How To Make Sourdough Bread
A list of things you’ll need:
- Baking oven
- Stand mixer with bread hooks (So far our Sunbeam 250-Watt has lasted us 2 years of making bread 2 - 3 times a week)
- Sourdough Starter (This is the one we have - San Francisco Sourdough Starter)
- 2 glass containers for starter (We recommend these 8 cup pyrex measuring cups)
- Set of measuring cups and spoons (These are nice and cheap)
- Dutch oven, although a pyrex bowl will also work (This one is nice and comes with a free lid / frying pan)
- Set of wooden spoons
- Parchment paper (We use this one)
- Unbleached all purpose flour
- Optional: Organic Unbleached Bread Flour , Organic Bread Flour Whole Wheat
- Water without chlorine (filtered or bottled)
- Bread Knife (this is the one we have)
Feeding the Starter:
For X cups of starter add X cups of water and almost 2X cups of all purpose flour. Mix well with the wooden spoon. Keep container that the starter is in covered, but not sealed because the starter needs to breathe.
After feeding the starter, the next day you will have about 2.5 times the amount you had the day before.
Day 1: You have 1/8 cup starter, so add 1/8 cup water and almost 1/4 cup all purpose flour
Day 2: You have a little over 1/4 cup starter but we can treat it as if it’s 1/4 cup, so add 1/4 cup water and almost 1/2 cup all purpose flour
Day 3: You have a little over 1/2 cup starter but we can treat it as if it’s 1/2 cup, so add 1/2 cup water and almost 1 cup all purpose flour
Day 4: You have 1 1/4 cup starter, so add 1 1/4 cup water and almost 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
Day 5 (Bread Day): You have a little over 3 cups starter. Time to make bread. Take out 1/8 cup starter and put in the second glass container and feed it. This now becomes Day 1 again. The rest of the starter will be used to make the bread.
- If you prefer to make bread less often, put the 1/8 cup starter in the fridge after feeding it for up to 1 week. Then take it out and feed it as you normally would (see Day 2)
- If you want to make bread more often, take out 1/4 cup starter or even 1/2 cup starter on Bread Day (instead of 1/8).
- about 3 cups starter
- 3 cups of bread flour (we use 2 cups whole wheat bread flour and 1 cup unbleached wheat bread flour, but other combinations work such as 1 cup whole wheat bread flour 2 cups unbleached wheat bread flour. Simple all purpose flour works as well.
- 1 Tblsp salt
- 1 Cup water (Chlorine-free)
- Mix all 4 ingredients in the mixer using the dough hooks until dough is consistent (approx. 5 minutes @ low speed)
- Line the dutch oven with parchment paper
- Transfer dough into dutch oven
- Let rise 3 - 12 hours (depends on temperature and other factors) until it reaches or passes the rim of the dutch oven
- Bake in oven without preheating for 1 hour at 400 degrees. In case you’re baking the bread in a pyrex bowl instead of an iron dutch oven then you’ll need to preheat your oven prior to putting the pyrex dish in the oven.
- Cover the glass container that the starter lives in with a towel, it helps prevents fruit flies and other small insects from getting into the container.
- Wait until the freshly baked bread cools down completely before slicing it
- Use an electric bread/food slicer for perfect slices every time (we use this one)
- Store sliced bread in freezer
This is how the dough looks after you’re done with step 3 of the instructions
And then after you let it rise for a few hours its time to bake the bread