Shauna Healy

Natalie McCrea, Occupational Therapist – Adult Mental Health and Disability Services, has been busy perfecting her Sourdough recipe during Lockdown.

“My new hobby is making sourdough bread from scratch, starting with growing my own starter. I am not much of a baker, but have been enjoying the process and joined a very active Facebook group which is full of tips and great ideas. As growing a new starter involves feeding and discarding some of the mixture, I have been using the discard to make other recipes including sourdough pizza, waffles, scones, crumpets and cinnamon rolls!

Here is a photo of my first ever sourdough loaf - hopefully I have improved a bit since then ;-) .”



The best thing about sourdough is that all you need to get started is bread flour, water and a jam jar!

So for flour organic is best if you have it - I used a mix of 50% strong white bread flour and 50% rye flour but you can use all white if preferred.

I used this method to get started:

But the BBC has an even simpler recipe:



You can give your starter a name (mine is called Jimmy - named by my 6 year old!) as this helps you to remember to feed it, at the start you will need to feed it every day at approximately the same time.

It will probably require 7-10 days of feeding before it is ready to use to bake your first loaf.

You don't need any fancy equipment but a proving basket is helpful, and a cast iron pot to cook it in.

Each time you feed you need to take some of the starter away, otherwise it gets too hungry. This 'discard' can be used to make a variety of other recipes. If you Google 'sourdough discard recipes' you will find loads of options.


Once you have a healthy starter that is doubling each time before feeding, you are ready to bake your first loaf. For sourdough bread recipes I recommend Googling a beginner's recipe such as these:



If you get a bit obsessed with it as I did, you can join a Facebook group called 'Wild Sourdough UK' which is great for advice and troubleshooting.

Hopefully I'll have a few fellow sourdough bakers in the Trust soon!

Thanks, Natalie