Sourdough bread

Sourdough bread

  • Preparation time: It can take up to a week to make the starter mixture required to make sourdough bread. Once you have made a starter it can be divided and fed to make more starters and loaves. Preparation time for the starter: 1 hour over 7 days Preparation time for the bread: 25 minutes plus proving
  • Cooking time: 30 - 40 minutes
  • Serves: --

Ingredients

  • 900g strong white flour to make the starter

For the loaf

  • 500g strong white flour
  • 225ml warm water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp runny honey

How to prepare sourdough bread

How to prepare sourdough starter

  1. Put 100g strong white flour into a 1.5 litre lidded bowl or jar. Add 125ml hand warm water (it should feel the same temperature as your hand and no warmer). Stir well to incorporate air. Leave in a warm place uncovered for 2 hours. Cover and leave in a warm place for 24 hours.
  2. Each day divide the mixture in half. Discard one half (or prepare another starter for yourself or a friend). Stir in 100g of strong white flour and 125ml of hand warm water to the reserved half. Stir well, until the mixture is smooth. Leave uncovered for 1 hour then cover and leave in a warm place for 24 hours. Repeat dividing the mixture, discarding half (or start another starter dough) and adding 100g of strong white flour and 125ml of hand warm water each day for a further 5 days. Stir well after each addition.

How to prepare sourdough bread

  1. Put the starter into a bowl or food processor and add flour, warm water, salt and honey. Stir well or mix in the processor to form a smooth dough. Tip out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead by hand to form a smooth pliable dough that does not stick to your hands. Add a little extra water if the dough is too firm and a little extra flour if the dough is too sticky.
  2. Put the dough into a large bowl and cover with cling wrap. Leave in a warm place for 4-8 hours or until doubled in size.
  3. Knead the dough again. Line a bowl twice the size of the dough with a clean tea towel and dust well with flour. Place the dough into the bowl and cover with cling wrap. Leave in a warm place for 8 hours or until doubled in size.
  4. Preheat an oven to 230C/210C fan/gas 8. Place a roasting tin in the bottom of the oven and pour in 2cm of boiling water. Put a baking sheet into the oven to get hot for 15 minutes.
  5. Tip the dough out onto the hot baking tray. Carefully lift the floured cloth off. Slash the dough with a sharp knife to make a pattern of your choice. Bake for 30 - 40 minutes until golden and the underside of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped with your knuckles. Cool on a wire rack.