All grains contain peptides that mimic morphine or endogenous opioid substances. This is where I deal with my latest loaf craving. Get your bread-based exorphin fix here.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Everyday Bread #53 - Camp Bread in a Dutch Oven: Sourdough Discard Bread

Camp Bread #4: 
A Spent Sourdough Rye and All Purpose Bread Baked in a Dutch Oven 

"Why doesn't your bread rise much?" my sister-in-law Kathy wanted to know.

I told her it was because of the flour I was using: the rye and multigrain bread flour wouldn't form as much gluten as an all-purpose or plain bread flour.  It is difficult to tell people who like fluffy air bread that the more denser whole grain loaf is actually what I am after.

This bread was an attempt to prove that I could bake an airy loaf using all purpose flour.  I took few pictures of this loaf, though: this blog is about whole grain breads, and this is not a whole grain bread.  It is also not a no-knead bread: this bread is kneaded 5-7 minutes, during which time the gluten gets really cohesive and springy.

But the most interesting thing about this loaf (to me) was, I used 1 c of sourdough starter.  This was a very liquid starter, built from my older spent sourdough with my nephew's other son, Andrew the day before.  This refreshed wild starter was made with rye.

I followed the sourdough discard bread recipe from Bread and Whine, that I have used previously.  The only difference being, I was using recently refreshed sourdough.


This dough had a long rise, overnight in the cold car.
In the morning I formed it into a single loaf after a single fold.
I made a fire, but I didn't wait 2 hours before putting the dough in the preheated pot.
I admit that my coals were poor, the rotten birch logs that I used were burning up too quickly.
In spite of the uneven heat of the pot and the fire's coals, the bread rose in the Dutch Oven.  After 25 minutes, I snuck a peak at the loaf.  It had blown apart on top.  But to me, it didn't quite look done.

I set it back on the coals for 10 minutes, lid off, but the problem I was having was, it was burning on the bottom and unfinished on the top.

I flipped it onto the grill and then turned it over in the pot for 10 minutes more.  This probably had the effect of pushing down some of the rise of the loaf.

The bread was mostly baked, but one section of it in the middle remained a bit clinchy.

This is a mild tasting sourdough, good when toasted, edible with cheese.

Notes to Myself
  • Keep the pot on the coals for the hottest part of the bake: the beginning.  Try putting the Dutch Oven, covered, on the coals for 10 minutes, then remove it from direct contact with the coals for 10-15 minutes.
  • The lid off, check the loaf, turn it over as needed and bake for 10-15 minutes more (lid on or off as required).
  • Why are all-purpose breads more of a crowd pleaser than any whole grain breads?  Why don't people like denser loaves that don't rise as much?  It must be taste.  Many people prefer the taste of simpler, refined-flour breads.  To me, they taste flat and less interesting.

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