Where are the virtual fireworks when I need them? After months of neglect, my sourdough starter was brought back to the kitchen! I actually tried baking bread once a few weeks ago, but when I attempted to revive the sourdough “chips” I had prepared, the resulting starter refused to cooperate: it was sluggish, slow, not at all vibrant. This time I went back to my frozen little balls of starter and they jumped right back into action. For my first bread made in the Supernova, I chose a recipe from TxFarmer, who runs two blogs, one in Chinese and another at The Fresh Loaf Forum. She is very creative and always pushes the boundaries of sourdough baking. Without further ado, this is the first bread born in the confines of our new oven…

Orange Cumin Sourdough

(slightly adapted from TxFarmer’s recipe)

*Makes 1 X 700g loaf

68 g  dark rye flour
54 g water
4 g rye starter at 100% hydration

Mix and rise at room temp for 12 to 16 hours.

Final Dough
386 g bread flour
9 g salt
grated orange peel from 1 large orange
fresh orange juice from 1 orange plus water to 245 g
1/2 Tbsp cumin powder
122 g levain mixture

Mix everything except for salt, autolyse for 40 min.  Add salt and knead in a KitchenAid type mixer at medium speed for 4 minutes.

Bulk rise at room temp (~78F) for about 2.5hrs, with stretch and fold  at 30, 60, and 90 minutes.

Pre-shape into a ball, let the dough rest for 10  minutes, then shape and place in a floured banneton for the final rise.

Proof until the dough springs back slowly when pressed. It took me 2 hours and 20 minutes.

Bake at 450F for 40 to 45 minutes, the first 25 minutes with steam. Let it cool completely on a rack before slicing.


to print the recipe, click here

Comments: This is a bread that screams for a bowl of chili, and that is exactly what I made on a Sunday afternoon.  I used our favorite recipe that simmers on the stove top for hours, but we did not touch it until next day.  That chili is good on the day it is made, but it turns into spectacular the day after.  Plus, what can be better than arriving home from work on a chilly Monday, and have dinner basically ready and waiting for you?


TxFarmer description of this baby was spot on, by the way.  The orange gives it a slight hint of sweetness, but the sourdough character of this bread is there.  The cumin is the touch of genius that makes this loaf superb with a bowl of chili or any type of spicy stew.  I could not have chosen a better loaf to inaugurate our Supernova!

I am submitting this post to Susan’s Yeastspotting


ONE YEAR AGO: Homemade Calziones

TWO YEARS AGO: Plum-Glazed Duck Breasts

THREE YEARS AGO: Holiday Double-Decker

FOUR YEARS AGO: New York Deli Rye


    • Bread flour is just a white flour with a slight higher gluten content – 13%, sometimes even 15%, but those are usually better to make bagels that require a lot of gluten for proper structure.

      I have made plenty of sourdough bread with regular flour, and it works well too, so I would not worry too much about finding the perfect type of flour. I know that in Germany as well as other countries of Europe the denomination for flour is totally different…. Vive la difference! 😉


  1. That’s a fantastic looking loaf of bread, Sally. In the past, I’ve tried baking with rye and was never pleased with the results. Maybe it’s time I try again, especially if the loaf has this flavor profile. Cumin and orange sound really good!


    • Very little rye in this bread, as it goes exclusively in the starter – rye can be pretty tricky. I once made a 75% rye bread that could have been used to fight extra-terrestrial beings


  2. What a handsome and happy loaf! You got lots of oven spring and perfect bloom. I love it! Now, do you ship to WA? Tell me you do and I’ll start on the chili right away! 😉


  3. Oh dear! This looks beautiful and appetizing and I too love the orange and cumin!! . . . Hmm, and there I did order a sourdough starter from the US as Celia suggested quite some time ago, and I hate to think where at the back of the fridge it is now situated 🙂 ! Useless. Well, ’tis time for New Year resolutions, isn’t it 😉 !


  4. Wow, I think you have bread baking down to a science! I get a bit intimidated by the use of a “starter” or keeping one alive. I’ve made bread making a simple, one time starter, and I know that it makes a huge difference in my bread baking. I love the touch of orange in this, very Sicilian, as my dad seemed to add a bit of orange into many things!


  5. Ok, I found an extra copy of the sour dough cook book, so how do I send it to you? By the way, I’ll be out of town for a couple weeks so it might take me a while to get it sent off.


  6. Pingback: Rosemary-thyme oat sourdough bread – Internet loafing

  7. Pingback: 10 Easy Cumin Recipes | Vegan Cumin Recipes

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