I always thought that making sourdough was hard – tricky and hard. So, I happily spent money buying artisan loaves because I was never really sure how to get started. And then I listened, and I never paid for artisan loaves again! I am 100% in, and you can be too!
Check out my blog for how to get your starter going, and once you have that done, come back and give this a go! I promise you, it will be worth it – for real!
Day 1, evening
100 g of starter
200 g of lukewarm water
150 g baker’s flour
50 g of rye flour
Mix sourdough starter, water and flour in a bowl, cover with plastic and put it somewhere warmish during the night. I aim for somewhere between 22 and 24°.
Day 2, morning
450 g water
750 g of baker’s flour
20 g of salt
Mix all ingredients except salt and run 8 minutes in dough mixer -5 minutes at low speed and 3 minutes with a little more speed. Or work it by hand if you prefer. Add the salt and run for 2 more minutes. The dough should have a good elasticity and should release from the side of the bowl. It should be slightly sticky without clinging to your fingers too much. If it does not feel ready, rest for 5 minutes and then run for a few minutes. It’s fun, not science! Lubricate a plastic box with canola or some other neutral oil, place the dough in the box and put on the lid. Please mark the box where the dough is located, so you'll see how it's rising. Let it rise until it reaches double size, which may take 3-5 hours. Fold the dough three times while it is in the box. The first time after 1 hour, then every 30 minutes or so. With wet hands, you stretch and fold the dough from left to centre, and from right to centre, top and bottom. It's not complicated and you can’t really go wrong, as long as you get some tension in the dough and don’t overwork it – you want to keep all those bubbles in there.
Baking Heat the oven at 275 degrees in good time. Depending on how you are going to bake, either just heat the oven (if using a casserole for baking) or place pizza stone in the middle of the oven and an oval plate for water.
Casserole method: Shape a round loaf with some tension, sprinkle some semolina and rice flour mix on the bread, plop it into the casserole – you might want to line the bottom with baking paper. Score the top of the dough with a razor to allow it to rise. Put casserole, lid on in oven, turn down temp to 220 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes w lid on, then take lid off and bake for another 15-20 or so. Take out and remove bread from casserole.
Traditional method: Turn the dough on a floured baking table and divide it into two pieces. Without pushing the air out of the dough, pull one of the pieces into an approximately 30 x 30 cm square. Sprinkle some semolina/rice flour mix along the sides and fold it once into an elongated bread. Score it with a razor. Gently lift the dough into a baking sheet. Insert the bread into the oven and place some ice cubes on the lower plate. Immediately lower the temperature to 250 degrees. After 15 minutes, lower to 200 degrees and air the oven by opening and closing the door. Repeat the airing every 5 minutes until the bread is ready. Remove the bread after a total of 30-35 minutes (inner temperature about 96 degrees). Remove the bread and let it cool on a grid.