I had always found bread making hugely intimidating. That is until I discovered the no-knead, stretch and fold method. It goes without saying that I am totally hooked on sourdough. It is after all fermented and I am a fan of most fermented goodies. Just not natto, don’t think I can stomach it.
This is the easiest sourdough bread that you will ever make. It is versatile and comes out tops every time.
Basic Sourdough loaf
You need –
100 grams 100% starter.
310 grams water – 65% hydration
320 grams water – 67 % hydration
330 grams water – 69% hydration
The higher the hydration, the more difficult the dough will be to work with.
500 grams flour – (your own combination)
10 grams of salt
Put starter, flour and water in a bowl and mix together. Be sure to incorporate everything so that there are no bits of dry dough.
Leave to rest for 30 minutes to 2 hours, covered.
Lightly oil another bowl and transfer the dough. Make indents in the top and sprinkle over the salt. Wet your hands. Do one set of stretch and folds to mix in the salt as best as possible.
Do three more stretch and folds 30 to 45 minutes apart. If you are using 65% hydration be careful that the dough does not tear. The gluten is busy developing.
Cover and leave in a warm spot for two to two ½ hours until it is at least 1 ½ times its original size. Yu can leave in the oven with the light on.
Pre-shape on a lightly floured surface and leave to rest, covered for 20 minutes.
Final shape and place in a well-floured (rice flour) banneton, cloth-lined basket or couche. Leave for a further two to three hours or until almost doubled. Do the poke test. OR cover with plastic, top and bottom and place in the fridge until the desired proofing is achieved. 12 to 18 hours.
Remove from the fridge an hour before baking. You will not be able to do the poke test if it has been in the fridge.
About an hour before baking, turn the oven to as hot as it can go, this is usually about 240 degrees C. Place your baking vessel in the oven to heat up.
Score your loaf. Place in the hot baking vessel and bake covered for 30 minutes. Turn the oven down to 220 degrees C and remove the lid. Bake for a further 15 minutes. The internal temperature of the bread should be 95 degrees C when it is cooked.
Remove from oven and leave to cool completely before cutting.
Enjoy with cultured butter and kefir cheese.
Recipe with thanks to Cindy Hall on the Facebook group Sourdough Bread Baking.
Look out for my future workshops where you can learn to make your own sourdough starter from scratch and we will bake the loaf above. We will also make cultured butter and kefir cheese to go with the bread.
Keep on fermenting.