Tips For Making Sourdough

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sourdough

Bread is one of life’s greatest pleasures. There is nothing better than enjoying a slice of freshly baked bread with a slice of cheese and a glass of wine. However, what makes that combo truly special is when you are pairing it all together with a delicious and authentic sourdough loaf.

Sourdough is one of the most famous types of bread in the world. It’s the ultimate journey of a baker, to create a sourdough starter and turn it into all sorts of delicious sourdough loaves of bread, buns and even pizza. 

What’s interesting about starting a sourdough is that you start with nothing and end up with something incredibly delicious and special. But, it doesn’t happen overnight. Unless you buy a ready to use sourdough starter that is.

Whether you are a baking novice or an experienced baker, sourdough is the ultimate baking challenge. Keep reading for more information about sourdough, baking tips and a great recipe.  

What is Sourdough?

Sourdough is a type of bread that has been fermented using naturally occurring lactobacillus bacteria. 

Unlike other bread, sourdough does not use any raising agents or store-bought yeast products. Instead, sourdough is made using a starter, which is a mixture of flour and water that will ferment. The fermentation process causes the bread to rise and develop its tangy flavour.

Creating a starting can take up to a week and involves regularly ‘feeding‘ the starter with water and flour.

Making a sourdough can be perfect for a home baker seeking to produce an artisan-style loaf with a long shelf life. If however, you are a bakery or cafe owner with less time on your hands, you may wish to use a frozen dough from a trusted wholesale bakery supplier.

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Authentic Sourdough Recipe 

There are many recipes for sourdough bread, but YouTuber Joshua Weissman has one of the most popular tried and trusted sourdough bread recipes.  

Levain

The first step in your sourdough baking journey is to make your levain, which is what will make your dough rise. To make your levain, you will need:

  • 35g of sourdough starter
  • 35g wholemeal flour
  • 35g all-purpose flour
  • 70g water at room temperature 

Dough

You will need to start your dough about one hour before the levain is finished proofing. For your dough recipe, you will need:

  • 804g of quality bread flour
  • 75g wholemeal flour
  • 740g water at 32°C 
  • 18g fine sea salt

Tips For Making Sourdough 

When it comes to baking sourdough bread, there are a few things that can make all the difference. 

From trial and error through to becoming a sourdough ace, here are some tips for baking sourdough:

  • Create your starter from scratch 
  • Use glass jars and bowls
  • Use silicon utensils (Don’t use metal or wood)
  • Use only filtered water for sourdough
  • Use thermometers to get the temperatures exact 
  • Organic and unbleached is recommended
  • Use the light in your oven to create a warm environment for proofing 

Authentic sourdough bread is a little tricky to make, but if you follow the right steps and have a good recipe, you’ll be sure to succeed! You might even find it is less of a challenge than you think it is.