Although preparing sourdough bread has become a popular activity, the bread has been around for thousands of years. Recently, there seems to have been something of a revival of interest. Sourdough is the oldest known form of leavened bread (bread that rises as a result of added ingredients), and many cultures around the world love it!

Sourdough bread is frequently praised for its health benefits, as it is rich in vitamins and minerals. Additionally, it is a fantastic source of antioxidants. Sourdough's higher amino acid content helps maintain strong muscles and reduces the chances of heart disease, cancer, and stroke. Since sourdough has less gluten than non-fermented bread, it causes less inflammation, bloating, and other associated negative effects in gluten-sensitive individuals.

Sourdough and wine

Similar to how wine ferments slowly over a period of days in a range of vessels, sourdough bread likewise goes through this process.To make sourdough bread, you need a starter, which is a mixture of flour and water that develops wild yeast. This yeast creates lactic acid, which gives sourdough bread its signature tangy flavor. This acid preserves a sourdough starter from spoiling while also flavoring the bread and eliminating undesirable germs.

Bakers create a variety of flavors and types of sourdough bread to suit consumer preferences and modern nutritional trends, showcasing sourdough's versatility. On the other hand, consumers appreciate the various ways they can enjoy sourdough. Some prefer eating sourdough for breakfast, paired with dietary additions that suit their palate, such as avocado and poached eggs or Greek yogurt and berries. Others find it perfect as a crispy meal with any kind of stuffing. The delightful crunch of sourdough is ideal for creating various appetizers or serving with a hearty soup.

Contrast and compliment flavours

While collaborating with one of my clients, a well-known local bakery, I had the opportunity to sample some delicious sourdough bread. Together, we experimented with combining sourdough bread with various ingredients and also explored pairing it with a range of wines. This experience was both curious and delightful as it enhanced the flavors of several foods, including cheeses, cured meats, condiments, and more. This creative project embraced a subjective approach, resulting in a wide range of perspectives, ideas, and abundant options. Our primary goal was to create harmonious matches that balanced taste, flavor, and texture while also providing pleasant and educational contrasts.

Sourdough and wine pairing:

Walnut and hazelnut sourdough

  • Wine: Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva
  • Other: Cheddar cheese

Comments: The combination of walnut and hazelnut sourdough with a Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva and cheddar cheese creates a harmonious and delightful experience. The hazelnuts in the sourdough complement the richness of the Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva, as both the nuts and the red grape skins contain tannins, which balance each other. Additionally, the rich texture of the cheddar cheese, combined with the toasted nut flavors, further enhances the balance and accentuates the characteristics of the oaked wine.

Chorizo and chili sourdough

  • Wine: Chilean Syrah

Comments: The peppery and spiced notes of Chilean Syrah red wine make it an excellent pairing for the flavors of chorizo and chili sourdough. The wine's characteristics create a balanced combination with the savory and spicy elements of the bread. Additionally, if desired, slightly chilling the wine can provide a refreshing contrast to the palate after enjoying a spicy bite.

Grano Duro sourdough

  • Wine: Chilean Chardonnay Reserva
  • Other: Extra virgin olive oil

Comments: The acidity of Grano Duro sourdough complements the acidity present in the Chardonnay Reserva, creating a harmonious pairing. The woody flavor of the freshly made bread further enhances the match, particularly with a slightly oaked Chardonnay Reserva. Additionally, the extra virgin olive oil adds a balancing element, as it aligns well with the characteristics of Chardonnay, offering a buttery texture and woody notes that complement the overall experience.

Black kalamata olive sourdough

  • Wine: Chilean Pinot Noir
  • Other: Mozzarella di bufala

Comments: The deep fruit flavors and earthy notes of Chilean Pinot Noir make it an excellent companion for the sweet brininess of black Kalamata olives. The wine's characteristics harmonize with the olives, enhancing their flavors. When paired with the Black Kalamata olive sourdough, the soft and delicate texture of Mozzarella di bufala provides a perfect balance, both complementing the brininess of the olives and harmonizing with the earthy notes of the Pinot Noir.

Gratitude and admiration

Thanks in part to the wine industry, customers have evolved into dining enthusiasts, exploring a diverse range of culinary experiences that complement the world of wine. This newfound interest has led to a growing curiosity and desire to learn more about various wines and grape varietals. Simultaneously, the baking industry has been championing sourdough bread, presenting it as a healthier alternative with a multitude of flavors to suit different tastes. Both wine and bread, as delectable and nutritious foods, deserve our gratitude and admiration.