“Blues is to jazz what yeast is to bread. Without it, it’s flat.”-Carmen McRae
I always loved the smell of fresh baked bread in a warm kitchen. It smells like “home” and gives you the idea of comfort, of a cosy place. And the homemade bread tastes different. It has something in it that wakes up all the sweet memories of childhood. That is why I used to bake my own bread at home using fresh or dry yeast for years.
It’s been a while though since I started playing with my sourdough starter after finding the courage to make it at home and I must confess I cannot go back to the dry yeast. I’ve been inspired by Codruta @ Codru de paine in cultivating my wild yeast at home and following her instruction I managed to have my own. It wasn’t easy as I had problems identifying the flour that worked properly, but I’ve made it. I tried some of Hamelman’s recipes and these days I’m experimenting some of Emmanuel Hadjiandreou, from its book How to make bread. I decided to share with you some of my bread experiments starting with basic white sourdough made by Hadjandreou’s method that might be used for other recipes ( with olives, with sunflower seeds, with herbs and cheese etc)
( for a small loaf)
- 150g white flour
- 100g manitoba flour
- 150ml warm water
- 75g starter
- 5g salt
- Prepare the starter: mix 15g of “mother dough” (100% hydratation) with 150ml warm water and 150g flour in a large bowl; cover and let ferment overnight. The next day use the amount of ferment required for the recipe.
- In a small bowl mix the flour with the salt; this is the dry mixture
- In a larger bowl mix the starter with water; this is the wet mixture
- Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until it comes together.
- Cover with the smaller bowl and let stand for 10′.
- After 10′ knead the dough in the bowl by pulling one portion of the dough up from the side and press it to the middle, turning the bowl slowly, reapeating this movement 8 times . It should take 10”
- Cover the bowl and let stand for another 10′.
- Repeat step 5 & 6 and then step 5 again. Cover the bowl and let rise for one hour.
- Dust a clean surface with flour, put the dough onto the surface and shape it as a round ball, put the ball in a suitable container with flour for the final rise.
- Let it rise for 3-6 hours until it doubles.
- When it doubled put it onto the prepared baking sheet and score it with a pair of scissors or a bread blade.
- About 20′ before baking preheat the oven to 240° C. Place a pan to the bottom of the oven to preheat.
- When the oven reached the temperature, place the bread into the oven on the baking sheet ( on the baking stone), pour a cup of water in the pan and reduce the temperature to 200°C
- Bake for 30′ or until golden brown. To check if the bread is baked, tip it upside down and tap the bottom – it should sound hollow.
- If you want a bigger bread, double the quantities and increase the baking time.
I send this recipe to Sonia’s Voglia di Lievitati @ Oggi pane e salame, domani…