Unlike a lot of the recipes out there, this recipe uses All-Purpose Flour instead of Bread flour. I also wrote this recipe for those of us who are NOT professional bakers. I wanted to keep it easy and less intimidating for those of us just looking to make TASTY bread. Yes, there are MANY technical terms and techniques that you could use, but it starts to get confusing if you are JUST starting out, so I decided to keep it real and keep it easy. If you do not have a Sourdough Starter, I suggest you visit my recipe to get that going first. It takes about a week to get an established starter. (But just think of the BREAD!!!!)
Again, it is an easy to follow recipe, and if you have any issues, just email me or message me on instagram and I will walk you through it!
There are all KINDS of all-purpose flours out there, but if you are using one with a higher protein count, the bread will be much more “sourdough boule” like with lots of air pockets. If you are using a regular All-Purpose Flour with a protein count of 3g or 4g, you may have less air pockets, but it will still be CHEWY and DELICIOUS! Either way, Win-Win!
Regardless of whether you have bread flour or not, sourdough boules are YUMMY! They have a great soft, chewy consistency while being crispy on the outside. Once you make it a few times you will not want to return to “normal” bread! I make a large Sourdough Boule twice a week for our family, as well as Sourdough Bagels, and Sourdough Pizza Dough. Once you get the hang of Sourdough, the benefits are endless!
Check out my Sourdough Bagel Recipe here: Sourdough Bagels
Check out my Sourdough Pizza Dough Recipe here: Sourdough Pizza Dough
You will need a Dutch Oven for this recipe. If you do NOT have a dutch oven, you can still bake a free form loaf on a pizza stone or heavy baking sheet, with a pan of water in the bottom of your oven.
|Prep Time||20 min|
|Passive Time||10-13 hours|
- 475 g All Purpose Flour About 3 1/4 Cups
- 90 g Active Starter About 1/2 cup (fed within 3-8 hours before using)
- 300 g Water About 1 1/4 cups (filtered and room temperature)
- 8 g Sea Salt (Non-Iodized) About 1 tsp - Iodized Salt can kill yeast, causing bread not to rise.
- First start by making sure your starter is fed and active. You will know it is ready if a small piece floats in water.
- Add your starter and water to the mixing bowl. Give it a quick stir to make sure it is mixed.
- Next add your flour and salt to the bowl and attach to the stand mixer. If not using a stand mixer, that's ok. You can pull this together using your hands in a different bowl.
- Make sure to measure out your salt in a separate container just in case you add too much! (This has happened to me once or twice!)
- Mix on the lowest speed until the dough forms. Transfer to a clean bowl.
- Cover the bowl with a damp tea towel and let the dough rest for 30 minutes on the counter.
- Once the dough has rested, start folding the dough by pulling up the side farthest from you, and folding it over towards you.
- Do this in quarter turns until you have made a complete circle.
- A nice little ball should start to form. The dough will be sticky, but after folding, it should come together in a rough ball. If it doesn't, now is the time to work in a little more flour. Start with 1 tbsp at a time.
- Fold one more time before going to bed, and then cover the bowl and set on a warm part of your counter.
- After about 10-12 hours the dough should have doubled in size. If not, let it rise a little bit more.
- Gently tun out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and continue the folding as you did the night before. Turn the dough over, and using your hands (or a scraper) gently turn dough in a circle while shaping into a round ball. Using the friction of the surface to bring the underside of the dough together.
- Put a piece of parchment paper into the bowl with a little flour on the paper. The gently place the dough into the bowl, onto the parchment paper. Cover and let sit again for an hour.
- You can repeat the folding again one more time if you feel you like your dough needs it to create more bubbles, or if you aren't quite ready to bake.
- Put your dutch oven into the oven, covered, and heat the oven at 500º for an hour. This will allow the inside of the dutch oven to get nice and hot, but not TOO hot.
- After the dough has risen for an hour, take the dough out, parchment and all, and gently sprinkle flour on the top of the dough. Rub the flour evenly over the dough so that the dough is nice and smooth white on top.
- This is the time to score the top, using a sharp blade and creating a slash about 1/2-1 inch deep. You can start out with a simple X on the top. This will allow the extra steam to escape and also allow for the dough to rise (known as the "oven spring"). Don't worry, as you back more and more, you can get fancy with your scoring!
- Turn the oven temperature down to 450º and GENTLY place the parchment and dough into the dutch oven and cover it with the lid (parchment and all). Place it in the oven on the middle rack and bake for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, turn the temperature down to 425º, uncover the dutch oven, and keep baking for another 20 min. This will help brown the top and give it a bit crispier crust. (I usually try to just take the lid off while it is still in the oven, just be careful not to burn yourself with the steam!)
- Once done baking, take the Boule out of the oven. Carefully lift the Boule out of the dutch oven using the parchment paper and place on a rack to cool completely before cutting. (I generally cover with a clean tea towel while it is cooling on the rack.)
- If you cut into the bread before it is cooled, it can cause the inside to be a bit gummy. (If you CAN'T wait to try it, place the cut end face down on a cutting board and allow the bread to finish cooling that way.)
- Store all your bread in a tea towel, or bread bag, in a container on the counter for up to 5 days or so. A bread bin is perfect for sourdough. Do not put in the fridge, as this can make it go off faster.
- That's it! Now enjoy your hard-earned bread! This bread is amazing for sandwiches, toast or just eating with some jam on top!
I would say, just remember that your first loaf will not be perfect. You may need to adjust the amount of flour, water, or fermentation time. It is a bit of a science experiment, and all starters are different. Don't stress, either way your bread will TASTE great and the more you make it, the better you get! Don't be intimidated!!
Also keep in mind that I am baking at about 5400 ft altitude. If you find your bread needs a little less water or flour, you can adjust accordingly.
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