Saturday 15 December 2018

The Third D.I.Y of Christmas - A 3 Day Sourdough Starter

This is a Gluten Free Fail-Safe Sourdough Starter. Strictly speaking this is a cheats' method, as I use a pinch of yeast and milk just to get the right kind of lactobacteria started.

Gluten free sourdough - Our Handmade Home

Since being diagnosed coeliac I have really struggled with the texture of Gluten-free bread products - Especially pizza and naan bread, where the chewiness is quite important to the enjoyment. Gluten-free flour has no, well, no gluten in it, so it lacks the spring and thus, chewiness that comes with a wheat flour. The sourdough replaces this springy texture perfectly.

A few binned attempts at coeliac friendly sourdough and I discovered this method in an old Nigella Lawson book. My main alteration is the use of rice flour instead of rye flour. I don't know why rice flour works and other GF flours don't, but having spent megabucks on other attempts just trust me on this... it works.

Gluten free sourdough rice flour - Our Handmade Home

You need:
150g rice flour (available in large supermarkets or online)
200ml warm water
1/2 tsp milk
pinch of instant yeast

STEP 1 - Put everything in a bowl and whisk it all together.

Gluten free sourdough mix - Our Handmade Home

STEP 2 - Cover the bowl with a lid (or clingfilm) and leave for 3 days - it should buble away nicely and smell a bit like natural yogurt.

STEP 3 - (make sure you wait 3 days) Use 1/2 cup of the starter to make something yummy.

STEP 4 - Pour the remaining mixture into a jar and 'feed' it regularly with equal parts rice flour and water.

Coeliac sourdough - Our Handmade Home

Theoretically your starter can live forever, as long as it is fed regularly, the flavour and smell improve with age. Try to use it every day or 2 and always replenish what you have taken out. If any runny stuff appears on top just pour the liquid off and 'feed' as usual. If you prefer you can keep it in the fridge and feed it only once a week.

Uses for your sourdough -
I use it mostly for pizza (click here for my pizza base recipe) and pancakes, I just add a 1/4 cup of starter to my regular batter/dough. However I have also used it for naan, gingerbread and regular little buns and loaves.

Total Time - 3 days
Total Cost - £2 ish (for the rice flour)
Total Christmassy Rating - 2/10 - which is a bit lame for the 12 D.I.Ys ... but when you consider sourdough pancakes on Christmas morning, its an easy 8/10

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