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Basic Sourdough Bread

For my birthday I got this super heavy dutch oven which was basically the first occasion to bake my first personal sourdough bread. I started searching the whole internet, looking for the right recipe until I had so much information I just couldn’t decide on what to do anymore. I was simply overwhelmed by all the different ways your sourdough bread could look like, so that I finally decided to write down a simple but incredibly delicious recipe for you. If you still have your doubts, your best bet is to simply leave them alone; your whole family will love it! Believe me, mine does and they always keep asking for more! ;)


Sourdough Bread Ingredients

  • Flour - I like to switch up the flour to get a lot of different bread types. You could use white flour, dark rye, or light, whole wheat,... Depending on the flour, the level of difficulty will differ. To start, I would recommend just using ½ cup of any flour other than white and all-purpose

  • Sourdough Starter - Before you start the dough, you need to have a ready-to-use starter. We always make our own and have a separate post on it here.

  • Salt - 10 g seems like a lot, but I promise you it will be tempting to use more!


Sourdough Bread Tips

  • Use a sourdough starter - To make a sourdough bread, you first need to have a starter. If you're wondering how to do that, we have a step-by-step guide that will teach you how to grow your own starter. Check it out here.

  • No yeast?! - Nope! Only the sourdough starter is required since you’re basically making your own living yeast.

  • How long will it take?! - The dough is ready when it has doubled in size and no longer looks dense. This can take anywhere from 4 h to 12 h, depending on the flour type and the temperature.

  • 2x Rise - After letting the dough rise for the first time; shape into a ball. And after the dough has been shaped, it has to rise again.

  • Bake your sourdough bread in a dutch oven - The pot traps heat and moisture, which is essential for making artisanal bread at home.

  • Baking steps - This bread requires 2 baking runs. Leave the lid on the pot for the first 30 minutes. Then, reduce the heat to 350 F, remove the lid from the dutch oven and let the bread bake for another 15 minutes.

  • Make a slash - This allows the steam to escape and the dough to expand during baking. Make it about 2-3 inches long in the middle of the dough. (I sometimes forget to to do this and it’s never a problem)




Ingredients - Option #1

Hard - ca. 5 servings - 2 days (due to resting) 
  • 140 g dark rye flour

  • 150 g light whole wheat flour

  • 200 g all-purpose flour


  • 80 g active starter

  • 280 g warm water

  • 10 g salt


Flour Option #2

  • 150 g spelt flour

  • 340 g all-purpose flour


Flour Option #3

  • 140 g whole wheat flour

  • 150 g coarse whole wheat flour

  • 200 g all-purpose flour


Option #4

  • 140 g dark rye flour

  • 100 g light rye flour

  • 250 g all-purpose flour




Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, weigh the flour and salt and simply combine with a fork.

  2. In another container measure the water and sourdough starter and quickly whisk with another fork.

  3. Then, pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix everything together - using a fork and then a spoon!

  4. When everything is combined, cover the bowl with a clean, very damp kitchen towel. Let rest for 1h.

  5. After the dough has rested, work the dough into a rough ball in the bowl for about 15 seconds.

  6. Now, let it rise (cover the bowl again) until the dough has doubled in size and no longer looks dense. This can take anywhere from 4h to 12h - I let mine usually rise overnight in the oven where it is dry and kind of warm. (But don’t let it rise in the dutch oven)

  • During this rise, you will have the opportunity to do a series of ‘stretches and folds’ to strengthen the dough. Start 30 minutes into the rise. Gather some of the dough, straighten it up, and then fold it over. Turn the bowl a quarter turn and repeat this process until the circle has closed. Do this once or twice, about an hour apart. While this step isn't mandatory, it will add to the overall volume and height of your bread

  1. Preheat the oven to 470-500 degrees Fahrenheit and place the dutch oven into the preheating oven.

  2. Now, remember your two baking steps - first bake the bread with the lid on for 30 minutes and then take the lid off and bake for another 15 minutes. So, brush the dutch oven with a small amount of olive oil and place the dough ball into the dutch oven - Just before your bread goes into the oven, make a slash cut about 2 inches long in the center of the dough. Use a knife.

  3. After 45 minutes of baking in total your bread is done! YAY!

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