high hydration sourdough bread. work in progress. altering a very complex "pro" recipe to something tractable for me. INGREDIENTS
350 grams unbleached bread flour (preferably organic), plus more for dusting 90 grams whole wheat flour (preferably organic) 350 grams (90°F/32°C) filtered water 90 grams ripe sourdough starter (100% hydration) 9 grams Diamond Crystal kosher salt or fine sea salt white rice flour, for dusting your banneton basketHalf recipe... also cut water down. I'd start with about 4 grams salt, < 200 gm flour. Starter, enough water to make a somewhat sticky dough.
New to sourdough baking? I highly recommend reducing the hydration in this recipe if you are new to sourdough baking. This is a high hydration dough and can be challenging to work with (and build strength in) if you're not an experienced baker. If you're looking for an easier to handle dough, I recommend reducing the water quantity to 320-330 grams.
IMPORTANT NOTE: I do not prepare an off-shoot levain for my sourdough baking, as this baking timeline and method works well for my schedule, as well as my starter's feeding schedule. This choice is up to you and can be adapted/tweaked to fix your schedule, but please plan accordingly. Keep in mind that you'll need to account for the starter quantity in the recipe (90 grams), as well as the normal quantity needed to continue to maintain and feed your starter. Autolyse: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours. Add the 90°F/32°C filtered water and mix with your hands until thoroughly combined. Cover with a clean shower cap or plastic wrap, and rest at 80°F/26°C for 1 hour or up to 2 hours. This step hydrates the flours and helps build dough structure. Add Starter and Rest: While this test isn't fool-proof, your sourdough starter should pass the 'float test' when it's ready. Place a tiny spoonful of your ripe starter in a jar of water, it should float to the top. If it sinks, give it more time (15 to 20 minutes) and test again. Add the starter on top of the autolyse mixture. Use your fingertips to dimple the starter into the surface of the dough, then use your thumb and fingers to pinch the dough (pincer method) until the sourdough is evenly incorporated. Cover and rest at 80°F/26°C for 30 minutes. Add Salt and Rest: Sprinkle the salt over the surface of the dough. Use your thumb and fingers to pinch and incorporate the salt thoroughly (you shouldn't feel any granules at the end of mixing) into the dough. Depending on the coarseness of your salt, this might take a couple minutes. Be thorough. Cover and rest at 80°F/26°C for 15 minutes. Bulk Fermentation: We will preform a total of 6 sets of stretch and folds (see blog post for further instruction) in the first two hours of bulk fermentation. The dough will not rise much during the stretch and fold period, but it should gain more strength. Dip your hands in water (to prevent sticking) before each fold. Preform the first 3 sets of stretch and folds in 15-minute intervals, covering and resting the dough at 80°F/26°C between each. Preform the remaining 3 sets of stretch and folds in 30-minute intervals, covering and resting the dough at 80°F/26°C between each. *If your dough is strong and elastic, you can reduce the total number of stretch and folds to 3 or4. Bulk Fermentation (continued): Allow the dough to rest, covered at 80°F/26°C, for an additional 2 hours after the last stretch and fold - watch it carefully - or until it has roughly doubled (total bulk fermentation time = 4 to 4.5 hours). There should be some gas bubbles on edges of the dough and the dough should be slightly rounded on the edges. It should look aerated and jiggly. The total time will vary depending on ambient temperature, starter strength, and flour. Pre-Shape: Transfer the dough, without degassing, onto a clean countertop. Use a bench knife to gently shape the dough into a round, pulling it gently towards you on the countertop in a circle to create some tension on the skin of the dough. The dough should feel aerated and almost bouncy. Do this step as quickly and gently as possible. Rest the dough, uncovered, for 10 to 20 minutes. Pre shaping gives the dough some extra tension and strength (and is particularly important if you are doubling the recipe and preparing two loaves, as you'll need to divide it prior). Allowing it to rest allows the gluten to relax slightly before preforming the final shape. Final Shape: Dust a 9-inch round or 10 or 11-inch oval banneton basket with rice flour (be extra liberal if you are not using a cloth or linen liner). Dust the surface of the dough lightly with bread flour. Use a bench knife to gently lift and flip it flour side down onto your countertop. Depending on your preference, banneton, or baking vessel, shape the dough into a round or batard. *Tip: I recommend this guide on shaping rounds or shaping batards for further guidance and visuals. Gently pick up the shaped dough, flip, and transfer into your floured banneton, with the seam side facing up. Drape a kitchen linen over the banneton and place the banneton in a plastic bag (*I use a clean plastic produce bag). Seal with a clip and allow the dough to rest at room temperature for 10 minutes. Final Proof: Place covered banneton basket in the refrigerator and retard dough for 15-16 hours at 38°F/3°C. This slow and cold fermentation stage helps develop flavor and improves the final crust texture. Preheat the Oven: Preheat your Challenger Pan, Dutch Oven, or combo cooker (with lid on) in a 500°F/260°C oven for at least 1 hour. Bake: Once the oven and baking vessel have preheated for an hour, remove the banneton from the fridge and uncover. *Note: If you are using a Challenger Pan or combo cooker, you can skip parchment and carefully invert the basket directly into the preheated base before scoring. I like to lightly sprinkle the bottom of the pan with semolina, but this is optional. If you are using a traditional Dutch oven: Place a large piece of parchment over the banneton, then top with a thin cutting board. Invert and flip carefully, so that the banneton is upside down, setting it down onto your countertop. The dough should release, right side up, from the banneton onto the parchment. Trim any excess parchment paper, creating two handles on both ends for lifting the dough. Use a bread lame to score the dough (1/2-inch deep), carefully transfer into the preheated pan, cover tightly with the lid, and place in the oven. Bake covered at 500°F/260°C for 25 minutes. Remove the lid. The dough should have risen and expanded considerably, and the crust should be set, but only lightly golden in color. Reduce the oven temperature to 475°F/240°C (*note: if your oven runs hot or your loaves are browning too quickly, reduce the temperature to 450°F/232°C) and continue to bake uncovered for an additional 15-25 minutes or until the crust is deep golden and caramelized. Carefully remove the bread from the pan and transfer to a cooling rack. Cool completely before slicing. This will take several hours. Slicing into warm bread will result in a gummier texture and cause the bread to stale faster. For more tips, read this guide on how to store, freeze, and refresh sourdough. Recipe method inspired by The Perfect Loaf. HOW TO ADAPT THIS RECIPE: Feel free to adjust the flour type percentages and hydration to suit your preferences, using the same total flour weight as a guide. Higher quantities of whole grain flours will yield a denser, less open crumb and may affect total bulk fermentation time. EXAMPLE BAKING TIMELINE: DAY ONE: 8:30 AM - autolyse (mix flours and water). allow mixture to rest, covered, at 80°F/26°C for at least 1 hour or up to 2 hours. 9:30 AM - add sourdough starter, mix thoroughly. cover and rest at 80°F/26°C for 30 minutes. 10:00 AM - add salt and mix thoroughly. cover and rest at 80°F/26°C for 15 minutes. 10:15 AM - 10:45 AM - stretch and folds #1, #2, #3 (every 15 minutes). cover and rest at 80°F/26°C between each set. 11:15 AM - 12:15 PM - stretch and folds #4, #5, #6 (every 30 minutes). cover and rest at 80°F/26°C between each set. 12:15 PM - 2:15/3:15 PM - allow to rest, covered, at 80°F/26°C for the rest of the bulk fermentation period. this period will range anywhere from 2 to 3 hours (or longer), depending on ambient temperature, starter strength, and flour variety. 2:15/3:15 PM - pre-shape. leave uncovered at room temperature for 20 minutes. 2:35/3:35 PM - final shape. transfer to rice floured banneton basket, cover with a plastic bag, and seal. allow to rest at room temperature for 10 minutes before transferring to the fridge. 3:45 PM - 7:45 AM - retard dough (final proof) in refrigerator at 38°F/3°C for about 16 hours. DAY TWO: 6:45 AM - preheat challenger pan, Dutch Oven, or combo cooker in 500F oven for at least 1 hour. 7:45 AM - remove banneton from fridge, transfer dough to preheated pan, score, and bake at 500°F/260°C, covered, for 25 minutes. 8:10 AM - remove pan lid, reduce oven temperature to 475°F/240°C, and bake uncovered for an additional 20 minutes or until deeply caramelized. allow loaf to cool completely (this will take several hours) before slicing. RECOMMENDED PRODUCTS As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases. Challenger Bread Pan CHALLENGER BREAD PAN Thermapen Thermometer THERMAPEN THERMOMETER Baking Scale BAKING SCALE Bread Lame BREAD LAME Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free White Rice Flour, 24 Ounce BOB'S RED MILL GLUTEN FREE WHITE RICE FLOUR, 24 OUNCE Oval or Round Banneton Basket with Liner OVAL OR ROUND BANNETON BASKET WITH LINER NUTRITION INFORMATION: Yield: 12 Servings Serving Size: 1 Amount Per Serving: Calories: 199Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 366mgCarbohydrates: 41gFiber: 2gSugar: 0gProtein: 6g A Beautiful Plate provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietician. © LAURA // A BEAUTIFUL PLATE CUISINE AMERICAN / CATEGORY: SOURDOUGH BREAD SHARE YOUR BEAUTIFUL PLATE! post it on instagram and tag it #abeautifulplate.