Not Sourdough Bread

Sourdough crackers - final

My sourdough bread is still a bit hit and miss. A recent experiment with apple and walnut bread ended up as an over chewy frisbee. LSH gamely ate his way through a couple of slices (that’s husbandy loyalty for you!) but the rest ended up in the bin. So I thought I’d try something different – sourdough crackers.

There are various versions of this on line. Mine is a rosemary and garlic version based on this one on the Fresh Loaf website as it was the only one I found in weighed measures.

I mixed 100g of my rye starter with 50g of white bread flour. I added 20g of olive oil along with 1/8tsp of garlic salt and 1 tsp of finely chopped rosemary. It came together into a sticky but still workable dough which I kneaded for about 10 mins before leaving to rest for about 5 hours.

I cut some greaseproof paper to the size of the baking tray and then rolled the dough out very thinly directly onto the greaseproof so that it was only a couple of millimetres thick.

Sourdough crackers - pre bake

I cut these into small diamonds and scattered some sea salt over the top. They were then baked for 15min at 180C.

LSH definitely preferred these to sourdough bread and scoffed a bowl full of them in no time. He thought that they were cheese as the taste was very tangy and said he would eat those again. They were a little too tangy for my taste so next time I will reduce the amount of sourdough starter and increase the amount of rosemary. A promising start though and a whole new lease of life for my starter.

Sourdough crackers - final 2

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Sourdough Success

Cromarty Cob

Sourdough is one of those things that I’ve had very mixed success with. Occasionally it’s worked brilliantly, but more often than not its produced bread looking more like a frisbee than something you’d want to eat. If I did get it to rise the texture was invariably too dense and chewy for eating it to be an enjoyable experience.

Cromarty Cob - crumbBut still I’ve┬ápreserved in the hope that eventually I’ll get there. And at last I think I have. ┬áThis time I painstakingly followed the recipe in Andrew Whitley’s book Bread Matters for Cromarty Cob which uses a rye starter with a 50:50 mix of white and wholemeal flour.

I’d refreshed my starter the day before. When it just started to collapse again I used it to make the production leaven. The eventual dough managed to rise above the level of its proving basket (I clearly need to add to my collection!) and produced a lovely loaf, rich in flavour with a good texture.

Now all I need to do is be able to slash the loaves properly. I think that may take a bit more practice….