This is Emmanuel Hadjiandreou’s Wholemeal sourdough recipe – I first met Emmanuel about six or seven years ago. I was recording a programme for the BBC Kitchen Garden Show about croissants. What I remember most was how magical it was to pass on his knowledge, and how his international background has influenced his baking. Em has a unique insight, learning his craft in a German bakery and had worked for both chef Gordon Ramsay and Daylesford Organic (an award-winning organic farm shop in Oxfordshire, England.) His work has, over the years won him many awards, such as the Soil Association Organic Food Award for his sourdough. His previous book, the best-selling How to Make Bread, has also earned Emmanuel the prestigious Jeremy Round Award for Best First Book at the Guild of Food Writers Awards 2012 – and has now been translated into13 languages including a Japanese version I saw recently.
I drove down to Hastings a few weeks ago, to the launch of Em’s newest book – How to make Sourdough. It is a beautiful book, and I met the photographer Steve, who really brought the bread to life with some excellent photography. The launch was a wonderfully warm welcome party in the pub that Em bakes for and he had made pretty much every recipe from the book for us all to try. It was a real treat as they were all delicious, and I have to admit that I made off with the rosemary & sultana sourdough ( I think it was possibly one of my favourite flavour combinations ever.) I also got to try an incredible naturally leaven croissants and I am delighted to say that Emmanuel will be teaching a Sourdough Crossients course here later this year ( there are only a few spaces left)
I asked to Em sign a copy of his new book, as a giveaway, which I have here .. so simply comment below and retweet this article or post to Facebook or Instagram and comment with the #SourdoughClub hash tag ( Please cc us in @Sourdoughclub or @VanessaKimbell) We will pick a winner on the 27th of August at random and post this to you. In the meantime, this is the simple wholemeal/wholewheat loaf, which is the one on the front cover, and one that Em says is a is a good one to start with.
Wholemeal sourdough recipe
All it takes to make it look really attractive is a couple of slashes after the proofing stage. Bear in mind that different brands of wholemeal/wholewheat flour will require different amounts of water when making this loaf.
- Making the dough: 50 minutes
- Letting the dough rise: 12–24 hours
- Knocking back and shaping the dough: 10 minutes
- Final proofing: 2–6 hours
- Resting in the fridge: 30 minutes
- Baking: 30–40 minutes
- Cooling: 30 minutes
- 500 g/4 cups wholemeal/wholewheat flour, plus extra for dusting
- 10 g/2 teaspoons salt
- 25 g/1 oz. wholemeal/wholewheat sourdough starter
- 380 g/380 ml/1½ cups warm water (30–37°C/86–99°F)
- 1 x 800-g/1¾-lbs. round proofing/dough-rising basket
- 1 small peel, floured
- Makes 1 x 800-g/1¾-lbs. Loaf
- In a small mixing bowl, mix the flour and salt together thoroughly. Set aside. This is the dry mixture. Add the sourdough starter to a large mixing bowl. Add ¾ of the water and dissolve or break up the sourdough with your hands.
- Add the dry mixture. Stir the mixture slowly with your hands until it comes together and there are no dry bits at the bottom of the bowl.
- Add the remaining water. If the mixture doesn’t come together and it seems a bit dry, add more water and record how much you used for next time. The dough should be slightly sticky. Cover the mixture with the small mixing bowl that contained the flour mixture. Leave to stand for 10 minutes.
- Knead the mixture 10 times.
- Turn the ball of dough over in the bowl and make a finger mark in the dough (to indicate the first knead).
- Cover with the small mixing bowl again and leave the dough to rest for 10 minutes.
- Repeat steps 6–8 another 3 times, making sure the mixture is covered between kneads and remembering to mark the dough indicating the amount of kneads done.
- Cover the dough and leave it to rise overnight in a cool place (not in the fridge, though).
- The next day, gently punch down to de-gas the dough.
- Remove from the bowl, using a light sprinkling of flour so the dough does not stick. Shape the dough into a ball.
- Coat the proofing/dough-rising basket with flour. Coat the top of the dough with flour and place seam-up into the basket.
- Allow to proof for 2–6 hours or until the dough has nearly doubled in volume. Cover with a shower cap or with an upturned mixing bowl if a skin starts to form.
- Place the dough in the fridge for 30 minutes to stabilize it.
- Preheat the oven to 250°C (500°F) Gas 9. Place a deep roasting tray at the bottom of the oven and a baking sheet on the middle shelf.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured peel.
- Slash the loaf with a sharp serrated knife or a lamé with a design of your own choice.
- Slide the loaf onto the preheated baking sheet in the oven. Pour a cup of water into the hot roasting tray and lower the temperature to 220°C (425°F) Gas 7.
- Bake for 30–40 minutes until golden brown. Tap the loaf on the bottom. If you hear a hollow sound, it is ready. If you are not sure, return it to the oven for a further 10 minutes.
- Remove the loaf from the baking sheet and allow it to cool on a wire rack.
This recipe published with kind permission of Rylands Peters Small Publishers – I highly recommend getting a copy. – How to make Sourdough.