Starting to experiment pt1: white sourdough 36 hr prove

Now that I’m getting a bit more cocky confident about sourdough bread making, I’m starting to experiment a bit more. I know that the bread geeks might poo-pooh at my experiments, and how tame they are. But I’m new to all this and hoping to help other rookie bakers, not really teach anything to anyone, let alone seasoned bakers. Although if I manage that, too, then hoo-RAH.

I wrote in another post about long proving of loaves. I regularly prove our ‘house bread’ (Dan Lepard’s Mill Loaf) for 72 hours now. But thus far I’d only proved white sourdough for about ten hours regularly, and 24 hours max.

So the other day, my partner (I’m so fed up of saying boyfyhusband, it sounds so fucking twee) was going to London and I decided to send my Italian Daddie – who lives there with my Italian Mamma – a loaf of my bread.  He’s the sort of man who eats bread at every meal and he buys his baguettes from the supermarket, and I think they’re a poor substitute for the sort of bread he grew up with.

He likes his bread to be white and crusty. So I made a batch of sourdough, shaped one into a round for us, and one into a baton for him, proved it overnight and got up at FIVE O’CLOCK IN THE MORNING to cook it as my partner was leaving at 6am. I kept the other loaf and cooked it yesterday morning, after a 36 hour final prove in the fridge at 4 degrees.

I am pleased to report that it was splendid. I cooked it for only 20 mins, 15 mins at 250 and 5 at 220, as I was after a slightly softer crust than the usual blackened, sour crust I go for. It was delicious, delicate and here it is, photographed in the morning sunlight.

White sourdough, cooked after a 36hr prove.

2 thoughts on “Starting to experiment pt1: white sourdough 36 hr prove

  1. Jo

    Looking good Annalisa! I don't do long fridge proves usually as B doesn't like 'sour' sourdough that much and if I do this the bread gets good and sour and often flattens out in the oven. Bread nerd questions coming up…. What flour do you use for this? It must have good gluten strength to survive these proves or maybe it is your expert shaping and folding technique? x Jo

  2. Annalisa Barbieri

    Hello JoAll my main flours are Waitrose Organic Stoneground, so its White or Wholemeal Bread flours. I should really put which flours I use to make it more nerdy (I like nerdy).I really don't think it's my shaping and folding techniques! I wish. We love sour in this house but yes if you don't, the longer you leave it the stronger the flavour. Am tempted by the Rye Caraway bread you wrote about yesterday!A x


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