Hopefully you have taken the time to read through my Sourdough Bread Starter post because this is the beginning stages of creating my Sourdough Bread. Long story short, I have done some research on the healthy components of Sourdough Bread and making it with what I am is called “Natural Yeast” not “Fast Acting Yeast”. There are thousands of websites full of information about the healthy properties of Sourdough Bread as a prebiotic made from Sourdough Starter which is actually “Natural Yeast”. There are also several good articles written about Sourdough Bread because it is made with natural yeast, being a bread that could be eaten by people who have gluten intolerance.
The following website ~ https://www.sourdough.co.uk/category/sourdough/sourdough-nutrition-digestibility is one of the best websites I have found with all the information you will need to understand the healthy components of Sourdough Bread and a wealth of other fabulous information, including recipes that you should checkout. Vanessa Kimball also has a new cookbook coming out called “The Sourdough School” to be hitting the Amazon market in April 2018. As an avid cookbook reader, I cannot wait to purchase a copy! Needless to say Vanessa of The Sourdough School in the UK has mastered the art of making Sourdough Bread and has created a school to teach others the art of making an artisan loaf. Someday I hope to be able to just go sit in her kitchen observe and sniff. I am so fascinated with people who have elevated their loves and passions to a successful business model, this has always been my dream. The niche’ charming small businesses that are hands on and provide such a valuable service and craft to our fast paced world. It takes us back in time to a simplified definition of living. We all know that everything is better in the UK, so down to earth and unpretentious like our American culture has become. “Real” is what I prefer to call it. Happy, simple, it is what it is…. we all need more of this in our life!
Sourdough Sponge (Made in the Sourdough Starter Post)
4 3/4 cups Bread Flour wheat or white
5 tsps fine salt
Take your sponge that you pulled together in the Sourdough Starter post, it should look like the above and below photo.
Mix your flour and salt together with the sponge by hand, squeeze it all together. Add more flour and water if necessary to make a soft, easy manageable, sticky dough. Throw it out onto a clean work surface and knead it with your hands for about ten minutes until the surface of your dough is smooth and it feels springy. You will need extra flour for your hands and for your work surface if necessary.
Mold the dough into a tight oval ball, sprinkle flour all over, on sides, bottom and top. Cover with a plastic bag and let it rise.
After about one hour, turn it out onto your work surface again. Form it into a oval round again, put it back in your bowl, cover and let rise for another hour. Repeat these steps once or twice more. After the final rising, turn the dough out onto your work surface and totally deflate the dough. Divide it into two or three different sections and shape these into bread loafs. Cover all the loafs with flour and place onto a tea towel, linen cloth or proofing basket. Really any surface will do, I put mine on parchment paper on top of one of my large baking sheets and I covered this with a large plastic bag to keep the moisture and heat inside. Honestly you do not need to spend and arm and a leg on high priced baking items. Always feel free to improvise with what you have got, that is exactly what I always do. Let your loaves sit and rise until they are doubled in size. Depending on the temperature of the dough and how robust your sourdough starter is, this can take from one hour to overnight. I let mine sit overnight.
Turn the oven on 500 degrees. Place a clean bread baking sheet on one shelf and a large roasting pan on the second shelf. Put the tea kettle on filled with water. Once your stove has preheated and the tea kettle has whistled, take your baking sheet out of the oven. Cover with fresh parchment paper. Flour your Sourdough Bread rounds and spray or sprinkle well with water, then run a serrated knife design upon the top of your loaves. Place on the parchment paper and place the baking sheet into the hot oven. Pour the hot water from the tea kettle into the large roasting pan on the shelf beneath your loaves of bread. Quickly shut the oven. Bake at 500 degrees for ten minutes. Check your bread loaves and reduce the oven heat to 350 degrees for 25 to 35 more minutes. When the bread is brown and crusty and feels/sounds hollow when you tap them, pull them out of the oven. If you are doubting their completeness, leave them in the oven to bake for a little while longer. Let cool on a baking rack or any clean surface.
Many times I will cut my homemade bread up into cubes and serve it with roasted garlic infused virgin olive oil.
Roasted Garlic Infused Olive Oil
- 4 Large Heads of Garlic
- 3 cups Virgin Olive Oil of your choice
Slice the edge off of your garlic heads and place cut side down into a round skillet or baking dish.
Cover the garlic heads with the oil and bake for 45 minutes on 350 degrees.
Remove from the oven and let cool. After cooled you can basically squeeze the roasted garlic out of their shells. I use kitchen scissors to cut up the garlic cloves. Salt and pepper to taste and dip your fresh Sourdough Bread cubes into the roasted garlic infused virgin olive oil. Bonapetit!