Friday, 6 May 2011

Project Sourdough

For reasons still unexplained, around three weeks ago I was consumed by the insatiable urge to make my own sourdough. I'm laying most of the blame at the door of the lovely new blog I've discovered Cityhippyfarmgirl.

Doing some research a few things quickly became obvious.
1. There are a lot of different methods out there.
2. Making your own starter and breads uses masses of flour.
3. Flour is very expensive in the supermarkets.
4. The whole process takes A LOT of time!

I decided that while I was starting out I needed to choose a method and stick with it. At least until I have enough experience to know what I am doing. Living not too far from Surry Hills, it seemed rude not to go with the Bourke St Bakery method. The book was a third of the price in the UK so I ordered it from there!

Next up was the problem of the flour. A quick exchange of comments with Cityhippyfarmgirl took me to Harkola in Auburn to buy 12.5kg of Manildra flour $13. What a bargain! It nearly broke my back carrying it back to the station. Why is my car on the wrong continent?

Solving the first three problems so quickly isn't bad. I'm sure there will be many more to come.

However, the problem of time is still vexing me. I'm planning another blog post before I start baking and hoping for a bit of help from the blog-o-sphere!

To give myself something to ponder I bought a loaf of Bourke St Bakery sourdough on the weekend. A high standard to live up to!


  1. Love it Ritchie. Curious whether the oven will also play a part in this process. Have you read anything?

  2. From the reading I've done the oven plays a big part. But as I only have one to choose from I'm going to try and not worry about it!

    The oven on max (sounds high to me?) and a pizza stone seem to be the way to go.

    Controlling the heat and humidity during proving also gets a lot of mentions. Haven't decided what I'm going to do there either yet...

  3. Good luck Rich! Looking forward to seeing your progress. Might have to ask for a bit of starter from you if you suceed to save myself the time =p

  4. Your welcome to some if it is any good!

  5. Horray! That is super exciting! The sourdough beast is emerging :-)
    This weather is going to slow things down a whole lot, which may extend your bread making times, unless you have a very warm kitchen or other hidey hole. I'm impressed you lugged 12.5 kilos of flour on a train too.
    The oven, just play. I bake mine at 240C, I find bumped up to the hottest temp is just too hot, also depends on the look you are going for.
    Have you visited Iggy's Bread in either Bronte or Bondi? *sigh* that's what I'm aiming for one day...
    Good luck! Will be reading with interest :-)