This is my second sour dough recipe, and I think I am beginning to understand how it all works…
Their is no fixed rule when it comes to sour dough. Kostas has refined his bread over a few years, first trying some ideas, then mixing others. In the bakery he uses 2 different sour doughs and mixes them: one using the water from soaked chickpeas, the other a slightly sweeter mix, which was made with honey added. The recipe here is a mixture of different ideas and combines all of Kostas’ passion and knowledge. The main thing he told me is that every time you add, you have to double the amount. This recipe will give an initial 600g of sour dough and it’s a 6 day process which uses the chick pea water as the original base, although you can of course use natural water. If using the chick pea water follow the instructions from day 1. If not, go straight to day 2 🙂
Day 1: 2. Soak dry chickpeas overnight in spring water or bottled water (this is important as the water is completely pure).
Day 2: Take 100ml of the chickpea water or spring water and add 100g flour and 1 tablespoon of honey. Mix, cover with plastic and leave for 48 hours at a stable room temperature. You can choose your flour here – Kostas uses a blend of wholewheat, white and semolina. Other recipes use pure barley flour or pure wholewheat.
Day 3: Leave the mix to do it’s magic 🙂
Day 4: When you remove the plastic cover, you should see bubbles on the surface. This is all the chemistry which i’m not even going to begin to try and explain. Basically it means it’s alive. Now add 200ml of your favourite rich, flavoursome beer, 200g of flour and another tablespoon of honey. Mix and leave to rest for another 48 hours. Drink the rest of the beer (that’s why it should be your favourite!).
Day 5: Rest and drink a beer in celebration
Day 6: Check the mix – if it’s bubbling it’s ready for making bread. If it’s not bubbling…ask Siri!
To save for next time: So now we have 600g of beautiful bubbling sour dough ready. You’re going to use half of that for the following recipe, but you need to prepare the sour dough for next time as well. Pour 300g of sour dough into another container and set aside for the bread. With the remaining 300g we are going to add 300ml water and 300g flour. Now we have 900g of sour dough so give some to a friend and save the rest in the fridge. When you want to use it, just remember to take out of the fridge the day before.
Sour Dough Bread Recipe
300g Sour Dough
600g Flour (again mix and choose)
250ml Warm Water
Put the flour into a large bowl, add the sour dough, salt and half the water. Mix with a spoon and gradually add the rest of the water and begin mixing with your hands. It should be quite sticky. Empty the dough onto a floured surface and knead for 10 – 15 minutes, until the dough becomes elastic, and no longer sticks to your hands. If necessary add a little water or flour. Put the dough in a floured bowl, cover with plastic and leave to rise for at least 4 hours. You could even make it in the morning, go out all day and then bake in the oven in the evening.
When the dough has doubled in size, carefully remove onto a floured surface – you don’t want to handle too much here. Shape into a circle or use a bread tin if you prefer and place on a floured baking tray. Make cuts in the surface and if you want to, sprinkle a little flour on top for a rustic feel.
Bake at 220ºc for approx 1 hour until it sounds hollow when you tap the bottom.
Remove and allow to cool for 10 minutes before you devour it 🙂