Whole Wheat Sourdough Recipe Redux

 

title 2 Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

So excited to share this awesome recipe and technique in my first post for the #RecipeRedux. May’s Recipe Redux theme is as follows:

What favorite kitchen staples do you now make from scratch – but in the past you purchased? Show us your best DIY recipe for keeping cupboards, fridge or freezer stocked with healthy basics…”

What is more basic than bread? I have always sought out good bread to purchase. A big problem that I have come across is that healthy, whole-grain fresh bread is not always widely available- and if you do find this bread, it is rarely affordable. For this reason, I have sought out to make my own deliciously healthy bread to keep on hand. Sans preservatives.

Let’s first talk about bread in general. It seems like we live in a culture where bread is blacklisted and carbs are literally the devil. Yet, the country as a whole just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Let’s take a swim to the other side of the Atlantic, say…France. Bread is a delicacy, eaten daily. And not just any bread, good bread. Why good bread? Because they are not going to settle for some preservative-filled, over-processed, prepackaged bread that will sit on the shelf for weeks. It Is simply not in their nature. They would prefer to go without, than have bad bread. And this prejudice towards bread is exactly why The French have a reputation for indulging, yet rank #31 on the World Health Organization’s Country Global Obesity Chart. Where does America fall? Ninth place. So why don’t we take a lesson from the French and make fresh bread with good ingredients, no preservatives, and truly enjoy our bread…in moderation of course.

just slices Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

Back to the sourdough. It is thought that the fermentation process that occurs in sourdough bread allows for improved digestibility, and less intolerance. Although, I have not found clinical research on this topic, I myself have found this to be true. But true or not, it sure makes a delicious bread. After months of research, I pieced together advice and tips from all over about sourdough and its baking process. But let me remind you, I am not a baker… Mostly because I don’t have the patience to be as precise as bakers must be. So I came up with this technique and recipe that is virtually foolproof. Does it take some work? Definitely. But it is so worth it. After the freshly baked bread cools down, I slice it up and freeze it. How many people do you know that always have perfectly fresh, homemade bread on hand!?

Sourdough bread begins with a “starter.” This is basically a dough that has captured wild yeast from air and naturally occurring in the flour. This starter dough is used in place of yeast. So you really can’t go to the store and purchase yeast and make sourdough bread. You can however, make your own starter at home, or purchase a starter online. I really liked the idea of making my own starter at home. And it was really easy. You just add equal parts of water and flour to a bowl, cover, and place in a warm spot. Every day you add a little more water and flour, and after about a week will have a bubbly mixture of yeasty sourdough starter. There are tons of informational websites on making your own sourdough online. I like this one. The cool part about making your own sourdough, is that you can use whole wheat flour to make the starter and dough. For this recipe, I used King Arthur Flour brand White Whole Wheat Flour.

Once you have your starter ready to go, you simply add it to flour, water, and salt and mix into a dough.

Mixer Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

The dough is supposed to be very sticky, so don’t worry.

Sticky dough Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

Here comes the work part… You have to actually knead the dough for 10 to 15 minutes by hand. Be prepared for it to stick to your hands, this is totally normal. Just work through it. You can add 2 tablespoons flour throughout the kneading process, but you want it to remain pretty moist. There are many recipes out there that find ways around this step. But I have found that by getting in a mini workout in while making my bread is the best way to do it, and honestly, this is the only true work that goes into this bread. How do you know when you are done kneading? Take a small piece of the dough, roll it into a ball, then flatten it. Slowly stretch this flattened piece of dough until it is almost transparent. If it breaks to easily, you are not done. You are looking to reach a point when the protein in the dough has become strong enough for some stretching.

Now, use olive oil to coat a glass or plastic bowl and place the dough inside. Add a small amount of oil to the top of the dough as well, just to coat. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 24 hours.

after kneading Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

After 24 hours, pull the dough out of the fridge, and let it come to room temperature for 45 minutes.

after resting in fridge Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

Now we are ready for shaping. With the tips of your fingers, press the dough into a rectangle shape.

rectangle Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

Take a 3-inch section at the top of your rectangle and fold it over. Then fold in the two upper corners. Now take this entire section and roll it.

Collage Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

Continue folding the corners and rolling the dough tight until you create a log.

final dough shape Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

You can either place the dough seam-side-up in a loaf pan or let it sit on the counter or baking sheet for 3 to 5 hours to rise. The dough should almost double in size. Just make sure that the surface of the dough, and the loaf pan or your counter top is oiled. Cover with plastic wrap.

Last rise Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

You have two options for actually baking the bread. You can either bake it in a Dutch oven like I did, or place on a baking sheet. The most important thing is that you heat the oven to 500°F with your Dutch oven or baking sheet inside.

preheating the oven Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

Once the oven is fully preheated, remove the lid from the Dutch oven and place your dough inside, or on the pan. Use a very sharp knife or kitchen shears to create a slit down the middle. This will allow your bread to spring up and rise in the pan. Sprinkle the pan and dough with tap water to create steam. Replace the cover, lower the heat to 425°F and bake for 20 minutes. If you are not using a Dutch oven, cover with a piece of foil.

dough in dutch oven Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

After 20 minutes, remove the lid or foil. Allow to bake for another 15-20 minutes.

Taking the lid off Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D. | Tasteful Wisdom

You will know the bread is done when you tap it on the bottom and it sounds hollow. If you’re not sure about this, let it bake for the full 20 minutes remaining. Allow the dough to cool completely, usually an hour, before slicing. Now you can enjoy! I like to freeze it as soon as possible to keep in the moisture and retain freshness.

 

 

Whole Wheat Sourdough #RecipeRedux

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat starter
  • 3 cups, plus 2 tablespoons white whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • Olive oil

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients, except for 2 tablespoons flour and olive oil, into a stand mixer. You may also mixed by hand. Mix until dough ball is formed. Remove dough from mixer and knead by hand for a 10 to 15 minutes adding up to 2 tablespoons of flour as needed. The dough should be sticky. Grease a glass or plastic bowl and place dough inside. Brush top of dough with olive oil and cover with plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Once time has passed, remove from fridge and allow to rest at room temperature for about 45minutes. Remove the dough from bowl and place on non-floured surface. With the tips of your fingers, press dough into a rectangle. Take a 3-inch section at the top of your rectangle and fold it over. Then fold in the two upper corners. Now take this entire section and roll it onto itself. Continue this process until you are left with a log-shaped dough. You can either place the dough seam-side-up in a loaf pan or let it sit on the counter or baking sheet for 3 to 5 hours to rise. The dough should almost double in size. Just make sure that the surface of the dough, and the loaf pan or your counter top is oiled. Cover with plastic wrap. Once the oven is fully preheated, remove the lid from the Dutch oven and place your dough inside, or on the pan. Use a very sharp knife or kitchen shears to create a slit down the middle. This will allow your bread to spring up and rise in the pan. Sprinkle the pan and dough with tap water to create steam. Replace the cover, lower the heat to 425°F and bake for 20 minutes. If you are not using a Dutch oven, cover with a piece of foil. After 20 minutes, remove the lid or foil. Allow to bake for another 15-20 minutes. You will know the bread is done when you tap it on the bottom and it sounds hollow. If you're not sure about this, let it bake for the full 20 minutes remaining. Allow the dough to cool completely, usually an hour, before slicing. Now you can enjoy! I like to freeze it as soon as possible to keep in the moisture and retain freshness.
http://tastefulwisdom.com/sourdough-recipe-redux/
For other May #RecipeRedux posts, visit some of these great blogs below!

Reference:

http://www.who.int/gho/ncd/risk_factors/overweight/en/

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3 Comments on Whole Wheat Sourdough Recipe Redux

  1. Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamily
    May 25, 2015 at 2:12 pm (2 years ago)

    We love sour dough bread, especially home made! My mom has had the same starter for over 15 years! Your bread looks perfect! Oh, and Welcome to RR!

    Reply
  2. Deanna Segrave-Daly
    May 23, 2015 at 10:43 pm (3 years ago)

    First off, welcome to ReDux! I love making bread but I’ve never attempted sourdough because I’ve never had a starter (or I guess looked into how to make one.) But you have inspired me – am pinning this one!

    Reply
    • Bryee Shepard, M.S., R.D.
      May 24, 2015 at 8:46 am (3 years ago)

      Thank you, Deanna! And thanks for the comment. It is certainly a little work, but soo well worth it!!

      Reply

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