The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

3/30/10 - 50% Spelt Sourdough Batards

breadbakingbassplayer's picture

3/30/10 - 50% Spelt Sourdough Batards

Hey All,

Just wanted to share with you some spelt sourdough batards that I baked last night.  I'll post the recipe a little later.  Enjoy!


Total Recipe
500g Organic Spelt Berries (500%)
350g BF (35%)
150g AP (15%)
588g Water (58.8%)
20g Kosher Salt (2%) (I will probably do 1.8% salt next time)
60g Firm Sourdough Starter (60% Hydr) (6% of total flour, or 20% of levain flour)
1668g Total Dough
Makes 2 batards at approx 690g after bake

Spelt Levain (preferment 30% of total flour at 58% hydration)
150g Organic Spelt Berries (freshly ground)
150g AP
174g Water
60g Firm Sourdough Starter (60% Hydr)
534g Total

Final Dough
350g Organic Spelt Berries (freshly ground)
350g BF
414g Water
20g Kosher Salt
534g Spelt Levain
1668g Total

Evening before baking: Grind spelt berries for levain, cover and refrigerate.  This is just for convenience so I didn't have to grind in the morning.

Bake day:
8:30am - Mix spelt levain, cover and let rest on counter for 8-12 hours, go to work.
6:30pm - Measure out final dough ingredients, grind spelt berries.
7:00pm - Mix all ingredients for final dough in large mixing bowl by hand with wooden spoon until combined, then knead by hand in bown for 3 minutes.  Do not add any extra flour.  If dough sticks to your hand, scrape off with plastic scraper, dip hands into water and continue kneading.  Cover, let rest for 30 minutes.
7:30pm - Knead for 1 minute, cover and let rest.
8:05pm - Turn dough, cover and let rest.
10:00pm - Dough is ready when it has expanded, and when you poke it with a wet finger, the impression remains.  Divide into 2 equal pieces, shape into batards, proof seam side up on very lightly floured couche, cover with plastic bag so they don't dry out.
10:45pm - Arrange baking stone, stones in oven along with steam pan.  Preheat to 550F with convection.
11:30pm - Turn batards onto peel, slash as desired, place into oven directly on stone.  When they are all loaded, place 1 cup of water into steam pan, close oven door, turn down to 450F no convection.  Bake for 45 minutes, rotating half way through bake.  Cool completely before cutting.

Notes: I am using a hand crank grain mill.  This tends to grind the bran a little coarse.  Also, make sure that your grain mill is well lubicated with a food safe lubricant.  I am just using mineral oil, the kind you use to oil wooden cutting boards.
Mixing: My technique is a follows.  In a large mixing bowl, put the water in first, cut up the stiff levain in pieces, place that in next, then add the flours, and salt.  Mix with wooden spoon until combined, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and spoon, then knead by hand using wet hands.  Do not add any extra flour.
Autolyse: Just place the entire bowl in a large plastic bag.
Turning: I turn in the same bowl so I don't have to add any extra flour.  You can either stretch and fold, or just knead a few strokes and turn the dough ball seam side down.

Submitted to Yeastspotting


weavershouse's picture

Looks tasty and I love the slashing. I look forward to the recipe.

Great job.


Doughtagnan's picture

as usual Tim. I always look forward to your posts and eagerly await  the recipe as I have some organic spelt flour in the cuboard.  I have one spelt recipe in the River Cottage Baking handbook so am keen to see how they compare. Cheers, Steve

Doughtagnan's picture

.... the recipe Tim, I baked half the recipe today as well as Dan Lepards Spiced Stout Buns (Hot Cross), only variation was hardly any salt and a little olive oil.  I have not cut into the loaf yet and my shaping is still WIP but here's the result which will be enjoyed with the fromage course tonight!, cheers Steve

breadbakingbassplayer's picture

That's a nice looking loaf Steve.  Please let me know how it turns out when you cut into it, and please post a crumbshot.


Doughtagnan's picture

Hi Tim, crumbshot below, it is a real a heavy, solid loaf with a good crust, texturewise it's like some 100% wholemeal bricks ( but lighter). The flour I used was a UK Doves Farm Organic Spelt and it was really good with cheese but quite filling, which stops me eating too much cheese!.  I will definitely bake this again and am interested how this toasts up with some homemade Plum Jam. Have a good Easter, cheers Steve 


PS. How keen am I, it's now 0030 in the UK and i'm uploading bread pics!, dedication.....

breadbakingbassplayer's picture

Thanks for the crumbshot!  It looks similar to mine, so I am relieved that the recipe and method worked...

I have tendency to bake late too...  Most of my breads come out of the oven a little past midnight...



breadbakingbassplayer's picture


I just posted the recipe.  Please let me know if you have chance to try it out.


ryeaskrye's picture

Great looking loaves.

Yet another recipe to bake from an already enormous TFL collection. *sigh*


Martyn's picture

Great looking bread! I want to say thanks for the way you have written out the recipe and method; as I read through them it was as if a little light came on in my head, it's as if I understand now how to build the dough.

I'm going to read through a few more recipes now to see if my little theory about dough building is valid for other breads.

breadbakingbassplayer's picture

Thanks again Floyd!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

More than you will ever know, Thank you!  and Congratulations again!


breadbakingbassplayer's picture

You are very welcome Mini!


Sam Fromartz's picture
Sam Fromartz

I am just now rising a 50% sourdough spelt loaf, with flax seeds. Will post the results. Sam