Sourdough addiction

We have been sourdough addicts for a year or so now. On Tuesday in Sweden, I got chatting to a lady whose sourdough starter came from Calabria in the south of Italy several generations ago. She kindly gave me some in a muslin bag which I managed to bring home despite airport security.[I mention this because my camera was swabbed for explosive at Birmingham airport on the outward journey and sourdough starter could be mistaken for explosives!]


This is the first result, made after two days of refreshment of the starter and an overnight rising in the airing cupboard. Totally addictive!!

  • mystuart 4y

    I just LOVE this, Drew--both the bread and the story! Wonderful!
    May you steward it well (and enjoy it, of course!)--doubtless it will change over time in your house and environment and become something once again slightly different. . . . those yeasts are never static, do you think?
    Seen in my contacts' photos. (?)
  • ian bower 4y

    looks very good shame that cant get bread that good locally
  • kate&drew 4y

    Melinda - I get nervous about losing a starter so keep various parts of it around the house in various conditions and temperatures. This Italian/Swedish starter is a sort of dry powder so I'm keeping it in an air-tight jar. The starter I made a year or so ago is much more liquid, though thicker than batter. Some sits quietly in the fridge as a back-up; the rest is kept at room temperature in the kitchen or warmer in the airing cupboard.

    Ian - there is a good (tiny) bread shop at the Snow Hill end of the Great Western Arcade in Birmingham City Centre. Well worth a visit if you're in the area.
  • Cosygreeneyes (Steve & Karen) 4y

    This looks wonderful - & I like your 'smuggling'. I really must try using a starter for bread - just need to get more organised & find some space in the airing cupboard......K
  • John Garghan 4y

  • mystuart 4y

    Drew--thanks for the above remarks, which I just found.
    I thought of your Swedish recipe as I made this--to the extent of keeping it going for well more than one day--adding and stirring as I went. Such fun to watch the yeast growing. As to the top-slashes--I find that having a dense dough, rather than one too light (mostly white flour), leads to success--for me, anyhow. When the dough is very light and puffy, the slash doesn't work very neatly, but when it is denser (1/3-1/2 rye/wholewheat), it seems to work.
  • Pippa Curran 1y

    Hi! I know this is kind of an old thread, but I'm hoping you'll get the message anyway! That's a beautiful sourdough bread! As someone who has recently become obsessed with sourdough, I can certainly appreciate it! I was wondering if you have any suggestions regarding finding these old heritage sourdough starters?!? I've found a couple, so far, but like I said... I'm obsessed! LOL! I just finished creating my very first wild-crafted sourdough starters for both Herman/Amish Friendship Cake and regular sourdough! Both were a great success!! So, I now have a "Taste of Brooklyn" happily brewing away in my kitchen! I made my first loaf of Friendship bread last week and it was INCREDIBLE! I've dated the starter and I plan to write up a bit of the story that goes along with how & why I started it so I can pass it on to friends, family, and other enthusiasts! I love the idea of continuity and history, and sourdough starters with strong stories are awesome! So, I'd LOVE the opportunity to keep them going! Any guidance would be greatly appreciated! And well done! :-D
  • kate&drew 1y

    Hi Pippa. Thanks for your comments. It was quite by chance that I got some of this starter. Some would argue that by now any traces of its Calabrian origins would have been totally lost by now. They may well be right but, like you, I'm a devotee of the traditional aspects of it. My other starter has been going for 2-3 years now, a mere youngster, and just happily sits in a jar in the fridge. I've just turned some of it into a rye starter and made a lovely rye bread in the Swedish style. Good luck with your baking! Drew.
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Taken on October 23, 2011
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