Columbia Essential loaf, photo inspired by mountaindog
After making the dough for the Columbia Essential sourdough loaf (in Maggie Glazer's Artisan Baking) on Sunday and fermenting it in the fridge overnight, I put it in the oven Monday morning and ended up with this:
I was inspired to take the picture on my deck by mountaindog (loved the picture of your Thom Leonard Country Loaf). The slashes on this bread spread in an incredible way - I was really surprised, since by the end of the 2nd ferment, the dough didn't look particularly proofed. The oven spring worked magic - the loaves easily doubled in height and the slashes did what they were supposed to. The crumb has a nice look and taste, and the crust is fantastic - crispy, with lots of little bubbles just under the surface, but not hard, like my other sourdough loaves have turned out. This recipe is definitely a keeper.
Instead of the diastalic malt syrup called for in the recipe, I used dehydrated malt (Spray Malt - my husband brews beer) and added enough water to make a syrupy consistency. It seems to have worked fine.