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Alert: sourdough pancakes require planning. You can’t wake up in the morning and decide to make them. You must have a starter, or create a starter from scratch, and activate it at least the day before. The older your starter, the more sourdough flavor in your recipes. I’ve heard of people keeping their starter active for years and years, sharing and handing down to the next generation.

As a child I remember waking up one morning to the smell of pancakes frying. Oh, yum. Don Bruckner was staying at my house for a few days and treated my family to sourdough pancakes for breakfast. That morning he told me about the time he made sourdough pancakes for a huge group out in one of the villages and he mixed up the batter in the bathtub because it was the only container big enough. That’s a mental image I cannot shake.

What I don’t know about sourdough could fill several volumes. There is science involved in the whole process. I’m all about easy, so I don’t care to know why it works. I do not have an ages old starter, nor have I ever kept a starter for more than a few months. Here is how I do it, right or wrong.

The starter recipe I use to get going is based on the recipe Quick, Overnight Sourdough Starter in Rita Davenport’s cookbook, Sourdough Cookery (1977). I have tried many recipes in it.

In a medium bowl mix 1-1/2 Tbsp. active dry yeast, 2 cups warm water, and 2 cups flour. Cover, and let mixture stand in a warm place overnight. It bubbles and then separates. I stir mine down occasionally.

In a medium bowl mix 1-1/2 Tbsp. active dry yeast, 2 cups warm water, and 2 cups flour. Cover, and let mixture stand in a warm place overnight. It bubbles and then separates. I stir mine down occasionally.

If you want to save your starter, keep it active by feeding it equal amounts of warm water and flour at least once per week. If you want to stop feeding it, place the starter in the refrigerator or freezer.When you’re ready to use the starter again, add equal amounts of warm water and flour and let it sit in a warm place overnight.

The night before you want to make pancakes, either add 2 cups warm water and 2 cups flour to ½ cup starter or make the starter recipe above. [Remember that using the Quick, Overnight Sourdough Starter recipe doesn’t yield much sourdough flavor if used the next day.] The next morning remove ½ cup starter to save and feed for other uses.

To the remaining mixture, stir in 2 Tbsp. sugar, 1 tsp. salt, ½ tsp. baking powder, and 3 Tbsp. oil.

To the remaining mixture, stir in 2 Tbsp. sugar, 1 tsp. salt, ½ tsp. baking powder, and 3 Tbsp. oil.

Beat in 2 eggs. Dissolve ½ tsp. baking soda in 1 Tbsp. water and gently fold it into the batter. Do not stir it any more.

Beat in 2 eggs.

 Dissolve ½ tsp. baking soda in 1 Tbsp. water

Dissolve ½ tsp. baking soda in 1 Tbsp. water

 Dissolve ½ tsp. baking soda in 1 Tbsp. water

Gently fold the soda & water mixture into the batter. Do not stir it any more.

Cook

Pour the batter onto a moderately hot, greased griddle in the sizes that you wish. Once the edges are dry and bubbles have formed across the entire pancake, turn over.

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Makes 4 servings. Tastes great served with jam or jelly, syrup or honey.