Sourdough starter baby

Well, tonight is the night when I finally face one of my biggest kitchen challenges and fears: making my own sourdough starter. I’d read about this from Michael Pollan during college, that I could actually make my own starter just from filtered water and all-purpose flour given that there are all kinds of wild yeasts in everything from flour to our hands, but the thought of it kind of scared me. This would actually be a living thing, in my apartment, that would require daily and/or weekly feedings. It seemed like too much maintenance, so I pushed it off “to another time,” I thought then.

Well, “another time” has come, and I’ve started the process tonight. I didn’t have a scale like my bread-making colleagues advised me to get (I mean, Amazon isn’t really prioritizing scale orders now, right, nor is Sur La Table three blocks away considered an “essential business”), but I decided to wing it with my cup measures. If all goes well, I may be giving birth tonight to a new member of our family that will require a weekly feeding and a permanent spot in our refrigerator.

What I really want to make, though, is whole wheat sourdough, and I don’t actually have whole wheat flour. Buying flour online seems to be difficult since most places have seen a surge of demand and many are low in stock. I guess that challenge will need to wait until at least another week once this starter has (fingers crossed) ripened, and I won’t have to wait a ridiculous amount of time at Whole Foods to get whole wheat flour (the other markets around us do not seem to carry it!).

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