In Germany, Hermann, a sweet sourdough, is probably one of the most common forms of sourdough. It is made from wheat flour and is mostly used for baking cakes. Since the 1970s, it has been passed around like a chain letter. Around 1980, the time of the German peace and ecology movement, a letter with care instructions was added when giving it away.Jump to recipe
In the United States, this dough is known as Amish Friendship Bread. The cake-like bread with cinnamon baked with it is traditionally distributed to friends or needy people. The American version tastes a little sweeter than a dough made from Hermann. For both recipes you need dry yeast for baking.
Is it possible without added yeast?
I'm more into wild yeast, so I tried to prepare a sweet dough without purchased yeast. With success! My sweet, wild yeast dough I call Hermione, or Hermine in German, and it is fabulous for baking cakes. Or for sweet breads and rolls.
Sweet sourdough, Harvard and science
During my Harvard studies to become a fermentista, I also had to prepare a sourdough. Naturally, this involved scientifically analyzing and understanding the principles behind it. I took various measurements of the dough every day. If you are also interested in such things, then do a simple measurement and find out the measurable acid development of the dough. For this you need pH strips* to find out the pH of the dough. Hold one side of the strip in the dough for 10 seconds and read the displayed value. Do not forget to write down your observations.
What do you notice?
Baking with sweet sourdough
I love Hermione especially for cakes with slightly alcoholic fermented fruits and spices. The dough rises really well, and makes a very very tasty, sweet cake. All without added yeast!
* I buy my test strips here https://www.hobbybrauerversand.de/PH-Messstreifen-10-Stueck-pH-38-55?fml=1. The scale is suitable for all types of ferments and they are very reliable for home use.
If you order through the linked recommendation, a share of the purchase price goes to me (at no extra cost to you, you know the principle under the name Affiliate Links). I take the commission as your appreciation for my work as a writing fermentista and thank you if you trust my recommendations.