The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

What is this!?

Larry Clark's picture
Larry Clark

What is this!?

I know there are legions of home bread makers chasing the holy grail of sour sourdough. I'm not one of them. Naturally, I've made some attempts at achieving sourness and they all fell short, but I was unfazed because I'm quite happy with my sourdough just the way it is. But then David (dmsnyder ) suggested I try Pierre Nury’s Rustic Light Rye Bread and I got sour!!

The question is why? Was it the firm levain? I've done that. The long, cold fermentation, or the addition of rye flour (a whopping 50 grams!)? I've done those, too. I have no clue, but now the search is on. By the way, this bread is fantastic! My only regret is I didn't slash the loaves. They would have looked much better.



dmsnyder's picture

Hi, Larry.

That is a very fine looking Nury's Light Rye.

I'm glad you tried it, and I'm delighted you like it.

I don't know how sour your loaf is, but this bread usually is mildly but perceptibly sour. You are comparing it to other breads you have baked which are less sour, but without knowing how you made them, I'm unable to account for the difference in sourness.

Generally, a long cool fermentation adds to the sourness as well as the overall flavor complexity, but I have not found breads made with added yeast as sour as pure sourdoughs, my Pains de Campagnes being a prime example. If you prefer less sour breads, you might like them.


ehanner's picture

Larry that's as nice a loaf as I have seen. What ever you did I hope you took notes. Just beautiful bread.

Please tell us what kind of flour you used and any deviations from the stock recipe.



Larry Clark's picture
Larry Clark

as posted by Zolablue to a T. I used Stone-Buhr unbleached bread flour.

I waited as long as I could stand it, which was about an hour, before doing a taste test and it was noticeably sour. As time went on the sourness receded into the background and became almlost an after taste, but it's definitely there. I'm not complaining, just surprised. Although sourness is not one of my goals, it would be nice to be able to create it on demand.



Janedo's picture


That's odd. I don't think of this bread as sour. You can also try making this bread with a different type of starter (I have done this). You can also do the cold fermentation, but reduce the time.

Or maybe it is just the time your taste buds need to adopt this new flavour! The first time I tasted it, I was startled... then I became addicted. So, keep eating it, make it again and let us know.


sannimiti's picture

i'm really happy for you. the bread looks great. though there may be better authorities on that i guess the sourness would be due to the rye. my sourdough isn't very sour either and even looooong fermentation doesn't make too sour bread but with rye flour it's much more sour though things happen a lot faster. i've noticed that with rye flour it takes about 1/3 of the time for the sd to double and still it's sourer. but see how the bread's the next and the third time, if it's sour as well that will seem to work for you. happy baking, sanni