Sourdough bread: the ultimate sourdough recipe

Sourdough bread is the bake of the moment, and it's easy to see why. Master the art with our simple sourdough recipe

sourdough bread
(Image credit: Getty Images)

We're a nation obsessed with sourdough bread, and for good reason. Not only does this loaf taste superior to any other bread recipes that we've tried, it also keeps for longer and – thanks to its naturally occurring yeast – is much easier to digest for many. Also, the only ingredients you need are flour, water and salt – it doesn't needed added yeast so no worries if you can't get hold of this at the moment.

Below you'll find our tried and tester sourdough recipe, which should get you on-track to achieving your dream loaf. However, we will preface this recipe by saying that making sourdough is an art, so it may take a few attempts to get it just right. It's all part of the fun though. And, we've given instructions for making the bread with the help of a food mixer – but, of course, you can do it by hand; it just requires more elbow grease.

Find more recipe ideas and inspiration over on our food hub.

  • Special thanks to Miele for sharing this recipe with us

Sourdough bread recipe

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Ingredients:

  • Strong white bread flour, 400 grams
  • Wholemeal, rye or spelt flour, 100 grams
  • Tepid water, 360 millilitres
  • Sourdough starter, 100 grams (click for our guide to make your own starter)
  • Salt, 10 grams

Method

1. In a food mixer bowl, combine the flours and 350ml of tepid water and stir until there is no dry flour left. Cover the bowl, and leave to the side for 30 minutes. This process is called autolyse and helps to hydrate the flour particles therefore making it much easier to knead afterwards.

2. Add the starter into the bowl (see our sourdough starter guide to find out how to make yours), attach the dough hook and knead on a medium speed for one minute. Add the salt and remaining 10ml water and knead for another four minutes on a medium speed. When ready, cover the dough with a damp tea towel and set the timer for 30 minutes. If you do not have a food mixer, knead by hand for 10 minutes.

3. After 30 minutes, you will need to gently stretch and fold the dough in the bowl a few times to help with gluten development. Cover again and repeat the same process every half an hour three more times, then leave the dough to prove at room temperature until it doubles in size.

4. When ready, flour your worktop and tip the dough very gently. Shape into a smooth round shape and place into a floured bread basket or a bowl. Cover and leave in the fridge overnight.

5. Preheat the oven (on Moisture Plus if you have this function, with two bursts of steam) to 250ºC. If your oven doesn’t have this function, spray the oven cavity with some water or put a baking tray filled with water at the bottom of the oven as soon as you slide in the tray with the dough and keep the door shut to retain moisture throughout the cooking. When the oven is ready, transfer the dough on to a baking tray, score with a serrated knife and bake for 35 minutes. 

6. When ready, remove from the oven and transfer into a wire rack. Allow to cool for at least an hour before slicing.

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