Flour Power In Johnson’s Sourdough Basics workshop, students make and take home their own levain (the French term for sourdough starter), a continuously fermenting mix of flour and water that can be kept for many years and is used as the basis for sourdough bread. Students also learn to make their own loaves, as well as other recipes from which levain is the basis, including foccacia and crackers.
On the Rise Brennan Johnson runs The Walnut Schoolhouse in Marshall, where he teaches workshops in the art of bread making.
On Your Mark After a morning spent making their own sourdough starters and preparing their loaves, students score their creations before they go into the 700-degree outdoor brick oven.
Sprinkle it On Students assist in making the foccacia for lunch, adding thinly sliced potatoes, olive oil, salt, pepper, and sage.
Seedy Crisps The class helps make sourdough crackers with spelt flour, butter, seeds, and salt.
Meal Time The lunch spread of salad, foccacia, hummus and crackers, and cold cut meats and veggies
An Exact Science Unlike breads made with baker’s yeast, sourdough results from the fermentation of dough using naturally occurring lactobacilli and yeast, which gives it its distinct sour taste.