- 2 cups sprouted rye flour mixed with 2 cups of filtered water you want to use non–chlorinated, non–florinated water (reverse osmosis), but not dead water (distilled).
- Mix well in a large bowl (needs to hold at least 1 gallon ), cover with a thin tea towel or cheesecloth and place on your back porch, balcony or some other safe place outdoors.
- Leave for 24 hours. Bring your starter in, pour it into a clean bowl (same size) and add 1 cup of sprouted rye flour and 1 cup of filtered water.
- Cover and outdoors it goes again. Repeat the transferring to a clean bowl and feeding process for at least 5 days, but up to 7 days (I fed my first starter for 7 days, my subsequent starter for 5 days).
- Your starter will begin to bubble between days 2–3 and take on a pleasing wine aroma by day 5–6.
- You can also make your starter with sprouted wheat or spelt flour. I discovered that my wheat starter was not quite as active as my rye starter and I haven’t tried spelt yet.
- A recipe is a guideline at best for me so I haven’t really measured how much flour I’ve used in a recipe yet. I promise to get better at this because I know many of you like to be precise.
- Remove a pint of your starter (You can start the feeding process over at this point by adding 1 cup each of flour and filtered water to the pint of starter, or you can put the pint of starter in the refrigerator until you get ready to feed it again for further bread making).
- Place the remainder of starter in a clean bowl. Add 1 cup of filtered water to it, 5–7 cups of sprouted flour (I use sprouted wheat flour ) and 2 tablespoons of salt.
- Mix until your dough is thick enough to get your hands in it and knead for 7–10 minutes.
- Once your dough has been kneaded enough it will take on an elasticity. It will not be as glossy as a regular flour bread dough, but the elasticity will be evident.
- Let your dough rest for about 5–10 minutes. Cut it into 2 pieces and shape it to fit 2 buttered bread pans (I use ceramic breads pans by Emile Henry).
- Brush tops with olive oil, cover pans loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise (I usually leave overnight for convenience, but the rising process may take only 4-6 hours depending on the temperature in your home).
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees for at least 30 minutes before baking. Place your pans on a granite or pizza stone in the bottom of your oven, or place on a rack in the lowest position of your oven, and bake for about 1 hour.
- Remove bread from pans immediately after taking them from your oven. Let loaves cool on cooling rack before slicing.
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