As promised here’s a little update on my sourdough experiment.
To tell you the truth, I thought I killed my starter. It was going so well! But then, my 2 year old got sick…and then I got sick…not fun. So the sourdough starter got…neglected. As in, sitting in the fridge and not fed for over a week. The horror! I had read enough to know that you can usually keep sourdough starter in the fridge and feed it about once or twice a week to keep it healthy…i.e. whisk in 1/3 cup each of flour and water. Well, that totally didn’t happen. I didn’t do anything with that little jar of sourdough goodness for over a week. So when I took it out of the fridge to see what I had to work with, I wasn’t holding my breath. Here’s what I found,
See that line of dark liquid?? This apparently indicates that either too much water has been added, or that the starter has been left unfed for too long…Yup. I decided to pour it off, bring it to room temperature and feed it again. Just to see what would happen. After two days of feeding (once a day), this is what I woke up to,
The sourdough gods were smiling down on me! It was saved! Or so it would seem, right? It smelled pleasently sour and yeasty, and it was practically foamy! But still the question remained, how would it perform in a recipe?
Most recipes I found required you to mix up a dough and let it sit overnight. I fed my starter in the morning, like normal and planned on preparing the dough that night to make bread the next day…by lunch time the starter was overflowing! I think its safe to say it was active! So I decided it was the perfect time to try out sourdough pancakes. It didn’t require any resting time and it would use up a cup of my highly active starter. (I am testing out some sourdough bread recipes, so keep an eye out for that)
I found a recipe in an old copy of The Encyclopedia of County Living. And let me just say, if you’re looking for a laugh, open up that book and just skim through the illustrations! Too funny! Hilarious illustrations aside, the pancakes turned out great. They didn’t turn out as fluffy as a regular pancake but they had a very mild sourdough flavor and were really tasty. My kids were begging for more – they devoured them! That’s a sign of a great recipe, am I right?
So the moral of the story is, go make a sourdough starter! Even if you mess up, you’ll likely be able to save it. It seems sourdough starters are pretty forgiving. And make delightful pancakes.
Adapted from The Encyclopedia of Country Living: 9th Edition
1 cup Sourdough Starter
1 cup flour
1 egg, beaten
1/2 Tb honey
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tb butter, melted
Milk (enough to make a pourable batter – approximately 1/2 cup)
1 Tsp baking soda
Mix the first 6 ingredients plus enough milk to make a pourable batter. It will vary depending on how thick your starter is. Add in baking soda and mix well. Let batter rest a few minutes, then fry pancakes on a griddle or pan at medium heat. Flip when bubbles have begun to pop and the edges of the pancakes are set. Then serve them up with your favorite toppings, and enjoy!