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Tag Archives: sourdough

Normally, I make sourdough bread because Chuck 2.0 is doing quite well.  I haven’t posted about my normal sourdough sandwich loaf, because I’m still changing things around.  It’ll probably be a post in the near future.

But recently, I made an oatmeal sandwich bread instead because I had used the majority of Chuck to make biscuits and English muffins and then didn’t leave enough time to feed him again before I would need him for bread.  And I was out of bread.  And I no longer have a habit of buying bread.  What do?  See what you have in the pantry and make that type of bread instead.  In this case, oatmeal.

I used King Arthur Flour’s recipe for oatmeal bread and in terms of taste and smell, it went quite well.  Bread tastes great.  I like the extra nuttiness oatmeal gives and it holds up well against my ridiculous sandwiches (the main reason why I need bread).  Bread also smells very good.  Maybe…a little too buttery smelling…but overall, I love the smell of baking and fresh baked bread.

HOWEVER.  This was my first time using whole-grain bread improver.  I used it because it’s something I’ve been wanting to try in my sourdough loaf, since Chuck is a whole grain starter, but I hadn’t had the chance.  Since I was making another whole grain bread here, I figured I’d just try it out here.  Um…it works.  Really well.

In case you’re wondering, the whole-grain bread improver adds a bit more gluten into the dough so the dough can hold it’s structure better during proofing.  It’s not necessary, but it helps keep the bread lighter and less dense.  The whole grains get in the way of the gluten network forming as well as it does in a white bread, which is part of the reason why whole grain breads sometimes are very dense.

Anyway, I tried it out and then did my usual for same day proof and bake.  Um…I didn’t account for the fact that I had used the bread improver.  And I also didn’t account for how hot it was in my kitchen.  And so…I ended up with monster bread.  It was totally over proofed.  Oops.  Will have to try again.

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I made a lot of sourdough English muffins. I make a lot of sourdough based things when I’m trying to ramp up a starter, in this case the original Chuck, because of all the discard between feedings. I don’t like to throw them away, so I keep trying to find new things to stick sourdough in. KAF is really nice resource for this because they have a whole section of recipes dedicated to sourdough discard. So…I made sourdough English muffins.

The thing with this recipe is that it makes A. LOT. of English muffins. It was ok because I didn’t have any other bread at the time, so I used the English muffins in place of sliced bread for sandwiches and stuff. Or I would toast one to go with my chili or something. But I still had to freeze half of them. At least bread products freeze well.

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Because Chuck wasn’t as active as an established starter when I made the English muffins, they only have kind of a whiff of sourdough flavor to them. But they have really great texture and they crisp up nicely in the toaster. I would try making them again with an established starter.

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