If you get this one right, you and your family can enjoy fresh baked bread anytime. Fancier recipes are just gilding the lily.
Once you have an established sourdough starter, you’ll be ready to bake your first loaf. It’s not hard, but it takes several steps and patience. This recipe (my favorite) comes from The Perfect Loaf, a great bread blog, but I’ve simplified the language and removed most of the technical jargon. Each of the major steps is shown on a separate page of the post, as well. The goal is to create short, easy steps.
Once you get comfortable baking, I encourage you to go to The Perfect Loaf. The author has many amazing bread recipes to try and terrific guidance on the more advanced elements of baking.
Ingredients you’ll need:
- 40 grams sourdough starter
- 788 grams bread flour
- 150 grams wheat flour
- 49 grams dark rye flour
- 18 grams fine sea salt
Each step will be described in detail in this post. What you’ll do:
- Make your levain and let it sit at room temperature for approx. 8 hours. Levain is just a fancy name for the yeast you’ll mix into your bread dough; it looks and feels very similar to your sourdough starter.
- Mix up the flour and water for the dough and let it sit at room temperature for an hour.
- Add the levain, a little salt, and a little more water to the dough and mix it in with your hand.
- Work the dough to activate the gluten.
- Stretch and fold the dough every 30 minutes. You will stretch and fold three or four times, then let it sit at room temperature for a couple more hours.
- Divide and preshape the dough, then let the loaves sit on the counter uncovered for 30 minutes.
- Shape the loaves.
- Place each loaf in a medium sized bowl, then cover and refrigerate for 8-12 hours.
- Cool and eat.
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