I’ve started so I’ll finish…

April 24, 2010

Above is the result of my second baking session with my sourdough starter.

I made a couple of changes since the first one I made – on the advice of Mr Aubergine File, I used Canadian bread flour, which apparently has a much higher gluten content. I’m not too sure what that’s supposed to do to bread, but he said it’s great for sourdough. And this loaf certainly rose much better than my first one.

Also on his suggestion, I added some other flavours, namely rosemary and nigella seeds. Gail’s, the London artisan bakery, does a rosemary and nigella seed sourdough, and as I had all those components, I thought I’d try it.

Personally, I wasn’t too sure the sourdough needed anything extra in the taste department, but my friends, Nick and Kerry, who ate some of it with me this evening really liked it.

One more thing I did differently this time, and that was use a proper proving basket, which is how I got those lovely coiled ridges on the loaf – unfortunately spoilt by it splitting in the oven. My own fault, really. I couldn’t bring myself to ruin those beautiful rings by slashing it, but clearly that’s what I should have done.

Anyway, that’s the nice thing about having a starter on the go – there are plenty of opportunities to experiment, without feeling like you’ve wasted anything. And, next week, I’ll certainly be trying something else…


3 Responses to “I’ve started so I’ll finish…”

  1. The bread looks fantastic! Glad you found a bread basket, where did you find it?

  2. Gabby Says:

    I’ve never even heard of nigella seeds!

  3. I got the basket at Divertimenti, which of course meant it was stupidly expensive – £17! I’m going to have to make a lot of bread to get my money’s worth from that.
    Gabby – nigella seeds are also called black onion seeds. They’re used in Indian cooking a lot.
    And, after a couple more slices last night, I decided I actually really liked the flavour in the bread!

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