Okay, so for years I’ve always been told that sourdough is SO hard to make and for that reason I never even bothered to even look into it. Boy was I missing out!! I told you that I would take tons of photos from my first loaf and share my new found obsession of being a sourdough bread baker. Without further adieu, Heres the scoop on what I like to call my Sourdough life..
A friend of mine inherited a sourdough starter and bought the Artisan Sourdough Made Simple book followed by making her first loaf. After she had made her first loaf she had nothing but crazy amazing things to say about her experience and walked me through the process. Just hearing her experience got me excited… So excited, that I wanted to have a sourdough life of my own. She gave me some of her starter and I immediately went home and purchased the same book on amazon and later realized that I don’t have anything to actually bake it in. After doing a bit of research and putting into consideration that I don’t want to spend $300 for a dutch oven, I settled for the next best thing. A clay bread baking dome by Sassafras.
After all of my glorious tools arrived I was ready to bake my heart out!
I don’t know about you but whenever I’m baking something new I’m always a nervous wreck in the kitchen. Is it going to rise? Is it going to taste like salt or what if its tasteless? All the scenarios flash through my head. This time around though I also had the added pressure of living up to Augusts Sourdough loving expectations so I definitely wanted it to turn out well! I mean… what wide wants to disappoint their husbands by bombing it making their favorite thing?! PS. Ive totally done that before haha!!!!
Pictured here: The 2nd step of mixing together your starter, Water, Salt & Bread flour- Mix it together till its all shaggy and then let it sit for 30 minutes.
One thing that I appreciate about this The “Artisan Sourdough made simple” recipe book is that there are ample photos for you to go off of. Even down to what the shaggy dough bowl is supposed to look like. If your anything like me and do much better following directions that include photos as apposed to JUST directions than this is the book for you! Since this was my first time making the bread I wasn’t sure what to expect in each step and thankfully this all of those photos made it less of a mystery although I wouldn’t say a complete mystery… you just never know until you you actually bite into it right?
Pictured here: The 3rd step- pulling the doughs corners and folding them into the center until it nice and tight and semi smooth. I obviously didn’t finish the process before jumping to a photo. lol after thats done, you let it rise with a damp towel over it for 8-10 hours.
Now… Ill admit, this was the HARDEST part for me! we stayed around the house all day, so I was just kind of in holding for 8-10 hours just asking myself constantly “I wonder if its rising?” “Maybe I should check under the towel to make sure its working.” For this very reason she mentions in the book to have it rise over night so that you aren’t tempted to keep creeping on your sourdough! Im not a very patient person so I happen to think that this sourdough making life is helping me learn to love the “Process” of things much more. Theres no speeding up the bread rising process unless you were to use a packet of yeast, in which case it changes things about the dough a bit.
After hours of self rising and my patience meter bursting, this dough was ready to be transferred onto the parchment paper and scored.
A side from eating it, this may be one of my favorite parts of the sourdough making process because it makes you bread look SO inviting. I tried to be all super professional with it obviously.. Here’s what my first scoring job looked like…
Its a beauty!! At this point I was so stoked to be putting this baby in the oven… I could hardly wait for it to be completely done!
In the oven it goes….
After the dough has been cooking for a solid 45 minutes it was ready to come out of the oven but not yet ready to eat. I know what you’re saying… Seriously?! When can you eat the dang thing? lol I was saying the same thing… Once it comes out of the oven you have to wait another hour for it to sit and cool. The fun part about this is hearing all of the crackling when the dough comes out. It kind of soothing sounding…
Pictured here is my finished product mid crackling:
Y’all… I am SO HAPPY to report that my sourdough came out FANTASTIC and got the approval from mr. sourdough himself. haha! My sourdough life has been nothing short of a fun, therapudic time. So if you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to make your own sourdough bread.. I would say to you JUST DO IT! I can almost promise you that you will find joy in it and it might even teach you a few things in the process. (Thats another blog post for another day.) IF you decide to have a sourdough life of your own, feel free to share your experience, tips + tricks in the comments below!!