I’ve discovered the excellent Wild Yeast blog recently and have been on a rampage whirlwind of cooking and experimentation ever since.
With the time poverty avoided by the last couple of months, what I’ve most enjoyed is the discovery of semi-sourdough. Sourdough is one of life’s greatest delights, but it does have a habit of eating into half of your weekend. Especially if you don’t have a mixer and have to spent a fair while coaxing the goopy mess by hand. Semi-sourdough is what it says on the tin, a slightly less hydrated dough made with extra ripe starter and skipping the sponge stage, meaning you can go from scratch to out of the oven in about 5 hours. Purists be damned – if I can knock something up that quickly and have hand made bread for my week I’m happy to be a deviant.
Inspired by Wild Yeast and the opening of some new organic shops around the area I’ve also been experimenting with different flours grains and seeds. The last weekend I decided to combine both. A Buckwheat infused, grain and seed heavy semi sour, although I deviated from both recipes a bit in doubling the rises for an extra tang. In honesty it was a complete, but very pleasant experiment. A crispy, slightly bubbled crust with a moist, sweet and nutty crumb. Excellent with a little butter and even better with a strong cheese. Testing with various blues and cheddars left me immensely satisfied.
70g Mixed Seeds & Grains (Pumpkin, Sunflower & Sesame)
250 g White Flour
30 g Wholewheat Flour
30 g Buckwheat Flour
70ml Super Ripe Starter
6 g Salt
The Method (Non Mixer)
Soak all of the seeds/grains in the water. Leave for 30 minutes.
In a large bowl combine the flours, starter, seeds and water and mix until blended with a wooden spoon. Cover and leave for 30 minutes.
Uncover and mix in both the salt and yeast thoroughly. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until you’re at a decent level of development. Don’t expect the window pane variety of your average sourdough here. Buckwheat is gluten free after all.
To use Wild Yeast’s ferment ‘n’ fold method, grease a low, wide casserole pan and turn out into the dish. Leave to develop for 3 hours, folding letter style at 30, 60 and 90 mins.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a batard. Turn into a floured couch and leave to rise for 3 hours.
30 minutes before the final rise is up, pre-heat the oven to 230C and insert a pan of boiling water at the bottom of the oven.
Turn the dough out onto a floured and semolina lined baking parchment and place into your prepared oven. Give it 10 mins at 230C and the remaining 40mins at 200C.