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My First Ever Sourdough Loaf And I’ll Bring To Fiesta Friday #50

 

Just out of the oven

Just out of the oven

I must tell you I was very nervous about this loaf, but with Ginger’s expert advise and soothing reassurance by jove I did it. A beautiful crusty sourdough loaf. Now the original recipe used whole wheat flour, I got mine out of the fridge and the first thing I noticed was a little bit of a rancid smell, that got tossed so I had to improvise. I used bread flour, barley flour and wheat germ. I think the resulting loaf is wonderful and I hope that Ginger is proud of me.

The loaf is so good I decided to bring it to Fiesta Friday #50, a milestone really, 50 consecutive parties and Angie shows no sign of slowing down. Full speed ahead and we are only 2 weeks away from a full year of Fiesta Friday’s. Amazing isn’t it, so this week the party is hosted by the effervescent and ever present Angie@The Novice Gardener and our lovely co hosts are Selma @Selma’s Table and Sue @birgerbird. Enjoy the bread everyone and I am also bringing some hand churned butter from my CSA to slather on!!

In conclusion, this bread is INCREDIBLE, the crust is crisp, the inside is soft, it has complex flavor because it’s sourdough. This recipe is a keeper and well worth the effort. I am now more comfortable with levain and will be making this loaf on a regular rotation.

Dough after an overnight sit in the fridge

Dough after an overnight sit in the fridge beautiful dough

The recipe calls for 3 cups whole wheat bread flour, since I didn’t have whole wheat flour here is what I used: Next time I make this loaf I am going to weigh the flours and include that in my notes.

3 cups bread flour

1/2 cup barley flour

1/2 cup wheat germ

It’s a very soft dough, you have to work quickly when transferring to the hot pot. I didn’t really have to shape it since the dough is soft it kind of conformed to the shape of my pot nicely.

I did not get a photo of the dough in the pot, it’s hot, you have to work quickly, slashing the top, sprinkle with a little flour, get the lid back on and put back in the oven. Don’t be tempted to lift the lid while baking, leave it be it has to build up steam. I was so tempted to do that but held myself back. Was dying to see what the bread looked like.

crust is so crisp

crust is so crisp

Side Note: The levain I had left after making the bread dough was put in the fridge and will be fed today to make yet another loaf of delicious sour dough bread. I also want to make note that I am decreasing the amount of salt in the recipe to 2 1/2 tsp.  Also, I used an oval 36cm, 4 Qt pot. Smaller would also work.

Big loaf

Big loaf

IMG_3884

157 Comments Post a comment
  1. Wow! You did an incredible job – and what, exactly, is “Fiesta Friday”??

    January 9, 2015
    • It’s like Sunday Supper, a virtual party we have every Friday hosted by Angie @The Novice Gardener, we all bring a dish and post it on her site. Lots of fun, you should do it when you can. Thank you.

      January 9, 2015
  2. Gorgeous!!! You did a great job – both crust and crumb look perfect to me! There’s nothing better than bread freshly baked, still warm from the oven.

    January 9, 2015
  3. Oh Yum Suzanne, that bread and lots of butta!!! Cheryl

    January 9, 2015
  4. Wow – I feel like a very proud grandmother now! 😉 The loaf is beautiful and I have to really commend you on your persistence, you did a great job! I think the first time is difficult because you feel like you don’t quite know what you’re supposed to be doing, the second time is so much easier! You made this a very special Fiesta Friday for me!

    January 9, 2015
    • Thank you for putting up with my questions (way to many and I apologize) I am a bit OCD when it comes to baking and getting things right. It came out perfectly even though I didn’t use whole wheat flour. Ordered some so I have it now and will keep in the freezer next time. Your bread is amazing and I am so thrilled and happy to share with the FF#50 crew.

      January 9, 2015
      • I think once you have a feel for how wet your dough needs to be you can experiment with any flour or ingredient. I like my bread simple, but dry-roasted seeds and oats are wonderful, too!

        January 9, 2015
      • Yes I can’t wait to experiment, oat flour, spelt along with the regular flour. Honestly Ginger it is a brilliant recipe.

        January 9, 2015
  5. shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com #

    Suzanne – wow – I am blown away – this bread is beyond amazing – wow! This looks like the sourdough rolls I see at a local bakery near me – fabulous!
    Happy Friday!!

    January 9, 2015
    • Thank you, it’s the recipe honestly it’s terrific. The bread is so good I can’t even explain just how wonderful it is.

      January 9, 2015
  6. skd #

    You nailed it Suzanne 😃 I was equally excited to see how your bread turns out. It looks so airy with a beautiful crust 👍🍞🍪

    January 9, 2015
    • The bread is just fantastic, the crust is perfect, I never knew about baking bread in cast iron pots, now I know and am hooked. Thank you.

      January 9, 2015
  7. ….. and there she is, your loaf and you :). I know you were a tad worried as to the final product, but it looks perfect, right color, right crust and most of all I’m sure delicious!

    January 9, 2015
    • It is Loretta, yes I am a worry wart and a tad OCD when it comes to baking. Must say it’s a stellar loaf. Thank you so much.

      January 9, 2015
  8. *Gasp!* It’s gorgeous. Definitely the star of the fiesta! Hugs!
    ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

    January 9, 2015
    • Thank you Teagan, you should have seen my face when i opened the pot I wish I had, LOL. Relief, surprise and excitement. It was like getting a gift. Thank you.

      January 9, 2015
  9. Lovely looking bread… 🙂

    January 9, 2015
  10. It looks amazing! There’s nothing better than fresh baked bread. Yum 🙂

    January 9, 2015
  11. That looks amazing!!!!

    January 9, 2015
  12. Looks gorgeous!!!

    January 9, 2015
  13. I’ve never been a huge bread eater but I am simply in LOVE with sourdough bread. I don’t know what it is about this bread, but I go crazy every time I eat it lol. I gotta take your recipe.

    January 9, 2015
    • Me too, love sour dough bread!! Highly recommend giving this a try, it’s a show stopper both in taste and appearance Thank you so much.

      January 9, 2015
  14. Huge Congratulations on your success.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

    January 9, 2015
  15. Congratulations, Suzanne! Looks very good and yummy! I have gained a new respect in bread making. 🙂

    January 9, 2015
    • Thanks so much Fae, I actually had a lot of fun making it the process was a little scary just because it was unknown for me. I have made lots of bread before but never made levain or sourdough. It was great.

      January 9, 2015
  16. Beautiful loaf!

    January 9, 2015
  17. Sourdough is my absolute favorite. Looks amazing!

    January 9, 2015
  18. This is just gorgeous Suzanne! Lool at the crust. I liked the mwdley of flours there. Just beautiful!

    January 9, 2015
  19. OMG this is so beautiful. I love sourdough! Impressive. I’ve always been a little afraid of messing up the starter. SO awesome. Thanks for sharing. I cannot get over how perfect that looks.

    January 9, 2015
    • Yes me too Amanda. if you go to Ginger’s site you will see my many many questions. This starter is easy and very forgiving. Thank you I am so happy that the bread came out well.

      January 9, 2015
  20. Looks so perfect ❤ Yum 🙂

    January 9, 2015
  21. Absolutely stunning. Good work! I know how hard it is to get that perfect crust at home.

    January 9, 2015
  22. For me there is nothing better than sourdough bread! My starter is always in the refrigerator, ready for a recipe 🙂

    January 9, 2015
    • I am doing the same alway keeping a starter in the fridge. Thank you so much.

      January 9, 2015
  23. I’m always scared to make bread, so I’ve been inching in with rolls and biscuits. Your sourdough looks so perfect!

    January 9, 2015
    • Thanks Pamela, this wasn’t hard a little labor intensive but so worth it. Thanks so much.

      January 9, 2015
  24. What a nice crust you have here. Looks wonderful! 🙂

    January 9, 2015
  25. We have been on the same journey at the pretty much the same time! How long did it take for your levain to get going? I love how your loaf turned out with the floury top – I dusted mine with fine semolina so it was a little crunchy. And yours is so full of air holes – brilliant loaf, Suzanne. It’s odd that it dough is so soft, isn’t it – I practically throw it in the screamingly hot pot! I did notice that you read my post but I’ve been too busy with FF to reply to comments today – you must try the sourdough pancakes – they are quite different and actually, I think that they would be great with smoked fish and a dollop of lemony cream fraiche for a very posh Sunday brunch…thanks for sharing this with the crowd and Happy Fiesta Friday to you!

    January 9, 2015
    • The levain took 8 days with one feeding. Really pretty quick. I kept the leftover levain in the fridge, fed it, let it sit in my oven with the light on it puffed up again and I am making another loaf tomorrow to take to a friends house for dinner. Your loaf was simply stunning. I will try the pancakes and I think you are right it would go beautifully with smoked fish like salmon, sour cream, yum what a wonderful idea. Thank you Selma and thanks for co hosting.

      January 9, 2015
      • Gosh, that ddn’t the long at all then. Great result. I take the lid off for the final 20 mins – that give it a deeper colour i think. Have a look at Celia’s sourdough recipes – she even makes bagels…

        January 9, 2015
      • I thought that 8 days for the levain to mature was great and it really does do well in that time. I think the longer you leave it in the fridge the better it will be so my levain is not 2 weeks old, I will use a cup of it tomorrow for another loaf and store the rest in the fridge until I am ready to use some more. It really is a carefree recipe for levain I like it a lot. Thats a really great idea taking the lid off to get a deeper color, will do that tomorrow.

        January 9, 2015
  26. Looks amazing! Can almost smell it. And nice combo of flours to use. Okay, wheatgerm ain’t a flour as such. Still, love its flavour. If only I could get my hands on barley flour. Come to think of it, I haven’t baked bread in months. Anyway, well done!

    January 9, 2015
    • It’s a wonderful bread. I do love making bread but I am so insecure about my capabilities. This one turned out just beautifully I am so happy, Thanks so much Johnny.

      January 9, 2015
  27. You had me at sourdough! This looks absolutely delicious. Can you tell I love bread?!1

    January 9, 2015
    • Thank you I love sourdough also, yes I can tell you love bread. I do too!!

      January 9, 2015
  28. I’m so happy for you Suzanne – what a beautiful crust! It really does looks stunning… and perfect with a slather of cultured butter (something that I bought at the farmer’s market this morning – but now just need a slice or two of your bread to go with it!) 🙂 Hope you enjoyed the eating!

    January 9, 2015
    • Yes with a generous slather of cultured butter, delicious. Thanks Margot wish we were neighbors I would bring you some.

      January 9, 2015
  29. What a beautiful loaf of bread and I am sure delicious!

    January 9, 2015
  30. Sue #

    Finally, I’ve made it through the crowds to your post!!! Congratulations on your first loaf of sourdough, it looks really delicious and you got some nice holes going on there! Barley flour and wheat germ, now that’s interesting. I bet both would add some nice flavor. I’ll take a loaf to go, please, sorry everybody else!!!

    January 9, 2015
    • You got it Sue, a loaf to go. LOL, thank you I was very nervous but am so pleased with how the bread turned out, Thank you and thanks for being such a great co host.

      January 10, 2015
      • Sue #

        Haha, thanks Suzanne. Now, it’s 6 a.m. in Santa Monica and I need more sourdough toast!!!

        January 10, 2015
      • Coming up, I’m an early bird too!!

        January 10, 2015
  31. Liz #

    oh boy! Glad it went so well for you. Thinking I would’ve eaten the whole thing in one sitting–how did you keep some to share? 😉 You’re totally on a roll, Suzanne.

    January 9, 2015
    • Thanks Liz, I am on a low carb diet, I gave the loaf away. Had to taste so took the small end but trying desperately to stay away from carbs. Ugh… I was thrilled with how the bread came out.

      January 10, 2015
  32. Wow, Suzanne! I can’t believe this is your first loaf of sourdough! I looks so professional! You should be very proud of yourself! 😀

    January 10, 2015
    • I am incredibly happy that it turned out so well, thanks to Ginger who was an amazing teacher. Thank you so much.

      January 10, 2015
  33. What a gorgeous loaf! I’ve always had terrible luck getting my sourdough to rise. Bravo!

    January 10, 2015
    • Thanks Tux, I was scared but thank goodness it rose. Gingers levain is fantastic.

      January 10, 2015
  34. Looks delicious!

    January 10, 2015
  35. toozesty #

    I love sour dough and making bread! A successful sour dough still evades me. Yours looks beautiful! Happy 50th fiesta!

    January 10, 2015
    • I was always afraid to try making sourdough for some reason maybe the levain but when I saw Gingers recipe I had a feeling it would be the one that works and it did. Thank you so much.

      January 10, 2015
  36. Will try this recipe. I love a good sourdough loaf! Thanks for sharing it with us! 🙂

    January 10, 2015
    • Thanks Serena, am making another loaf tomorrow the dough is in the fridge until tomorrow morning. This time instead of barley I used oat flour. It’s so exciting making this bread and it’s really an easy recipe with great results.

      January 10, 2015
  37. You’ve convinced me that I need to do more bread baking! Love how crusty the top is. Nothing beats homemade bread.
    Enjoy your weekend Suzanne!

    January 10, 2015
    • Thanks Christin, you too, it’s such an easy recipe another loaf is rising the fridge right now. Hope you have a great weekend also!

      January 10, 2015
  38. This bread looks ah-maz-ing! I’ve yet to try baking bread myself, but I would definitely loooove to give this a try 🙂 I’m glad you didn’t give up. Nice work!

    January 10, 2015
    • Thank you so much, it is a fantastic recipe. Ginger knows a thing or two about bread.

      January 10, 2015
  39. Congratulation Suzanne, you have your beautiful sourdough. It looks so gooood! I am so nervous to make sourdough. It can’t be guarantee success everytime, that’s put me off! But now, you drive me to have another try. Wish me good luck, pls! 🙂

    January 10, 2015
    • Me too Mochi, I was very nervous especially about the starter/Levain. It worked so well I am so happy. Thank you so much.

      January 10, 2015
  40. Suzanne! What a GORGEOUS loaf of bread! Bravo!

    January 10, 2015
  41. Wow, that looks brilliant! The crust looks just perfect!

    January 10, 2015
  42. Wow looks delicious.. Perfectly baked

    January 10, 2015
  43. Hard to believe this was a first. No room for improvement – just a perfect loaf.

    January 10, 2015
    • Thank you so much Hilda, I feel I can always improve, what a nice thing to say.

      January 10, 2015
  44. I love this! Thanks or sharing, and I can’t wait to give it a try. Sourdough with some real, sharp cheddar makes our favorite grilled cheese sandwiches!

    January 10, 2015
    • It does make an awesome grilled cheese sandwich, thanks for reminding me. That will be on the agenda this week. Thank you!

      January 10, 2015
  45. I love sourdough bread, and this loaf looks so good! I’ve never tried to make it myself, but I need to sometime! 🙂

    January 10, 2015
    • It’s really pretty simple Nancy, you really should give this recipe a try. The levain is brilliant. Thank you so much.

      January 12, 2015
  46. Looks amazing !

    January 11, 2015
  47. The bread looks gorgeous! I love the flavours in a sour dough, but never tried making them before. Time to try it out!

    January 11, 2015
  48. Perfect Suzanne!! and you’re right that ball of rising dough IS beautiful! If I have a favorite food, it’s got to be good bread and sweet butter (is that too boring? This looks super!

    January 11, 2015
    • Not boring at all it’s one of life’s greatest pleasures IMHO, thanks so much Rhonda.

      January 12, 2015
  49. Wow that bread looks perfect Suzanne. … just love that cracked crust and just looks amazing….

    January 11, 2015
  50. Sourdough looks stunning

    January 11, 2015
  51. This is absolutely gorgeous! I would love to bake one soon! 😊

    January 11, 2015
  52. An amazing bread, Suzanne and the crust is perfect. Happy Fiesta Friday!

    January 12, 2015
  53. Your sourdough is absolutely incredible! I can’t believe this my friend 😀

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru

    January 12, 2015
  54. Yum I love sourdough bread. It has such a “meaty taste and texture”. It also does not raise blood sugar levels as much as other breads. Not sure if it has less carbs or if the ingredients react somehow but it is a good bread for diabetics.

    January 12, 2015
    • I didn’t know that, wow, I think thats wonderful and will give some to my friend who is diabetic. I imagine using the whole grains is also good for those with diabetes. Thanks Cindy thats so good to know.

      January 12, 2015
  55. This bread looks like complete perfection Suzanne! I love the crusty exterior and how soft it looks on the inside. I love the cut slice….looks straight out of a bakery, for real!!

    January 12, 2015
    • Thanks Brandi, I am in the process of making my third loaf now from the original levain that has been fed. The recipe for the levain is the best as is the bread recipe. Thank you so much Brandi.

      January 12, 2015
  56. I do love to bake my own bread, and that is a stunning loaf. Quite an accomplishment to achieve that beautiful crunchy exterior!

    January 12, 2015
  57. Fantastic post, and I know that bit of trepidation that can creep in when making something! And then – when it’s done – relief! And a bit of wondering what all that angst was about…to tell ya the truth, all though I’ve made tons of pies over the years, I get a bit nervous whenever I make one now, because it seems the only time I do is for Thanksgiving! Silly, huh.

    Obviously, no worries here in how this turned out. Wish I had a slice! 🙂

    January 12, 2015
    • Thank you, I am always nervous whenever I cook anything but scrambled eggs, or something that simple. It was such a relief when I lifted the lid and saw that beautiful loaf. It tastes great too!! Thank you so much and I wish I could give you a slice.

      January 12, 2015
      • Me, too! Funny thing is, I hardly ever “goof up” something new – it’s when I toss together recipes I know well, willy nilly, and over confident that I realize I’ve done something wrong…:)

        January 12, 2015
      • :o)

        January 12, 2015
  58. Congratulations on a beautiful loaf of bread! The crust is absolutely perfect. I must try this!! ❤

    January 12, 2015
    • Oh do give it a try, it’s the best bread really it is. Thank you so much, it’s also so simple to make and really a fool proof levain recipe, honestly I am terrible at keeping starters alive and this one is the best.

      January 12, 2015
  59. I’m in awe, Suzanne! This bread is absolute perfection…was this your first attempt (using your levian)? I really, really really need to get going on my own levian… though I fear I’d make a loaf a day! 😉

    January 12, 2015
    • Yes that was the first attempt and look at the results. The levain is great, I made another loaf on Sunday morning, and just fed the levain today and am making another loaf on Wed morning. I tell you it’s the best recipe, the levain is so easy to maintain. It just keeps going. You only use a cup of levain in the bread dough, put the rest in the fridge and when you want to make another loaf you feed it and let it sit for 12 hours and then you are then ready to make more bread. It’s fool proof and coming from me who has killed starter in the past it’s saying a lot.

      January 12, 2015
    • Oh one thing I did that was a little different than the recipe is that when I make the dough I always add 1/8 tsp yeast along with the levain. It’s so little it really doesn’t make a difference probably but for me it’s a security blanket.

      January 12, 2015
      • Thanks for sharing your tip… after making flat bagels yesterday I’m a little skittish! LOL

        January 12, 2015
      • I”ve made flat bagels know the feeling.

        January 12, 2015
      • Whew… happy to hear I’m not alone. 😉

        January 12, 2015
      • I’ve made flat bread that wasn’t supposed to be flat too!

        January 13, 2015
  60. Looks amazing.

    January 13, 2015
  61. petra08 #

    What a gorgeous bread! It looks so professional! You make it look so easy. Wow, it looks delicious 🙂

    January 13, 2015
    • It is easy and aside from the 8 day levain process it’s fairly quick once you actually have a working levain. Thanks Petra.

      January 13, 2015
  62. Well done, your bread looks so good. I love sourdough but I take the lazy route and buy it. 😉

    January 13, 2015
    • Thanks I usually do that also but now that I have a living and thriving levain it’s so easy to throw a loaf in the oven. Takes almost no time to make, the dough rises in the fridge overnight and is baked off the next day, nice for a weekend. But when you can get great bread from outside with out the fuss, I’m all for it. Thank you and hope you are well!

      January 13, 2015
  63. This bread looks sooooo good. I want to slather hummus all over it. 🙂

    January 14, 2015
  64. ciao! i can smell it 🙂
    thebestdressup

    January 14, 2015
  65. Wow! Considering it’s your first ever it’s extremely impressive! Lucky Fiesta Friday …

    January 14, 2015
    • Thank you, I thought it was probably just luck on my part but made a second loaf with the same outcome, it’s a great recipe.

      January 14, 2015
  66. Beautiful looking bread Suzanne, the texture looks perfect. Never heard of levain before sounds like that is the way to go.

    January 14, 2015
    • Thank you Cheri, the levain is amazing, I wish I could understand the science exactly but it works like a charm and it keeps working. I am still using the levain I made a few weeks ago.

      January 15, 2015
  67. I’ll give anything to have a slice of that gorgeous bread! Anything! I’ve tried sourdough starter twice now, both time I thought the bread was too dense. I need to follow Ginger’s recipe closely. Hopefully, third time’s the charm 🙂

    January 15, 2015
    • I would give anything to bring you a loaf. Thank you, highly recommend the recipe. It’s a keeper.

      January 16, 2015
  68. Bread is such a tricky thing for me. Sometimes good, sometimes a mess. Will have to try the pot method!

    January 16, 2015
    • It really can be so tricky, I have never baked bread using levain before, was a bit scared of the outcome but this recipe and the recipe for the levain is perfect. Honestly, I have consistently good results and I’ve made 4 loaves from the same levain.

      January 16, 2015
  69. WOW!! Congratulations, this is a mighty feat! Such a beautiful loaf of bread, Suzanne!

    February 1, 2015
    • Thank you, I love making it the recipe for both starter and bread is so easy and the results are awesome.

      February 1, 2015

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Fiesta Friday #50 | The Novice Gardener
  2. Everyday Wholewheat Sourdough | Ginger&Bread
  3. Whats Up This Week, More Snow, A Loaf And A New Toy For My iPhone Camera | apuginthekitchen

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