yeast method**: Combine 2 cups flour, undissolved yeast and salt in a large mixer bowl. Add water (120° to 130°F) and starter to flour mixture; beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat 2 minutes at high speed. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth, about 8 to 10 minutes. Cover dough and let rest 10 minutes.
Shaping and Baking – Both Methods: Remove dough to lightly floured surface, divide in half. Roll each half to 12 X 9-inch rectangle. Beginning at long end, roll up tightly. Pinch seams and ends to seal. Taper ends by gently rolling back and forth. Place, seam sides down, on a large greased baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover; let rise in warm draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 to 45 minutes.
With sharp knife, make 4 or 5 diagonal slashes (1/2-inch deep) across top of each loaf. Bake at 400°F for 35 to 40 minutes or until done. For crispy crust, spray loaves with water just before baking and every 5 minutes during the first 10 minutes of baking time. Remove from baking sheet; let cool on wire rack.
*The amount of flour needed varies according to the consistency of the starter.
**While RapidRise Yeast can be successfully used, for best sourdough flavor, we recommend using
Active Dry Yeast for this recipe.
TO MAKE ROUND LOAVES: Divide dough in half. Shape each half into 5-inch ball. Place on large greased baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 to 40 minutes. With sharp knife, make 4 slashes (1/2-inch deep) in crisscross fashion on top of each loaf. Spray with water and bake as directed.
VARIATION: Replace 3/4 cup water with 3/4 cup plain yogurt, buttermilk, or flat beer.
NOTE: To achieve a stronger sourdough flavor, allow sourdough starter to ferment 4 to 6 weeks.