Simple Sourdough Bread
Yield 2 loaves
To make the bread (this makes 2 loaves), you'll need:
- 5-7 cups flour (the book I got this from says whole wheat pastry flour, but really, use what you want. I really enjoy both spelt, and a spelt or wheat combo with rye, or just wheat).
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 1/2-3/4 cup sourdough starter (I tend towards the 3/4 cups starter, so I add slightly less water)
- 1 tsp salt
- A couple hours before you're ready to start, take your starter out of the fridge, give it a good stir, and let it sit on the counter to come to room temperature (you may notice that it totally separated while in the fridge and looks a strange purple-ish color- once you stir it well, it'll be just fine- really!). In a large bowl, start with 5 cups of flour, the water, starter and salt. Stir well, and slowly add the remaining flour, a bit at a time. Knead dough until smooth and consistent.
- Let the dough sit overnight in a well-oiled glass or ceramic bowl (plastic can interfere with the fermentation process of the starter). Roll the dough around so it's covered lightly in oil, and cover with a cloth. My book says to leave it for 12 hours. I generally make mine before bed, around 9pm, and then knead it in the morning after breakfast, (8:30 or 9), so there's my 12 hours.
- Knead the dough again for 3-5 minutes (you may need to add a little more flour if it's too sticky). Cut it in half, and you can either place them in in lightly oiled pans, or shape into a loaf and use a cookie sheet. Cover and let rise again for 6 more hours (or until desire size). I let mine go until the mid afternoon, just before I start cooking dinner (maybe 3 or 4pm).
- Bake loaves at 425 F for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake for another 45 minutes or until golden brown. Check with a knife to see if done. I find for spelt that I can lower the oven temperature when I first put it in, rather than waiting 15 minutes, otherwise it can get a little too hard, and sometimes I do more like 50-55 minutes. I've changed ovens many times, so it feels like I am always changing my method a little.
- Top up your starter by adding equal parts flour and water to make up for what you used. Mix with well, and leave on the counter for a few hours, then put the lid on and put it back in the fridge.
Courses Baked Goods
Recipe by Keeper of the Home at https://keeperofthehome.org/a-lesson-in-making-sourdough-bread-for-yall/