Sourdough Starter Recipe:
- 6 tablespoons instant mashed potato flakes
- 6 tablespoons white sugar
- 2 cup warm water
- 4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- Mix the Ingredients together (instant potatoes, sugar, water, and yeast) into a covered container. A small crock with a lid will work but any enameled or glazed container will do. Note: Do not place in a metal container.
- Let the starter sit on the kitchen counter for 5 days at room temperature. Stir once daily with a wood spoon.
- On the fifth day, feed the starter with 3 tablespoons instant potatoes, 3 tablespoons sugar, and 1 cup warm water.
- After feeding on the fifth day, your starter will be ready for use about six hours after the feeding.
- Remove, 1 cup of the starter to use in any sourdough recipe.
- Refrigerate the remaining starter.
- Every five days, feed the starter again with 3 tablespoons instant potatoes, 3 tablespoons sugar and 1 cup water. Note: Always remove 1 cup of starter and feed for each use. Let starter rest at room temperature 6 hours before use. If starter is not being used in a recipe, keep refrigerated and discard 1 cup of starter after each feeding.
Another sourdough starter recipe using flour just like Cookie did on the Chuckwagon:
- Blend a cup of warm water and a cup of flour,
- Pour content into a glass jar. That's it. Simple right. You will not need to add yeast. Place starter at room temperature, 70 - 80 degrees (f) Fahrenheit.This allows yeast that already is in the flour combined with the air to grow. Allow to stand for three to four days then feed the starter. Cookie kept his starter sometimes wrapped with a wet towel and stored in the pantry box of the Chuckwagon to prevent the starter being in direct sun light or reach temperatures over 100 degrees (f). In cooler weather, he would keep wrapped in a dry towel and sometimes near his body to keep the temperature warm.
- Every 3-4 days Feed the Starter and after each use. To feed the starter, first remove half of the starter content and discard. Second, add half cup of flour with half cup water and mix with the remaining starter. Do this every three to four days until your starter begins getting little bubbles throughout the mix. It will vary as to humidity, temperature and may take one feeding or several. It will take on a sour smell much like aged beer. The starter may puff up too, which is very good. Once it has developed the bubble froth, it's done and ready to use. Once the started is ready, you will need to store in the refrigerator.
- Refrigerate the Starter. Keep the starter in refrigerated. At this time, the storage container must allow the sourdough starter to breath. If using a large mouth mason jar, a plastic or glass jar, the lid must remain slightly open, or cover with a cheese cloth or punch holes into the lid to allow for breathing. Once chilled, feed the starter weekly or upon each use.
- Note: If you do not use the start, you will need to feed weekly. A great way to make friends is remove what would be discarded and share with a neighbor or friend with one of your favorite recipes.
- What's this liquid: Sometimes a liquid builds up in your starter mix once refrigerated. That's OK. Sometimes this liquid may be dark in color and smells like a strong beer. Well, it is. Either pour off of stir back into the mix as it will not hurt anything.
- Using the Starter: Remove the starter mix from the refrigerator for any recipe you plan to make: (Bread, Pan De Campo, Biscuits, Sourdough Pancakes, etc) about 4-6 hours before use.
- Place all the starter mix into a mixing bowl and feed with (1) cup of flour and (1) cup of warm water. Allowed to stand.
- Clean starter storage container. Hot water and soap and wash clean. You can even boil after it is clean, then dry off completely and allow to sit until you place starter back into storage for refrigeration.
- Watch for a white froth bubble content of the starter. When you see this, it's ready to use. However, the longer allowed to sit, the stronger the flavor of sourdough will be present when baking. Times again vary and may react sooner as the dough is fermenting.
- Note: If you plan to use first thing in the morning, let sit out the night before:
David Parks, Chuckwagon Chef, King Ranch, Texas
during the November 2009