Bakery hosts world's first birthday party for sourdough starter, marking 65 years of use: 'The hardest working employee'

The world’s first birthday party has been held for a pot of sourdough ingredients, which has been making loaves for 65 years.

The sourdough starter was brought to England in 1955 where it has been in constant use at a bakery in Bristol.

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Sourdough makers create their breads by using a “starter” — a mixture of flour and water which is left to ferment. A portion of that is then added to fresh flour, warm water and salt, which is kneaded to make the dough. The starter is then replenished with fresh organic rye flour and water to keep it going for future doughs.

Some bakers simply replenish the same starter repeatedly, essentially using the same batch for years.

Hobbs House Bakery is now based in Chipping Sodbury, near Bristol. It has been baking for five generations and is award-winning.

Hobbs House Bakery is now based in Chipping Sodbury, near Bristol. It has been baking for five generations and is award-winning.
(SWNS)

And at Hobbs House Bakery in Bristol, a party has been held for a batch which has been in use since 1955.

Staff have lovingly labeled the mixture as the company’s “hardest working employee” — and some think it could be even older than 65. The starter was a gift from another baker who traveled from Germany and settled in England after World War II.

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It has been nurtured and cared for daily, since and each day some is taken out to bake the bread.

It has been nurtured and cared for daily, since and each day some is taken out to bake the bread.
(SWNS)

This means it may have been used by generations before arriving in Britain, although the bakery only dates it from when it landed in their hands.

It has been nurtured and cared for daily ever since, and each day some is taken out to bake new breads.

“We like to call our sourdough starter the hardest working employee in the bakery, such an important member of staff deserves a fitting celebration for her birthday each June,” said Alice Drake, of Hobbs House Bakery.

“We love to share our family recipes, equipment and ingredients; baker to baker, especially our sourdough starter.”

The sourdough starter was brought to England in 1955 where it has been in constant use at a bakery in Bristol.

The sourdough starter was brought to England in 1955 where it has been in constant use at a bakery in Bristol.
(SWNS)

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“Over the last few weeks it has been great to see such a huge increase in demand for sourdough baking, we have shipped many hundreds of jars of our sourdough starter across the country to budding home bakers. We love the thought that many thousands of loaves have been enjoyed up and down the country all baked with our edible heritage, to become a custodian of this is priceless.”

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