"No one is bigger than bread!" - the old people said, and not without reason. In the past, bread preparation was a very laborious and complicated process - from harvesting the wheat from the field, to grinding it by hand to kneading and baking it. Flour cereals and rough fresh cakes were originally prepared. Only around 5 000 BC the Egyptians discovered the most ancient form of natural blister obtained from the fermentation of raw dough - yeast.

Like any good and useful thing, the yeast recipe quickly spread and soon more and more peoples enjoyed bread.

In Bulgarian traditions, the "leaven" is central to many rituals. At the funeral, a "toll" was asked, with which the deceased was sent to the other world. When a baby was born, the Mother of God was preparing to honor the patroness of the mothers. In epidemics and against evil forces, warm bread was left in a bag in a foreign village, and it was believed that the disease or demon was taken out of the settlement. The weddings also began with the involvement of leaven for the ritual breads in the two newlyweds' homes. Kvasnik also stirred during the first plowing for a new house, as well as on a number of other occasions.

Quas for our ancestors was a symbol of prosperity and prosperity. To leave a house without leaven was to the poor. It was believed that if someone stole it, bad luck would come home. The ceremonial preparation of new kvass was made only around major holidays - Ignadzhen, Christmas, Easter, St. George's Day, New Year.

In today's fast-paced world of technology and semi-finished products, traditions often remain in the background. Fortunately, more and more people are turning back to their roots. Once he finds the taste of real leavened bread, one rarely reaches the factory - full of improvers, stabilizers and impurities of unclear character. Besides, it turns out that yeast is extremely beneficial for our body. The bacterium "Lactobacillus bulgaricus" (discovered in 1905 by Bulgarian student Stamen Grigorov), which it (kvass) contains, maintains the normal balance of microorganisms in our stomach and has a beneficial effect on the entire digestive system. It also processes the complex carbohydrates of the grain and makes them easier to digest.

So - how to make leaven at home?

All you need is flour and water, and the very process of turning these components into yeast is quite lengthy and complicated. It is good that the flour you use will be rye or whole grain, with no puffs and whiteners in it, and the water is springy or as clean as possible.

In a glass jar, stir, not necessarily with a metal spoon,. Hour glass. flour with ½ hour glass. water to a homogeneous mixture (the density is like a cupcake dough). We add a pinch of sugar and slam it with a lid, but not completely so that the yeast can breathe (you can put a few layers of gauze and clamp it around the throat of the jar). We put the mixture in a warm place - about 18-24 degrees (but not near a heat source), adding in the morning, lunch, and evening to an incomplete spoonful of flour (and water, if necessary) and stirring well. From the very first days you will smell the sweet smell of fermentation, and by 5-6 day the yeast should already be bubbling and moving in a jar.

And so - our yeast is ready for use. You can store some of it in the fridge, and when you need it again, you just wake it up. How? It is enough for 1-2 days to feed it 3-4 times a day with flour until it is activated.

Here are some recipes for sourdough bread:

Rural bread

Required:

700 gr. Flour (rye or whole grain)

Sol

1 vinegar

200 ml. active yeast

Add the sourdough, a pinch of salt, vinegar and some cool water to the sifted flour. Knead soft dough (the softer it is, the more porous our bread will be). Allow 20-30 to rest and mix. It rests again, we mix it again and put it in a greased baking pan. We are waiting for the 3-4 hours to be able to boil and bake in an 220 degree Celsius oven. After baking, allow the bread to cool for about an hour and then eat.

White flour baguettes

Products:

550 gr. White flour

Sol

200 ml. active yeast

350 ml. lukewarm water

dried vegetables or spices of your choice

When kneading the dough, we follow the steps of the rustic bread recipe above (note that the dough with white flour is more elastic and flourishes faster and more than the dough with whole grain flour). We divide the already soaked mixture into two parts and form long rolls. Put them in a greased pan, sprinkle with flour and leave at room temperature for 2-3 hours to boil. Bake in an oven preheated to 250 degrees for 10 minutes and tap into 220 degrees for another 25 minutes. It's a good idea to make a few cuts diagonally of the baguettes before we put them in the stove. After baking, allow the baguettes to cool before slicing.

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