This weeks bake is in aid of #RealBreadWeek. I am a lover of bread but there are so many kinds and don’t get me wrong a slice of white supermarket loaf toasted with butter is perfect for hangovers, but it is nothing compared to a good sourdough loaf. Since I did my sourdough course in November I have been working hard each week to keep up my practice of sourdough and perfect my starter (Leven) and get use a method of bread making which works best for me. Bread making is its own art, you never quite know how the yeast is going to perform and this will always give some kind of uncertainty in the aeration of the bread. I base all my recipes from the basic “bubble bread” recipe that I was given on my sourdough course which I have adapted and changed over time.
Ingredients for step 1
- 45g of Starter (Leven- make sure this is bubbly and has been fed about 1-2 days before using)
- 100g Strong white bread flour (the better quality flour the nicer your bread will taste!)
- 35g Water
Method for Step 1 (Bulk Leven)
- Mix your starter culture before weighing into a medium sized bowl.
- Add your flour and water and mix in the bowl until forms a soft dough.
- Cover with cling film or re-useable alternative and leave to rise and relax for 18-20 hours at room temperature about 20 degrees.
Ingredients for Step 2
- 480g Strong white bread flour (or half white half wholemeal)
- 320g Water
- Your bulk leven
- 8g Salt
- 70g Mixed seeds (I used sesame, poppy, sunflower and pumpkin seeds).
Method for Step 2
- Add your flour, water, salt, seeds and bulk leven to a large bowl and mix using one hand, ensure that the salt is fully incorporated.
- Cover and leave to rest for 20 minutes to allow the gluten to relax.
- Knead for 5-10 minutes until the dough is soft and stretchy.
- Cover bowl again and use extra cover of towel or tea towel and leave to rise for an hour.
- Prepare your banneton bowl if you have one and dust with flour. (If you do not have a banneton leave in a bowl and leave to rise for the full time, I usually use one but had left mine at uni).
- Place dough in banneton bowl for 4-6 hours depending on air temperature and rise. It should rise to fill the bowl.
- Pre-Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. If you have a pizza stone then pre heat in the oven until warm.
- Once the dough has risen tip out onto pizza stone and score the top in your design and bake in the oven for about 45 minutes until golden brown.
- Leave to cool for at least an hour on a cooling rack before serving.