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Feed Me!

Yeah, I know that I could have tried to attract wild yeast swirling around in the air and coax them into a friendly, flour and water living environment. But I didn’t. I ordered a starter from the Baker’s Catalogue.
I fed it.
I’m ready.

This is how you know someone is serious about bread baking, because according to the instructions included with it, my starter requires more attention than some of the pets I’ve owned.

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  • Anne
    March 1, 2005

    Oooh, I’m having my first starter in the kitchen right now! I’ve done it from scratch (simply because that’s my only option – no cool catalogues here.) and I’m on day three. Well, it seems to be alive and well – can’t wait to cook with it!
    //Anne in Sweden

  • Nic
    March 1, 2005

    That is really great, Anne. I’m going to try my first loaf in the next day or two. I hope your starter keeps coming along!

  • Andy T
    March 1, 2005

    Do you get the King Arthur Flour baking sheet newsletter? (I’m pretty sure they mention it in the Baker’s Catalogue.)

    My mom works for K.A., and writes for their baking sheet. She mentioned that the next issue (due to hit mailboxes any day now) has lots of sourdough recipes in it (including some of hers).

  • Nic
    March 1, 2005

    Working for K.A. – and writing for the Baking Sheet, no less! – sounds like it must be a great job. I’m jealous! I just recently signed up for the newsletter, so hopefully I’ll get the sourdough one. Can’t wait.

  • Andy T
    March 1, 2005

    Yeah, she loves it. She’s worked all over the place for them — the retail store, the phone order team, the baker’s support line, now writing for the Baking Sheet and traveling with the National Baking class team to Arizona, and has loved every position. I’m jealous of her, too.

    As for the sourdough issue of the newsletter, she said (maybe a week ago) that she’d gotten her copy at work, and that mailed copies would be out late February/early March. My copy hasn’t made it to Florida yet, so there’s a definite possibility you’ll be getting it.

  • emptywheel
    March 9, 2005

    Re Pets and sourdough.

    I harvested a started not long after starting grad school (survived on homemade sourdough for five years). The starter made it through some neglected summers while I was off doing research, a couple of moves, and the addition of a husband. What it didn’t survive was the addition of the dog.

    The dog was in his new-dog stress period and definitely on the look-out for competitors in his new home. So sure enough, the first day the husband (who trained nicely into the sourdough pancake maker role) left the starter too close to the edge. I pretty much felt like my brand new pet ate my long-time pet. Suffice it to say the dog had amazing gas for days. (Some pet people told me after the fact that the big bowl of yeast could have killed the dog, which I guess would have been ironic but doubly sad.)

    I’m currently about 3 years into the second starter though, without any more incidents between the dog and the starter. I’m fairly certain the starter knows it’s not the alpha dog, but it seems to work fine nevertheless.

  • Nic
    March 9, 2005

    Hi Marcy. It’s refershing to hear that your starter is comfortable with its social position in your household. That means that mine won’t be plotting my demise in the foreseeable future.
    And I’m keeping it away from my cats, as exploding and/or unusually gassy pets do not sound plesant.

  • dee
    March 12, 2009

    I am unreliable about renewing my sour dough starter so I always take a small plastic cup and put about 1/2 cup of the fresh starter, after it sits out and gets bubbly, in it and freeze it. Then when it is nice and hard I vacuum pack it with a food saver and store it in the freezer. To renew it take the frozen puck and put it in your sourdough crock and add your water and flour and let sit until defrosted, then stir well and leave out till bubbly. That way I always have extra and can make more with it or give it to a friend. It pretty much keeps forever that way.

  • Gem
    April 4, 2009

    Years ago – (maybe 25)I was living on the Navy Base in PAX River, MD. A neighbor gave me a sourdough starter and a printed sheet of instructions to follow and it included a recipe for Friendship Cake. Oh how the kids and I loved it! Unfortunately,it has been lost over the years with moving, moving, moving ! Anyone out there with it !!!!!?????

  • Dee
    December 13, 2009

    As I recall it had sugar flour yeast and milk or something like that and it was called Amish Friendship bread. I’ll bet you could Google it.

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