Apple Sourdough

As I mentioned on Monday, this is the best bread I know. As I also mentioned… pretty time consuming, but most of that time is hands-off waiting time.

Ingredients:

First Stage:

  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup apple sour starter
  • 4 1/2 cups whole wheat bread flour

Second Stage:

  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup shredded apples (I think using the most tart apples you can get provides the most interesting flavor)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cup whole wheat bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • dough from first stage

Although this recipe calls for whole wheat bread flour, I couldn’t get it and just used regular bread flour. I think this might be part of the reason why my dough is so very wet, but it works out.

Stir together all the ingredients for the first stage in a large bowl, then knead for 5-7 minutes until smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball and place in a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover, and let rest 8-10 hours, or refrigerate up to 24 hours.

After that first rise, combine the dough with the apples, honey, and water from the second stage, mixing well.

Blaaarg!

Add the salt and 1 cup of the flour. Knead 5-7 minutes, adding the remaining half cup of flour only if the dough is super wet. The few times I’ve made this bread, even after adding that extra half cup of flour the dough is still too wet to really knead normally, but I wouldn’t suggested adding tons of flour. The texture of the finished bread is great, so adding another cup or two of flour would likely give you a brick. Just knead your wet dough as best as possible, then transfer to a greased bowl.

Cover, and let rise 5-8 hours, or another 18-24 in the refrigerator. (I did a combo, leaving it in the fridge for about 8 hours while I slept, then several more hours out at room temperature. You just have to figure out what works best with your schedule.)

Grease and line two bread pans with cornmeal. I like how this bread looks as one giant round, so I just use one springform. Transfer the risen dough to your prepared pan. Again, I’ve always had it be too liquidy to shape into loaves, and just spread it evenly in the pan.

Mist with water, then let rise another 3-4 hours. If the dough had just come out of the fridge, you’ll need at least 4.

Remove the dough from the oven and preheat to 425 degrees. Bake for 20 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375 and bake a further 20 minutes until well browned and hollow sounding when tapped.

The texture is great as-is, I think it would be a very dense bread if you added enough flour to make it easily kneadable.

That pretty large loaf lasted just over 24 hours in our house before being polished off. Just added to the starter to make another. I think I’m going to try putting in some cheese powder!

As far as scheduling goes, it looks something like this:

  • 2-10 minutes to make the starter, depending on if you use apple sauce or have to grate apples
  • 7-10 day wait (the first time, 1 day all subsequent times)
  • 10-15 minutes to stir together and knead the first stage
  • 8-10 hour rise, or ~24 hours in the fridge
  • 15 or so minutes to combine and knead second stage
  • 5-8 hour rise or ~18 hours in the fridge
  • 5 minutes to prepare pans and transfer dough
  • 3-4 hour rise
  • 10-15 minute preheat
  • 40 minute bake

By using the refrigerator to slow down the rises, you can really make this fit most schedules. You just have to be patient!

Apple Sourdough

From Chef Tess Bakeress.

First Stage:

  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup apple starter
  • 4 1/2 cups whole wheat bread flour

Second Stage:

  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3/4 cup shredded apples
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cup whole wheat bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • dough from first stage

Stir together all the ingredients for the first stage in a large bowl, then knead for 5-7 minutes until smooth and elastic. Shape into a ball and place in a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover, and let rest 8-10 hours, or refrigerate up to 24 hours.

After the first rise, combine the dough with the apples, honey, and water from the second stage, mixing well. Add the salt and 1 cup of the flour. Knead 5-7 minutes, adding the remaining half cup of flour only if the dough is very wet, then transfer to a greased bowl. Cover, and let rise 5-8 hours, or another 18-24 in the refrigerator.

Grease and line two bread pans with cornmeal. If possible, shape dough into loaves, otherwise press evenly into the prepared pans. Mist with water, then let rise another 3-4 hours. If the dough had just come out of the fridge, you’ll need at least 4.

Remove the dough from the oven and preheat to 425 degrees. Bake for 20 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375 and bake a further 20 minutes until well browned and hollow sounding when tapped.

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About sparecake

My name's Corinne, and I like cake, cookies, and chocolate! Also, non-c-things such as ponies, Star Trek, and biking. I write a food blog and a blog about life, wide open spaces, and museum work. Nice to meet you!
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