My book, “Wild Bread: Handbaked sourdough artisan breads in your own kitchen” is now available on Kindle. Amazon is supposed to link the Kindle edition to the paper edition within the next 48 hours. You can buy the spiral-bound paper version here.
Santa Fe resident, vegan, and bicycling advocate Jackie Shane baked these sourdough whole wheat/rice bread loaves and took their picture. She says, “Got the idea from Sandor Katz author of Wild Fermentation, and the awesome starter from Lisa Rayner, who authored Wild Bread.”
The local Flagstaff magazine Mountain Living did a story on my sourdough bread and natural canning books for the Nov./Dec. issue. The magazine is distributed in the daily newspaper and around town. The editor used photos from my blog showing a loaf of my artisan bread and foraged urban apples. We just finished eating the last of the apples a couple of days ago. Now it’s time to start eating the applesauce we made.
Nov. 23, 2015
Artisan dough is a simple formula of active sourdough starter, flour, salt, and water. Artisan breads are baked without a pan to help shape them directly on ceramic tiles, bricks, cob or adobe. In addition to the rich sourdough flavors, free-standing artisan loaves baked at 500°F or more have additional depth of flavor and smell that isn’t present in loaf breads due to the chemical reactions that take place during the crust browning process, most importantly the Maillard reaction between amino acids (in the wheat protein) and naturally-occurring sugars.
Here are links to sourdough loaf bread posts I’ve done. Details are in my book Wild Bread: Handbaked sourdough artisan breads in your own kitchen:
- Making a loaf of whole wheat sourdough artisan bread
- 100% whole wheat sourdough artisan rolls
- Sourdough artisan “pillow” bread rolls
- Solar baked artisan rolls
- Baking whole wheat sourdough artisan bread in a solar oven
- Solar baked sourdough artisan rolls
- Sourdough caraway artisan rolls
Other posts in this series:
- Make your own sourdough loaf breads
- Making sourdough artisan breads
- No knead sourdough breads
- Making sourdough flatbreads
- Making sourdough sweet doughs
- Sourdough specialty breads
Look up “solar bread” or any other type of bread in my search box to find even more posts, dated earlier and later than this post.
I made some extra artisan dough when I was baking some bread. It is easy to make exactly the volume of active sourdough starter that you want to use by adjusting how much flour and water you use to feed the starter. I brushed the rolled out dough with melted vegan butter (Earth Balance) and then sprinkled it with evaporated cane juice (unbleached sugar) and cinnamon from my natural foods buying club.
See my post on making a large pan of cinnamon rolls.
Part III: Real sourdough flavor
Real sourdough flavor comes primarily from the bacterial acids. The lactobacilli need a minimum of 12 hours to ferment in order to produce these wonderful flavors. Non-sourdough breads made with baker’s yeast rise so fast that there is no time for bacteria to grow, which is why modern bread lacks the flavor of wild bread.
Sourdough bacteria also produce amino acids (the building blocks of protein), B vitamins, some carbon dioxide and a variety of other compounds. The amino acids help create the savory aromas of crusty brown artisan breads baked at high temperatures.
I baked a thick slab of whole wheat sourdough focaccia (foe-CAT-cha) with chopped Kalamata olives. I wanted to be able to slice the bread horizontally as shown in the bottom photo. I like eating open-faced sandwiches with avocados and sliced tomatoes and cucumbers at this time of year. After a couple of days when the bread is no longer fresh, I toast the slices first and eat them with salads or slice them into croutons to go directly in the salads. I used my basic artisan dough formula.