The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Hello from Los Angeles

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

Hello from Los Angeles

Hi...I stummbled into this place after googling for sourdough sandwich bread recipes. I'm on a mission. Last weekend I went to brunch and had the most amazing Italian breakfast sandwich....on sourdough toast. Now I want to recreate that meal at home. I've had my starter going for almost a year now but realized I've never made that soft kind of sourdough that makes such yummy sandwiches. And here I find myself....surrounded by all sorts of bread people!! woooo hooo!! If you happen to know of a good sourdough sandwich bread recipe...lemme know. Meanwhile, I'll be poking around here. Who knows what other goodies I'll come across.  :)

Ford's picture
Ford

Hello and Welcome. Here are my two favorite sandwich recipes.

WHITE SOURDOUGH BREAD (substitutions for ♥)

[19 sl./lf., 1/2" sl., 47 g, 110 cal, 3.3 g prot, 2.0 g fat, 19.3 g carb.]


2 3/4 cups (25 oz.) refreshed sourdough starter (100% hydration), at 70 to 80°F
3 3/4 cups (31.9 oz.) tepid scalded milk (skim ♥)
10 1/4 to 10 3/4 cups (43.6 to 45.7 oz.) bread flour*
1 1/2 Tbs. (1 oz.) salt
1/4 cup (2 oz.) butter (or corn oil ♥)
butter or solid shortening for greasing pans
1/4 cup (2 oz.) melted butter (or corn oil ♥) to brush dough
water in a sprayer

Note: for part of the bread flour, you may use 1/2 cup (2.1 oz.) whole-wheat flour, and/or 1/2 cup (1.7 oz.) oat meal (rolled oats), pulverized to a flour, to modify the flavor and texture of the bread. Decrease flour appropriately, say by 1/2 cup (2.1 oz).
~77% hydration. 3 loaves @ ~34 oz unbaked, ~32 oz baked.

For the poolish, combine the refreshed, room temperature starter with the milk, half the bread flour and, if used, oat flour and/or whole-wheat flour. Let this sit for about one hour for the flour to absorb the water and to ferment. Long fermentation time is not required for sourdough. Over fermentation can mean the loss of structure by the acid attacking the gluten.

For the dough, mix in the quarter cup of melted butter, salt, and as much of the remaining flour as can be mixed with a spoon.. Turn out on to a floured surface and knead in as much flour as it takes to make a soft, non-sticky dough. The stretch and fold method of kneading will work. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover, and allow it to double in volume. With stretch and fold the dough has already doubled by the last rest.

Brush melted butter around the inside of three 5”x 8” loaf pans. Again, turn out the dough on to the floured surface and divide into three equal parts. Shape the dough into loaves and place them into the loaf pans. Brush each loaf with melted butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let them rise until the dough comes well above the top of the pans, about 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Place a broiler pan of boiling water on the shelf below the baking shelf. If desired, slash each loaf with a greased razor blade or a very sharp knife, making a quarter inch deep cut. Spray the loaves with a mist of water and place them on the middle shelf of the oven. Spray the loaves two more times in the oven at two-minute intervals. After fifteen minutes, set the oven temperature to 350°F and bake for an additional 40 minutes or until the interior temperature of the loaf reaches 190-195°F.

Turn the loaves on to a cake rack and brush all sides with melted butter. Cover with a damp paper towel and with plastic wrap. Allow the loaves to cool before cutting or wrapping. The loaves may then be frozen, if desired.

WHOLE-WHEAT SOURDOUGH BREAD (subs. for ♥)


2 3/4 cups (25 oz.) refreshed whole wheat sourdough starter (100% hydr.), at 70 to 80°F
3 3/4 cups (16 oz.) whole-wheat flour, King Arthur brand, finely milled*
4 cups (34.0 oz.) 80°F scalded milk
(1 cup [3.3 oz.] oat meal, pulverized to a flour, optional, decrease flour by 3/4 cup [3.1 oz])
1/3 cup (3.8 oz.) honey, or brown sugar, or corn syrup
~6 2/3 cups (28.5 oz.) unbleached bread flour (King Arthur brand preferred)
1/4 cup (2 oz.) melted butter (or corn oil ♥)
1 1/2 Tbs. (1 oz.) salt
1/4 cup (2 oz.) melted butter (or corn oil ♥) for brushing dough and the baked bread

~78% hydration. ~50% whole wheat flour. 3 loaves: ~35.8 oz. each unbaked, ~33 oz. baked.
*If you use stone ground, coarsely milled, whole-wheat flour (Arrowhead Mills), then use 3 1/4 cups, still 16 oz.

For the soaker, combine the, milk, honey, whole-wheat flour, and optional oat flour in a large bowl. Cover and let sit about one hour to soften the bran, allow the flour grains to absorb water.

For the dough, mix the soaker, the refreshed, room temperature starter, the salt, and a quarter cup of melted butter. Blend in as much bread flour as can be mixed with a spoon. Turn out on to a floured surface, knead well, working in only as much of the flour as to give a non-tacky dough. The dough will not be as elastic as the white bread dough. Place in an oiled bowl, cover, and allow to ferment for thirty to sixty minutes, then gently degas the dough by folding it on itself.

Brush melted butter around the inside of three 5”x 8” loaf pans. Again, place the dough on the floured surface and divide into three equal parts. Shape the dough into loaves and place them into the loaf pans. Brush each loaf with melted butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let them rise until the dough comes well above the top of the pans, about 2 to 3 hours. Do not keep the dough at room temperature for long periods as the acid in the sourdough may break down the gluten strands.

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Place a broiler pan of boiling water on the shelf below the baking shelf. If desired, slash each loaf with a greased razor blade or a very sharp knife, making a quarter inch deep cut. Spray the loaves with a mist of water and place them on the middle shelf of the oven. Spray the loaves two more times in the oven at two-minute intervals. After fifteen minutes, set the oven temperature to 350°F and remove the pan of water. Bake for an additional 40 minutes or until the interior temperature of the loaf reaches 195 to 200°F.

Turn the loaves on to a cake rack and brush all sides with melted butter. Cover with a damp paper towel. Cover the damp towel with plastic wrap. Allow the loaves to cool before cutting or wrapping. The loaves may then be frozen, if desired.

I have found that as I have gained experience in handling the dough I have been able to work with slacker dough, i. e. dough of higher hydration. The slacker dough will produce a lighter loaf.

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

This is wonderful! Thank you so very much. I'm going to try the White Sourdough tomorrow.

I've been messing around with sourdough breads (and my starter) since last April. One thing I seem to struggle with is knowing when my starter is "vigorous" and ready to use in a recipe after its last feeding. Is it a small window of time? Can you tell by looking at it? My starter is 166% hydration so it doesn't explode and rise like thicker starters do. (btw, for this recipe you shared with me, I will be lowering the hydration in tonights feeding.)

Ford's picture
Ford

I use starter with 100% hydration (bakers %) That is, equal weights of flour and water. The starter is ready when it has been refreshed and doubled in volume. I don't bake enough to keep my starter at room temperature all of the time. So after refreshing it I store it in the refrigerator. When I want to bake, I will take it out of the refrigerator, refresh with a ratio by weight of 1:1:1 = starter:flour:water. Allow that to stand for about 8 hours, then refresh that with the same ratios giving me the right weight for use the next day. It is vigorous then.

Thus, for 25 ounces of starter: I take 3 oz starter add 3 oz. each of flour and water, mix, and let stand for 8 hours. Add to that 9 oz. each of flour and water, mix, and let stand over night. That gives me 27 oz. of refreshed starter. I store or use 2 oz. of this refreshed starter and the balance goes into my bread.

Ford

amolitor's picture
amolitor

A starter is "ready" when it has stopped expanding. A short time after that maximum growth spurt is when the populations of yeast and bacteria are at their highest.

In a way this sort of requires a time machine -- wait until the starter has stopped growing, or has started to collapse, and then go back in time maybe 1 hour ;) However, you can use it then, you're just a little bit late, the populations have started to die off -- there's still a lot of yeast and bacteria left, though. Also, as you use your starter more, you'll begin to recognize when it's peaking, when that maximum growth spurt is happening, and then you can snag it just after that. Some people like to grab it slightly before the maximum growth, I think.

The stuff is pretty forgiving. The more accurately you can nail the peak time, the less starter you need to raise a loaf. If you're too early or too late, your loaves will probably just rise more slow, and maybe not as much. If you're in the generally right area, it's no big deal -- the same thing will happen if your kitchen is a little cooler today than normal, no big deal.

 

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

Thank you for all this great information! I'm considering changing my starter to a lower hydration level and this will help a lot. I'll need to feed my starter one morning (on a weekend) and hang around the house so I can pay attention to what it does and gauge the time frame.

:)

jcking's picture
jcking

Also record you're mixed ingredients and room temperature. As these change so will the time it takes to reach the desired result.

Jim

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

I never thought of that! Which totally makes sense...I mean, rising time of bread is affected by room temp so of course the starter would be too. Thanks Jim

Ford's picture
Ford

You are using about 1 cup of flour (4.25 oz.) to 7 oz. of water. This much water will not allow the starter to double in size. So use the amount of bubbles as an indication of readiness for making your dough.
Ford

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

Great!! Thank you so much. I'm in the process of making your bread recipe as I type :)

golfermd's picture
golfermd

Welcome to the forum.

Dan

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

Thanks Dan :)

ImStuffed's picture
ImStuffed

I just wanted to share the results with you, Ford. The bread came out wonderfully! Would you mind if I share the recipe on my blog? If you have a blog or site url to give me, I can put a link up so I'd be giving you the credit. Once again, thank you!

Danielle

Ford's picture
Ford

Of course, you may share. I don't believe in keeping secret recipes.

Ford

cksearle's picture
cksearle

I just wanted to thank you for this recipe (White Sourdough) - it was "spot on"!  This was my very 1st attempt at making sourdough bread (my starter was only 7 days old) and it turned out too good to be true.  I kept staring at it b/c it was so beautiful!  I've been baking bread for about a year now and have been intimidated by sourdough, but this has inspired me (that could be trouble!).  Thank you for the detailed instructions.  Your techniques delivered!  I'm going to try it a few more times and then move to the whole wheat :)

Ford's picture
Ford

Mike Avery said that baking good yeast bread requires patience and making sourdough bread takes patience squared.  Sourdough requires more time, but really no more effort than breads made with commercial yeast.  Contrary to the perception of some people, sourdough does not have to taste strongly sour.

Ford

cksearle's picture
cksearle

Yes, I agree on both fronts!  The bread had a subtle complex flavor, but it was not sour.  It actually rose more than any sandwich bread I have made!  And it was no more effort at all... as you say, just more waiting time, but completely worth it.  A new learning curve though... how to keep my starter healthy and happy... a little more maintenance, but I'm hoping that will become second nature.  And, I need to "get to know" my starter so I can tell when it is at its peak.  I've been reading Mike Avery's site - need to keep re-reading.  I'm having fun with it though... especially after a great 1st bake!  Thanks again.  It's such a gift to be able to come on here and learn from experts ;-)