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Fun Food: Sourdough Starter

Don't have yeast? Here's a way that the pioneers, and even into today's modern era, created leavened bread. Its mentioned in Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder and several other books. Great activity for a literature unit, or a science compare/contrast experiment.

Ingredients:

3 c. all-purpose flour
1 pkg. active dry yeast
2 1/2 c. lukewarm water (110 to 115 degrees)


Directions:

1. Starting a day ahead, place the flour in a large mixing bowl.

2. Make a well in the center of the flour and pour in the yeast and water.

3. With a large spoon, gradually stir the flour into the yeast and water, continuing to stir until the ingredients are well combined.

4. With a whisk or a rotary or electric beater, beat vigorously until the mixture is completely smooth.

5. Drape with a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm, draft free spot (such as an unlighted oven) for 24 hours. If at the end of this time the starter has not bubbled, it must be discarded.

6. After you have used as much of the starter as you need, transfer the remaining starter to a glass jar or crock equipped with a tight fitting lid.

Covered and refrigerated, it can be stored for several weeks. If used regularly, it may keep indefinitely. Makes about 4 cups.

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