The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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I have finally managed to bake a 100% sourdough bread with oat bran that is not too dense and tastes rather good. The first criteria I decided upon was the weight of the loaf I wanted to bake. In this case, it had to be small since this was an experiment, hence 600g total. I was not sure how it would turn out and did not want to waste flours. The slashes are not very good. Maybe next time.

This bread was formulated to allow for the interaction of a couple of specific enzymes. A dough enhancer was also factored in. I wanted it to be from a natural source, namely in this case extra virgin olive oil. The added oat bran and wheat bran had to be of specific weights, calculated as a percentage of total flour weight (TFW). This bread is hand kneaded.


60g of mature whole wheat/rye starter, comprised of:
14g stone ground whole wheat
22g stone ground dark rye
24g filtered water

Sourdough preferment
All of starter
9g organic wheat bran (finely ground)  [2.5% of TFW]
34g organic oat bran (finely ground) -  [10% of TFW]
102g filtered water (room temperature)

106g unbleached all purpose flour [~ 46% of TFW]
160g unbleached bread flour [~ 31% of TFW]
108g filtered water
7g sea salt - 2%
14g extra virgin olive oil - 4%

Total flours (including oat bran & wheat bran and flours from starter): 345g (100%)
Total liquid (including from starter & preferment): 234g (68%)

1. Starter is built the day before & allowed to grow at room temperature for 12 hours.
2. Preferment is then prepared by thoroughly mixing the starter with the water, and adding the ground oat bran and wheat bran. Fermentation lasted 12 hours.
3. All remaining flours and water are then mixed with the preferment and the salt; the dough is then kneaded until everything comes together.
4. Extra virgin olive oil is then gradually incorporated in the dough and the dough is kneaded for a few minutes more.
5. Bulk rise lasted 3 hours. Dough had not doubled but I did not want to wait longer to prevent the development of too much sourness.
6. Three sets of stretch & fold were performed at 30 minutes interval.
7. Dough was preshaped and allowed to rest for 20 minutes.
8. Dough was shaped and transferred to an oiled & semolina-coated clay baker for proofing.
9. Proofing lasted 3.5 hours.
10. The clay baker finally went into a cold oven and the temperature turned to 450ºC.
11. The loaf was baked covered for 20 minutes at that temperature, then uncovered for another 30 minutes at 375ºC, to an inside temperature of 210ºC.




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Mostly Sourdough Brioches

Total weight: about 1600 g

3-build starter: 250 g @ 65% hydration

All flours: 732 g (100%), which breaks down as follows:
- 348 g unbleached bread flour
- 232 g unbleached all purpose flour
+ 152 g in starter

15 g sea salt (2%)
353 g eggs (48%)
100 g sugar (14%)
303 g unsalted butter (42%)
3 g fresh yeast (0.4%)
25 g flavours (alcohol: eau de vie & orange blossom water)

This part is not important. Calculated for fun.

All liquids: 497 g (68%), which breaks down roughly as follows:
- eggs water content: 229 g (total eggs input: 353 g in the form of 3 whole eggs + 2 egg yolks)
- butter water content: 50 g
- milk: 95 g (not part of the formula, but was added in panic mode - will explain below)
- flavours: 25 g
+ 98 g filtered water in starter


Mixing was done in two stages, using a Bosch Compact. One big mistake: I forgot to remove about 20% of the dough flours for the second mixing. Thus when the first mixing turned out on the dry side, I quickly added some milk to prevent the formation of lumps in the dough. That turned out all right. So maybe I will include milk in the formula next time, or better still some cream.


Using the whisk, eggs are beaten & the 250 g of starter is broken into pieces and gradually added to the mix. Everything is mixed to a smooth consistency.

The whisk is removed & replaced with the dough hook. All the dough flours was added and mixed (here I should have used only roughly 80% of the flours, keeping the rest for the second mix. Naturally the mix was crumbly and that's when I added some milk to help the dough come together.)

That dough is transferred in a loosely covered bowl and allowed to ferment for about 4 hours at room temperature (next time, I would put it inside the lit oven instead for a somewhat higher ambiant temperature, about 28º C)


Fresh yeast is mixed with a little warm water & a tiny bit of the sugar. (Water not accounted for in the formula.)

In another bowl, butter and sugar are creamed and put aside.

Flavours are weighed and put aside.

The first dough is transferred in the mixing bowl. Using the dough hook, the fresh yeast mixture is added and incorporated in the dough. (speed is at level 1)

Gradually, over the next 15 minutes or so, the creamed butter and sugar is added to the dough in spoonfuls. Each spoonful is allowed to be fairly well incorporated in the dough before the next one is added. (Speed is at level 1)

Speed is switched to level 2 and the dough mixed for about 5 minutes. During that stage, the flavours are added.

Dough is transferred to a clean bowl & allowed to ferment overnight in cooler at about + 10º C.

The next day, the dough is transferred to the working board and while still cold, is patted down to a rectangle and folded. That is done three times, at 10 minutes interval. The 1st time is a bit hard, but it gets better as the dough starts to warm up. At some point, it is possible to use a rolling pin to flatten the dough before folding.

Next came the divide and weighing part. This dough was divided into two, one for the brioche pan (which went to a friend) and a smaller portion for the loaf tin for us.

Both went into the lit oven for 8 hours to rise and then baked at 180ºC for about 45 minutes.


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