Mother Earth Living

Making Bread without Yeast: 2 Bread Starter Recipes

Making bread without yeast can open up a whole new world of baking. These two bread starter recipes, as well as two bread recipes, will help you get started.
By Charlotte Denholtz
April 2013
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Pioneers shared sourdough starters with their neighbors and taught their children to knead with gentle but firm hands.
Photo By Fotolia/sugar0607

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The Modern-Day Pioneer (Adams Media, 2012) by Charlotte Denholtz is a charming book that celebrates simple pleasures by showing readers how to incorporate basic skills and living into their everyday life. Whether you’re interested in growing your own fruits and vegetables, mending your own clothes, or crafting delicious meals from scratch, The Modern-Day Pioneer will be your guide every step of the way. Making bread without yeast is easy. Try these two bread starter recipes and bake two delicious creations with the accompanying bread recipes. This section is excerpted from chapter 4, “How a Pioneer Bakes: Making Bread Without a Breadmaker.”

You can purchase this book from the Mother Earth Living store: The Modern-Day Pioneer.

Bread Starter Recipes and Bread Recipes without Yeast

Friendship Bread Starter recipe
Friendship Bread recipe

Bread Starter Recipes and Bread Recipes with Yeast

Sourdough Starter recipe
Sourdough Boule recipe

Making Bread without Yeast

“All sorrows are less with bread.”—Miguel de Cervantes

On the frontier, if you didn’t know how to make bread, you went hungry. Bread was a staple of the pioneer diet. It soaked up the gravy from their stews at supper, it filled them up at breakfast before a long day of work. Pioneers shared sourdough starters with their neighbors and taught their children to knead with gentle but firm hands. For these adventurous people who journeyed out into wild, unexplored territory, bread was a taste of home.

Before yeast was readily available, the creation of a starter was the only way bread could be made. Starters are often shared with friends, hence the name of this first sweet bread. 

For more from The Modern-Day Pioneer, check out the article Beekeeping for Beginners.

This excerpt has been reprinted with permission from The Modern-Day Pioneer: Simple Living in the 21st Century by Charlotte Denholtz and published by Adams Media, an imprint of F+W Media, 2012. Buy this book from our store: The Modern-Day Pioneer.

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