Sourdough French Bread

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In 2015 I decided to experiment with sourdough. I had discovered that my body tolerated sourdough bread fairly well, plus I loved the idea of having fresh bread at home.

I began by creating a starter with kombucha and kept it going for 3 months. My family loved the fresh bread I made every week. Then we went on vacation for 12 days and lost the starter. Bummer. Unfortunately, I decided not to create a new batch.

Then we went on vacation for 12 days, and I lost the starter. Bummer. Unfortunately, I put off starting a new batch…until a few weeks ago. It’s been over a year, and I had been buying sourdough bread at the store so figured it was time to get back in the habit of making my own.

This time I used a dry culture a friend had purchased for me awhile back. The starter grew quickly, and soon I had enough for waffles, pancakes, and then this week, French bread.

I took the bread to church, and it received rave reviews so here is the recipe for those of you who were wanting it! (It’s much easier to do than most realize, though there is definitely a science to it if you want to become a dedicated connoisseur! I am not a connoisseur, just an everyday lady making some yummy bread. 🤠)

SOURDOUGH FRENCH BREAD

 

IMG_4105

This is a little light. I would have baked it a bit longer for a nice crust.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups starter (ask any friends if they have some or google how to make your own)
  • 1 Tbl. yeast (+ 1 tsp sugar)
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 3 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 4 – 5 cups flour
  • 1/4 c. butter, melted

Dissolve the yeast by combining the yeast with the warm water (make sure it is not too hot!). Stir in the tsp of sugar. This helps the yeast proof. Set aside 5 minutes.

Add starter, salt, and sugar in a glass bowl or mixing bowl (I used my KitchenAid mixer bowl. It needs to be big enough to let your dough rise.). Add the dissolved yeast.

Stir in 3 cups of flour while mixing. As you begin to knead, add flour 1/2 cup at a time until you have a smooth, elastic dough. (You may or may not use all the flour. You want the flour well incorporated before you add more. Then make sure the dough is not sticky.).

Return the dough to the bowl (or keep it in your mixer bowl) and coat lightly with oil. Cover with a towel and set in a warm spot to rise.

Let rise until double (30 min – 1 hr). Punch down.

Shape dough as desired and place on the pan you will be baking in. I make two loaves on a sheet pan. Cover and let rise until double again. (I always let my dough rise in a VERY, slightly warm oven.)

Melt butter and spread on the dough just before putting it in the oven to bake. Cook at 400º F. for 35-40 minutes until brown on top. It should sound hollow when thumped.

SMOTHER a warm piece of bread with fresh grass-fed butter, close your eyes, and be delighted!

WARNING:  This recipe may cause overeating. 🤣

Tomorrow I try my hand at sourdough English muffins! 

 

 

 

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