This is a recipe for what I named “everyday bread”. I make this regularly, once or twice a week. It calls for a little sourdough starter as well as dried yeast. The sourdough starter acts like a natural flour conditioner, making the bread keep longer.
I normally make this in my bread maker, but you can of course make it without. For one 1Kg loaf, you’ll need:
- 1/2 tablespoon of instant dried yeast (7g)
- 4 cups of combined high grade flour and wholemeal flour (I normally do half and half but you can adjust the ratio to your liking)
- 3/4 cup sourdough starter*
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 2 tablespoons of sugar (I like using dark cane sugar)
- 2 tablespoons of milk power (optional, though this keeps the bread soft for longer)
- 2-3 tablespoons of butter or vegetable oil
- 1+1/2 cups water
- If you are using a bread maker, put all the ingredients into the bread maker, set and forget 🙂
- If you are making this by hand, mix all the ingredients together and knead for 15-20 minutes until really smooth and you can stretch a little of the dough out really thin without breaking.
- Let it raise until double in size (~45 minutes)
- Punch it down and squelch the sides towards the middle and leave it to rest for 30 minutes.
- Punch it down again and shape it into a loaf.
- Let the loaf rise for 50 minutes until roughly double in size and preheat the oven to 200 C
- Bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour until it’s golden and sounds hollow when tapped.
Note 1: The actual amount of water you need will depend on the climate and your flour. When you first try this recipe out, check on the dough after 10 minutes of kneading to see if it needs more water (too dry) or more flour (too wet). Add 2 tablespoons of water or flour at a time to adjust.
Note 2: You can add other ingredients to “spice up” this recipe. If you are using any ingredients that are wet (like sun dried tomatoes, olives or fresh herbs of 1/4 cup or more), hold back 1/4 cup of water in the beginning. If the dough seems dry after 10 minutes of kneading, add more water. If using dried herbs, you shouldn’t need to adjust the amount of water.
Note 3: I made my sourdough starter from an apple in 2005 and it’s still going well! Read how to make it here.