Fruit Sourdough

Written by Warwick Quinton. Posted in White starter Breads

Fruit Sourdough

 

Fruit Sourdough is what I like to call 'grown up fruit bread'. It exhibits all the complexity of flavour and texture you would expect from either a fine wine or a fancy meal at a restaurant - in a humble loaf of sourdough bread!

It's based around a white sourdough, with apricots, figs, dates and sultanas added in generous amounts - indeed, the fruit makes up about a fifth of the finished weight of bread. So you have a very chunky fruit bread, full of flavour.

I've steered clear of adding any fat or oil, but have succumbed to adding a smidgin of raw sugar to the dough, to give the crust softness. The interplay between sweet and sour is there, especially when I ferment the dough for more than 72 hours. It's baked on a low heat  in the woodfired oven, allowing this dense bread to cook gently. 

I particularly enjoy this bread with soft, ripe cheese, or prosciutto, or both. Of course, fruit sourdough bread with a lovely unsalted butter and nothing else at all goes down a treat. 

Turkish Sourdough Bread

Written by Warwick Quinton. Posted in White starter Breads

Turkish Sourdough Bread

 

Turkish Sourdough Bread is a bit of a rarity. It's talen me quite a while to get it right. I've seen versions of this leavened with yeast as well as sourdough starter around in some artisan bakeries, but this one is pure sourdough. It's soft and delicious. 

I've broken my three ingredient rule for this one, adding yogurt, olive oil and a smidgin of raw sugar to the classic flour, water and salt recipe. There are also nigella and sesame seeds sprinkled on for flavour. Not only do these things go together to create a really authentic and deliciously complex flatbread, they also contribute to the softness of the crust.

I remember years ago being impressed by a little turkish restaurant on Clevelend Street, Surry Hills - they made amazing lentil soup, very affordable for struggling musicians, and accompanied it with this beautiful freshly baked turkish bread. I asked the secret of the flavour, and was told in a rich, turkish accent, 'yogurt'. At the time I wasn't a baker, but years later a compatriot baker reminded me of this ingredient while I was trying to figure out how to make this bread. 

Turkish sourdough makes an excellent shell for anything you want to put between its golden crusts - meats, salads, cheeses, hommous, tapenade, pesto or any combination of the above. It's made with a soft dough in a ferociously hot woodfired oven.  It's as enjoyable to eat as it is to make!

 

Sourdough Bread Rolls

Written by Warwick Quinton. Posted in White starter Breads

Sourdough bread rolls

 

Sourdough Bread Rolls are such a lovely thing to bake - and to eat! When the woodfired oven is at its hottest - usually right at the beginning of the bake - the ripening rolls are peeled in as quickly as possible, so as to utilise the blistering heat. I use a large square baker's peel which can hold nine rolls at a time - though an even bigger peel would be very useful for this task. 

Almost as quickly, the rolls are rotated in the oven, and peeled out, to  ensure the crust is golden brown, while the base is not too thick. This is easier said than done when Luna the woodfired oven is sitting at around 300 degrees! More often than not the rolls come out beautifully, but even when the crust is a bit thick, they are still an amazing flavour and texture.

They weigh about 180 grams, so they are quite a large roll. Filled with salad, cheese and meat, they are a meal held in the hand. One roll satisfies a big appetite. 

The crust is thin, and the flavour is tangy. They are best consumed on the day you get them, but can be sliced and toasted to make delicious dip shovels for days afterwards as well. 

Large White Sourdough

Written by Warwick Quinton. Posted in White starter Breads

Large white Sourdough

 

The Large White Sourdough is a whopping 1.5kg of pure sourdough bliss. It's meant for large families, or just simply keen sourdough lovers who have to wait a week or more between their doses of SourdoughBaker breads.

In aesthetic terms, a large loaf like this is proportionately more dough to crust, so you get big slices. A secondary feature of this bread is that it keeps moist for longer periods - and so is good for sandwiches for a week. After that, it toasts very well.

Toasties using this bread are superior too - something about the larger slice works perfectly with anything you can think of to put in a toasted sandwich. 

The flavour is mild yet deep, and lends itself to salads and crispy greens.

 

The large white has a slightly thicker crust than some of the other breads, because they must be baked more slowly in the woodfired oven, due to their greater girth. The crumb is loose, and can have quite large holes - though I do try to keep the texture reasonably consistent so fillings don't fall through them!

Rustic Sourdough Baguette

Written by Warwick Quinton. Posted in White starter Breads

Sourdough Baguette

 

My Rustic Sourdough Baguette is not rolled and folded like many baguettes, but rested and pulled in stages. This gives it a quite unique crust, and a very large and loose crumb. The crust is thin and dark, due to the baguette being baked on the floor of the hot woodfired oven. Like all SourdoughBaker breads, I don't use bread tins or trays, preferring to bake 'on the sole'.

The baguette is made from a white starter, giving it a light, tangy flavour. A true baguette is all about the crust. As such, it lends itself to soft toppings like ripe brie, or perhaps a seasonal berry jam - these types of toppings help to highlight the crustiness of the baguette. The other thing that a baguette does very well is to create a transport medium for dips, pates and so on. The sourdough flavour, while complex, is also mutable, complementing whatever you choose to top your baguette with. The crust holds firm in soups too, so a baguette is an excellent choice with anything liquid.

Baguettes are meant to be eaten the day they are consumed - but if you find that there is still some left over, they toast very well, and make excellent croutons too!

 

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