I am always looking for the easiest ways to make our sourdough bread. Especially in spring, I need our bread recipe to be the least hands on as possible. A few days ago, I had a happy accident in the kitchen. I was getting ready for church and realized we were almost out of bread. So, I took a chance and just mixed up the ingredients, shaped it, and put it in the oven when we got home. You know what? It was a wonderful loaf of bread! So, let me show you the easiest sourdough artisan bread EVER!
When I put that loaf in the oven, I was biting my nails a little, ha ha! I had never been so careless in my bread making! At the very least, I always try to either knead it, stretch and fold it, or give it 2 rises. Well, I broke all the rules with this one.
It occurred to me that maybe, just maybe we don’t have to fuss AT ALL with our bread. What if we just mixed it and waited on it to rise and bake it?
This particular recipe uses mostly all purpose flour with a little freshly milled whole wheat.
I will be developing this technique for 100% whole wheat next.
So, for the beginner sourdough baker, this couldn’t get any easier. I wish I would have known this when I first started making sourdough!
All you need for this recipe is water, active sourdough starter, flour, and salt. For the rise, you need a tea towel and a banneton basket, or, alternatively, you can use a medium colander.
As spring gets busier and busier, I need a recipe that literally takes the least amount of my time to make. But, I obviously still want a delicious and nutritious loaf.
This one checks all the marks! So, let’s get started.
The night before, feed your starter. Alternatively, if you are like me and keep your starter in the fridge, as long as it was fed in the last few days, it will be fine. You won’t have to feed it prior to this recipe.
The morning of the day you want to make the bread, barely warm the water to lukewarm. Add it to a large mixing bowl. Add the starter and mix well.
Add the flour and salt and mix well. You may need to use your hands to get it mixed completely.
Once it is mixed well, turn onto a very lightly floured surface and shape into a ball. Roll the ball around the surface to tighten the seam and build some tension.
Take your banneton basket or medium colander and line it with a tea towel. Generously flour the towel. Add the ball of dough, seam side up, to the colander or banneton basket.
Cover and allow to rise for 4-8 hours. You will know it is ready to bake when an indention made with your finger stays in the dough. If it springs back, cover and allow to rise a little longer.
Preheat your oven with the dutch oven inside to 450 degrees F.
Take a piece of parchment paper and turn the dough, seam side down on the paper. Take a sharp knife or razor blade and slice the top of the dough. You can get fancy with this or just one slice into the dough will work fine.
Place very carefully into the dutch oven, place the lid on and bake for 20 minutes.
Take the lid off and continue to bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.
Allow to cool completely before slicing.
That’s it! The easiest sourdough aritsan bread recipe, EVER!
Easiest Sourdough Artisan Bread, EVER!
- 1 Dutch Oven
- 1 Banneton Basket or Medium Colander
- 1 1/2 cup lukewarm water
- 1 cup active sourdough starter
- 3 1/2-4 cups Unbleached all purpose flour may use 1/2 cup whole wheat as part of the flour
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- In a large mixing bowl, add the water and starter. Mix well.
- Add 3 cups of the flour and the salt. Mix well. Add additional flour 1/4 cup at a time until a ball of dough forms that cleans the sides of the bowl. I used 4 cups when I made mine. You may need to use your hands to completely mix the dough.
- Turn the dough on a very lightly floured surface and shape into a ball of dough. Pull the dough along the surface to tighten the seam and build tension on the top.
- Take a banneton basket or colander and line it with a tea towel. Generously flour the towel and add the ball of dough, seam side up. Cover.
- Allow to rise 4-8 hours. When an indention made with your finger doesn't spring back, it's ready to bake.
- Preheat oven with a dutch oven inside to 450 degrees F.
- Turn the dough onto a piece of parchment paper. Slash the top of the dough with a very sharp knife or razor blade.
- Add the dough (with the parchment paper) into the dutch oven very carefully.
- Put the lid back on and bake for 20 minutes.
- Take the lid off and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Allow to cool completely before slicing.