Sourdough Bread – Something which I grew up on my whole childhood! We never bought bread – or very rarely! And even mum’s homemade ‘yeast’ bread was a treat in our household! So this divine loaf of bread is still from the same sourdough culture that my mum had as a kid! It’s actually over 120 years old! Not kidding! This is one seriously old culture! And the bread that results is proof that it really is amazing! You keep feeding the culture, perhaps once a week and it just keeps on living! Amazing stuff!
What I will say is that this is my version of mum’s sourdough! I’ve revamped it! Mum’s sourdough often came out quite dense, and largely because she made it with mostly rye flour, however I do quite a different rise process, and I believe it makes a big difference!
Obviously I have a pre-existing culture. Some of you may be lucky to have a culture too. If you don’t, there are recipes out there to start your own, or you can sometimes find it in specialty cooking shops or health food stores.
This is the REAL deal sourdough! I mean, most of the sourdough that you buy in the supermarket has yeast added! Well I’m here to tell you that this has none, zilch, zero, zip! Just naturally occurring yeast from the culture! Often those sensitive to regular yeast breads can handle sourdough.
The bacteria in sourdough (Lactobacillus), along with the natural yeast from the fermentation, work hand in hand to predigest the grains. This helps to make the bread much more easily digestible. I love the fact that this is another way I can get good bacteria into my family!
Because the production of sourdough is lengthy, the proteins in the gluten are broken down far more than a typical loaf of bread, also aiding in digestion. We eat a diet low in wheat & gluten, however this sourdough as a treat suits us much better, as it’s much more gentle on the gut.
Sourdough has an amazing way of preserving itself. The Acetic acid prevents molds from growing, so there’s no need to worry about it spoiling in the fermenting process.
Sourdough is also an incredible powerhouse of naturally occurring vitamins. With excess of 15 vitamins, it really is so much better than what you will find on any supermarket shelf.
You can see in the image above the beautifully kneaded bread in the Thermomix.
Then after it has proven, about 6-8 hours later!
Above you can see how I’m doing the last prove on the bread. You can see how the loaves are pushed up against each other, with baking paper in between, and proving parallel using the Thermomat in between. The Thermomat also provides stability, holding the loaves up to prove.
Look at the gorgeous crumb on it! It’s quite aerated for a true sourdough! Not quite sandwich bread, but perfectly filling and satisfying! Once you store it, it will become more dense, but then it’s beautiful toasted!
- PRE FERMENT
- 200g Organic Unbleached Bakers Flour
- 150g Filtered Water
- 40g Sourdough Culture/Starter
- 400g Pumpkin Puree (approx. 600g fresh uncooked)
- Reserved Pre Ferment
- 700g Organic Unbleached Bakers Flour
- 250g Filtered Water
- 2 tsp Celtic Sea Salt
- 100g Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Mix the pre-ferment ingredients together, cover with cling wrap and let ferment for 8-10 hours
- Place roughly chopped pumpkin into TM basket.
- Place 500g water into mixing bowl and insert TM basket. Cook 20 mins/120°/Speed 2. Once cooked, remove basket using spatula, discard water and transfer pumpkin into mixing bowl. Puree, 10 Sec/Speed 5.
- Allow to cool briefly. Add the preferment, bakers flour, water and salt and bring together 10 Sec/Speed 6. Knead 2 Mins.
- Add the toasted pumpkin seeds and Knead 2 Min further.
- Transfer into a large mixing bowl and leave to prove for 6-8 hours.
- Once proved, using a pastry scraper push and fold the dough down in the bowl. The dough will be very sticky at this point. On a lightly floured surface, bring the dough together so it is just workable. Be careful not to incorporate too much extra flour as it will end up too tight a loaf!
- Cut into 2, and shape each loaf into a vienna shape. Place onto sheets of baking paper, pushing the loaves up against each other, with baking paper in between. Using a really sharp knife, slash loaves, making 3 parallel slashes along the length of the bread. Leave to prove for 2-3 hours.
- Twenty minutes before baking, place a baking tray on the lowest rung of the oven, and a pizza stone on the rung above. Preheat the oven to 250°C.
- Boil the kettle. Once oven is hot, carefully place 1 (repeat the process with the 2nd loaf) prepared loaf onto the pizza stone, leaving the baking paper underneath. Quickly pour about 150mls of boiled water onto the tray below and shut the oven immediately. This will create steam in your oven to help create a nice crispy, dark crust.
- Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. The bottom of the loaves should sound hollow when cooked. Serve warm with loads of butter!