I think (hope) I’ve exhausted my sourdough starter experiments for this year. In fact, I only made a second starter because I wanted to know if my first attempt had been a fluke … beginner’s luck.
It’s 70 deg F in my kitchen, even on top of the fridge, which is the warmest free spot I have for a ‘sourdough starter nursery’, so it took a while to get it going well, compared to the one started in June. I could have babied this second starter along for a few weeks but after dumping (horrors!) all but 2 tbsp after a week and transferring the starter to a new jar, I knew I had to end it as soon as possible.
The result was a tasty batch of buttery dinner rolls to eat with the stuffed pepper soup from my freezer.
I have trouble estimating the amount of starter in my jar so I ended up with less than 1 cup in my dough. No worries there. There was plenty to ‘flavour’ the dinner rolls, I think. Not too sour at all as I don’t really like SOURdough.
As to shaping the rolls – well I wanted something a bit different. So I made cloverleaf rolls. Fiddly, as you have to divide the dough into 1 inch balls (3 for each roll) and then place them into oiled muffin tins. I sprayed the muffin tins with baking spray and had minimal sticking on a couple.
Sourdough Dinner Rolls – makes 12-16 dinner rolls
1 cup sourdough starter
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 tbsp yeast (optional)
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp white sugar or 2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp olive oil
3-4 cups flour (can use 1/2 white and 1/2 whole wheat)
Lightly oil a 9 x 13 inch glass or metal pan or line with parchment paper.
In a 2-cup measuring cup, add the warm water. Stir in the sugar with a spoon until it’s dissolved. Pour in the yeast and stir well so you don’t have any clumps. Let sit for 5-10 minutes until the mixture is foamy.
In a large mixing bowl add 1 cup of the flour and the salt. Mix through with a large wooden spoon. (It’s very satisfying to use a wooden spoon.) Add the starter, proofed yeast mixture and oil. Beat well until you get a smooth batter.
Add in the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, and stir well until the dough is pulls away from the edge of the bowl and you can no longer stir it.
Turn out onto a very lightly floured surface and knead gently for 8-10 minutes by hand. Place dough in an oiled bowl and cover. Set in a warm place to double in size.
When double, press down the dough and with lightly floured hands, form into rolls.
Risen dough cut into 4ths to help estimate shaping amount. Each quarter of the dough was shaped into 4 rolls.
Place the rolls on your prepared pan, cover gently with a clean towel or oiled plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled, 35-45 min in a warm place.
For cloverleaf rolls, make one inch balls of dough (in multiples of 3 for every roll you’ll make) and place 3 balls in an oiled muffin tin and let rise until they’re 1/2-1 inch taller than the rim of your muffin tin. (The balls of dough were pretty sticky as I didn’t want to flour and over-handle them.)
Preheat oven to 375 deg Fahrenheit.
Bake your rolls approximately 20 minutes in a 375 degree oven. During the last 5 minutes of baking, brush with melted butter and return to oven.
Trial 1: Stirred a total of 4 cups of flour into the dough. Used only about 150 ml of starter as I didn’t have more. Used an additional ~1/4 cup of flour and kneaded the dough for about 8 minutes until it was soft and no longer tacky, though it would stick to an unfloured surface if allowed to sit too long. Made 16 cloverleaf rolls … could make 18 comfortably. I baked my rolls for a total of 25 minutes, as I wanted them darker. I could try 400 deg F next time.