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This is the most awesome sourdough bread recipe I have ever tried. It is soft, tasty, and has an excellent rise. I like the added nutrition from ingredients like whole milk and free-range eggs. This recipe calls for a stand mixer with dough hooks: In the future I plan to knead it by hand to see how it turns out. Feel free to give it a try without a stand mixer if you don’t have one; if that’s too difficult, try the Simple Sourdough Bread Recipe instead. If you have any problems, check out my Sourdough Help page and feel free to ask questions in the comments section.
This recipe is adapted from a recipe at Sarah’s Musings. Her recipe uses a “sponge” that rests overnight; I’ve tried making the bread that way but the dough becomes too runny to knead definitively. I just combine all the ingredients at once and make it similarly to the Simple Sourdough Bread, but with only two rises instead of three.
Combine ingredients. Let dough rest for 10 to 30 minutes. Knead for about 10 minutes with a stand mixer and dough hooks until dough passes window pane test . This bread has two rising periods, one in the mixing bowl and one in the loaf pan. It can take anywhere from 4-12 hours to complete the rising process, depending on the temperature of the rising environment and the yeast activity of the sourdough culture. This recipe makes one sandwich-size loaf and 6 burger buns/rolls. You can divide it in half to make two, smaller (~2lb) loaves. Weights are approximate (until I get a more accurate scale).
- 6 cups (~900g) Organic Whole Wheat Flour + 1/2 cup to knead (if you aren’t using a stand mixer)
- 2 cups (~450g) Whole Milk
- 1 cup (~250g) Sourdough Starter
- 6 TBSP (~60g) Soft Unsalted Butter, Refined Coconut Oil, or Ghee + extra to coat dough and loaf tin
- 2 large (~100g) free-range eggs
- 1/4 cup (~80g) Honey
- 2 tsp Real Salt
- Stand Mixer with dough hooks and large bowl
- Mixing spoon
- Dinner spoon for scooping flour into measuring cups
- Measures: 1 cup, 1/4 cup, 1 TBSP, 1 tsp
- Loaf tin
- Plastic wrap or damp kitchen towel
- Meat thermometer
- Parchment paper
- Proofing basket or second loaf tin (optional)
- Baking tray (optional)
- In a large glass bowl with a mixing spoon, mix the liquid ingredients and salt in the bowl first; add flour next. If your previous loaf turned out too dense (see Sourdough Help), add a measure of flour at a time until you get a wet and workable dough. Remember to measure flour by scooping flour with a dinner spoon, pouring the flour into the measuring cup, and leveling with the spoon handle.
- Let the dough rest for about 20 minutes (10 minutes to 30 minutes is fine; the flour will absorb the water making it easier to knead) in the mixing bowl, covered by plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel
- Knead in a stand mixer for about 10 minutes. If the dough is too wet after being thoroughly mixed and won’t pull away from the sides, add more flour gradually until it does. The dough should be able to pass the windowpane test: pull off a chunk of dough (there should be some resistance to pulling it off) and stretch it taught with your fingers to see if it will become thin enough to let light through without breaking. If the dough breaks, keep kneading and performing the test every few minutes until you have a stretchy dough that passes.
- Remove the dough and add extra unsalted butter, coconut oil, or Ghee in the mixing bowl. Shape the dough into a ball by folding the sides underneath until the top surface of the dough is taught; place it upside-down in the oiled bowl to coat the top and sides and flip it over so the bottom is coated too. Cover the mixing bowl with plastic wrap or a damp paper towel. Let it rise for 2-6 hours.
- For a faster rise, place it in the oven with the light (or pilot light) on. 78F is a warm temperature for sourdough to rise.
- For a longer, more nutritious rise, leave on the counter at a room temperature around 72F.
- If you made your dough too late in the day to bake, you can put it in the ‘fridge to rise the next morning; give it a couple hours to come to room temperature before progressing.
- When the dough has doubled in size, divide 60/40 for a 2.5lb loaf with 6 rolls or divide 50/50 for two 2lb loaves. Add butter, coconut oil or ghee to the loaf pan or line with parchment paper;
- If making a second loaf, prepare a second loaf tin or a proofing basket (you may want to line it with parchment paper so the dough can be transferred to the same loaf tin after it is used to cook the first loaf).
- If making rolls, place a sheet of parchment paper on a baking tray.
- You can try two methods of trapping the gas bubbles created by the yeast (see options below) in each of the portions of dough. Place the loaf portion in the loaf tin and the rolls on the baking tray (or one loaf in the tin, another in the proofing basket or second tin, etc.) Coat all dough with additional butter, oil, or Ghee and cover loaves loosely with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel.
- FIRST OPTION: Depress the dough gently and fold sides under to make a new ball.
- SECOND OPTION (recommended): re-knead the dough briefly and form a new ball.
- If you are making rolls, you will want to cut the “40%” portion into 6 equal pieces and reshape each piece. I did not cover the rolls.
- Allow the dough to rise in the desired environment for another 2-6 hours. It should double in size. Cut a long line down the center of the loaf with a sharp knife. If you haven’t done so already, cut an X on the top of your rolls.
- Bake the loaves of bread at 375F for 45 minutes; pull the rolls out after 15-20 minutes. Every oven is different; my gas oven cooks a loaf of this bread at 325F for 60 minutes (I put my bread in while the oven is preheating for extra rise: this probably shortens the baking time). The inside of the bread should measure 190 to 200F when completely cooked; use a meat thermometer to help determine cooking time. If the crust is too dark, cook at a lower temperature for longer next time. If it is too light and takes too long to cook, use a higher temperature for a shorter period of time.
- Let loaf rest in pan for 5 minutes after removing from the oven. Remove loaf from pan and let the loaf rest for 15 minutes. After this you can slice and enjoy!