Sourdough for days

I made myself a sourdough starter last November and have, ever since, been on the quest for a good loaf of bread. Along the way, I’ve mastered sourdough flapjacks and utterly failed at both sourdough coffee cake and sourdough cinnamon rolls.

I’ve had dozens of decent loaves and a handful of truly terrible ones. And then there was this morning…. the snow was falling outside my window, the fire was blazing, the dog was sleeping and ahhh! At last!

That crust! The crumb! It makes me ridiculously happy. I’m not sure if I have another one in me, folks, (thank goodness for the flapjacks) but just in case this is the perfect combination of all the things, here’s how she came to be.

Mixed ingredients

100g starter
300g water
20g honey
10g salt
400g flour (I did half whole wheat and half bread flour)
Mix until combined and then let rest (autolyse)

Fold and turn method for mixing — I think I did this 3x between 2 – 5pm.

Rising at room temp, then into the fridge for the night. (I don’t spray the mixing bowl but I do spray the plastic wrap that sits on top of the dough. Then I covered the bowl with a damp towel. (I’ve had some trouble with the dough drying a bit when using my cloth covers so this time I did the plastic wrap plus the towel.)

Remove from fridge. Fold and shape into ball and place in proofing basket. I re- covered with the plastic wrap and left it alone to “wake up” for a couple of hours.

Preheat oven to 475 with dutch oven inside.
Gently place dough into pre-heated dutch oven. Score and bake for 30 minutes with lid on. Then remove lid and lower oven temp to 425. Bake additional 20 minutes.

I might let the dough “wake up” a little longer out of the fridge next time (ie TOMORROW). I’m going to try 3-4 hours next time because the dough was still cool to the touch when it went in the oven and even with that nice crumb, there are a few spots that are ever-so-slightly dense.