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sourdough recipe ii

November 17, 2011

when i return, i vow to start a new sourdough starter. and i think i’ll try this recipe. just look at those photos!

Norwich Sourdough
(adapted from Vermont Sourdough in Bread: A Baker’s Book of Techniques and Recipes by Jeffrey Hamelman)

Yield: 2 kg (four or five small, or two large, loaves)

Time:

Mix/autolyse: 35 minutes
First fermentation: 2.5 hours
Divide, bench rest, and shape: 20 minutes
Proof: 2.5 hours (or 1.5 hours, then retard for 2 – 16 hours)
Bake: 35 minutes

Desired dough temperature: 76F

Ingredients:

900 g white flour
120 g whole rye flour
600 g water at about 74F
360 g ripe 100% hydration sourdough starter
23 g salt

Method:

In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the flours, water, and starter on low speed until just combined, about one minute.
Let the dough rest (autolyse) for 30 minutes.
Add the salt and continue mixing on low or medium speed until the dough reaches a medium level of gluten development. This should only take about 3 or 4 minutes.
Transfer the dough to an oiled container (preferably a low, wide one so the dough can be folded without removing it from the container).
Ferment at room temperature (72F – 76F) for 2.5 hours, with folds at 50 and 100 minutes.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter. Divide it into 400g – 500g pieces. I usually make four 400g loaves and refrigerate the rest to use for pizza dough later. Preshape the dough pieces into light balls.
Sprinkle the balls lightly with flour, cover loosely with plastic, and let rest for 15 minutes.
Shape into batards and place seam-side-up in a floured couche or linen-lined bannetons.

Slip the couche or bannetons into a large plastic bag or cover with plastic wrap and proof at room temperature for 2 – 2.5 hours. Alternatively, the loaves can be proofed for about 1.5 hours at room temperature, then refrigerated for 2 – 16 hours and baked directly out of the refrigerator; this will yield a tangier bread with a lovely, blistered crust.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven, with baking stone, to 475F. You will also need steam during the initial phase of baking, so prepare for this now.
Turn the proofed loaves onto a semolina-sprinkled peel or parchment. Slash each one with two overlapping cuts that are almost parallel to the long axis of the batard.

Once the loaves are in the oven, turn the heat down to 450F. For 400g loaves, bake for 12 minutes with steam, and another 15 – 18 minutes without steam. I leave the oven door cracked open a bit for the last 5 minutes of this time. The crust should be a deep brown. Then turn off the oven and leave the loaves in for 5 minutes longer, with the door ajar, to help them dry. Larger loaves will need to be baked longer.
Cool on a wire rack. Don’t cut until the loaves are completely cool, if you can manage it!

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One comment

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