My husband got excited about sourdough started last week. We have a little yeast, so we used that for our first room temp starter. In a large bowl:
1 env. active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
1 cup water
1 cup flour
1 tsp sugar
Cover with a cloth (cheese cloth but we used a terry cloth towel (You can also make starter with no yeast, but it can take a few days to get where we got in 12 hours, which is bubbly and doubled in volume.)
When bubbly, begin feeding by dividing the starter into a 1/2 cup portion and the rest. The rest goes in a second large bowl in the fridge and is the reserve. The 1/2 cup portion goes back in the bowl with a new cup of water and flour, and should be fed twice a day.
The second bowl in the fridge should be stirred every time you add to it, and also fed a cup of water and flour once a week. When you have over 3 cups of reserve, you can take some to make bread.
Stir the reserve before measuring out 3 cups.
* Stir in 2 cups of flour. It should be a loose but “hairy” ball of flour.
Knead in 1/2 cup additional flour, 100 strokes by hand or 5 min with a KitchenAid on low speed. It should now be a smooth, elastic ball.
Cover and let rise until double. Room temp starter could still take 3 hours, refrigerated will take at least 4. Time could be shortened with gentle heat (such as a oven pre warmed to 170 F), but careful not to kill it.
Give the dough a few folds (or punch it if you must). Let rest 10 minutes (this allows the gluten to relax again).
Shape as desired. For a basic loaf I fold it in thirds like a letter, then turn it 90 degrees and roll it tight like a sleeping bag.
Cover and allow to double in size again. It will probably take as long as the first rising, but if you’re able to check hourly that would be best.
Bake at 350 for 35 minutes for a loaf of bread, 375 for 20-25 minutes for rolls, and 400 for 15 minutes for PIZZA
We don’t need salt in ours but if you you wish, you can add 2 tsp salt and 2 Tbsp flour at the *Stir step.
My next experiment will be making starter with no yeast with gentle heat.