Sourdough History

Sourdough bread

The sourdough is believed to start in Ancient Egypt around 2000BC,  but of course its origine would go much earlier as sourdough was certainly discovered by primitive homo sapience experimenting with grinding flour by stones, mixing it with water and making first flat bread on fire.

  It was originally used with rye flour mixed with water,  and it naturally fermented in a warm temperature.   Sourdough process develops due to fermentation,  the same process which develops good bacteria in yogurt, sourmilk, cheese, sauercraut and wine.   The bacteria produced during the fermentation process are characteristic to milk bacteria, vinegar bacteria and wild yeast.

The rye flour is the easiest to produce sourdough where bacteria develops easier and quicker due to different gluten than in wheat or other flours.   The best are wholegrain flours which include husks where the wild yeast is present in the grain.

In 19th century the sourdough process was replaced by using commercially produced yeast mainly for making white bread and breadrolls with wheat flour, and to speed up the fermentation process.  Sourdough remained mainly used for the rye bread.

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