Baking Bread Without Preheating The Oven

My beautiful loaf!

Have you ever tried baking bread but starting with a cold dough in a cold oven? Yeah I know, that idea turned everything I knew about baking upside down!

I read about this method from a group of sourdough bakers on Facebook. I asked to clarify as I never heard of anyone doing it this way and the wonderful lady replied in such detail that I believe I understood it enough to try it!

DO=dutch oven. 😊

Most home bread makers will know that bread baking requires creating steam by spraying water into the hot oven, placing ice cubes in the oven, or preheating the dutch oven/baking vessel/pizza stone with covers in the oven. Most of the time, you’ll be placing the dough into something really hot. I had my share of burns this way, even though I try to be very careful. So this Cold Method is intriguing to me. I know that some people use this method to avoid getting burned when placing the dough in a hot dutch oven, others to protect their clay bakers/roasters from the sudden temperature change of adding a cold bread dough to a preheated clay pot, or placing the cool clay pot in a preheated oven.

Lovely isn’t it?

I just got a beautiful Romertopf clay baker recently, so I decided to try cold start baked bread today. I would hate for this beautiful pot to break so if this method will work, I will definitely bake in it this way.

I started timing for 35 minutes, covered, after temperature is reached, then 15-20 minutes uncovered, or until desired dcolor on loaf is achieved.

35 minutes after temperature is reached, uncover and bake 15-20 minutes more.

I used a recipe I found in the same Facebook group and just winged the process. I made it fit my timeframe and I wrote it down here that way I can always go back and see it. It’s a very easy and very forgiving recipe. I hope you’ll try it!

400 grams flour

120 grams starter

250 grams water

9 grams salt

Mix everything in the Thermomix (easiest as it also has a scale) or a food processor with dough blade. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Cover and rest overnight to proof, stretching and folding at least once (I was tired and sleepy so i only was able to do it once!)

Shape in the morning. I shaped mine into a batard as it’s easier for to use for sandwiches than a boule. You can definitely shape it any way you want.

Place seam side up in a heavily floured banetton. Cover and prove for about 2 1/2 hours. Remove cover, place a sheet of parchment over the dough and invert onto your hand. Place in the clay baker with the parchment under the dough. Score the dough , cover with the lid, place in oven and set oven temperature to 450F.

Start timing after temperature is reached. I did 35 minutes with cover, removed the cover and baked for 15 minutes more. I think this works for the bread I made. The advice I was given on the Facebook page was to leave it for 55 minutes covered, with an option of leaving it for 5 more minutes, uncovered, to brown a little more.

The resulting bread was a beauty! And the texture was great that I believe I learned a new way to bake breads! I am thankful to groups online that unselfishly shares knowledge and personal experiences to others as I truly have learned a lot this way. Here’s to hoping that you learn something from my blog too! ❤️

Quick Dinner Rolls

I’m still stuck with Happy New Year!

Time just flies by so quickly toward the end of the year that it’s already New Year before I even realized it!

When I was a kid, we would always have a huge honeyed ham, creamy mashed potatoes, buttered corn, peas, and carrots, bread, and some sweets for our New Year’s Eve Dinner. We would eat all these around midnight. We were, however, constantly sneaking bites here and there as we pass by the kitchen.

Since New Year was here before I was ready, I want to share this recipe for homemade rolls that I make when I am short on time (seriously, when do we have enough time?). I mean, what do you do when you want to serve warm bread rolls for dinner and it’s already past 3pm? Try this recipe! It’s easy, fast, super soft, and has a really good flavor.

The addition of extra yeast speeds up rise times significantly but doesn’t sacrifice flavor. I promise it tastes really wonderful, and its ready in about 2 hours, more or less.

I made the dough in the Thermomix and then asked my son to shape them into buns. They are not all the same size but I couldn’t have made this bread without him at this time. Plus, that is what truly makes homemade feel special, they’re not all the same as it was hand made individually.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did. My right arm has been in a splint for 3 weeks so I could not really do much, but smelling this bread baking is enough for now. And I know it’s really delicious!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • 2 tablespoons instant yeast (yes, tablespoons)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 5 1/2 to 6 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  1. Combine the water, milk, and yeast in the Thermomix bowl. Set to 2 minutes/37 degrees/speed 2.
  2. Add the butter, sugar, 5 cups the flour, and salt. Set to Knead/3 minutes. Scrape down sides of the bowl. Add more flour if needed to form a soft, manageable dough. Knead for 2 more minutes if needed. The dough should feel elastic and slightly tacky to the touch.
  3. Let rise for 20 minutes at room temperature or until the dough is full and puffy.
  4. Gently remove the dough and pat it out to a rectangle about 8 inches by 12 inches. Cut the dough into 4 long strips, then cut each strip into 6 portions for a total of 24 dough balls. Shape into balls, pulling ends to the center to create tension. Roll on the counter to seal the seam.
  5. You can place the rolls into any of the following pans, well greased or lined with parchment paper: One half-sheet baking pan or 2 quarter-sheet pans. Two 13″ x 9″ x 2″ pans. Four 8″ or 9″ round baking pans OR a combination of any of these pans.
  6. Cover rolls with plastic wrap or towel and let rise at room temperature for another 20 to 25 minutes, or until well rounded and full looking.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  8. Bake the rolls for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown and an internal thermometer reads 190°F. While hot, brush with melted butter. Serve warm.
  9. Left overs can be stored in a plastic bag for up to 3 days.

Note: To make without the Thermomix:

1. Combine the water, milk, and yeast in the a large bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes until bubbly.

2. Add butter, sugar, 5 cups flour, and salt. Mix well until a dough forms. Turn out onto a board and, adding flour as needed, knead until smooth and elastic, 5-10 minutes. Continue with #3 onwards.

*If you want to freeze the unbaked buns, place in the pans as described in step 6 and allow to rise for 10 minutes. Wrap airtight and freeze for up to 4 weeks. To bake, thaw overnight in the fridge, then unwrap and bake as directed.*

Just out of the oven!
After brushing with melted butter.
Look at that! 😊

Conchas (Mexican sweet bread)

Merry Christmas!

Have you ever seen these colorful, sweet looking bread buns at Latin/Mexican bakeries? They look like the Japanese Melon Pan I am used to, but they come in lots of beautiful colors and the topping is cut in many different, pretty patterns too.

There are a couple of grocery stores not too far from my home that sell these cookie crusted buns called conchas or pan dulce (sweet bread). I tried them a few times because they’re calling my name, sitting there looking pretty with vivid colors on the display case, but they were a bit too dry for my taste.

However, being that they are super popular, I figured the real fresh ones must be good. What better way to find out than by making it yourself?

I knew how it looks like but I do not have concha cutters available to make them all look the same. Using a knife solved this problem even though it didn’t look as nice as the ones at the bakeries. If I make these regularly, I might just get some cutters to make my breads prettier. 😊

I serve these for breakfast with hot coffee for me and my husband, and hot strawberry milk for my son. I’m sure hot chocolate would be perfect too as I was told some people dip these in hot chocolate! Have to try that next time!

This is perfect for Christmas breakfast or brunch with a hot cup of coffee, hot chocolate, or even eggnog!

Make this sometime and let me know how you like it!

Dough:

  • 3 tablespoons warm water
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Gel Food Colors

To Make the Dough:

  • To the bowl of the Thermomix, add the water evaporated milk, and the active dry yeast. Set to 2 minutes, 37F, speed 2.
  • Add in the melted butter, vegetable oil, granulated sugar, vanilla, ground cinnamon and eggs. Set to 30 seconds/speed 4.
  • Add the flour and salt, set to KNEAD/3 minutes.
  • Transfer to a lightly greased bowl , cover with a damp kitchen towel and let rise in the covered bowl for about 1 hour, until doubled in size.

To Make the Streusel-Topping:

  • In the same Thermomix bowl, add the topping ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, sugar, flour and vanilla extract. Set to 20 seconds, speed 4. Scrape down the sides and set to 10 seconds, speed 4.
  • Divide the dough in two, about 195 grams each. To one part of the topping, add a few drops of food coloring gel until desired shade is achieved . To the other half, add 1 tablespoon butter and the cocoa powder. Knead both toppings one at a time until blended. *You will have 2 kinds of toppings.*

To Assemble the Conchas:

  • Once the dough has risen, divide the dough into 12 equal parts, each about 100 grams. Form the balls of dough into rounds. Repeat until you’ve worked through all of the dough.
  • Take about 2 tablespoons of the topping, roll into balls and flatten into a thin round. Placee it over the round of dough, patting down lightly. Using a small knife, score designs in the topping like a clam shell. Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for about 18 to 20 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Allow to cool. Serve with hot chocolate or coffee.

Conchas (Mexican Sweet Bread)

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Colorful and sweet, this Mexican Sweet Bread will be perfect with coffee, hot chocolate, or tea for breakfast or as an indulgent snack.

 

Ingredients

Dough:

  • 3 tablespoons warm water
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Gel Food Colors

Directions

To Make the Dough:

  • To the bowl of the Thermomix, add the water and the active dry yeast. Set to 2 minutes, 37F, speed 2. 
  • Add in the vegetable oil, melted butter, granulated sugar, evaporated milk, salt, vanilla, ground cinnamon and eggs. Set to 30 seconds/speed 3.
  • Add the flour and set to KNEAD/3 minutes.
  • Transfer to a lightly greased bowl , cover with a damp kitchen towel and let rise in the covered bowl for about 1 hour, until doubled in size. 

To Make the Streusel-Topping:

  • In the same Thermomix bowl, add the topping ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, sugar, flour and vanilla extract. Set to 1 minute, speed 4.
  • Divide the dough in two. To one part of the topping, add a few drops of desired food coloring gel. To the other topping, add 1 tablespoon butter and the cocoa powder. Knead both toppings one at a time until blended. You will have 2 kinds of toppings.

To Assemble the Conchas:

  • Once the dough has risen, divide the dough into 12 equal parts, each about 100 grams. Form the balls of dough into rounds. Repeat until you’ve worked through all of the dough.
  • Take about 2 tablespoons of the topping, roll into balls and flatten into a thin round. Placee it over the round of dough, patting down lightly. Using a small knife, score designs in the topping like a clam shell. Place dough onto a large cookie sheet, leaving space for it to expand. Repeat with remaining dough and toppings. Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for about 18 to 20 minutes, or until lightly golden brown. Allow to cool. Serve with hot chocolate or coffee.

Raisin, Walnut, and Cinnamon Swirl Sourdough Batard

This recipe is a variation of the sourdough boule recipe. The raisins and walnuts give it enough sweetness and flavor to enjoy on its own. Of course, with butter and jam it is even better!

Ingredients:

1 cup raisins

1 cup walnuts

1/2 cup starter

3 cups water

8 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting

1 tablespoon salt

melted butter or water

2/3 cup brown sugar

4 teaspoons good quality ground cinnamon

Procedure:

Soak raisins and walnuts in enough water to cover.

Mix starter into the water in a large bowl. Add the flour and salt and stir to combine. Cover with a dish cloth and let rest for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Drain the raisins and walnuts well and knead into the dough. Cover and let rise overnight.

Divide the dough into two and turn out onto a floured board. Working with one at a time, stretch out the dough to a rectangle, about 16×8 inches. Brush with melted butter or plain water. Mix together brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and sprinkle evenly on the dough. Roll up, from the short end, pinching edges to seal as you go along.

Place in a flour dusted banetton. Repeat with the other half.

Cover and let rise for an hour, until puffy.

Preheat oven to 450F. Cut a piece of parchment bigger than your banetton. Place the parchment over the dough and invert onto your hand. Place on the counter and score 3 times, using a razor, or a lame. Place into a dutch oven, cover and place in the middle rack of the preheated oven. Bake for 20 minutes covered, then 35 minutes more uncovered.

Place on a wire rack to cool. Cool completely before slicing.

Raisin, Walnut and Cinnamon Sourdough Batard

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

A delicious variation for the basic sourdough boule recipe. This yield loaves that are just sweet and flavorful enough to enjoy on its own.

Ingredients

1 cup raisins

1 cup walnuts

1/2 cup starter

3 cups water

8 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting

1 tablespoon salt

melted butter or water

2/3 cup brown sugar

4 teaspoons good quality ground cinnamon

Directions

Soak raisins and walnuts in enough water to cover.

Mix starter into the water in a large bowl. Add the flour and salt and stir to combine. Cover with a dish cloth and let rest for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Drain the raisins and walnuts well and knead into the dough. Cover and let rise overnight.

Divide the dough into two and turn out onto a floured board. Working with one at a time, stretch out the dough to a rectangle, about 16×8 inches. Brush with melted butter or plain water. Mix together brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and sprinkle evenly on the dough. Roll up, from the short end, pinching edges to seal as you go along.

Place in a flour dusted banetton. Repeat with the other half.

Cover and let rise for an hour, until puffy.

Preheat oven to 450F. Cut a piece of parchment bigger than your banetton. Place the parchment over the dough and invert onto your hand. Place on the counter and score 3 times, using a razor, or a lame. Place into a dutch oven, cover and place in the middle rack of the preheated oven. Bake for 20 minutes covered, then 35 minutes more uncovered.

Place on a wire rack to cool. Cool completely before slicing.


Sourdough Boule

Sourdough….I just can’t stop making breads using my starter. Easy ones that taste wonderful are my go to right now. It’s still amazing to me what flour, salt, and water can do when given time!

This recipe makes 2 loaves. Feel free to halve everything if you want to only make 1 loaf. Or you could prepare the dough, then divide into two and make 2 different breads, one filled, one plain, like I usually do.

Remember to start the evening before as the dough needs to rest overnight to develop it’s structure and flavor. This doesn’t require much hands on time but a lot of resting/proofing time. Work it around your schedule, refrigerating the dough if you have to delay baking more than an hour after shaping, up to 8 hours. It’s all well worth it.

1/2 cup starter

3 cups water

8 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting

1 tablespoon salt

Mix the starter into the water in a large bowl. Add the flour and salt and stir to combine. Cover with a dish cloth and let rest for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Lightly shape into a ball by pulling the sides in, and rotating the dough 1/4 turn. Do this 4 times, and cover again with a dishcloth or plastic wrap. Leave at room temperature overnight, until doubled in size.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Divide into 2 equal parts.

Working with one half at a time, dimple the dough using your floured fingers. Shape into a ball again and roll the dough with both hands to create a taut surface.

Place the dough, seam side up, into a bowl lined with a towel that is sprinkled generously with flour. Cover and let rise until double, about 1 hour.

*You could also refrigerate the dough, covered, if you are not yet ready to bake, for at least 2 hours. Remove from the refrigerator right before preheating the oven.

Preheat oven to 450F. Remove the cover from your dough and place a big piece of parchment paper over your dough. Invert the bowl carefully onto your hand. Place on the counter and rub dough lightly with flour. Score using a lame or a razor blade. Place into the dutch oven, cover, and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, uncover then bake for another 20-25 minutes. Remove from dutch oven and cool completely on a wire rack.

Sourdough Boule

  • Servings: 2 loaves
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

One of the easiest Sourdough Boule recipe ever, you just have to remember to start it the night before. A versatile recipe, you can use this as a base for filled batards too!

Ingredients

1/2 cup starter

3 cups water

8 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting

1 tablespoon salt

Directions

Mix the starter into the water in a large bowl. Add the flour and salt and stir to combine. Cover with a dish cloth and let rest for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Lightly shape into a ball by pulling the sides in, and rotating the dough 1.4 turn. Do this 4 times, and cover again with a dishcloth or plastic wrap. Leave at room temperature overnight, until doubled in size.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Divide into 2 equal parts.

Working with one half at a time, dimple the dough using your floured fingers. Shape into a ball again and roll the dough with both hands to create a taut surface.

Place the dough, seam side up, into a bowl lined with a towel that is sprinkled generously with flour. Cover and let rise until double, about 1 hour.

*You could also refrigerate the dough, covered, if you are not yet ready to bake, for at least 2 hours. Remove from the refrigerator right before preheating the oven.

Preheat oven to 450F. Remove the cover from your dough and place a big piece of parchment paper over your dough. Invert the bowl carefully onto your hand. Place on the counter and rub dough lightly with flour. Score using a lame or a razor blade. Place into the dutch oven, cover, and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, uncover then bake for another 20-25 minutes. Remove from dutch oven and cool completely on a wire rack.


Sourdough Starter

I had always wanted to bake with sourdough. I remember a magazine I had a long time ago that had a picture of grapes on top of a flour/water mixture to make a starter. I cannot remember what that magazine was otherwise I will search for and buy it, if only for that page and the recipe!

When my son was in 4th grade learning about the Oregon Trail, we started reading articles about it at home. My interest in sourdough was revived around that time when I read about a century old starter in Oregon, Carl Griffith’s 1847 Oregon Trail sourdough starter, and wanted it immediately. I mean, they say that this is a hundred seventy years old and that is fascinating to me. It survived for so long! I can only imagine baking with the same sourdough they used at that time. I’m sort of a nerd, yes, I am aware of that fact. You can read all about the Carl Griffith’s 1847 Oregon Trail Sourdough Starter here: http://carlsfriends.net

I wondered if I could try and use this as I had been making bread with yeast forever. I am aware that different places would have different strains of local flora, yeasts and bacteria, therefore I wasn’t sure I’ll get the exact thing even if I revived this starter.

I asked a Facebook group “Perfect Sourdough” if anyone was familiar with this. Some were but they mostly encouraged me to just make it as “it would be ready by the time you get the Carl’s starter anyway.”

So I sent for the Carl’s sourdough starter, and at the same time, armed with almost everything I read from that group and online, started my own Rancho Santa Margarita 2017 sourdough! 😊

It took me 5 days total to get a bubbly starter. I placed my container on top of the refrigerator for extra warmth as it was December 14 when I began this little experiment. I used an easy to follow recipe that only ever uses 1 cup flour to 1/2 water to feed the starter.

Preparing your own Sourdough Starter:

Day 1: In a jar, crock or plastic bucket (1 quart is a good size) place 1 cup whole wheat flour(or rye) and 1/2 cup water. Mix well, and cover loosely. Place on top of your refrigerator for 24 hours.

Day 2: Discard top half (about 1/2 cup) of the starter and add 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour and 1/2 cup water to the remaining half in the container. Stir well, cover loosely and leave overnight on top of the refrigerator. *My starter had a crusty, dried out top and that was what I discarded.

Day 3: By now, there will likely be bubbles in the mixture. If so, feed every 12 hours(2x a day), removing half of the sourdough and feeding using 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour and 1/2 cup water each time. If it doesn’t have bubbles, feed just once today.

Day 4-5: Repeat feedings twice a day. On days 4-5 the starter should’ve doubled and bubbled all over. If not, continue feeding twice a day until it reaches this point (days 6-7). My starter was ready on day 5. Lots of bubbles and it doubled in less than 8 hours.

Once it’s ready, remove half of the sourdough and feed it once more. Leave for about 6 – 8 hours and take how much you’ll need for your recipe.

TIPS:

*If your recipe calls for more than 1 cup of starter, give it a couple of feedings without discarding, until you’ve made enough for your recipe plus 1/2 cup to keep and feed again.

*OR collect the discards in a jar in the refrigerator until you get 1 cup, about 2 feedings.

*If you’ve got nothing but 1 tablespoon left, that’s okay too! This happened to me more than once. Just feed it as usual and watch it spring back to life. This also goes for if you forgot about it for a few weeks. Just scoop out the top portion and get at least a tablespoon to place in a clean jar. Feed with 1/2 cup water and 1 cup flour then leave at room temperature until bubbly.

Maintaining a Sourdough Starter:

Transfer the remaining half of starter to a container. Feed this starter with 1 cup of flour and 1/2 cup water, cover loosely, and let it rest at room temperature for 4-8 hours.

Store this starter in the refrigerator after and feed it regularly: 1 cup flour and 1/2 cup water once a week, after removing half for “discard”. Remember to leave it at room temperature for a few hours after feeding, then store in the refrigerator until needed.

TIP: place a rubber band on the container to mark the starting volume, that way you’ll know when it doubles.

What To Do With Discards:

You do not need to throw way the discard sourdough once your sourdough is ready. There are plenty of recipes online for crackers, waffles, pancakes, pizza, pretzels, etc. that will make use of these dough instead of wasting them.

King Arthur Flour is a great place to find recipes for sourdough and for discards. Link here: https://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/collections/sourdough-discard-recipes

Sourdough English Muffins:

https://athomewiththeresa.com/2019/07/06/sourdough-english-muffins/

Sourdough Waffles:

https://athomewiththeresa.com/2019/10/08/sourdough-waffles/

Sourdough Baguettes:

https://athomewiththeresa.com/2019/07/05/sourdough-baguettes/

*My Carl’s Sourdough did arrive about 2 weeks after I started my own starter. It is now my dehydrated back up in case something goes wrong with the one I am using. I just don’t think I can take care of 2 different sourdoughs as I don’t bake everyday.*

Sourdough breads
Waffles

Sourdough Starter

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

An easy to follow tutorial to grow your own sourdough starter at home!

Directions

Day 1: In a jar, crock or plastic bucket (1 quart is a good size) place 1 cup whole wheat flour(or rye) and 1/2 cup water. Mix well, and cover loosely. Place on top of your refrigerator for 24 hours.

Day 2: Discard top half (about 1/2 cup) of the starter and add 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour and 1/2 cup water to the remaining half in the container. Stir well, cover loosely and leave overnight on top of the refrigerator.

Day 3: By now, there will likely be bubbles in the mixture. If so, feed every 12 hours(2x a day), removing half of the sourdough and feeding using 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour and 1/2 cup water each time. If it doesn’t have bubbles, feed just once today.

Day 4-5: Repeat feedings twice a day. On days 4-5 the starter should’ve doubled and bubbled all over. If not, continue feeding twice a day until it reaches this point (days 6-7). My starter was ready on day 5. Lots of bubbles and it doubled in less than 8 hours.

Once it’s ready, remove half of the sourdough and feed it once more. Leave for about 6 – 8 hours and take how much you’ll need for your recipe.

TIPS:

*If your recipe calls for more than 1 cup of starter, give it a couple of feedings without discarding, until you’ve made enough for your recipe plus 1/2 cup to keep and feed again.

*OR collect the discards in a jar in the refrigerator until you get 1 cup, about 2 feedings.

*If you’ve got nothing but 1 tablespoon left, thats okay too! This happened to me more than once. Just feed it as usual and watch it spring back to life. This also goes for if you forgot about it for a few weeks. Just scoop out the top portion and get at least a tablespoon to place in a clean jar. Feed with 1/2 cup water and 1 cup flour then leave at room temperature until bubbly.

Maintaining a Sourdough Starter:

Transfer the remaining half of starter to a container. Feed this starter with 1 cup of flour and 1/2 cup water, cover loosely, and let it rest at room temperature for 4-8 hours.

Store this starter in the refrigerator after and feed it regularly: 1 cup flour and 1/2 cup water once a week, after removing half for “discard”. Remember to leave it at room temperature for a few hours after feeding, then store in the refrigerator until needed.

#ad “As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases”

For the container I use to keep my sourdough, check out this Cambro 1 quart with lid:

Chocolate Bread

Chocolate bread with chocolate chunks in it? Count me in! The chocolate lover in me just couldn’t resist and every bite was instant happiness!

This bread needs to be started the day before so that it can rest and develop it’s flavor overnight. Makes it perfect for breakfast!

You will need the following:Enjoy!!!

2 1/4 cups water

2 1/4 teaspoons rapid rise dry yeast

5 1/4 cups bread flour

1/2 cup dutch process cocoa powder

2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons salt

6 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

Place water, yeast, flour, cocoa powder, sugar and salt in the Thermomix bowl. Set to dough/knead function for 2 minutes. Add chocolate chips and knead for 1 minute, reverse blade function.

Let rise, covered, for about an hour until double in size.

Tip the bowl over and remove the dough to a floured surface. Pull the edge and fold the dough over itself several times. Shape into a ball, place into a greased bowl then turn the dough over and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

Shaped and ready for proofing.

Remove from the refrigerator after the overnight rest. Leave to warm to room temperature for about an hour.

Divide dough into 3-4 pieces and shape each into an oval and place onto a baking sheet, leaving a few inches between the loaves. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise for about another hour, until doubled in size.

Proved and ready for scoring.

Preheat oven to 450F.

Spray loaves with a fine mist of water and slash the tops at an angle 2-3 times. Bake for about 35 to 45 minutes, rotating the sheet halfway through baking.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Hardest part is waiting until it is cool enough to EAT!

Enjoy!