Simple Sourdough Loaf – 3

So I have a Simple Sourdough Loaf 1 and a Simple Sourdough Loaf 2 in my previous posts, so why version 3 you ask? Well usually one would perfect a recipe and then post it on the blog but the impatient me just could not hold my horses when I created the first 2 loaves. Ideally I could have edited the second post to accommodate the changes that experiment 3 brought forth, since I obtained a slightly different result this time. However, after pondering a while over that idea, I decided to give this being its own space and with good reason too.

I have been using my Kitchen Aid stand mixer to knead the dough for all my loaves so far but I have also been confident that the same can be achieved by hand too, due to the lower hydration of the dough. In this latest recipe however, one of the changes was to increase the water and since I have not yet tried working by hand with high hydration dough, I thought I would document this for those who have a machine OR who are also comfortable working with their hands with wetter dough.

So if you are freshly stepping into sourdough (SD) loaf baking, I would suggest that you first try your hand (yeah pun intended, why not 😎) with my SD loaf 2 recipe. You could also go for SD loaf 1 if you have no issue with using dairy and eggs.

So let us quickly get to the recipe and hope that I do not get better at this and add to the confusion by producing an even more awesome SD loaf 4 😀

And before we proceed, do stop and gaze lovingly at her for a bit will ya? She is all sliced up and posing for you!!!

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Simple Milk Bread

So I am the wholegrain enthusiast right? Then what makes me resort to Maida/All purpose flour (APF) bread from time to time? Well at times I like to gift my bakes to people and for first time recipients I usually go with refined flour unless I know them to be wholegrain fans 😎

Today is Ramzan Eid and in this Corona era, it has been a dull festival for my Muslim friends, just like all our preceding Ugadi, Easter etc have been, ever since the calamity that has befallen the earth since Feb 2020.

Despite that, one of my dear friends Fazi Khan told me that he would come to my house (with all corona protocols in place) and bring me his famous home made biryani. Fazi is a great cook and wonderful person too and I wanted to make a few things to give him in return.

A nice, soft milk bread loaf was one of them, since he has always admired my bread bakes on Facebook. The other things I made for him were buttery Sourdough crackers and also my famous Whole wheat Christmas cake which I had been promising him since last Christmas 😎 This cake is much better with whole wheat and has been tried and trusted and tested and tasted by many. Hence the elimination of maida here.

So now let us get back to our Milk loaf and see what I did with it. Yes I added a twist (literally) and inserted a layer of soaked Christmas fruit, which serendipitously turned out looking like the Eid ka Chaand … the crescent Eid moon 🙂

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Sourdough Basic Crackers

Ever since I started playing with Sourdough (SD) starters some years ago, I had been addictively baking mainly SD crackers in various variants and slyly avoiding baking those gorgeous looking breads that I always gazed at on the internet. A lack of time, patience and focus … and hitherto, skill, is what had been holding me back. Hence it is ironical that my newly created bread loaves have found their way into my blog before the crackers could but now it is time to erase that injustice and place these crisp beauties in their due glow of limelight.

There are so many versions that one can make and they are such simple and forgiving recipes, that I will not be surprised if they become an obsession for you too.

Am starting you off with one of the basic ones which are wholegrain and vegan too. Later we will move on to my other variations in the coming blogs. You can play with the ingredients and create your own favorite flavors and textures too and do not blame me if you get hooked on to them.

Currently in this Corona lockdown, I am literally baking a fresh set a day, mainly because they are (not so) mysteriously disappearing soon after emerging from the oven.

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100 percent Whole Wheat Sourdough Loaf – 1

As I mentioned in the earlier post, to the best of my ability I tend to eliminate the use of all refined ingredients in my bakes. A couple of experiments with maida/All Purpose Flour (APF) are all that I can tolerate with a new recipe, before my system itches to go the full hog and play with 100% whole grain flours.

However, while it is easy to slip easily into this process while baking cakes and cookies, I am a bit more cautions when it comes to breads because even though I have achieved sufficiently appealing 100% whole wheat loaves at times, the outcome is not consistent and depends on the moods of both myself and my wheat flour ‍😎

That nevertheless does not deter me from continuing to experiment and my fortunate family ends up being the recipient of my endeavors *insert evil laugh*

Sourdough (SD) being the current love of my life during this corona lockdown as you have seen from the slew of past posts, it was but a matter of time before I turned my attention to creating a whole wheat SD loaf. This was undoubtedly a challenge, seeing how even a regular commercial yeast, whole grain loaf is not easy to unfailingly get right.

A little bit of persistence and an initial non success (there will be a sufficiently frightful picture below, to disturb your peace) and then I managed to obtain an end product that was reasonably pleasing for a second attempt.

Of course the trials will be ongoing but my dear reader, the impatient me wants to inflict this one on you in the meantime. Hence also, the optimistic usage of the number 1 in the title, to indicate a potential for upcoming and hopefully more successful versions in future.

For now, bear with me and let us venture into this together.

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Simple Sourdough Loaf – 2

In my previous post, you witnessed my first attempt at baking a Sourdough (SD) sandwich loaf, which is a softer bread than the usual crusty SD boule. Though I prefer using 100% wholegrain in my bakes, I usually start off my new experiments with maida aka All Purpose Flour (APF) and once I master that, I then move onto blends and combinations of other flours.

While that was my intention while baking the previous loaf, I managed to miscalculate the hydration and ended up needing a little more flour and for this additional flour I decided to use whole wheat flour since it was a small quantity.

But now in this recipe, I have tried to correct that hydration error and I have come up with a 100% maida loaf for those who prefer completely refined flour breads.

In the process, this also happened to serendipitously become eggless and vegan.

And now that I am sort of satisfied with the outcome, you will see me plunging headlong into a 100% whole wheat SD loaf, the next time. Let’s hope that I do not create a brick and instead turns out like a soft pillow to cushion my plunging head 😀

So let us get on with this SD loaf 2, which as you can see, is rather pretty or maybe I am biased? Let’s go with the former shall we? 😉

 

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