Do you like the idea of making your own homemade wholemeal sourdough bread and savour it fresh from the oven, but you are put off by the long preparation process? While making sourdough from scratch does take a long time, you can use this low-effort recipe and see how you get on.
The Traditional Method of Making Sourdough Bread
When I was researching how to make my own sourdough bread, I felt quite demoralised by the amount of steps needed (and the kneading needed!). In a nutshell, you can’t leave the house because you have to knead the dough every one-three hours a few times to develop the gluten, which in turns will develop the typical open structure of the bread.
I make my pizza dough the lazy way: I just mix the ingredients together and let the dough rise untouched for 24 hours, no labour required.
Among the various recipes I found, I saw that many suggested a long fermentation process to cut down on the physical labour. While you still need to do some kneading, this is kept to a minimum in this recipe.
I combined recipes from Alex The French Guy on YouTube and other video tutorials, plus a number of online recipes.
Homemade Wholemeal Sourdough Starter
Day 1: mix together 100 gr of wholemeal flour with 100 gr lukewarm filtered water. Use a glass or plastic container and cover loosely with a lid, keeping in a warm place away from draughts.
Days 2-7: scoop out half of the mixture (you can use it to make sourdough pancakes or sourdough pizza), add another 100 gr of wholemeal flour and 100 gr of water, mix well and cover loosely.
Day 7: the sourdough should be ready. It should smell vinagry and have developed bubbles. You can also do a simple test to check if it’s ready by dropping a tablespoon of starter in a glass of water and see if it floats. If it floats it’s ready to use.
Sourdough Starter Video
Homemade Wholemeal Sourdough Bread Easy Recipe
This recipe produces a very sticky and wet dough (80% hydration). You are welcome to customise it and add more flour or use less water for a more manageable dough.
200 gr sourdough starter
500 gr wholemeal flour
400 gr lukewarm water
6 gr sea salt
Dissolve the starter in a bowl with the water, then add the flour and mix well with a spatula or wooden spoon for 2-5 minutes. Cover with a lid or with cling film and rest for one hour.
Mix the salt with a splash of water then add it to the dough, incorporating it well. Cover and rest for another 6 hours (or 12 if you have time).
Dust the workbench with flour and tip the dough, folding it onto itself like an envelope. Give it a round shape (use an extra dusting of flour if it’s too sticky). Cover a bowl or proofing basket with a cloth and sprinkle it with flour. Tip the dough gently into the bowl and cover it with the cloth. Rest it for another 1-3 hours (or overnight in the fridge if you are not ready to bake).
Sourdough Bread Video
Pre-heat the oven at 220 degrees Celsius (or the maximum temperature in your oven settings) for at least 15 minutes, also heating the tin you will bake the bread in and a roasting tray below.
Using oven gloves take the hot tin out of the oven, place the formed dough in it, cut the surface of the dough to allow it to expand, then put the tin in the oven. Splash a glass of water into the roasting tin below the bread to create steam, which will allow the bread to rise. Bake for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, reduce the temperature to 200 degrees Celsius. Move the bread to a cooling rack and allow it to cook for at least one hour (don’t be tempted to cut the bread before as it will collapse, as it will still be cooking with the residual heat).
Enjoy your delicious homemade sourdough bread!