Potato Flake Sourdough Starter and Bread

Potato flake sourdough recipe

The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Rise and Rest Time: 196 hrs
Total: 196 hrs 45 mins
Servings: 3 loaves
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1888 Calories
44g Fat
334g Carbs
39g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3
Amount per serving
Calories 1888
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 44g 57%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 4mg 1%
Sodium 2203mg 96%
Total Carbohydrate 334g 121%
Dietary Fiber 11g 38%
Total Sugars 101g
Protein 39g
Vitamin C 2mg 8%
Calcium 72mg 6%
Iron 4mg 24%
Potassium 438mg 9%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Homemade sourdough bread has to begin with a sourdough starter. This is often just water, yeast, and flour, but it can also be made with potato flakes. The potato flakes result in a very soft dough with a slightly sweet taste, adding another dimension to typical sourdough bread.

With attention, you can keep this sourdough starter with potato flakes going for an extended period of time; it will continue to gather wild yeast from the air and just get better. Use this starter to make Amish sourdough, also known as Friendship sourdough bread, or any other sourdough bread.

Ingredients

For the Starter:

  • 1 cup warm water

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1 package dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)

  • 3 tablespoons instant potato flakes

For the Starter Feeder:

  • 1 cup warm water

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 3 tablespoons instant potato flakes

For the Bread:

  • 1 cup starter

  • 6 cups bread flour

  • 1 tablespoon salt

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1/2 cup oil

  • 1 1/4 cups warm water

Steps to Make It

Make the Starter

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for sourdough starter
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  2. In a small bowl, mix together the warm water, sugar, yeast, and potato flakes. Let ferment on the counter for two days.

     Warm water, sugar, yeast, and potato flakes are mixed together
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Make the Starter Feeder

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for starter feeder
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  2. In a small bowl, mix together the warm water, sugar, and potato flakes. Add to the starter, mixing well.

    Mix
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  3. Let the mixture stand on the countertop for 8 hours, stirring every so often. Refrigerate for three to five days before making the bread.

    Feed starter
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Make the Bread

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for making bread
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  2. Remove the starter from the fridge and let it come to room temperature. To a large bowl or stand mixer bowl, add 1 cup starter, bread flour, salt, sugar, oil, and warm water. Mix well. Using a dough hook or by hand, knead for 5 to 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.

    Mix dough in mixer
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  3. Put the dough into a greased bowl. Cover with a wet dish towel and let it rise in a warm place overnight or all day (about 12 hours).

    Cover dough to rise
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  4. Punch down the dough. Knead on a floured surface to remove any air bubbles.

    Punch down dough
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  5. Spray 3 loaf pans with cooking spray and divide the dough equally among the pans (shaping into loaf form). Cover loosely and let rise for 6 to 8 hours.

    Loaves in pans
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  6. Bake at 350 F for 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the pans and cool completely on a wire rack.

    Loaves cool
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Feeding the Starter

  1. After using 1 cup of the starter for the bread, reserve 1 cup of the remaining starter and refrigerate (discard the rest). 

    Feed Starter
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  2. When you are ready to make more bread, or every three to five days, add the starter feeder mixture again to the starter. Stir well and leave on the counter overnight or all day (about 12 hours) and then refrigerate.

    Feed mixture every three to five days
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Why Discard Most of the Starter?

When feeding the starter, you are instructed to toss out all but 1 cup. This is because if you kept all of the starter, you would end up with more than a home baker could handle, as it grows exponentially. There are a few ways you can use excess starter in recipes that aren't bread—you can also freeze it.

Recipe Variation

After the first rise, punch down the dough and roll it into a 1/2-inch rectangle. Spread with confectioners' sugar and cinnamon, sprinkle with nuts and raisins, and roll it up jelly roll style. Then continue with the recipe's baking instructions.

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