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It’s now 22 days since I first mixed my sourdough starter, so over the weekend I worked up the courage (and energy) to make an actual loaf of bread from it. I hadn’t given much thought to the process of making the bread itself until now, so had to do a bit of interwebs research as I’m still waiting for my Dan Lepard (homepage under construction atm, but keep checking, it’s worth it) book to arrive from the UK. The Sourdough Companion has been my friend for a while. I went with this recipe for a home-style bread with rather easy-to-remember formula, using a 70:30 mix of my whole wheat and rye flours.

And joy of all joys – It Worked!

The dough was quite sticky which, combined with my innate laziness, meant fewer stretch-n-folds than prescribed, and I decided to cook it in my beloved Le Creuset dutch oven because I was worried it would spread out into a pancake if I baked it on a baking sheet.

The loaf took a little coaxing out of the pot at the end, but didn’t leave any behind when it did decide to come loose.

It tested the limits of our patience to wait for the bread to cool before slicing into it to check if it was a mound of mush in the middle, but no – it was cooked, albeit a tad on the stodgy side (maybe related to using whole wheat and rye).

In terms of eating experience, the crust was nice and crunchy and it had a definite sourdough sourness to it – in a pleasant way, of course..

I think for the next loaf I might try weaning the yeasty-beasties onto a bit of plain white flour to see if I can get a lighter loaf.

Of course, in the meantime I may try this Sourdough Brownie recipe from Wild Yeast. Looks pretty scrumptious!