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Zoe, My Sourdough Starter

Updated: Oct 27, 2023


Meet Zoe, My Sourdough Starter

In my circles, I get questions about sourdough bread. Especially questions about starters. What are they? Where do you get one? How do you care for it? What???? Use it instead of yeast?


Let’s talk sourdough starter.


A sourdough starter is a leavening blend with a long history throughout the globe. From the ancient middle East to the settlers and modern pioneers it has been a staple in the home. Because it is a simple mixture of flour and water, it is easy to create and maintain. It is also versatile and can be used to bake more than just breads.

Homesteaders and cowboys would keep a good supply of starter with them on the wagon trains and on long journeys for healthy sustenance. I’ve even heard it said that the settlers used it for sealing the gaps in their cabins and then it is preserved as it dries out. Is this true? I’m not sure. But I believe it’s possible, as I have dehydrated some of my Zoe (sourdough discard) to preserve her for later use. If dehydrating a sourdough starter peaks your interest, check out this video by Mary's Nest to learn how.


As far as healthy goes, sourdough is fermented. Fermented foods are excellent for healthy gut, microbiome maintenance. A healthy gut feeds a healthy brain, and that is a healthy gut/brain axis. Fermented foods contain lots of probiotics and prebiotics. And as the healthy body would say, “When my gut is happy, we’re all happy. But if my gut is unhappy, we are all in trouble.”


As a Biblical Wellness Ambassador, it is fitting that we look at another wonderful aspect of sourdough. God created us in His image, a beautiful, fine-tuned machine, if you will. And He gave us everything we need to maintain this beautiful body to live in fullness and abundance.

‘My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ Philippians 4:19 NKJV
‘Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit tree that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself, on the earth”; and it was so.’ Genesis 1:11 NKJV

God provided the seed (wheat) that is ground into fine flour and mixed with water. Once mixed, the amazing happens. It ferments, grows health-giving bacteria, then becomes a delightful and satisfying food when additional God-designed ingredients are added. The original source of sourdough was made according to the three principles I have learned as a Biblical Nutrition Academy student and I now help others learn as a Biblical Wellness Ambassador. I'll share the first one with you. Principle #1 Eat Foods God Called Good.


My sourdough starter is three years old. Her name is Zoe and she has her own room in my house, in the refrigerator. I know what you’re thinking, “You named your sourdough starter?” Yes, because if I treat her like a pet, I won’t forget to feed her. The reason I named her Zoe is that the name means Life in Greek. I even set an alarm notification on my phone to make sure I don’t forget to feed her because she can’t speak or remind me it’s time to eat, like my blind, diabetic Yorkie, Lukey.

When I started Zoe three years ago, it was a confusing new process. I failed to feed her well and had to revive her after 11 days. It isn’t easy at first and can be rather intimidating. I encourage anyone attempting this venture to stick to it. As your starter matures, so will you.


And it becomes a joy when baking. The most important ingredient in my sourdough baking and all my baking and cooking is thanking the Lord for His provision and His gifting me to bake bread. I pray the Bread of Life helps me to prepare His provision with His Hand. As I speak His Life into my kitchen, I pray for whoever and whatever He brings with Him to my heart and kitchen.


I want to share a video by Mary's Nest with a recipe for a no-knead sourdough bread I use often. It is an easy and delicious bread we enjoy at our table and we love to share with others.


I hope this time with you has been a special blessing and I look forward to hearing from you as you venture into the world of sourdough bread. Visit our Facebook page , drop a photo of your sourdough project and share your thoughts or questions.


Until next time, here's Stin Ygeia Sou! (To Your Health!)


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