Possibly my first sourdough ‘ear’

This is the first time I’ve got an ear on my sourdough loaf!

Flap of dough lifted up on a cooked sourdough loaf. Black sesame seed topping

The loaf was prepared using Sourly’s recipe which only really varies for my own in that it’s got honey in it but otherwise is about 70% hydration I think. This has always seemed to work normally ok for me.

I made a double quantity and a round and rectangular shape but was a bit disappointed in the round loaf. The dough just spread out and made out of blob not a nice boule shape. I’m sure it will taste nice it just looks a bit burnt to be honest. The boule was scored and then baked open on a baking stone – with steam – in the oven.

The rectangular was open cooked for 5 minutes, scored then covered in the cloche with a good water spray.

Sourdough boule with flax seed topping

I think my oven temperature is probably too high – it’s so hot today day maybe I could have done with the lower temperature?

I’ve come to the conclusion that my problem is that I over prove the dough. So although I retarded this in the fridge overnight I followed Sally’s suggestion to sit outside for 80 minutes before putting in the fridge. I think it was this in the hot weather that has caused yet another over- proof.

To be honest I used to get much nicer looking loads with a lower hydration somewhere between 60 and 65% but a nicer, holey crumb with the 72%. So more experimentation still needed on one day I might get it right.

Making it seedy…

Today’s bread has seeds in it. As a family we love seeded bread, and I’ve made it with commercial yeast, but not with my sourdough starter yet.

It’s kitchen cupboards yield a variety of seeds; I like to toast them for topping salads and cooked dishes. After a quick glance at a recipe on The Perfect Loaf, over confidence got the better of me. After a quick calculation I opted for 4% flax, 4% sesame and 5% sunflower seeds to add to my normal dough weight. I soaked the flax for about 30 minutes and toasted both sesame and sunflower seeds. After draining the flax I added both to the dough before kneading.

So far, so good. I’m now waiting to see how it proves.