ELAINE’S SOURDOUGH BOULE


The recipe for this bread, also known as 500 g overnight sourdough,  is beyond tried and true. My dear friend Elaine has been baking this very recipe for years, probably at least twice every week, if not more often. Her very detailed blog post about it can be found here. You can also marvel at her slashing skills, which inspired me to become more adventurous. Remember?

When you bake bread on a regular basis, it is nice to have a formula that is not overly complicated, one you can do it almost without effort. This is it. Of all sourdough breads I’ve baked, this is the one that I will go back to when I want a great loaf of bread, pure with regular bread flour, just that delicious sourdough tang, and a crumb that has the type of texture I enjoy. Some holes, but not a bread sieve. And add to that great crust too. All bases are covered.

Here is a simplified overview of the recipe. First, you need a bubbly sourdough starter, at 100% hydration, that is 50:50 flour to water ratio.

You’ll use 150 g of your bubbly sourdough and mix it with 285 g water, 500 g bread flour, and 9 g of salt. Incorporate it all with your hands, no need to work very hard.  Leave it for 30 minutes at room temperature, then knead it by folding a few times.  Let the dough proof at room temperature overnight. Mine was ready to walk outside and greet the world…

Pour the dough gently out on a floured surface, shape it.
Let it sit for 30 minutes, while you heat the oven to 450 F.
Slash it with enthusiasm…

Bake for 45 minutes, leaving the bread covered for the first 30 minutes, generating steam whichever way you like.
I use the moistened lid of a Dutch oven.

To view the detailed recipe, visit Elaine’s site.

I loved this recipe so much, that I baked it twice in the same week, so that we had enough bread for a bunch of golfing buddies that visited us.  On my second time around, I went for a wheat-stalk design, but the bread had a mind of its own…
Still, it’s fun to try different patterns.

The goal… a few wheat stalks decorating the bread….

The outcome…  not exactly a wheat stalk, but it’s always nice to see a strong oven spring in action!

I can hardly wait to bake again, and try new slashing patterns on the bread.  For the wheat stalk, I think the key is to either omit the central slash of the stalk, or make it very delicate and shallow. Must practice…

Elaine, thanks for bringing sourdough baking back to my routine,
you are a constant source of inspiration!

ONE YEAR AGO: Zucchini, Lemon and Walnut Cake

TWO YEARS AGO: Paleo Energy Bars

THREE YEARS AGO: Pecan-Crusted Chicken with Honey Mustard Dressing

FOUR YEARS AGO: Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Burgers

FIVE YEARS AGO:  Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps

SIX YEARS AGO: Clay-pot Pork Roast

SEVEN YEARS AGO: Panmarino

EIGHT YEARS AGO: A Classic Roast Chicken

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15 thoughts on “ELAINE’S SOURDOUGH BOULE

  1. You are absolutely right, this is the recipe I use again and again and it always works well for me, so I’m glad it worked equally well for you xx Thank you for all of your kind words and the links 😍😍😍😍 your loaves look fab and the slashing looks great!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, Sally, I need a good starter! I have one of those packages of Alaskan sourdough starter and never bothered using it…I saved Elaine’s “foodbod” and I guess that I just need to get a starter going, suggestions? Recently Lidl’s opened a store near us and I found that their German sourdough was acceptable. Heck Amazon carries a packet f Austrian sourdough cultures. LOL

    Liked by 1 person

    • if you can buy a commercial sourdough – ANY – I would go for it, it takes the stress out of making it, and you can jump in the fun right away. I would not even worry too much about the kind, just get something with good reviews, or from a reputable source, like King Arthur Flour, but there are so many out there….

      Like

  3. “Bake for 45 minutes, leaving the bread covered for the first 30 minutes, generating steam whichever way you like.
    I use the moistened lid of a Dutch oven.”

    I don’t understand how you would use the moistened lid of a dutch oven…could you explain?
    thanks mac

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fill the lid with water in the sink – discard the water, some will be still glued to the lid – invert very quickly over the Dutch oven – you will hear the steam forming right away from the intense heat of the oven

      Next time I make break I might make a little video, just for fun

      Like

  4. Love the look of this bread! I have some good, feisty starter, so plan on giving this a try this week. One question: Do you keep your oven at 450 for the entire bake? I usually start at 450, then turn down to 400 for the initial bake, then 400 convection for the 10 – 15 minutes the bread is uncovered.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It depends – if I feel it’s browning too much I will reduce to 425F. I find it almost impossible to over-bake bread and enjoy a hearty crust, so I tend to push the envelope with my sourdoughs – with other kinds of bread I am more gentle…

      Like

  5. Pingback: Sourdough | Deliciously Kind Kitchen

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