This is one of my absolutely favourite loaves. It never fails to produce a nice rise and always has a reliable prove and bake.
The recipe itself is so simple but the taste of this loaf is fantastic! It has a crunchy crust and a soft crumb making it suitable to be paired with just about anything- delicious toasted with some eggs too!
You want to make sure you have a good strong starter for this recipe (here’s how I make mine) as we skip a levain in this recipe and add our starter straight after we autolyse our mixture.
This loaf is one of the ‘dry-er’ one of my bakes, having around 65% hydration- although you wouldn’t know from the incredibly delicate crumb! It is still quite a wet dough but not too tricky to work with, just make sure that during your folds, you wet your hands. As the hydration is relatively low, I would advise against using any extra flour, so when you tip your dough to pre-shape, don’t flour your surface; instead put your bench scraper to good use!
This is a great beginner-intermediate loaf. Once you’ve mastered your single-flour bake, this is a great step up. The use of spelt makes for a really light texture whilst the wholemeal gives the crust the desired cruch.
So here goes!
- 150g Starter
- 212g Strong White Bread Flour
- 200g Spelt Flour
- 88g Wholewheat Flour
- 10g Salt
- 5g Cumin Seeds
- 325g Water
Mix all ingredients except the starter in a large bowl and allow to rest (autolyse) for 30 minutes
Add your starter and incorporate into the whole mixture (there is no need to knead the dough, just a thorough mix using your hands)
Cover with a damp tea towel and allow to rest for an hour
After the hour is over, perform your first of 6 folds- then perform another fold every 30 minutes for the next 2.5 hours
Allow to rest for another 1.5 hours
Heavily flour your banneton or tea towel
Tip dough onto a NON-FLOURED work surface and pre-shape, you want to use a bench scraper (knife will suffice if you don’t have one) to stop the dough sticking. As the dough is only 65% hydration it shouldn’t be too tricky!
Wet your hands to make the process simpler, pull one side of the dough out and fold on top, then repeat with the sides and finally the bottom (this is to create tension on the opposite side, so imagine it is just like folding corners of paper to form an envelope)
Turn the dough over and form into a boule before placing it seam-side up in your banneton
Place in a plastic bag to prevent the dough drying out and place into the fridge overnight
In the morning, preheat your dutch oven at 250 degrees celcius for an hour
Tip your loaf out of the banneton onto a sheet of baking paper, dust off any excess of flour and (optional) score your loaf.
Bake in a dutch oven at 250 degrees closed for 30 minutes and the at 200 degrees uncovered for a further 20 minutes
Allow to cool completely on a wire rack, serve and enjoy!