Welcome even more bread in this post! This time – two nice recipes of my favorite type of bread (and sometimes just food in general) – sourdough bread. As my American friend currently living in St Petersburg puts it, as long as there’s bread, you can survive. And I do agree with it completely! So here are two sourdough bread recipes that I made recently – two breads to keep you away from being hungry!
I had a surplus of refreshed sourdough from White, Whole Rye, and Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread, a recent recipe from a pretty much-used source of inspiration, www.karenskitchenstories.com. So I used it for this first recipe I’m sharing with you here – which actually was more successful than the former.
A year ago – Greek Briam with Danish Rye Rolls
Two years ago – Moscow and Courgette Pies
Sourdough 2 adapted from sarahfromscratch.com website which – unfortunately – seems to be not working any more. So I guess with reproducing the recipe here I will preserve it online and make it available – which is worth it because the bread is just great! See my remarks in italics.
- Firm Starter: I made less so that I won’t have leftovers
- 2 cups bread flour
- 2 cups sourdough starter
- half of the batch firm starter
- 3 cups bread flour – I mixed in some rye too as my sourdough culture is from rye flour
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon malt or sugar – I used rye malt
- 1 cup water
To make the firm starter, mix the sourdough starter you keep in the fridge with the flour. Add a little water if necessary to make into a cohesive mass. Let rise for several hours, or overnight in a cool environment (Overnight rise will get you a more sour flavor).
To make the loaf, measure out the amount of firm starter, and mix with the water, flour, sugar and salt. Because the starter has such little moisture, it is a bit harder to blend into the other ingredients. Turn it out onto the counter and knead it a few times to get everything come together.
Next, lightly oil the bowl your dough will rise in, place the dough in there and cover with a plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature for several hours until it has doubled in size. At this point you can either take it out and knead the dough, or you can just give it several turns within the bowl.
Let it rise for an hour or two more. Once the dough has risen again, turn it out onto a floured work surface. Let the dough rest for about 30 minutes (this step helps the gluten develop and relax, so don’t skip it!). Press the dough down with your fingertips, to create almost a rectangle. Then fold the dough down the top 1/3, followed by the sides and then fold the bottom remaining portion up over the other folds. Flip the dough seam side down and gently cup well floured hands underneath the dough. Start pulling the dough towards you slowly but firmly to create a tight skin on the outside. Transfer the dough into a proofing basket that is generously dusted with rice flour (I used a glass bowl dusted with plain flour). Cover with a dish towel and let rise for an hour.
Preheat the oven to 250 ‘C with a Dutch oven inside (including the lid) for at least 30 minutes. (Here I decided to bake this loaf without a pan, just on baking paper but covered it with aluminum foil.) Take the Dutch over out of the oven, and carefully flip the loaf into the pan. Cut a slit or two across the top of the loaf and cover the dutch oven with the lid and place it back inside the oven. Turn the oven down to 225 ‘C and bake the loaf covered for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and continue baking for approximately 25 minutes. Take the loaf out of the oven and let cool completely before cutting.
Result: This bread is quite neutral in taste (even though I added some rye malt – but without scalding it) and will make wonderful sandwiches with some cheese and herbs. The bread rose well in the oven and looked pretty with all the cracks on top.
And here’s a ‘sandwich view’ with home-grown basil:
And now here’s the second sourdough bread recipe for today:
Sunflower Seed Batard made with Sourdough adapted from thebakersguide.com will make tasty chewy and really crusty black bread. Follow the link to see the original recipe.
I turned the bread into a more rye-ish bread, adding more rye flour than bread flour + mixing in rye and wheat brans. Apart from sunflower seeds I also added some milled flax seeds.
The procedure will take time but this is sourdough bread so the time makes difference. I did not use baker’s couche or linen, I just floured two glass bowls and placed my round loaves in them to rise. I have to bake my loaves longer.
I like how the sunflower seeds peep through the cracks in the top crust:
The other loaf came out with this huge crack on the side:
Here, take a closer look inside:
Result: These loaves will rise wonderfully in the oven, making small but nice-looking crusty loaves. The crumb is medium-dense and definitely chewy with those sunflower seeds! I liked the texture of this bread more than of the first loaf of my post today.
For a different sourdough loaf using sunflower seeds see this Sunflower seed rye sourdough that I tried this winter.