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Thursday, December 29, 2011

French Country Bread With Sourdough Starter

Jessica of My Recipe Project challenged the Daring Bakers to prepare a bread with homemade starter. She gave some recipes for the starter and breads and I chose to do the french country bread.  The starter was ready in four days and I prepared the bread on the fourth day. My bread didn't look nice. The day I kneaded the dough, I had a power shut down for nearly 9hours. The bread after two rises need to be in the oven in 5hours but my dough went into the oven after 9hours. There was a rise and then the dough started shrinking. So I kneaded it again and hand shaped the dough which explains its appearance. I made to breads. I sliced, toasted a bread and had it with peanut butter. The other went into a delicious bread pudding. The taste was different from the yeasted bread and the texture was also different. It was dense and the crust was hard. But it toasted well and tasted incredible. I have already experimented with sourdough and this is my second attempt. Though it was not a huge success, it turned out nice. If anyone has experience with french country bread, please tell me whether it is supposed to be like this.. 

Wild Yeast / Sourdough Starter:

Mix 4 1/2tbs whole wheat flour with 4tbs water. Cover with wrap and keep it aside for 24hours.

Mix 4 1/2tbs wheat flour and 3tbs water along with the starter from 1st day. Keep it covered in a plastic box covered with cling wrap for 24hours.

Mix 4 1/2tbs wheat flour and 4tbs water along with the starter from day 2. Keep it covered with cling wrap and set it aside for 24hours.

Mix 3/4cup+1 1/2tbs all purpose flour with 1/4cup-4tsp water along with starter from third day. Keep it aside for 5 hours and it will become bubbly and double in volume. At this stage the starter is ready for the bread.

French Country Bread:

Stage 1:
Sourdough Starter-1cup-1tbs
Wheat Flour-6tbs-1tsp
All purpose Flour-1cup+2tsp

Stage 2:
Wheat Flour-3/4cup-1tsp
All Purpose Flour-2cups+2tbs
Water-1 1/4cup
Starter From Stage 1-1 3/4cup

1. Mix all the ingredients of stage 1 and keep it aside for 4hours until bubbling.
2. Mix all the ingredients from stage 2 except the starter.
3. Knead it for 10minutes on an unfloured surface.
4. Stretch and fold until smooth and elastic.
5. Spread it into a circle and place the starter from stage 1 in the middle.
Incorporate both the doughs. It is the messy part because it is so sticky.
6. Apply water on the counter, place the dough on it and cover with a bowl and let it rise for 1hour.
7. Knead it again and divide it into two equal parts.
8. Make two round breads and place it in a foil lined baking tray.
9. Allow it to rise for 4-5hours.
10. Preheat oven to 180C.
11. Make criss cross patterns on the doubled dough with a sharp knife.
12. Bake the breads for 1 hour or until the crust is brown.
13. Cool on wire rack and use.

Stage 1 ingredients mixed and doubled

Mix stage 2 ingredients -stage 1 starter

Knead the dough for 10minutes

Make a circle

Place the starter from stage 1 in the centre

Incorporate both dough

Shape two breads, proof and score

Bake till golden
Sending this to Yeastspotting


  1. Looks wonderful..so glad that you joined me for BM

  2. wow this looks really nice, i am yet to recover from a recent yeast debacle, once out, will definitely try this one, love the rustic look

  3. Yummy bread .. I have seen the sourdough starter bread only in stores.

    Event: Sinful Delights
    Event: Stuffed Paratha

  4. looks good...but I have never had the patience to do the starter

  5. wow looks great.will try the starter sometime next week.


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