Mmmmm…Smell That Bread

Figure 1 Sourdough Baguettes -recipe

Sourdough Baguettes

After some experimentation to see how Sourdough reacts to certain conditions and techniques I’ve discovered that it seems to enjoy very little attention.  Again “less is more”. The hardest part of this process for me is to let Mother Nature do her job without my interference. I’m not good with idle hands.

Here is the process I used to make my sourdough baguettes and based on the reception from my taste testers I have committed it in writing on a recipe card.  Done Deal!

In a glass mixing bowl add:

1/2 Cup unfed sourdough starter

A generous 1/2 Cup of tepid non-chlorinated water

A scant Cup of unbleached flour

Mix well and let stand at room temperature for about 12 – 14 hours. (Really…just leave it alone)

Add:

A generous 1/2 Cup of tepid non-chlorinated water

A scant Cup of unbleached flour

2 Tablespoons of sugar

1 Teaspoon sea salt or Kosher salt

Mix well and add:

1 more Cup of unbleached flour.

Mix well and pour out onto a surface that has an additional 1 1/4 Cup of flour on it and gently knead until all the flour has been picked up.

Place in a greased and covered bowl and let rise until doubled 4-6 hours. (Again…Really…just leave it alone).

When doubled or even tripled in bulk gently pour out onto a floured surface (I use a shaker filled with flour for this). Dust the top with flour and gently cut the dough in half (Don’t punch it down like with regular yeast type bread, you want the holes for texture). Gently shape the dough into Baguettes and transfer them onto a greased baking sheet. Cover with a clean dish towel and let raise 2 – 4 hrs. (this is relative to temperature and humidity in your kitchen, just be patient and peek in on it every once in a while).

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Score the Loaves diagonally with a very sharp knife. This helps them expand in the oven without cracking

Slightly mist the loaves with a food grade spray bottle filled with water.

Bake in a  425 degree preheated oven for 25 – 30 minutes until golden brown.

Cool on a wire rack.

Store in a paper bag (plastic will change the crust from crusty to rubbery).

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