Sourdough wax cloth
I get asked to share how to make the wax cloths I use to cover my sourdough with whilst it proves. I’m not keen on using cling film. I have a young family and using something that takes a long time to degrade goes against the grain. I do use a wet tea towel to cover my dough from time to time, I found the most effective method to cover sourdough as it proves is to use a wax cloth. If you warm your cloth for a few seconds in the microwave before use, then it moulds itself around the bowl. It’s easy, inexpensive, and somehow more romantic. I also get my wax from my local beekeeper, and it smells amazing, and my children help me to make them.
You can download my wax-cloth step by step PDF.
Do not be tempted to over saturate your cloth, it needs to absorb the wax. If you over saturate it then it melts as you warm it up, and leaves puddles of wax in the microwave.
Do not overheat the wax. It will burn.
You will need
100% cotton fabric or linen square or tea towel.
Plenty of newspaper
A paintbrush (that will be used for this purpose only, forever after)
A chopstick to stir the wax as it melts
Some clothes pegs to hang your wax cloth on to dry.
Preheat oven to70 C (Higher will burn the wax)
Place pre-cut fabric and place on the newspaper
Pop the beeswax into a bowl.
Place in the preheated oven. Watch the wax carefully as it melts.
As soon as the beeswax is just melted, remove from oven, transfer the bowl into a saucepan with hot water underneath it .. you can reheat it gently on the hob if you need to but this stops it from melting.
Step 3a & 3b
Spread wax evenly with a paintbrush to cover the cloth.
Use your fingers to work the wax in.
Ste 4a& 4b
Once the wax is evenly distributed, it will start to set. Fold the cloth and pop it into the microwave for 20 seconds
Remove the cloth taking care not to burn yourself. Work the wax in by squeezing the cloth. You can do this several times, (but please don’t be tempted to microwave it longer as you can burn yourself if it gets very hot!)
Fold the wrap. It will set hard.
Each wrap will last several months or more depending on usage.
To use, pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds to warm. It will become flexible and then place over the bowl of dough. The more you use it the more beautiful it becomes. I do not wash my cloths, but if you really feel you need to then please wash by hand in gentle washing powder with no enzyme, rinse well and re-wax.
Generally, I re-wax, using about 10g of wax three times a year to keep it in top condition.