My sourdough culture had been sitting, mostly neglected, at the back of my fridge for the last two months. I finally decided it had been long enough and pulled it out and fed it a few times earlier in the week and then baked this delicious double batch today. Whole wheat flour mixed with some of my home made spent grain flour give this bread a delicious whole grain flavor.
Using the lazy sourdough method is actually quite simple. The real key to this method is that you can use your unfed starter straight from the fridge without the need to make a levain. There’s also no autolyse which saves about 30 minutes.
Schedule: Here’s a link to the lazy sourdough method.
The exact schedule I used is at the bottom of this post.
This recipe makes two loaves. Simply divide all the ingredients in half if you only want one loaf.
- 900g bread flour
- 60g whole wheat flour
- 40g spent grain flour
- 750g filtered water @ 84’F
- 200g unfed starter straight from fridge (100% hydration)
- 22g sea salt
- Oats and poppy seeds for dusting the bannetons
After mixing the dough, I performed 4 stretch and folds within the first 2 hours. I let the dough bulk ferment at room temperature for a total of 7 1/2 hours. Bulk fermentation can take anywhere between 7-9 hours depending on the temperature of your kitchen and how active your culture is. My bulk ferments using this method often take a little less than 8 hours.
Once the dough had doubled, I shaped the loaves and put them in bannetons that I liberally dusted with rice flour, oats and poppy seeds. I put the bannetons in vegetable bags and then placed them in the fridge for a 17 hour cold proof.
One hour before baking I started preheating the oven, with dutch ovens inside, to 450’F. When it was time to bake, I took the loaves straight from the fridge and placed them in the preheated dutch ovens, gave them a quick score and then put them in the oven.
I baked the loaves at 450’F for 20 minutes covered, then removed the lid of the dutch ovens and baked for an additional 32 minutes.
I’m always amazed at how great the smell of baking bread is. When I pulled the lids off the dutch oven to let them brown and caramelize some more, the smell that filled the kitchen immediately made me hungry.
The scoring on one of my loaves could have been a little deeper which resulted in the loaf not venting properly and I ended up with slightly less oven spring than I usually get. There are some really nice blisters on the crusts of the loaves thanks to the long, cold, proofing in the fridge.
The crumb is perfect as far as my opinion goes. I love a tighter crumb with my bread so it’s easier to slather on butter, cheese or any other toppings. The mix of whole wheat and spent grain give this a tan color.
I might have gotten by with leaving the loaves uncovered in the oven for another minute or two, but I didn’t want to risk burning them. The color of these is about exactly how I prefer mine to be.
My Baking Notes
- Ambient Temperature @ mixing: 73’F
- Mixed @ 1:10pm on September 29th
- Dough was 80.5’F at mixing
- 4 stretch and folds in first 2 hours
- Started proof @ 8:35pm on September 29th (~7 1/2 hour bulk fermentation at room temp which got to 76’F)
- Preheated oven @ 12:05pm on September 30th (~17 hour cold proof)
- Out of fridge and into oven @ 12:45pm