Another example of inspiration coming from The Fresh Loaf. David is a regular contributor to the forum, and every bread he makes is a work of art. He is the type of baker comfortable enough around sourdough starter to devise his own recipes, having recently come up with a fig and walnut concoction. David had access to fantastic figs, but when I went to the store I was not particularly impressed with what was available. Since I am no longer afraid to improvise ;-), I used dates instead. This bread is perfect to practice mindful eating. Don’t devour it. Instead, savor each bite as slowly as you can. Awesome bread, very complex taste.
SAN FRANCISCO-STYLE SOURDOUGH WITH WALNUTS AND DATES
(adapted from David, at The Fresh Loaf forum)
for the stiff levain
41 g water
66 g sourdough starter
78 g all-purpose flour
4 g rye flour
for the final dough
337 g water
416 g all-purpose flour
46 g whole wheat flour
11 g salt
189 g levain
98 g dates, diced fine
98 g walnuts, diced and lightly toasted
Dissolve the starter in the water. Add the flour and mix thoroughly until the flour has been completely incorporated and moistened. Ferment at room temperature for 16 hours.
In a stand mixer, mix the flour and water at low-speed until it forms a shaggy mass. Cover and autolyse for 30 minutes. Coarsely chop or break apart the walnut pieces and toast them for 8 minutes in a 300ºF oven. Allow to cool. Coarsely chop the dates, rinse in cool water, drain and set aside.
Add the salt and levain to the autolyse, and mix at low-speed for 1-2 minutes, then increase the speed to medium (Speed 2 on a KitchenAid) and mix for 5 minutes. Add flour and water as needed. The dough should clean the sides of the bowl but not the bottom. Add the walnuts and the figs to the dough and mix at low-speed until well-distributed in the dough. (About 2 minutes).
Transfer to a lightly floured board, do a stretch and fold, and form a ball. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover tightly. Ferment at 76º F for 2 1/2 to 3 hours with a stretch and fold at 50 and 100 minutes. Shape as a large ball (or divide the dough in two and shape as two smaller loaves) and place in banneton. Proof at room temperature (68-70º F) for 1-2 hours. Cold retard the shaped dough overnight.
The next morning, proof the dough at 85º F for 2-3 hours. Heat the oven to 480º F. Score the bread as desired, and bake with initial steam, reducing the oven to 460 F when the bread goes in. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, and cool completely on a rack before slicing.
to print the recipe, click here
I am still having issues with our oven, the temperature shoots up and down, making it hard to control proper baking. At some point in the future we’ll change our kitchen appliances, but for the time being we dance according to the music. That’s the proper Zen attitude. Or so I am told… ;-)
I am submitting this post to Susan’s Yeastspotting.
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