Wednesday, March 15, 2006

White Sourdough



Here's a very easy recipe for all those who want to start baking with sourdough. It's perhaps cheating a bit to use yeast in the first starter dough - but who cares. The results are amazing, yielding large fluffy breads with a dense and soft crumb, and crispy thick crusts. Perfect for toast!

White Sourdough
2 loaves

Starter:
2 g fresh yeast
150 ml cold water
200 g flour

Dough:
15 g fresh yeast
500 ml tepid water
3 tbsp olive oil
1 kilo flour
1 1/2 tbsp salt

On day one, stir together yeast, cold water and flour into a soft dough. Cover with plastic and leave at room temperature for three days.

On day four, crumble the yeast, and mix it with the tepid water and the olive oil. Add the starter dough (which should look creamy and bubbly) and flour - gradually - and mix well for five minutes. (A bread machine sure comes in handy, but you can definitely do it by hand if you prefer that.) Add salt and knead for five more minutes. The dough should be firm, elastic and not sticky. Form into a ball, and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover and leave to rise for one hour or until roughly doubled in size.

Take the ball of dough and divide into two equal parts. Shape each, without overworking it, into a loaf. Place loaves on a baking sheet. You can place a rolled up tea towel in between them to make sure they don't rise into each other. Cover, and leave to rise for one more hour.

Preheat oven to 250°C. When ready to bake, cut a few slits in each loaf - I like a floral design - and place in the hot oven. Spray with lots of water to achieve steam - this will help with getting the crust nice and hard. After five minutes, lower temperature to 175°C, and bake for an additional 40 minutes.

Vitt surdegsbröd

7 comments:

Dagmar said...

This bread sounds lovely, Anne. I make sourdough bread every now and then, but I'm too careless with keeping the starter alive after I've done the first bread. And then I have to start all over again with a new starter when I want to bake another bread.

Erin Eats said...

Your bread is beautiful, I bet you wanted some velveeta melted on it!

I've never been successful at making bread, with the exception of focaccia and pizza dough.. it's very sad.

Anne said...

Dagmar, I'm not very good with keeping starter either. I have some rye starter in the freezer actually - it keeps very well there. Then again, I have to use it up soon...

Erin - haha, I didn't try this with Velveeta actually. This is a really easy bread to make - if you can make focaccia, you can definitely make this.

carin said...

Looks lovely. I can imagine it will not dry as quickly as regular white bread either. Where did you find the recipe?

Kevin said...

Anne,

I bought my sourdough starter from King Arthur Flour in late summer 2004. It comes from a batch that's about 250 years old. It's been gradually settling in to Tennessee and, judging from my last batch of bread, has finally made itself at home here. It's wonderfully sour.

Anne said...

Carin, that's a good question :) It's from some magazine or the other - I found it in the hotel lobby on my Gothenburg vacation a while ago, but the front page was ripped off, and I only leafed through it.. this recipe jumped out so I promptly jotted it onto my PalmPilot and later, tried it - with a few adjustments, I think I used a bit more yeast than the author suggested. Whoever it was, I'm very thankful. :)

Kevin, that sounds absolutely wonderful. How cool to have bread with tradition!

Fiber said...

I've never made a sourdough bread, but I was just thinking a few days ago that I needed to start.
This recipe looks easy enough to start with. Thanks!