More than 1 hour
Makes 1 round loaf (10-12 slices)
- 2½ cups (375g) white bread flour
- ½ + ¼ cup (125g) wholewheat flour
- 2½ cups (375g) lukewarm water
- ½ cup (100g) ripe sourdough starter (see below)
- 1 Tbsp (10g) fine salt
- Preheat oven to 240°C.
- Whisk together flours and add water until thoroughly incorporated and there are no lumps.
- Cover bowl with cling film and set aside for 1 hour.
- Add the starter and spread it over the dough using your fingertips.
- Fold the edges of the dough into the centre.
- Pinch the dough until the starter is well incorporated. (Don’t be delicate – you want to work this in quickly!)
- Cover with cling film and rest for 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle salt on the surface of the dough and use the same method as above to incorporate. (You shouldn’t feel any granules at the end.)
- Cover again and rest for 15 minutes.
- Dip your hands in water (to prevent sticking) before each fold.
- Grab the top portion of the dough with both hands and gently pull and stretch it upwards and fold over the opposite edge (don’t tear it).
- Rotate bowl 180° to repeat from the other side.
- Rotate bowl 90° and repeat again on both sides.
- Follow this process four times, allowing dough to rest for 15-30 minutes between each set of folds.
- Cover with clingfilm or a tea towel, and leave dough to rest for 1-2 hours (or overnight).
- Transfer the dough to a clean countertop, being careful not to break the air bubbles.
- Gently shape the dough into a 20cm round, pulling it towards you in a circular motion until it creates a tight ball and there is some tension on the skin of the dough.
- Rest dough, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes, until it has relaxed slightly.
- Dust top with flour and place seam- side up in a basket lined with muslin and dusted with flour. Rest in fridge for 1 hour.
- Transfer bread to a cast-iron pot, score the top and bake for 30 minutes with the lid on.
- Reduce oven to 220°C, remove the lid and bake for 30-40 minutes.
- Leave to cool in the pot for 10 minutes, then turn bread out onto a cooling rack.
- Serve within 3-5 days, or freeze (sliced) for up to a month.
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