The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

First Attemp at 1,2,3 Sourgough

coffeetester's picture

First Attemp at 1,2,3 Sourgough

I have been bread baking artisan style bread for about 4 weeks and my sourdough starter is very ripe and goes 4X in about 12 hours wih a 1:2:2 feeding. I have been making the Norchich sourdough with fits my schedule very nicly with the 5 hour prep to fridge and then 16+ hours before a cold bake. Here is my process at the 1,2,3

So I started with about 100 grams starter and then put together a 2:1:1 feeding and then waited tell it doubled. At this time I measured out 175 Grams Starter, 350 Grams warmish water, and 525 grams All purpose flour. I then let it sit and autolyse for about 30 minutes. I then threw it into the Kitchen Aid with the dough hook and ran for about 6 minutes. I tried to un-stick the sides and added about 15 grams more flour (I wont do this again). I then poured into a oiled bowl (Is Pam the right kind of oil?). I then did 3 Stretch and Folds at about 45 minutes between before I realized I forgot the salt. In my last fold I added the salt and did a little kneading to make sure it was well integrated. I let it rest for about 15 minutes and then formed it into a ball and threw it into my linen lined SFBI basket. To this I let it rest covered in a turkey roasting bad for about 120 minutes (I Fell Asleep but wanted 90). I saw little or no growth at this time. I then put it into the fridge.

So I came home the next night from work and cooked dinner and while I ate it put the oven on 475. After about an hour I removed the dough from the fridge and plopped it on my siliphant mat and made a nice + sign with my lame. I then opened the oven and threw 10 ice cubes into a cast iron loaf pan and moved the loaf onto the stone. After about 20 minutes I checked the color. Once it looked light brown I put in the instant read thermometer. I baked until 205 and then put it on the cooling rack. I waited 3 hours tell I cut off a slice and it was the best bread I have baked.

I really like the thinner crust and the gummy insides even though the dough was done (I prefer all my bread like this).

So here are a couple of questions as I go forward:

1. What effect will using Bread Flour vs All Purpose have on this bread? Will it effect the process I am following now?

2. With the 1,2,3 how will adding Rye or Wheat flower effect the ratio's. Should I worry as I think I can deal with a wetter or dryer loaf (Norwich is 65).

3. After thanksgiving I will try to hand knead this bread. What do you suggest as the best method. Should I follow the Mike Avery Folding method. Should I try the Slap and Fold method.


On a side note my wife is doing Team in training and I want to make 3/4 of a pound loafs to sell for 5$. I can buy bulk flower at Costco for about  $0.25 a pound for bread and all purpose. If the smart move is to use more bread flower I would rather know and experiment with before I purchase in bulk. I hope to make about 100 loafs in about 14 weeks.

flournwater's picture

As they say, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".  That's a mighty pretty loaf of bread you have there and if the flavor and texture are "on spot" I wouldn't change a thing. 

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

It looks like you're off to a good start. Other than forgetting your salt addition at the proper time, you still managed to recover well enough to produce a fine loaf.

I would suggest that you look carefully before you buy bulk flour at Costco. In the KC, MO area, the bulk flours are from Conagra and have been bleached or bromated. There are archived threads in the Forum that discuss bleached and bromated flours. After reading those threads, you'll have enough information to make a decision about using those flours. You will also be able to get information about the different characteristics of AP and bread flour in the Forum.

If you live in or near a larger city, you may be able to locate distributors that sell bulk flours that haven't been bleached. Many flours available in bulk aren't necessarily organic but will be chemical free.

ww's picture

in my limitd experience, the diff betw APF and bread flour can be negligible depending on the type of breadl. In any case, different producers have diff branding, not to mention flours from different countries, so switching betw one or the other will not make so much of a difference. But watch out with rye if using in bigger quantities - there are many threads here discussing rye. It is an altogether different animal.

For wet doughs, you would want to use the folding method.

hope this helps


G-man's picture

While it is true that Bread Flour and AP Flour can vary between brands, what a specific manufacturer labels "AP" flour tends to have less protein than that same manufacturer's "Bread" flour. Assuming you're working with products made by the same company, you'll get a more chewy, gummy bread if you substitute Bread flour for all of the AP flour in a recipe. If you change half the AP flour for as much Bread flour, you'll get a springier texture and perhaps a bit more rise.


In terms of method, try them all and use whichever feels right to you. Postal Grunt is right, the slap and fold method is intended for use with wetter dough, while the more gentle stretch and fold or just plain kneading are for use with doughs that are less wet. Kudos on giving hand kneading a try. You can learn a lot about how your bread is going to turn out from how the dough feels.

coffeetester's picture

I went back to he Norwich last night and made an 800 gram loaf. I scaled the recipe based on the amount of starter I had.

The original recipe is 40% of the original. I Mixed and proofed like above but decided to wake up and bake the loafs this morning

New Baskets

This was both of them. I got smaller baskets from SFBI this week and wanted to try.

Small Wicker

SFBI Linen

Both loafs started about 400 grams but came out closer to 350. Is this a good oven loss?

coffeetester's picture

I made a 123 formula last night. I started with 350g starter 700g water and 1050g flour. So I did a 30 minute autolyse and then a 6 minute mix with the KA dough hook. I did 3 folds about 40 minutes apart. After I removed the dough from the folding box (ikea rubbermaid like box). I let it rest for 15 minutes and then divided into 3 loafs. I then semi formed them into balls and let them rest before putting them into the proofing baskets. This is where I have a question


The dough was so loose that it spread from about a 6" diameter ball into about 18" flat bread. This has not happened before. I then moved the dough into the baskets and will bake tonight. What could be the root cause to be so loose?

Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

First thing is, did you remember to add salt? I try to add my salt after the autolyse and before turning my mixer on.  The salt plays a role in gluten strength.

Second question to ponder is waiting only 40 minutes between stretch and folds. If your room temperature is high that's not a bad idea but for most conditions, 50 minutes is more common between two stretch and folds. At the 150 minute mark, I usually do a pre-shape with a ten minute rest before forming.

Finally, did you plan a hydration level for your starter and dough? A 125% hydration starter will give you a more slack dough than if you built a 67-70% starter. I'm probably more casual or imprecise than most bakers here about my starter's hydration but I do try to land around the 68-72% mark because I've been using about 25-35% WW or WWW flour in my loaves lately. That may work for me but YMMV.

Don't fret if your loaves aren't museum quality. As long as they taste good, you're golden. The next time you bake, write down your procedures beforehand, step by step, as an exercise. Check your list against procedures in your favorite baking book. If you haven't forgotten anything, then go ahead, keeping notes on what you've done. Chances are that your results will be better than you expected.