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Seeking recipe ideas for a long acidic fermentation sourdough

anemic's picture

Seeking recipe ideas for a long acidic fermentation sourdough


I have done much research on TFL and all over the web (two weeks)and I am not seeing the solution to my quest. I have the Hamelman bread book on reserve at the library and I hope it will teach me a lot about how to design a proper recipe, as I see it is often referred to on TFL & elsewhere by skilled bakers. 

My wife is increasingly gluten sensitive (GS) and I am trying to emulate a sourdough secret recipe from Bezian's Bakery in San Fran which has a long acidic fermentation, from a week to a month. As a result of at least a 24 hour fermentation, the peptides in gluten are rendered harmless to GS people. Bezian claims that he has people with Celiac Disease eat his bread, and they report no problems. (We are not Celiacs) I have a strong suspicion that if I am able to produce a largely gluten free (GF) sourdough, then my family will be able to tolerate it just fine. An Italian study used a very controlled collection of  lactos & yeasts and I believe it was 70% GF flours (like rice flour etc) and 30% rye flour. It seems like a good idea to use mostly or all rye flour because it is not wheat and it contains far less gluten.

Can you give me any pointers on what might be a good start on a 1 week to a 1 month long fermentation sourdough recipe using all or mostly rye flour? I am quite lost in the forest in this regard.

I have two starters in process, and one pair of loaves under my belt > worst bread I've ever made! (the recipe didn't call for a cover, it seems like it would be useful, and it didn't spring much in the final rise, had no oven spring, and took a colossal amount of effort and time) I've begun using ideas from The Medium Rye Old Dough recipe does ferment for over 24 hours, but not for a week and more. 

I have had great luck using the 5 Minute Books. And these breads are intended to store in the fridge for a week or more. I wonder if a rye version of their standard recipe might do the trick, but I have my reservations (can't remember why not at this time). 

I welcome your ideas. 

Thank you

anemic in Grand Rapids 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven
anemic's picture

Thanks for the link. A travelogue with baking tips? is there something relevant on there? I went thru many pages and I saw a photo or two of bread, no tips. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

removed his gluten free recipes and methology.  Sorry...

VA Susan's picture
VA Susan

Hi anemic,

Over on Breadtopia there was a guy named Aubrey who has celiac and was making some long fermented sourdough bread for himself using all wheat flour. I asked him some questions about it there. You can read what he wrote. His comments start on November 16, 2009 at 12:03 pm and you need to scroll up to see his comments that followed. It was quite interesting.

anemic's picture

MiniOven- Bless you for sharing a useful resource. I was frustrated because my quest has been frustrating. I apologize for venting your way. 

VASusan - thank you & blessings to you also for sharing exactly what I have been after. Aubrey's method is encouraging!!! You have fulfilled my hope! 

After I became aware of the Italian study, my sourdough quest began...and immediately stalled. Nobody seems to want to take on the inconvenience of a bread recipe that takes days or weeks! But this is it. Thanks so much.

First thoughts: interesting that Aubrey succeeded in breaking the peptides in gluten using standard flour, 100%. I assumed that one would want to take advantage of the no-wheat, low gluten rye flour at some level (30? 50%?), and I plan to fiddle with that idea. However, it is fantastic that Aubrey has succeeded in overcoming the gluten obstacle. 


I will follow up on this thread & post my successes & failures. I would like to end up with a recipe that somebody can follow, and directions on how to do this as we still have to chase around from Breadtopia to NYTimes and here. I feel this is so useful that it should be much easier to find! 

Sourdough #1: ~50% rye, 50% whole wheat flour, liquid starter, some yeast added. Rise was okay but it kneaded with massive difficulty. Recipe didnt call for a lidded bake, and it seemed it would have been effective. Worst bread I've ever made. 

Sourdough #2: I have a 100% rye dough which I have added old dough AND liquid starter. Mixed it up using the 123 method from the French lady here on TFL. Added the salt after a half hour of autolyse (or whatever that is), but after I removed a chunk for old dough. Again I have a loaf which is nearly unworkable and overnight has not risen much (~15%). 

I think I will get #3 in process today using the Aubrey method, and not fear the gluten since he seems to have such good luck with it. 


Thanks Loafers! Happy Baking.



anemic's picture

(VASusan did you cover the loaf pan? Did you steam? Or did you go no-steam, uncovered, as Aubrey seems to indicate?)

sidebar: I am going to try my hand @ dinner rolls with the rye dough, which has been fermenting since Saturday, and seems to have a decent rise, but still looks it will have a very tough dense crumb. I like the idea of trying dinner rolls. Just 4 of them at a time leaves plenty of dough for the next (improved) bake. 

Sourdough for Celiacs Update:

Wow, the fermentation is close to 24 in progress, rise is huge, smells like great bread, can't wait till tomorrow when I'll bake it at about 40 hours fermentation. 


This recipe is even easier than 5 Minute Artisan Bread. Mix it. Age it. Dump it into loaf pan, bake it. No knead, no steam, no dutch oven, not even an oven stone. 

Here is the consolidated NYTimes no knead dough recipe as adapted by Aubrey for his Celiac purposes as indicated by the Italian study, edited and personalized by me & likely to change:


 Aubrey's GF (Gluten Friendly, Peptide Fixed) Sourdough

Long, Acidic Ferment

Adapted from Jim Lahey, Sullivan Street Bakery

 Yields one 1.5# loaf

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour (I used bread flour)

1 5/8 cups water

~ ½ C sourdough liquid starter

¼ teaspoon instant yeast

1¼ teaspoons salt

~1 TBS sugar


In a large bowl combine water, yeast, starter, soak a few minutes.  Stir in flour, salt & sugar until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 24 hours, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.

Aubrey's notes, edited:

Use AP flour (or bakers flour or fraction rye or whole wheat); Mix the entire dough batch at once, and let it all ferment. If I add flour after that, I have to leave it for another 24 hours minimum, or it bothers me.


I use the nyt no knead bread recipe, replacing an equal amount of flour and water with the starter. I add a sprinkle of sugar to the dough as I’m mixing, and then I put it into a lubricated crock, and ignore it for 24 hours minimum. longer tends to be better.


pour the dough out into a greased loaf pan, and be warned, this is going to be the most relaxed, slack dough you’ll see in your life. you couldn’t knead it if you wanted to. bake in a hot oven (450) for about an hour. If you temperature test, your dough’s center should be about 205. the loaf itself should have a crackly crust and sound hollow when rapped.

VA Susan's picture
VA Susan

anemic, I don't have issues with gluten but was asking him because a friend of mine has an intolerance.

I haven't yet baked it in a bread pan. When I made it, I fermented it at room temperature for 18 hrs and used a cast iron dutch oven to bake in. Eric on Breadtopia has a video showing how to make it. If you haven't already seen it it's here.

It's a bit tricky dumping the risen dough into the hot container, but it turned out great. I rose my dough in two bowls lined with Pam sprayed waxed paper sprinkled with whole wheat flour. (You'd need to use a non-toxic flour like cornmeal or rice flour for this) After it was risen, I lifted it out of the bowls by the waxed paper, but had to put it on the counter to get my hand all the way under it so I could dump it into the hot pot. I then peeled the waxed paper off the dough. I jostled it to center it in the pan and it didn't deflate.  My sourdough starter is very mild so my bread tastes good with no sour taste. Some long fermented bread can be very sour according to others here. Let us know how yours turns out.


Crider's picture

Try it without any instant yeast and use only 1/4 cup of starter. You'll likely get even greater ferment times.

anemic's picture

crider: thanks. when you say "greater fermentation times" are you referring to a longer fermentation? Please share what you mean ? sounds interesting. 

VA Susan's picture
VA Susan

I think he means that the yeast might exhaust itself before the final rise. If you use  more starter it uses up more food.  If there's less starter it takes longer to work through the whole dough and it still has enough food and strength to rise it in the oven. I used 1/2 cup the first time I made it according to Aubrey's directions and 1/4 c another time. It didn't make much difference either way with my starter, but I wonder if the gluten breakdown would be less effective with using less starter?

anemic's picture

I should get some pics up. We are seeing success! The long ferment sourdough is lovely. The crust is very firm. The crumb is soft & chewy, and is quite dense because I lost a good deal of rise when I removed it from the dry plastic pitcher (forgot to oil it) It has a lot of body, and is not sour. The whole family likes it, and no gluten after-effects have been reported. It had some oven spring, and a little rise after shaping. The probe seemed to stick at 203f (the digital probe I have seems to be based on Windows 95), so I may have overdone the bake, as the crust began to take on a very dark color, nearly black in a few spots, yet it seems fine, tastes fine, doesn't taste burned! Still, I'll watch it a little closer next time at the end.   

I immediately mixed and loaded the next dough (after oiling the pitcher!). I used 1 1/3 c bakers flour 1 1/3 c whole wheat flour and 1/3 c rye flour, and the same yeast schedule. I felt I should try to get away from 100% white flour. 

About the 100% rye sourdough, which I had used to a pair of twin yucky "sourdough" loaf fails (super dense, bland flavor, some effort to digest); second attempt used an old dough starter AND a liquid starter and three days fermentation time resulted in a better rise, for which I made dinner rolls for dinner last night - which the kids called Dinner Rocks! Despite the extreme crust the crumb was very soft and quite good, and they had a good oven spring. Next I decided the recipe needs some white flour, so I poured out the remaining dough (~650g estimated, or about half a loafs worth), added water to the bowl till all of the rye dough was as dissolved as it was going to get, rested it a few minutes then added about a cup of white bakers flour, 1/2c whole wheat flour, and  another 1/2 c bakers flour as the dough had easily hydrated the flour. The overnight rise is to the roof of the pitcher! It may blow the lid, I may need to split it into another container. I like the idea of having a dedicated dinner roll dough on hand as we frequently have soups for dinner and I am finding that a sourdough dinner roll is the neatest companion to the home made soups - even better than bread. I love the little slash on the little dinner roll. If I weren't a manly man I'd admit it's kinda cute.    


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

"...a sourdough dinner roll is the neatest companion to the home made soups - even better than bread."

Repeat after me,  "Sourdough IS bread."

anemic's picture

Ha! Ya got me MiniOven! Sourdough is bread whether it's a dinner roll or a loaf! I'll have to watch my lingo with you crackerjacks. 

Minor Setback

SWMBO reports some gluten seems to have rode in on the sourdough. Dang & double could this be, after a 40 hour ferment< which was clearly a successful ferment, judging by the rise?

I guess I will go for a week's fermentation. Strange how Aubrey renders the peptides harmless in only 24 hrs. 

At least Mrs anemic has turned into a sensitive gluten measuring instrument. There's always a bright side...


Fricken gluten. It sucks putting in so much effort to accomplish something which I had already perfected. Trying to make healthy food for the family, instead I hurt my wife, kinda wrecked her day, killed her mojo, made her feel as bad as she has in weeks..nuts man. Makes me frustrated. But not frustrated enough to quit. 

Aubreywithceliac's picture

I'm the aubrey from the breadtopia board

I'm sorry to hear about the gluten riding in, and I can give a couple suggestions.

one, bread flour is much higher gluten than straight AP. Whole wheat is harsh on that front as well.

two, I was living in texas at the time of the writing, so I was dealing with 80F temps and humidity about 40%, so that could provide 'better than average' fermentation conditions, which I'm certain helped break down the gluten.

three, the gluten breakdown is caused by enzymes that the lactobacilli produce, so you're going to want to make sure your starter is pretty acid.

four, to help deal with the yeast petering itself out, and to help out in general, I add a little sugar to my dough.

I have reason to believe that the temperature is pretty important, and I'll probably respond to a couple other postings as I read down.

I hope you haven't fully abandoned your experimentation, but I can say that it can be very foolhardy to experiment on oneself. (I make no claims to my own sanity)

Aubrey (now in colorado)

p.s. hey susan, sorry I lost touch, Iv'e moved to CO with my fiance

VA Susan's picture
VA Susan

I was so hopeful for you and your wife. Aubrey did say he did not recommend it because it can be risky. I wonder if the breadflour was the culprit? It has higher gluten than AP. Your wife must have a more severe intolerance than he does.

I came across this yeasted GF loaf online.

Gluten free yeast bread

hutchndi's picture

 Not trying to talk you out of your experiment, I actually am hoping you figure it out and have some success. I just wanted to share what might be pertinant information.

 Losing tolerance for gluten may not sound as serious as being celiac, but doctors have good reason to tell you to avoid the stuff if it is becoming indigestable. The stomache produces too much of whatever it needs to try to break the gluten down into something you can digest, and having all that extra caustic stuff in your gut all the time causes all kinds of problems.

 Besides whatever you may be experiencing in the early stages, you may be able to look forward to extreme acid reflux, deterioration of the stomache lining and associated plumbing, severe fatigue, intense and uncontollable bloating, and even worse, a list of other foods that your weakened digestive system can no longer tolerate that grows with each year you continue to ignore the warning and try to cheat on your special diet. Besides wheat based foods, there is gluten in other grains like oatmeal, rye, spelt etc, and it all gets on the list. Eventually, if gluten is not avoided, the condition worsens, how about adding eggs and dairy too? This all happened to my dear wife, and the last few years have been, well, lets say difficult in trying to find stuff for her to eat that did not contain anything previously mentioned. Even most of the gluten free foods and mixes contain either eggs or milk products.

Only a small amount of gluten is enough to trigger the over production of acids, and what may seem to be able to be tolerated may still be reeking havok on the insides.


Edith Pilaf's picture
Edith Pilaf

My sister is gluten sensitive (but not celiac), and suffers even after eating an all-vegetarian Chinese meal that contains small amounts of soy sauce.  She avoids wheat products of any kind. Period.  She's doing just fine.  Why press your (i.e., her) luck?

anemic's picture

Thanks friends. Yesterday was discouraging. 

Russ your comments give us a perspective on how serious this problem is. We are only 3 weeks into our GF life. Things are much better because of it. For me the glaring weakness of the new diet is the bread, and the difficulty in digesting GF foods, ironically. This sourdough quest would be really cool if it works for us. If not I will become a devotee of making the best GF bread out there. 

New info: Hamelmans book "Bread" became available last night at the library & I've begun to read it. It's an orgy of gluten, generally preferring high gluten flour (higher than bakers flour). The book is fabulous for it's explanations of the process. I've picked up some wonderful ideas such as using old bread (I've some of that from my first sourdough attempt which is unpalatable but wholesome otherwise given it's content). 

One wonders if the Aubrey method would benefit from a fold or three. Perhaps the fermentation would be more complete. 

Susan that is a good tip regarding gluten content of bakers flour over ap flour; which I had not considered, and it may be a factor. Thank you. 

What I have in process now, and already did before the negative feedback came in from my family, is two doughs with greatly reduced bakers flour content (more wheat, some rye). I have actually developed enough sensitivity that I can tell when I am getting the gluten as well but I don't "suffer" (yet). So I am going to let these doughs ferment longer, 4 days to a week, and see how they treat me. Bezian reported success with 1 week to 1 month fermentations. 

A thought comes to mind; many sourdough recipes call for a bulk fermentation, followed by a flour addition later, which is to be fermented only a couple hours. I may try this method, and possibly substitute rice & other GF flours (millet, quinoa etc). The idea here being to allow the fermentation to continue by feeding the yeast, which renders the peptides harmless (Is rice flour a yeast food? Probably, since brewers use rice as a fermentable sugar)

I'm still puzzling over why I had a peptide failure after 40 hours fermentation. It must be that the ap flour needs 24 hours minimum, *given ideal fermentation conditions*, and the increased gluten content of bakers flour needs more than 48 hours, and we run a little cold here in Michigan in January; best case for success is perhaps 5 days fermentation in the winter. Perhaps it also needs a fold to keep the fermentation going.

Will report updates live. Keep your constructive  ideas coming please, even if your idea  is to forget about it.  Thanks. 



hutchndi's picture

A few tips seeing as you are so new to GF:

Pamelas GF mixes are the absolute best if you can get them in your area

Crushed corn flakes makes great coating for chicken, pork chops etc

Brown rice flour thickens gravy better than wheat flour

anemic's picture

I have learned that one of the keys to long fermentation is to have a wetter dough. You won't be kneading this bread anyway, perhaps giving it a fold if it's too limp. It's my accidental discovery as I was slowly wetting out a bunch of old bread (which I had already hydrated overnight on it's own in a nearly-sealed tupperware) I ended up with a bit more water in the dough, which seemed to help give it some silkiness which it had lacked. 

The other trick is, if the dough is firmed up and less active, cover the dough with an olive oil coated cling wrap so the dough doesn't skin over. I had two loaves in loaf pans to make room for new dough mixes (also doing conventional GF breads per the 5 Minute folks' fine recipes). They skinned over like a baked crust. I folded the crust inside where it was soon metabolized, inverted the loaves, covered them in oil, covered them in the cling wrap and avoided the skinning.  

I have my bulk fermenter going full throttle, bubbling away like a primary fermenter full of beer. It's a two loaf batch of dough (2 2/3 c AP flour 2 2/3 c whole wheat flour 2/3 c rye flour on a whole wheat starter which was ~3 wks old) 

I had two single-loaf recipes in fermentation. I baked one last night after 5 days in fermentation. The crust of the heel is rigid, but then it's only aged ~18 hours post-oven so I can expect it will soften up over the next day. The crumb is still very rye like, somewhat like a bran muffin, but much better. The dough was 1 1/3c bakers flour (before the connection was made that BF is higher gluten), 1 1/3 c whole wheat flour, 1/3c rye flour on my whole wheat starter . The second single loaf will be baked tomorrow at one week's fermentation. 

I seem to be losing my ability to process gluten, as I've backed away from it. This allows me to more precisely judge the presence of gluten in these experimental sourdoughs. However, yesterday's loaf seems to possibly have low to no gluten peptides (so far so good). I will eat this one for a few consecutive days. If there is gluten in it, I will be able to detect it this way. Meanwhile this sourdough loaf is most bon appetite! 



VA Susan's picture
VA Susan


I hope that you can benefit from your own sourdoughs without any problems. Have you read this interesting article about bone broths healing properties for those with celiac?

There were also a lot of interesting information on this site about the long fermented breads and gluten intolerance.

PS Keep us posted on how your experiment is going.

anemic's picture

Hi VA Susan,

Yes, thank you, I have seen the weston a price materials and we are basically going that route; I need to get my saurkraut going! 

Since developing my own keen sensitivity, and also realizing that I was definitely not achieving harmless peptides in 40 hours, 5 days nor 8 days, I have been less eager to experiment. I'm sure it cost me 2 weeks of lost health (aggressive cold bug).

I've had a double batch in bulk fermentation since Jan 25, a little over 2 weeks. I want it to go for a month. That's my next step. It fermented vigorously for 7 days, slowed down & on day 8 I put it in the fridge. I feed the starter occasionally, which I also put into the fridge. 

If the one month fermentation works out, then I guess I will feed the planning pipeline accordingly so I can have a loaf or two weekly. Honestly at this time I'm not very excited about the project. I'd love to hear from Aubrey or any other Celiac about some updated ongoing success stories. So far we have the precision Italian study (on a bread which was 70% gf flours anyway) and Aubrey. Maybe Bezian's customers, but there isn't any real info out there on that case, only vague, mysterious & useless anecdotes. That is a dearth of info, isolated at that. 

Meanwhile to get by, we've experimented with the 5 Minute Healthy Breads GF chapter. The GF Boule is handy and not bad and the gf brioche is also good but a little sweet for my tastes, so today we are making a 50/50 to see how it goes. The gf brioche is made with 3 3/4 c of corn starch! While this delivers an excellent and exciting to see rise, I wonder if we need to be eating that much corn starch (isn't that stuff supposed to be an adjunct, like baking soda, not a staple of the diet?). So the 50% gf brioche / 50% gf boule might make a very nice loaf and healthy enough. GF anyway. GF bread is hard to "LOVE" but being sick is worse, so it's between the two evils.



Aubreywithceliac's picture

I had some problems similar to yours as far s the loaves giving me hell for a while, then I realized that I was managing to cross contaminiate the area (as well as my roommates doing regular baking and me not knowing it)

this may or may not help, and I don't blame you if you abandoned your experimentation, if so, please disregard, with my sympathies, and know that my heart goes out to you and yours.

acid seems to be a key here. a highly acid starter (perhaps even a bit unbalanced in regard to the yeast's survival?) with a vigorous colony of lactobacilli seems to have been the key to mine not being a problem. Also, I noticed that the older the starter got, the better its ability to render the peptides harmless.

I can say that as far as starters went, mine was potent, in the same sense as gym shoes left in a closet can be 'a little smelly', and if I had any left, I'd send you a batch. (I went away on a trip and the roommate threw it out)

I'm a simple kitchen experimenter, and I'm sorry that the method I posted gave you (or anyone else) false hope, either by being incomplete/ill-researched/etc.

even though it's months later, please extend my apologies to your wife for the illness, and to anyone else that may have had problems with this.

I intend on researching this further and seeing if I can pin down something of use..all I know currently is that for some reason, some fluke, it worked for me. I intended on starting a new starter here in colorado anyway, so that can be the basis for further experimentation.

If you and the other community members would like, I'll be more than happy to put down what I come across here.

Given the failure with my method, however, I can also see how I would have little credibility, and can understand if you'd rather me not.


VA Susan's picture
VA Susan

Hi anemic,

It would be good if the Bezian Bakery guy would give detailed information about how he does it. Sorry that your experiment has been so discouraging. Hope you'll be feeling better soon.  I'm glad that there are some edible GF recipes you can make. My son's girlfriend who has celiac buys a Rice Almond bread made with rice flour and almond flour and he says that it's good. It's made by Food for Life and sold in health food stores and some regular grocers too, so good bread is possible with GF.

I think cornstarch is also called cornflour in the UK, so maybe it is not so bad to use. You could research it to see.

anemic's picture

Hi Susan in VA,


You are so kind, thank you for your encouragement!

The 50/50 GF Boule / GF Brioche (GF Bouloche!) is actually quite nice! I tried a 70% GF Boule / 30% Brioche and I didnt get the rise of the 50/50. So I think we will standardize around here on 50/50 Bouloche at this time. Will update the one month sourdough fermentation in about 2 weeks. 



Aubreywithceliac's picture

I know I've been away quite a while... I think I may have found the difference

A. Niger. Seems there was a strain of black mold under the house that may have been infecting the loaves. A niger has several protein protease(s) that break down gluten proteins. (AN-PEP currently being tested in holland and several other european countries as a 'lact-aid' sort of product, which could be taken before a meal)

While harmless when ingested, the spores cause issues when breathed. The enzymes work exceptionally well in acid conditions (such as those in the stomach).  Seems that my starter captured some of the mold spores, and while these grew during the fermentation, they did break down the gluten, without overgrowing the bread and causing it to grow fur.

:( I am very sorry for any issues, false hope, pain, illness or confusion this caused. I attempted my bread again when I was in colorado (seems like so long ago) and I got nailed. Horribly. exact same process, exact same conditions, except for a different starter (I used the eons old 'friends of jim' sourdough starter, which is incidentally relatively high in lactobacilli.) and no hidden A. niger floating around the apartment complex.

Seems, like many natural foods, a wide variation of flora and fauna are best. 

Now, some time later, with an impending divorce, and a host of other weirdness going on in my life, I'm back to this, and determined to find a way to replicate my earlier 'seeming' successes.

some notes about AN-PEP

AN-PEP is a prolyl endopeptidase derived from Aspergillus Niger. In vitro studies have shown that ANPEP is active at a pH of 2-8 with optimal activity at 4-5, resists digestion by pepsin, and degrades all tested gluten peptides with a t1/2 value ranging between 2.4 and 6.2 minutes 

 Stepniak D, et al. Highly efficient gluten degradation with a newly identified prolyl endoprotease: implications for celiac disease. American journal of physiology. Gastrointestinal and liver physiology.2006;291(4):G621–9. Mitea C, et al. Efficient degradation of gluten by a prolyl endoprotease in a gastrointestinal model: implications for coeliac disease. Gut. 2008;57(1):25–32 I absolutely do NOT advocate anyone experimenting on themselves or their loved ones. This is a hairy, difficult field in which we've got a LOT of unknowns, and as much mythlore as fact. I'm going to see if I can't talk to some chemists I know and see if I can't track down 'which' strain of A. niger this is, how best to extract the enzyme, and just what the effects of innoculating the dough itself with the spores would be in a more controlled setting - however, it would be a very happy accident if we could mix a few grams of spores into our favorite recipe, and leave it work for a while. To all those who followed my previous entries and fell ill, you have my deepest apologies, sympathies and regrets for missing such a possibility.  Here's to hope.Aubrey
Roost 12's picture
Roost 12

What puzzles me the most about Bezian's bread is how he manages to ferment at such low temps ( below 10°C/50°F?) for so long (up to 1 month) without getting a mold problem. I also noticed (from pictures posted on different websites) his bread is really tall which means he must be doing a low hydration bread. You can get only so much oven spring. 

So is it possible he takes out the dough every so often, leaving it for an hour or two just so the culture can regain its balance? For example, leave the dough in the fridge for 33 hours, then take it out for 2 hours, put back in for 33 hours, take out for 2 hours again, put back in for 33h...etc until 1 month has passed?

Different strains grow differently at different temps so the temperature of refrigeration must play a big factor as well. Saccharomyces cerevisiae, for example, becomes dormant at 5°C/41°F according to wikipedia. I am still way too new to the bread-baking to have any chance of guessing the temp range so testing would be my best bet. Now I wish I had several different refrigerators so I could see which temp is better for longer fridge fermentation. Mine does only up to 8°C if I am not mistaken. Been a while since I measured. I am probably wrong but for some reason I think 8-12°C would be the sweet spot for fermenting the dough in a fridge? Also, the fact Bezian has been making his bread for over 19 years suggests his fridge temp can't be below 8°C because refrigerators weren't that strong back in the day (or am I mistaken?).


PS: I wish I had a chance to taste his bread. I am from EU, unfortunately. :)

sfsourdoughnut's picture

You should read this article where they mention Chad Robertson from Tartine Bakery and his wife who has become gluten intolerant.  He made a loaf with spelt and emmer instead which she well-tolerated.