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Sourdough. A dough (q.v.) that has been fermented either by acid-forming organisms naturally present in flour (q.v.) or by cultures of appropriate bacteria. In the case of sourdough for rye bread (q.v.) production, fermentation (q.v.) may be carried out in either one, two or more stages by lactic acid bacteria (q.v.) belonging to species of Lactobacilli, with intervening additions of flour and water to the sponge (q.v.) to perpetuate bacterial activity.