Crafts Blog

Bake your own sourdough bread and get that ‘out for brunch’ weekend breakfast feeling at home!

Recipe: Bake Sourdough Bread

SOURDOUGH BREAD recipe from new release Lucy’s Bakes

Lucy Cufflin says, “I call this my friendly bread because I often share my starter dough with friends and family. The loaf has a fabulous chewy, open texture, sour flavour and, I think, is the king of loaves. Sourdough has no added yeast but you make a paste with flour and liquid and leave it exposed to the air and as it sours it draws natural yeasts from the air and ferments. The initial ‘starter’ takes 5 days, but you freeze it, defrost and re-feed it, so the next time the process is quicker. It is a labour of love but worth it. I use yoghurt and milk to give it a quick start but you can just use water.”

Preparation 10 mins

Cooking 40 mins

Makes 1 large loaf

  1. Starter: Day 1
    175g milk, 150g live plain yoghurt, 120g strong white bread flour



    Heat the milk in a saucepan until just boiling and then remove from the heat and stir in the yoghurt. Add the flour, put it in a bowl, cover with a tea (dish) towel and leave overnight at room temperature (allowing plenty of air space to draw yeast from).
  2. Starter: Day 2
    150g strong white bread flour, 150g water

    Stir in the flour and water and repeat the process as day 1 but leave for 2 days.
  3. Starter: Day 3
    Nothing added
  4. Starter: Day 4
    150 strong white bread flour, 150g water

    Add the flour and water, mix well and leave again for 24 hours as day 1.
  5. Starter: Day 5
    150g strong white bread flour, 150g water

    As day 4 – the mix will have turned a sort of grey colour and have bubbles in it.
  6. Starter: Day 6
    The starter is ready to use. Measure out the 300 g (10½ oz) of starter for the loaf and then either freeze the rest if you are not making bread again for a while or you can store the remainder in the fridge. This will slow the process but you will still need to feed your starter every couple of days with equal quantities of flour and water to keep it alive. Now you are ready to make your own sourdough loaf.
  7. Bread: Ingredients
    500g strong white bread flour, 300g sourdough starter (see above), 250g water, 10g sugar, 10g salt
  8. Bread: Step 1
    Mix together the flour, sourdough starter, water, sugar and salt using a fork until you have a rough dough.
  9. Bread: Step 2
    Turn it out onto a clean work surface and knead for seven minutes until you have a non-sticky, elastic dough.
  10. Bread: Step 3
    This dough is softer than other breads and really needs a mould to help it keep shape to rise. You can buy a ‘banneton’ (a bread basket-shaped container for proving bread), which you flour liberally or simply line a baking dish or tin with baking paper. I use a 20 cm (8in) square, deep cake tin and this makes a great square deep loaf (pavé as the French would call it).
  11. Bread: Step 4
    Turn your soft dough into your mould, sprinkle liberally with flour, score some lines on the top using a sharp knife and then cover it with a tea towel. I always leave my sourdough overnight to rise as it likes a slower, cooler temperature rise.
  12. Bread: Step 5
    Heat the oven to 230°C (450°F/Gas 8) and put a ramekin or similar small dish of water in the oven. If using a banneton, quickly turn the loaf out onto a baking paper-lined baking tray. Bake the loaf for 10 minutes at this temperature then turn the oven down to 220°C (430°F/Gas 7) and bake for a further 30 minutes, or until the bread is a good brown colour.
  13. Bread: Step 6
    Turn the loaf out of the tin, if using, and knock on the base of the loaf with your fist. If it sounds hollow then the bread is ready. Cool on a wire rack before slicing.

Recipe from Lucy's Bakes: Over 200 of the easiest baking recipes you will ever make by Lucy Cufflin (£20, Hardie Grant Books)

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