back to blogging...
so now we have established that bread making is a art of love, passion and great raw produce to work with, there is always time to take it 1 step further.
Being on the net for a few years and having contact with sourdough bakers worldwide, you see bread creations with other natural edible products to give bread a funky twist. In the picture you see 2 dough’s, one plain white made with T65 flour from @wildfarmed grain and the blue one made with the same flour and adding pea flower powder to get this fantastic electric colour. These two will be folded together at a later stage to give them a marble effect. Each slice will have a different story to tell. In my eyes that is the second best bit after the crunchy crusty taste.
When making bread, patience and love is required, not just recipe and set of scales,as discussed before everything should be considered, quality flour, purified water and natural salt. one starts at the beginning with making a levain for the bread to be made. A levain is the starter dough for the bread in hand and usually is part of the recipe. When making a levain it takes usual 5-7 hours to get to peak. Mix the flour and water from the recipe 1 hour before the levain peaks. Follow the recipe and add Levain to the flour and water dough, then add salt and go through the stretch and fold procedure for 3 hours and the retarding time. Bake in a Dutch oven and presto another fine bit of bread came to life, ready to eat with a fine homemade topping with family and friends. Every loaf has a story of its own and brings people together, the smell and taste does this for you.🙂
It all starts with flour and water and a little salt, using a decent flour you start a 'mother' or starter dougd or even sourdough starter. It will take 6-8 days to make this by feeding and discarding surplus dough. And once achieved the perfect balance, give you starter a name. It becomes part of your daily life. Once you start making sourdough bread and get the grips with it, you will never buy sliced bread again, you make bread when you need to, no waist, no chucking in the bin, you make toast of the stale bread if need be, you strike a balance between supply and demand, not only that, in the long run making your own sourdough bread will be cheaper to produce then buying a sliced loaf anywhere. In time you start to experiment by adding herbs, nuts,dried fruits or olives perhaps,the world is your oyster. next phase is to make french sticks, foccacia's chiabatta's etc whatever you fancy.
I have been busy making sourdough breads from first lockdown started in 2020, at the beginning there were some good results, but if one remembers at the start of lockdown there were flour shortages, amongst other things. I started buying flour in bulk from June 2020 to have enough to 'play' with, gone were the 2kg bags in came the 16-25kg bags it stopped restricting me from developing and fine tuning the art of my sourdough. Over time I became aware not to stay with the one producer of excellent flour but sourcing growers and millers. Unbelievable what is out there incredible good millers who and fantastic producers of heritage varieties, those where Britain was build on. It is taken for granted going into a shop and buy sliced white or brown, oh yes and there are the big supermarkets offering freshly baked frozen breads, full of sugars, preservatives funny fats, even E's and certain citric acid all to keep those breads another day fresh and half goes in the bin at the end of the week. But they all forgot about taste, nutrients, health, ecological impact on the environment, food miles etc
I leave it at this for the moment
Sourdough bread, it has rather become an obsession for me, all the research and trials for the right reason, making breads the way they should be made. Talking to people all over the world, it has become clear to me that I am not alone in this...lol. There are so many loaf recipes’ out there, but eventually you create your own to suit you and your set up. For me it all started one year ago, when time was on hand and I wanted to master sourdough breads. There were some moments that results were very depressing, never stop till you have worked it out why……after a lot of practice your get over those hurdles and one develop the love and understanding how it all fits together. There is always that exciting moment when one cuts a loaf in half and the inside presents you with a beautiful picture.
Making bread using the right flour is of upmost importance. Just recently I came across a company called Wildfarmed. And their flour is by right one of the best flour I have ever used in the UK. Ecological produced using traditional farming methods using the right wheat’s making it very healthy for body and soul. I feel you must look into this company
Order their flour direct from them as they do not have national list of stockist.
Until next time🙂