Friday, April 12, 2013

Sourdough Spelt Baguettes

Crispy crust, chewy sourdough middle, delicious! (Though I say so myself).


7g salt
125g strong white bread flour
250g spelt flour
250g sourdough starter
180-220ml water
Olive oil, for kneading

1. Mix salt, flours and starter together in a large bowl.
2. Slowly add water - starting with 180ml, and gradually kneading in additional water until you have a slack dough - it will be quite sticky.
3. Turn dough out onto an oiled surface (do not add extra flour, it will make the dough act most peculiarly) or into the oiled bowl of a freestanding mixer.
4. Knead the dough for 5-10 minutes until it is smooth and elastic.
5. Cover the dough and leave in a warm place to prove for 5 to 6 hours, until the dough is doubled in size.
6. Shape the loaves - on an oiled surface divide the dough into 3 parts. Each should weigh about 275g (more important than the exact weight is similar size). Roll the dough gently into sausage shapes.
7. Transfer the loaves carefully to a floured, linen, tea-towel or baker's couche, pleating the cloth to stop the baguettes touching.
8. Leave the loaves to prove for 12-18 hour. A longer, slower rise (ie in a cooler place) will give a more sour dough. Beware of leaving the loaves too long at a warmer temperature as they may rise well and then collapse on themselves.
9. Preheat oven to 190C. Spray the inside and bottom of the oven with water to generate steam.
10. Transfer the loaves to baking sheets lined by non-stick baking paper. Apply more water around the loaves (but not touching the loaves) to generate further steam.
11. Bake the loaves for 15-25 minutes until the bases sound hollow when tapped.

Serving suggestion: Alongside some rich tomato and chorizo tapas (recipe to follow), or just slathered with creamy British butter.

Edited to add: Never done this before, but I am entering this in: Bake Your Own Bread
And: YeastSpotting
(I hope I did that right!)

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