The Fresh Loaf

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Susan's Simple Sourdough Challenge - Take One

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subfuscpersona's picture
subfuscpersona

Susan's Simple Sourdough Challenge - Take One

SUSAN'S SIMPLE SOURDOUGH CHALLENGE - TAKE ONE


On October 4th, ehanner's blog presented Susan's Simple Small Sourdough Challenge. Ehanner's challenge was simple - make the bread!


Susan, justly famous for her "magic bowl" baking method and photos of perfectly round, scrumptious looking boules, has posted her recipe and approach several times. Here is Susan's recipe for one small boule: 12g firm starter, 175g water, 225g high gluten flour, 25g white whole wheat flour, 5g salt. Here's the Baker's Percentage...


SUSAN'S SIMPLE SOURDOUGH

INGREDIENT BAKER'S PERCENT
firm levain 4.8%
white bread flour 90.0%
whole grain flour 10.0%
water 70.0%
salt 2.0%

I scaled the recipe up to make two loaves and baked them as batards, since we prefer this shape. Susan likes chewy bread but we do not, so I used unbleached bread flour rather than the high gluten bread flour Susan prefers. Whole grain flour was (home milled) hard red wheat. My sourdough starter is 100% hydration, so minor tweaks were made to the recipe.

The dough was definitely wetter than I am used to (my weekly sourdough bread is about 68% hydration with 20% whole grain). I followed her method for minimal kneading and periodic stretch-and-folds. The dough has a long bulk fermentation (at least 8 hours) and, after shaping, an overnight proof in the refrigerator. The risen dough gets a brief warm-up period, then into a pre-heated oven it goes.

Here's the risen dough, ready to be slashed and baked...

My batard was baked on a stone in a preheated oven, covered with the bottom of a turkey roaster for the first 13 minutes, uncovered for the rest of the bake. Here's what it looked like after the bake (hmmm, what's that weird shape?!)...
...Holy Major Oven Spring !!! - it's the end product of a frustrated oven spring. The loaf rose so much during the start of the bake it hit the top of my turkey roaster cover.

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HOLY MAJOR OVEN SPRING !!!

My turkey roaster bottom is 4-inches high and has low ridges on the inside...

...so my 22 ounces of baking dough hit the top and did it's best to keep on rising. Thus the flattened top and indentations, which you can see a little better in this photo (the right hand photo has blue lines added to emphasize the indentations)...

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So what if the loaf resembled Quasimodo? When sliced, who can tell? The taste was great - not too sour (we don't like really sour sourdough) with a nice open crumb. Here's the obligatory crumb shot...

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Hey that turned out great! I like the clever signature lines you managed to bake into the top. The mark of a perfectly made bread!


Eric

Royall Clark's picture
Royall Clark

On a side note I just had to do a search on you name.... How appropriate for bread making! Found the deffinition in the 1828 edition of a Websters dictionary.


 


By the way.... I put this together and is in the fridge now. I'll bake it up tomorrow. What temperature, about how long?


 


Thanks

Susan's picture
Susan

Just in case Sub doesn't see your question in time, here's how I did it:  baked at 450F for 20 minutes covered followed by 20 minutes uncovered


Susan from San Diego

Royall Clark's picture
Royall Clark

Thanks for the help Susan!

Royall Clark's picture
Royall Clark


I believe I messed up a little and need to know what to do to save this batch of dough. I didn't read the recipe correctly and put the dough directly into the fridge without folding it. I took it out of the fridge this morning and of course it hasn't risen hardly at all. Can I bring this up to room temperature and rework it or do I chalk it up to lesson learned?


 

subfuscpersona's picture
subfuscpersona

Susan's recipe is pretty forgiving.


Take the dough cold from the fridge. Maybe knead a little by hand (? 3 min). Let rise at room temp with stretch-and-folds about every 15 min for one hour. Cover and let rise at room temp. Susan says about 8 hours for the bulk fermentation but I think that depends in part on your room temperature. Give it a few hours at room temperature (covered) and see how fast the rise is going. If it is slow, leave it out overnight, otherwise refrigerate it.


The next morning, shape and let rise in the banneton (or colander or whatever you're using). Because the dough has had 2 long refrigerations (the "oops I forgot to knead" one and the kneading one), perhaps let the shaped dough rise at room temp (if you don't want to accentuate the "sour" in the sourdough) rather than having the shaped dough rise in the refrigerator.


These are just my thoughts. I've only made Susan's recipe 2 times. If Susan doesn't reply (b/c she doesn't see your question), why not send her a PM (private message)?


Best of luck - SF

Royall Clark's picture
Royall Clark

Thanks SF. That's is about what I've been doing. Had it out on the board all morning and have done two folds. It is slow to warm up evan though it is 82 today. I warmed up the microwave with some water in it and put the dough inside in a oiled bowl and will see what happens. If I don't get it to come back I'll makes some crackers or pizza for dinner tonight!


Mahalo- Royall

subfuscpersona's picture
subfuscpersona

inquiring minds plus the idly curious are eager to know. - SF

Royall Clark's picture
Royall Clark

Good morning Sub. Well I let the dough set out all day and folded several times (good practice!) Finally my focaccia was through baking and figured "what the heck" and formed a boule and put it on the stone with the peel. I didn't hold out much hope for it to rise but more interested if there was going to be any "flavor". I baked it for about 65 minutes and it had an internal temperature of 214*. I was running out of time (invitation to FREE food) pulled it out and let it cool. When I got home last night I cut the boule and was surprised that there was SOME gas pockets even though most may have been from the folding. The main reason like I said to bake it was to taste it. There is a very SLIGHT taste of SD, not much but a little. I'll try again! I've got to make a Challah this afternoon for another dinner and may go ahead and start another SD then. Here is a couple of "evidence" photos and Thanks for the replies, It's nice to know there are others out there on your side!