Something of a resurrection has been going on in my kitchen: what I though was dead sourdough starter has now been gently nurtured back to life……
I have been positively itching to be able to use my starter again for a loaf, so working in some sweet, juicy pears and salty Parmesan was just what I wanted for my inaugural sourdough resurrection bake!
This is a slight variation on my favourite Pear, Walnut and Gorgonzola sourdough
Reviving a dead starter
I have never neglected my starter before: it has had a regular cycle of feeding and using for many years, but a particularly busy few months in my life led to its neglect and to what I thought was its demise…
…a heart-sinking gloopy mass with an aroma that could only be described as rank!
I scraped off the top few inches to see what was below, thinking that as a new starter was probably on the cards, what had I got to lose?
BUT I managed to get a teaspoon or so of starter from the bottom: more like putty than a recognisable starter, it had a more pleasant fragrance so I decided to use this to try and make up a fresh batch: nothing ventured, nothing gained……so 100g each of flour and water was mixed in, half was discarded the next day and then repeated (the usual feeding cycle)….
….and after a couple of goes I had a nicely bubbling starter again.
Phew: lesson learned and now it is back to being my often-cared-for kitchen pet!
Pear and Parmesan sourdough (makes 2 loaves)
- 1 quantity of sourdough (recipe here but use 500g strong white flour and 100g strong wholemeal flour)
- 3 ripe medium pears or 2 large pears: peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 200g Parmesan cheese: chopped into rough cubes
For this bread, simply make up the dough as in the recipe above, omitting the walnuts and replacing the Gorgonzola for 200g Parmesan. Shape and bake as in that recipe.
Top tip: pat out the dough after its long rise (bulk fermentation) before you want to shape it. Then sprinkle over the pear and Parmesan evenly, roll it up loosely (like a Swiss Roll) and shape.