The Fresh Loaf

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My first SD bake 1/29/30

justkeepswimming's picture
justkeepswimming

My first SD bake 1/29/30

After getting comfortable baking yeast breads with at least some amount of home milled flour, I decided to don my proverbial water wings and venture into the deeper end of the bread baking pool with the sourdough people. So far, it feels like I am doing a dog paddle, but my first SD bake came out good enough for us. 

I followed Abe's VSSD recipe (a 60% whole wheat bread). The bulk rise didn't go nearly as high as his experience, barely doubled after 12 hours overnight. Our home is only 67F at night,so that may have been part of the issue. While my 100% hydration starter is quite vigorous, the stiff starter may not have been quite ready for prime time yet. I gave bulk a little more time, then shaped/proofed in a banetton/scored and baked in a DO. 

Proofing was quite slow as well, and I was certain the crumb was going to prove it was terrible. Even though my expectations were quite low, I decided to bake it and learn from the experience. The result was a very pleasant surprise! I expected a brick, but the crumb had a soft and pleasant chew with a soft tang. And the crust had a great crunch without being too much. Now I can hardly wait for my next "swimming lesson". 😄

Comments

Abe's picture
Abe (not verified)

My starter works quite quickly and does very well in cooler temperatures whereas many report a significant slowing down. All our starters, depending on maintenance, will have their own characteristics. Whether the stiff starter build needed more time, or it was simply a case of giving the dough more time in the bulk or final proofing stage, the end result looks and sounds like a big success. You have described the flavour that should be typical from this formula and crumb looks delicious. A soft and pleasant chew with a soft tang and crunchy crust. That's a winner in my eyes. 

If you still have some stiff starter in the fridge, enough for a second bake, why not try it again and this time give the dough however long it needs. Perhaps start earlier the day before to try and aim for it to be ready by morning. 

justkeepswimming's picture
justkeepswimming

We are a household of 2, so my next bake will by necessity not be for at least several days. We have somehow managed to not gain any weight with Covid restrictions or my bread baking hobby, hopefully we won't start now. Ha! 

I took the stiff starter out of the fridge for a few hours today, and could tell from the texture and smell that it is already better than it was when I used it in this loaf. I'm guessing the beasties just needed a bit more time to get established. 🤞

 

Abe's picture
Abe (not verified)

Ok... So two days before your next planed bake give this stiff starter some TLC. Give it a feed and allow it to mature but this time to the level you're experiencing now. Then back into the fridge ready for the next bake. Looking forward!

Benito's picture
Benito

This is a beautiful loaf, it is hard to imagine that this is your first sourdough bake.  I’m very impressed with the shaping, oven spring, scoring and most importantly the crumb.  This is a 60% whole grain which is even more impressive.  You are a natural!!

Benny

justkeepswimming's picture
justkeepswimming

I don't know about being a natural, lol. I think it has more to do with reading a zillion posts on here and learning as much as I could from everyone, combined with playing with yeast breads first. Those early bricks didn't get photos or blog posts to remember them by. 

Thanks, Benny!!!