As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.
This is additional information concerning sourdough, as the old Canadian who provided this recipe, was teaching a big city woman how to make the loaves and told her this:
"Just knock it together quick. You women fuss with things too much."
I honestly tried to follow the Canuck's advice, as I did understand that this bread is a chemical reaction and not a yeast reaction, but while I obtained nice loaves, many times they were dry and very hard to cut.
As I baked enough of these loaves, I noticed that some of them rose or puffed up quickly while others did not. This was due to the baking soda and acid sourdough producing a gas which is the leavening agent. When I tried to let them rise further, they would not over several hours and sometimes started falling......and that is the mistake I was making in this and what the Canuck was getting at.
He never said that with sourdough you bake the loaves almost immediately. You knock them together fast, meaning you do not over knead them, so the gases escape in the chemical reaction. In all dough, a little wetter the dough the easier it is for the dough to rise. Sourdough is like that. You do not want sticky, but a damper loaf is better for the quick rise it requires.
I form my loaves in as quick as I can put them together. Put parchment paper onto the baking pans, as this acidic dough sticks, let them puff up and bake them, because if I wait hours, the gases escape and the loaves are more like bricks than bread.
These loaves then which take about 50 minutes to bake, are moist, cut a bit easier, and taste better, than the drier loaves.
I have never had a sourdough loaf get mold on it. I keep them in the fridge in the crisper drawer, an we usually eat them for breakfast with eggs and bacon, just reheated in the microwave for a minute in 3 slices and then buttered.
I have had no reactions from this in allergies. The grain actually breaks down and converts to a more absorbable food due to the fermentation action. The "mother" that I have in the starter does a slow ferment, and as long as I do not fill the gallon glass jar too full, there is never a problem with it boiling over.
I just stir it up, to put the wine back into the dough, pour out 3 cups, into a half cup sugar and a teaspoon of salt.........add 3 cups of unbleached flour, and a 4th cup with a teaspoon of soda, to delay the reaction to the last in the rising.
I feed the "mother" with enough sugar to form about an egg yolk size island in the starter, and then usually put in 4 cups whole wheat flour with 4 cups water. You will get that figured out, as due to humidity in the air it will be a soup sometimes and sometimes it will be too stiff of dough.....you will see what you need in regulating the water.
As people are lazy and will not look up the starter, I started mine out with whole wheat flour in 4 cups, 4 cups very warm water and a tablespoon of sugar, in a gallon glass jar which was covered.
I make 2 loaves as I am lazy or frugle in I do not want to be baking bread every week, so I have a jar almost full, and you leave in it, the remaining starter, feed it with the above, and let it work for a week or two until you need it again.
The secret of sourdough is to hand mix it fast in not overworking it, get it into pan in a warm location, and let the gas be captured in this dough to make it rise, and then bake it within a half hour. It will expand some on baking and then you just flip it out, pull off the parchment paper so you do not get burned, and voila you have gold miner and trapper bread.
Real sourdough has it's own unique chemistry, in I think it is like French cheese as each batch has it's own natural yeasts which it blends. Our mother as of late has been a more a sweet than sour, with a wine flavor.
The sourdoughs used to never throw food away, and always fed their mother old pancakes and bread, but that can get it too volcanic as you are adding milk, eggs, grease and who knows what else, so I just stick to the wholewheat and sugar, and it behaves.
I will add one thing in this. Do not use King Arthur flour ever. My reason for saying that is I ordered from them a flavoring once, the charged me like 11 dollars shipping, for an ounce bottle, and then took 2 weeks to deliver it.......which as I wanted it for my birthday and the flavoring did not come, it ruined things in the cake I was making.
When I complained, they never offered a coupon or anything, but a big F*CK OFF. So I tell everyone what bastards King Arthur is in not giving a damn about consumers or making things right in their being a**holes, and tell people to purchase another flour which is superior as the other companies usually are in wheat growing country.
See a simple coupon would have had me praising King Arthur, instead of posting again what jerks they are, which ruins their business from stealing from poor people like me.