Happy 2020 from Twice as Tasty! January is Sourdough Month here on the blog. The Sourdough Giveaway Experiment has been so successful over the last 2 years that I’ve made it an annual event. I’ll be giving away sourdough starter through January 31, 2020.
There’s even more reason to get your free starter this year: later this month, I’ll be launching a Twice as Tasty Challenge for newsletter subscribers. All you have to do to participate in the challenge is to subscribe here to the monthly newsletter. Details on the challenge will be sent to you later this month. And although you don’t have to be baking with sourdough to participate, you’ll have more fun and be more involved in this food community if you do!
I’ve long believed that everyone should have a sourdough starter in their kitchen. Homemade bread, particularly long-fermented sourdough, tops commercially processed products in texture, flavor, and even health. I’ve been learning more about the health component in recent months. Friends stuck on a low FODMAP diet have reported that they’ve successfully returned to eating bread products if they’re made using sourdough starter and a long fermentation process. Others with gluten intolerance have reported that they can happily eat sourdough-blended recipes for similar reasons.
Although these experiences are anecdotal (and I will always recommend that people with health issues discuss such diet changes with their doctor or nutritionist), they have not only reaffirmed my faith in homemade, long-fermented sourdough but also inspired me to learn more about gluten. I’ve started to experiment with a gluten-free starter, and after tasting the delicious long-ferment einkorn loaf from Tabor Bread in Portland, Oregon, I’m preparing to learn more about using this ancient grain.
Baking with sourdough may seem daunting, but I’ve found it quickly becomes routine: You just have to get in the habit of using your starter. A starter thrives on being fed and divided or used. It wants to be shared—whether you pass along jars of starter or bake regularly enough to share your creations. That’s why I started giving away my starter.
About My Starter
My original sourdough starter was a gift, and it’s been going strong since May 2014. It’s a 100% hydration, wheat-based starter (I feed it with primarily all-purpose flour and occasionally a little rye or whole wheat). I use it to make all of the sourdough recipes on the blog.
Anyone who hosts or attends one of my sourdough workshops receives an active, ready-to-use jar of my starter. In 2017, I also began dehydrating my starter so that I could ship it anywhere in the world. I’ll be sending out starter again all of this month. If you request a free packet of my sourdough starter, it will arrive securely packaged in a padded envelope, along with instructions for waking it up. You simply pay the packaging and shipping costs using one of the methods indicated on the giveaway form.
I’ll be giving away sourdough starter all month. Here’s how you can get free sourdough starter:
- Sign up. Click here to join the 3rd Annual Sourdough Giveaway. Follow the instructions on the form to receive a packet of starter.
- Get started. Your new starter packet will come with instructions for activating it, along with other details to help you start caring for and using your starter.
- Share your creations. Share your successes and ask any questions in the comment section of any Twice as Tasty sourdough recipe. You can show us your creations too! If you share a photo on Instagram, tag it @twiceastastyblog and #twiceastastyblog.
The giveaway ends January 31, 2020, so be sure to sign up before the end of the month.
To really learn the ins and outs of baking with sourdough, meet me in person for a Twice as Tasty workshop. For a sourdough workshop, I come to your home and teach you and your friends how to bake successfully the first time you use your starter.
To schedule your workshop, simply contact me.
If you’re more of a self-starter (pun intended), Twice as Tasty has everything you need to get started with sourdough and successfully make breads and other recipes. Whether you are new to sourdough baking or are returning to brush up on forgotten techniques, I recommend starting with easier recipes before jumping into your first loaf of bread. This gives you a chance to get to know your new starter and how it will behave in your kitchen. Although you don’t have to try a recipe from each category listed here, doing so will give you more confidence as you form your first loaf:
- Quick bakes: Start with Sourdough Pancakes, Sourdough Waffles, or Low-Gluten Sourdough Naan.
- Low-knead flatbreads: Move on to Sourdough Pizza Dough, Stuffed and Grilled Breadsticks, Sourdough Calzones, or Sourdough Empanadas.
- Puffed breads: Test your baking skills, and your starter, but trying Sourdough Pita Bread, Sourdough Brioche Dough, or Sourdough English Muffins.
- Free-form loaves: You’re ready to make bread! Choose from Sourdough Cabin Bread or Sourdough Rye Bread for your first loaf.
I’ll be adding a new set of sourdough recipes this month that feature new techniques for specialty breads. So keep your eye on the blog this month to expand your sourdough world. And don’t forget to sign up for the monthly newsletter so that you can share your progress in the Twice as Tasty Challenge!