For Other Means Volume One, we spoke with talented racer Amity Rockwell about one of her other great passions: baking. You can read the full interview in our print magazine, or try out Amity's discard granola recipe below.
Throughout the last five years of making sourdough bread, I have never ever thrown out discard (discard is the sourdough starter that you’re not currently feeding or baking with; it is often “discarded,” hence the name). I don’t even like calling it ‘discard.’ It has so many great uses. Here’s my own granola recipe and also a list of my favorite things to do with leftover leaven.
1/4c butter or neutral oil
1/4c sweetener of choice (coconut sugar, honey, maple syrup, etc)
1/2c (or more) sourdough discard
4c combination of coarsely chopped nuts, seeds, grains, oats, etc.
Optional: dried fruit, spices, cacao nibs, hemp seeds, coconut, dark chocolate, etc.
- Preheat oven to 350º.
- Melt butter (or warm oil) over low heat in the bottom of a large pot. Stir in sweetener of choice. I usually use honey but maple syrup, coconut or sugar also work well. Add a few pinches of salt and any spices you might want to flavor it with.
- Wait until a little bubbly, then turn off heat and stir in vanilla. Let cool slightly, then add sourdough discard. I usually have about ½ cup discard on hand but have done this with varying amounts. The more you use the more sour it will be and the more it will all hold together in nice clumps.
- Add (give or take) 4 cups dry ingredients— I like a 50/50 mixture of nuts/seeds and rolled oats but this can be adjusted to taste/whatever you have on hand. More dry additions will give you a looser granola, less additions will give you more clumps. I usually add all the nuts and/or seeds first, then stir in rolled oats until it’s a good consistency, when everything is well coated but there’s not any extra goop in the bottom of the pot.
- Mix well and spread in an even layer on a baking sheet (parchment paper will save you a ton of cleanup here), and bake for about 40 minutes total ( but that will depend on your oven and how much discard you used). Every 15 minutes or so, toss: move the toasty edges to the middle and vice versa. Keep a close eye on it towards the end so it doesn’t get too burnt—it’s usually easy to tell when things are all crisped up well.
- Let cool completely before moving to a storage container. Also great warm from the oven :)
Honestly, I usually just eyeball all the measurements and end up with a slightly different granola every time. It’s very forgiving.
A few tablespoons of nut butter (add just after oil/butter), cocoa nibs, chocolate chunks (add when cool), dried fruit, or for a fall-themed one I like to add some warming spices (ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, cinnamon, etc.)
You can also mix it up with different grains and other dry goods—buckwheat, amaranth, millet, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, really whatever is languishing in the pantry!
Other great discard ideas
Pancakes, waffles, crackers, grissini (long thin crispy breadsticks), pie or galette crust, kvass (bubbly Ukrainian kombucha-like drink), any kind of quick bread - muffins, banana bread, etc. Swap in starter for part of the liquid ingredients—it’s as easy as that.
Read the full interview from Amity in Vol One - Available now