The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Fermented Apple Loaf - a Story in Pictures

Pablo's picture

Fermented Apple Loaf - a Story in Pictures

Hi All,

My latest fermented fruit loaf came out great, so I wanted to share.  As Eric noted earlier, fermenting fruit is not for everyone, some people are uncomfortable with the concept, or concerned about safety.  I'm having a good time with it, but "bake at your own risk" as they say.

The process took 6 days, counting an unfortunate error on my part.  Ingredients:

1150g flour (whole wheat and white)

675g water

454g pureed apples with skin (washed :-)

140g raisins

100g honey

30g salt

Actually the numbers don't add up, I ended up with ~3000g of dough... I'm uncertain on the flour - I added things sporatically


Stirling in the orchard

Apples from a friend

apples and honey

whir them together with 300g water and 20g local honey.  Let ferment in a warm place, like in the oven with the light on

melted plastic

Forget to check the oven before preheating.  Melt plastic container.  Discard and start over.

apples in container

chopped apples before blending

at first they're green

an immersion blender wand works great

ferment beginning

after 3 or 4 days there's lots of activity, bubbles and sweet alcoholic smell

overnight apple ferment

After all the ingredients have been incorporated I left it outside on the deck all night to ferment.  Here's the dough, nicely risen in the morning.

parchment rolls

the dough was so sticky I wrongly let it proof on parchment paper.  I couldn't get them free from it to turn onto the peel.  I left the parchment paper stuck to the top and scored right through it.  I wiped the score with a solution of honey and water.  The next load is on a couche.  Hopefully they won't stick.  I used lots of flour and cinnamon as my non-stick agent.  This is the first sojourn for my new proofing box.  It's live with a heating pad under the plywood.

ready for delivery

ready for delivery

They came out great.  I'm really happy.  Happy baking everyone!





weavershouse's picture

The bread looks great but I really love how you coordinate your shoes with your apples. Same blush pink :o)

That tree is loaded, what kind of apples are they?                                                                                            weavershouse

Pablo's picture

That's my pal, Stirling, picking the apples.  He'll be thrilled that you noticed his shoes.  He has a lot of shoes, and hats, and scarves...

We think that the apples are Granny Smiths.  The orchard is just a couple of miles from the house here.  I love the local connection. 

I distributed some loaves today and got rave reviews.  That's a thrill.


chahira daoud's picture
chahira daoud

I like your bread Pablo.

Thanks for sharing.

rezondeck's picture

i can confirm that yes those ARE granny smiths

hard, crisp and positively lovely

had i KNOWN that day that i was going to pick im not exactly sure what i would have worn.

i dont favour a manual labour wordrobe, i lean towarfs the wildly impracticle 



We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking up at the stars

weavershouse's picture

Welcome to the site. Sorry about the mistake, I thought that might be Pablo hiding behind the Granny Smiths. We never know what his next photo might be :o)                                         weavershouse

Jolly's picture

Hello Pablo, and everyone:

I loved your post on fermented apples. After looking at your photos I was inspired to continue working with the wild yeast water. I needed this post.

I too have been exploring Wao's Fermented Wild Yeast Water for the past week. Today I baked up two more loaves. Each time I bake with wild yeast I try something different. When I fine something new and challenging I bake just about everyday trying this method and that method until I get it mastered every which way.

I used Sourdough Lady's Deluxe Sourdough Bread recipe to test my fermented wild yeast water. Sourdough Lady I love your recipe....It came out delicious. Actually the flavor of the bread was even better and when I cut into the crust you could hear it singing. The wild yeast is amazing to work with. I'm just in awe of this wild yeast water. Once I made the wild yeast water I proceeded to make the pre-fermented dough.

Here is Wao's recipe, which I adapated to my style of baking. I really appreciated Wao's info...on wild yeast and want to share it with everyone. You can't compare it to packaged yeast. Actually it's much better and much more challenging.

Another reason I decided to explore wild yeast water by Wao was due to the high cost in gas. I know that sometime in the very near future were going to experience a lot more food shortages. That's why I'm trying to get acquainted with wild yeast.

I used fresh over ripe tomatoes from my garden to make the wild yeast water. I Cut them into chunks and mashed them with my fingers. Used about 1/2 cup tomatoes cut in large chunks, 1 1/2 cups water, plus 2 Tbsp. organic brown sugar. I set the jar on my deck to gather some energy from the sun. I had fermented wild yeast water in 12 hours. It's a good time to set the wild yeast in the sun light its real mild during the fall. I normally let my starters refresh themselves in the sun all through the Fall and the early part of spring.


This recipe makes 90 grams of pre-ferment dough enough to bake 2 loaves of bread, with just a little bit left over to make pancakes or biscuits.

40 grams wild yeast water, or 3 ounces
50 grams bread flour (Gold Medal Better for Breads Flour)

Place the fermented wild yeast in a 1-quart mixing bowl. Stir in bread flour, and mix until you have a soft moist dough.

Place the dough ball in a greased 2 cup container, press down the dough and cover. Let the wild yeast dough triple in volume (about 10 to 12 hours) or over night at room temperature of (70º to 80ºF).

Note: My wild yeast pre-fermented dough, tripled in 4 hours. Once it triples you can start baking. Using exactly 75 grams to make two loaves of bread.

TO MUCH WILD YEAST---In one of my experimentation I used 90 grams fermented dough, my loaves didn't rise as high. I would say 75 grams is the perfect amount to use in making two loaves of bread. For a slower rise I would use 50 grams. I don't know how this would work at a lower elevation. I'm at 5,000 ft here.

When I began using the wild yeast water and making the pre-fermented dough I combined it with a basic sourdough starter. I let the wild yeast dough dissolve in the water along with the basic sourdough starter and honey for 15 minutes. That's explains why the flavor of the dough is awesome.

SOUR DOUGH LADY---In The Deluxe Sourdough Recipe, Sourdough Lady calls for 1 1/4 cups sourdough I used 286 grams basic white sourdough, plus 75 grams pre-fermented wild yeast dough to make up her recipe.

I also let the dough rise at room temperature of 70º to 80ºF. and, I stretched and folded the bread 3 times during the fermentation period.

The pre-fermented dough ball can be used in any bread recipe, and used as old dough.

Added Info....I have a reverse osmosis system plus a whole house filtration system. My water is also magnetized I have 10 pound magnets on the reverse osmosis water tank. Which tends to put minute oxygenated bubbles in the water. Making my starters ferment faster and my breads are light an airy, it also affects the consistency of the dough making it smooth and silky. These added options make a big difference in my baking.

In baking the Deluxe Sourdough Bread I baked the bread at 475ºF. for 10 minutes with steam and 10 minutes at 450ºF. without steam. A total of twenty minutes. I also baked the bread with potatoes granules and the second bake without. I preferred the bread without the granules the best. The sourdough flavor is just right its not to sour nor is it to mild, the flavor is awesome. I shaped two free form Batards.

Its strange how this bread bakes in the first 10 minutes, the bread is stark white. When I looked at it,  I said oh this bread isn't gong to brown at all. Then when I came back after 8 more minutes of baking it was a deep golden brown and in couple of more minutes a dark amber brown and really crusty looking. The crumb was tight but not as tight as the first loaves I had baked earlier on. I'm sure as the wild yeast develops the crumb should get better. The crust is even crunchy when it cools down.

As I keep developing the wild yeast water I'll be happy to share more of my baking tip with you. Does anyone else have more info...and baking tips on the wild yeast water and the pre-fermented wild yeast dough?

Jolly the Happy Baker

Pablo's picture

Hi Jolly,

I loved your post.  You inspire me.  What a great idea it is to use sunlight to warm things.  I will be doing that.  I like to use the night for fermentation.  I feel like the gentle warming in the morning that occurs while the dough sits outside is just right.  Then I bring it inside and shape and proof.

Right now I like doing sweeter breads with the fruit ferments.  I add about 100g of local honey to a 1.5Kg batch of dough and it's just sweet enough.  I love using fruit that happens to come my way, e.g. peaches from a hitchhiker or apples from a friend.  I'm thinking of more exotic things, though, I'm wondering if bananas would ferment in a useful fashion.

We're just about to leave on a two week trip to visit family in the states.  I'm taking some starter to bake at their homes.

Thanks again for the great post.


rubato456's picture

really enjoyed sharing the process with you......i'm working on my wild yeasts this week....have 3 starters going.....all seem to be doing well can't wait to bake w/ them!