Everyday Sourdough

For those of you who are suffering from withdrawal symptoms…

I’m still baking every week, just haven’t baked anything new, sticking to the old favourites of toast bread and sourdough.

This is yesterday’s loaf of my regular sourdough with a little rye flour for flavour and colour.

250 g white starter (25 g active starter, 100 g strong white flour, 125 g water)
75 g rye flour
325 g strong white flour
200 – 220 g water
9 g salt

For full details of how to make this bread have a look at Weekly Sourdough Bread, a big tutorial style post.

12 thoughts on “Everyday Sourdough

  1. Jeannette

    That looks a lovely loaf, Joanna. I have been making sourdough bread every couple of weeks for nearly two years now, but I am still mystified by so many things. For instance, you seem to use a bigger amount of starter than some recipes state, is that amount just for one loaf? Every book, recipe I look at is so different in their amounts of starter to flour ratio, I must admit I find it very confusing! And yet, every loaf I make seems good, and is so much more enjoyable than the cotton-wool type you buy in the shops, so I carry on. I hope I haven’t opened a can of worms here!

    1. Joanna Post author

      Hi Jeannette, The truth is that it varies from loaf to loaf. If your starter is very active and fresh and has been refreshed in these proportions 8-12 hours before. 25 g of very active starter to 100 flour 125 water, which is what I did for this one, then it seemed fine, it makes a very mild sourdough. It’s more of a preferment than anything else. It maybe doesn’t need as long in the two proves as one made with a smaller quantity of starter. This one was ready to bake about 5 hours after mixing.

      My sister complains that my sour isn’t sour enough usually. If am baking for her I leave it longer to produce more acids. If I had used half the starter I used here the loaf might have needed a bit more time to prove and been slightly lower hydration, but I would probably have adjusted the water a bit.

      I am not expert enough to point out the finer differences between different proportions of starter to flour in a dough. To me the key difference is the interval between refreshments and the temperature the sourdough is kept at that affects how the yeasts and bacteria reproduce. The pro baking writers talk about 12 stages in the process of bread making and how changes to any make a change in the final bread. I am still feeling my way too, I know what you mean about the can of worms, very wriggly in the world of bread :D

  2. Jeannette

    Thank you for taking the time to explain that to me Joanna, every little bit helps. I do have lots of good books on sourdough making, including GH’s Bread but it still gets confusing to this old brain!

    1. Joanna Post author

      I think part of the problem is that recipes aren’t written to produce a standard quantity of dough. If they all made, say 850 grams of dough, then it would be easier to compare one recipe to another. When I started I was always getting caught out and made huge quantities not realising what I was doing. (confessions of a fool here). If you are good with spreadsheets most people end up using them. I have tried but they are not really my thing :)

  3. heidi

    Your everyday sourdough is a sight to behold!
    Thanks for sharing your recipe and pictures.
    I make sourdough- but I still like yeasted breads the best. Mainly because I understand them better. :D

    1. Joanna Post author

      I was trying to get leaf shape slashes, it sort of worked, the dough is very forgiving of my efforts sometimes. Thanks sweetheart :D

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