The lifecycle of a sourdough loaf…

Having shared these photos on Instagram over the last couple of days, and possibly bored people to tears, I thought I’d share them with you all too…!!! Hopefully I won’t bore you to tears too?! Or everyone at this week’s Fiesta Friday?! 

This is a loaf I put together yesterday morning and the photos chart it’s growth through to baking and eating..having used my lovely patterned Moroccan bowl again, you can literally see the growth. This is a sourdough loaf made with a mixture of my freshly fed bubbly starter, rye flour, kamut flour, strong white flour, pumpkin seeds and poppy seeds..

It began at 7am on Friday morning which is when I first put the dough together. 

This is the growth after 6 hours.

This is a later in the day at 5.30pm, hence the lack of light.

I then knocked back the dough, folded it several times and left it to prove again overnight.

This is what I woke up to at 6.30am on Saturday. Wow! The fact that it just keeps growing blows my mind πŸ™‚

 All ready to bake. The dough was quite sloppy so difficult to shape and slash. 

The baked loaf 45 minutes later.

And the inside story…

   
Isn’t it cool to literally see a loaf of bread come alive?? I love it! And it tastes good, which is a bonus! 

Check out my loaf plus lots of other people’s amazing dishes/offerings at Fiesta Friday, co hosted this week by the lovely Steffi and Andrea

Happy Weekend!!! 

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117 thoughts on “The lifecycle of a sourdough loaf…

      1. Mum to three

        Thank you! I’m following a method that has me adding some flour and water everyday for 4 (ish) days, stirring well after each addition. But after day 3, the water separates and the goopy mess floats on top. Is this normal?

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      2. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

        To me, if your starter has bubbled up so quickly after only two days of starting it, and the hooch has appeared already, it’s reacting and growing very fast which could be a result of your environment. Is it very warm/humid where you are? I could of course be wrong, I’m not the expert after all!!! But even when you get the murky liquid on the top, keep on feeding it, you can either stir the liquid in or pour it away.
        I tend to feed my starter by feel nowadays, I know I want the thickness to resemble wallpaper paste and for it to be glutenous. You might need to play with the ratios of flour to water…like I said, I’m not the expert, I’m just basing this on my experiences.
        One thing that I was told when I tried making my own starters from scratch is that age helps; they gain power and strength as they get older.
        Do you know Celia’s blog: Fig Jam and Lime Cordial? Celia is the real sourdough guru and happy to answer questions if my suggestions don’t work.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Mum to three

        Thanks so much for your suggestions and consideration. Because I’m so new, I’m a little tight abt “playing” with it, so this is a great thing to loosen me up a bit and just relax into the learning! Thanks for your encouragement. I’ll play around with the amounts and try and push past the liquidy yuck and see what happens. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

        Okay, and feel free to keep in touch πŸ™‚
        I totally understand the fear of playing with it, especially when all around are suggestions that making sourdough is a superpower! Stick with the guidelines that you’re using and try and gain a feel for it as you go. Or….I could send you some dried starter?!

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Mum to three

        Thank you for your encouragement and support! I’ll play with it a bit and then if I’m still struggling, I’ll reach out for some help. I don’t know anyone around me who uses sourdough or grows it in their own space. Thanks again xx

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Mum to three

        In southern Ontario, canada. So today is brutally cold, but that’s really the first day in a week. And the starter is hanging out next to the oven – very warm. And I’ve got 3 kids, a dog, and a cat, so I’m sure there’s lots of lovely things in the air to help it grow (lol and )

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Loretta

        I remember that pretty fondly. She did offer to mail me a starter, but I declined at the time as I’m desperately trying to not to eat too much bread, even though I absolutely love it πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

        Just because you have the starter doesn’t mean you need to eat lots of bread πŸ™‚ I bake it but I rarely eat it! The joy for me is the achievement of making it and then watching my boys tuck into it x

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  1. Life Diet Health

    Oh there’s your gorgeous bowl again! I didn’t realise the bread took so long to make… and you do wake up too early on a Saturday! πŸ˜› Having seen your posts previously about sourdough I thought I’d have a go using just rye flour… it didn’t appear to grow very much (although there were lots of bubbles) and feeding it didn’t produce growth either. By day 4 we decided enough was enough and we would try again another time! 😦 Do you think it’s possible (in this cold weather) to produce a healthy rye-only sourdough starter?

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

      They don’t have to take that long, but the longer you let it prove, the better the flavour. And 6.30 is late! There’s no lie ins in this house, ever…in fact, 6.30 IS a lie in!
      I think you’re trying an uphill route using rye flour 😦

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. Life Diet Health

        Gosh… on a weekend! Much too early for our household! My boys would sleep until 10am if I let them! :O πŸ˜› Maybe I’ll wait until I have more time (and it’s a bit warmer) then try again with the rye… I like a challenge! πŸ˜€ I think we’d all be waiting impatiently for the bread and it would end up being cooked as soon as possible πŸ˜›

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

        No…you need lots of patience with sourdough…the longer you can wait, the better the results.
        10am??? That’s the middle of the day!!! We wake up naturally between 5&6, have done since Ben was born plus the husband leaves for work at 6am..

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Life Diet Health

        We’re night owls! If hubby’s working on something it can be 1am (or later) before he’s in bed! Okay… I’ll try to remember the patience for sourdough (if and when I can get the rye starter to work)! πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Master of Something Yet

    I’m so glad you’ve posted about sourdough because I wanted to tell you that last weekend my starter finally did its thing and my bread dough rose beautifully! I had planned to take a photo after baking and send it to you but unfortunately my expected 25C day turned out to be 32C and I was in and out with commitments so the dough kind of over-rose and I think that’s what stopped the top of the loaf from popping up nicely (it was flat). On the plus side, it made a perfectly shape sandwich loaf! (I’ve been baking it in a normal bread tin so it can be used for sandwiches). When I do get a perfect loaf (which I expect soon), I’ll send you evidence with pride and thanks for your encouragement and telling me not to give up. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

      Yay!!!! I’m so pleased! Well done to you and your starter πŸ™‚
      The heat would definitely have affected it, it would have risen faster than usual and , like you say, risen then flopped. But it’s all a learning a curve and now you know the starter is healthy πŸ™‚
      Great stuff!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      1. Master of Something Yet

        Yes, it did rather fill the bowl. πŸ™‚ But even that was so exciting because before that, I could barely get it to rise at all. Secret, I think, is to take starter out of fridge two days before baking rather than one. At least, that’s what happened and what worked so….

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Ginger

    I was drooling over the pictures on Instagram, getting more and more excited with every photograph πŸ™‚ What a gorgeous loaf, Elaine, and thank you for sharing!
    You know us well over at Fiesta Fridays …
    Ginger x

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  4. Natalie Browne

    This is exactly the post I needed to see today. I started my first sourdough starter 2 days ago and am completely intrigued by what’s happening on my kitchen counter. It doubled in size overnight and had a slightly sour smell to it this morning, so I think it’s working, lol. Thanks for sharing these pics!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
      1. Elaine @ foodbod Post author

        I completely understand that! I’ve made a few and each time I’ll be there watching it and constantly saying to my son and husband…’look at that’ ‘how amazing is that?!’…they were never as excited as me for some reason!!!!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: Another sourdough loaf in pictures… | foodbod

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