Sourdough starter raring to go.
Sourdough isn’t so much a type of bread, but a method of getting the bread to rise – natural leavening, instead of using commercially produced bakers’ yeast. It’s the way bread was made for thousands of years before the discovery of a way to manufacture yeast industrially. The basis of sourdough bread is a sourdough starter or culture which is made from flour and water. Naturally occurring (wild) yeasts and lactic acid bacteria are present on wheat and rye flour, and in the air around us, and flourish in moist, warm conditions. They feed on the sugars from the carbohydrates in flour, producing carbon dioxide – the gas that makes the dough rise.