Friday, 13 June 2008

Wholemeal sourdough

Sourdough is amazing stuff. I came across it on the web and couldn't quite believe that you could raise bread just using some left our bread and water. Turns out you really can!

I got this recipe from here and it has worked well for me (well, not so well today because I forgot about the loaves and over proved them....)

1 1/2 cups water (room temperature, preferably filtered)
2 tbsp honey (I have used maple syrup when I've run out of honey)
2 cups wholemeal flour
1/4 cups starter*
2 tbsp oil
1 1/2 tsps salt
2 tsps bread enhancer (or a couple of powdered vitamin c pills)
3 tbsp wheat gluten
2 1/4 cups wholemeal flour

Mix the first four ingredients to form a sponge and leave for about 5 hours, until slightly bubbly but not at the peak of activity.
Add the remaining ingredients and knead until stretchy and soft. Cover with oiled clingfilm and prove for 6-7 hours at room temperature, or leave in the fridge overnight (this will give a stronger flavour).
Bake in a preheated over at gas mark 4 (180 oC) for 30 -40 minutes.

*There is tons of info on making starters on the web. You can even buy them. I made mine myself by mixing roughly equal volumes of water and flour and leaving it out in my kitchen. I poured away half the mixture everyday and added some fresh flour and water. After about a week (it was a cold time of year - it can happen faster) it was bubbly and yeasty smelling and made bread! Just like magic.

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