Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Superlative sourdough

I made another batch of sourdough bread the other day, and found that the memory lapse which led me to abandon the loaves at the final rising stage was entirely beneficial. Last time I made this recipe - Kimberly's - I followed it religiously (well, you would, wouldn't you?), allowing the full twelve hours for the sponge to develop, and letting the dough rise in the bowl for a generous time after hand-kneading it. This time, I bunged the sponge and the flour and so on into the breadmaker on "dough" program, thereby avoiding the sticky-fingers-when-the-phone-rings syndrome, and let it all fit in with what I was doing rather than the other way about. And then I left the formed loaves to rise all night - 12 hours - before I baked them.

The result was wonderful. Huge airholes in the chewy inside of the loaf made for a much less dense bread and fabby toast on the second day. I shall be practising benign neglect from now on.

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