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Sourdough Bread

This everyday sourdough bread recipe is to die for! Use bread flour for best texture!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Resting Time9 hrs
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Cuisine: American
Keyword: sourdough bread
Servings: 1 loaf
Author: Heather Perine

Ingredients

  • 50 g (1/4 cup) bubbly, active starter
  • 350 g (1 1/3 cup + 2 Tbs.) warm water
  • 500 g (4 cups + 2 Tbs.) bread flour
  • 9 g (1 1/2 tsp.) salt

Instructions

  • Make The Dough. Whisk the starter and water in a large bowl. Add the flour and salt. Squish everything together with your hands until all of the flour is absorbed. Cover with a damp towel and rest for 30 minutes.
  • Shape The Dough. After the dough has rested, work the dough in the bowl into a rough ball. To do this, grab a portion of the dough and fold it over, pressing your fingertips into the center. Repeat, working with your way around the dough until it begins to tighten, about 15 seconds. 
  • Bulk Rise. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and let rise overnight at room temperature. This will take about 8 to 10 hours (at 70oF, 21oC). The dough is ready when it no longer looks dense and has doubled in size. 
  • Shape. After the bulk rise, remove dough from bowl and place onto a lightly floured surface. Shape into a round. Start at the top and fold the dough toward the center. Turn the dough slightly and fold over the next section of dough. Repeat until you have come full circle. Flip the dough over and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile line an 8-inch bowl with a towel and dust with flour. With floured hands, gently cup the dough and pull it toward you in a circular motion to tighten its shape. Using a bench scraper, place the dough into the bowl, seam side up.
  • Second Rise. Cover the bowl and let rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour. The dough is ready when it looks puffy, and has risen slightly but has not yet doubled in size. Nearing the end of the rise, preheat the oven to 400oF.
  • Score. Place the parchment over the dough and invert the bowl to release. Sprinkle the dough with flour and gently rub the surface with your hands. Using a bread lame, or the tip of sharp knife score the dough. I keep it simple and do 4 cuts, but you can get creative! Use the parchment paper transfer the dough to your dutch oven. 
  • Bake. Bake the dough on the center rack, in a preheated 400oF oven,  for 20 minutes, covered. Remove the lid and continue to bake for 20-30 minutes. Optional: Remove from oven, and remove the loaf from the pot and bake the crust for an additional 10 minutes to crisp the crust. (My crust is always dark at this point, so I skip this step). Transfer to a wire rack. Cool for 1 hour before slicing. 

Notes

  • Adapted From Clever Carrot
  • Make sure your starter is active before you start. Drop a small piece in a bowl of water to see if it floats. It it does, then it's ready! If not, then it may need 1-2 more feedings. 
  • Use Bread Flour. Yes you can use all purpose flour, but bread flour gives the best texture. 
  • Use A Kitchen Scale. For best accuracy, it's best that you weigh your ingredients and not rely on volume (measuring cups)
  • Damp Towel!! When you let the dough rise overnight, be sure to use a damp towel to cover it so it doesn't dry out and not rise properly.
  • Use A Bread Lame. Yes you can try and use a sharp kitchen knife to make the cuts in the top of the bread but a bread lame is a great handy tool that makes clean cuts every single time. I love my bread lame!!
  • Bread Timeline: Thursday night: Remove Starter from Fridge and Feed
    Friday: Feed twice (once in the morning, and one at night)
    Saturday morning: Feed again
    Saturday evening: Remove the amount of starter I need to make my dough. Feed my starter again, and pop back in the fridge until next week.
    Sunday morning: Finish and bake my bread!