Homemade bread without commercial yeast is possible.
Very possible! As a matter of fact, it’s been done for centuries without the help of “rapid rise” yeast. All you have to do is capture the wild yeast in the air around you, and create a sourdough starter.
Yes, there is yeast all around you, and you can capture it and make your own bread and bread products with it! It’s called sourdough! And, it’s so simple to do for yourself, you’ll wonder why you didn’t try it before! Plus, the act of “fermenting” or souring the dough helps to make the doughs and breads easier to digest and the added sour taste is very pleasant.
All you gotta do is start with equal parts of water an flour.
They are “best” measured by weight, versus volume. So, instead of adding 1/4 cup of flour and water, I use 28-30 grams of each measured by weight. This will help get a more consistent bread baking in the future.
If you have city water that has flouride or chlorine in it, you’ll want to use filtered water, or leave it out for 24 hours to allow the chlorine to evaporate. These chemicals can kill of the natural yeasts. Just take a wide mouth jar, or other glass vessel and add the flour and water. I’ve heard that metal can interact with the yeasts and plastic can leach into the starter. I honestly don’t know much about that, but better safe than sorry, right?
With a wooden spoon or fork, stir like crazy, and get some air into the mixture. Cover loosely with a cheesecloth, or natural coffee filter. I add a canning band to keep the filter in place, and to keep bugs out.
Add in new flour and water and mix it every day for about 3-4 days. However, after the second day, you’ll want to remove about 1/4 of the mixture before adding fresh flour. This will help your starter mature faster.
And that’s a sign that it’s working!
Your starter will often need 11-14 days of feeding to be ready for use in all sorts of applications, breads, rolls, crusts and even cake! This is so that it is fully strong and mature and gives you a proper bread rising. It’s really worth the wait on this, trust me! So, get your sourdough starter going and join us for some recipes and fun things to do with it!
Have you made a sourdough starter? What is your favorite thing to use it for? Be sure to pin this for later!
Heather’s homesteading journey started in 2006, with baby steps: first, she got a few raised beds, some chickens, and rabbits. Over the years, she amassed a wealth of homesteading knowledge, knowledge that you can find in the articles of this blog.