How to make your own sourdough bread
Photo credit: Rawpixel - Getty Images
As a nation, we seem to have baked during the lockdown, and - along with banana bread - baking sourdough is regularly high on the list. In fact, making a sourdough starter is a mandatory insulation activity.
But apart from slow, mindful practice, what are the health benefits of sourdough bread and why is it touted as "the healthiest bread"?
What is sourdough bread?
Instead of using commercially available yeast like normal bread, sourdough is naturally acidified. This means that it is based on the naturally occurring “wild yeast” that is created when fermenting flour and water - the sourdough starter. This starter then combines the sourdough bread with just two other ingredients - flour and salt.
"Sourdough uses bacteria and yeast to develop gluten and cause it to increase," explains nutritionist Sophie Medlin. “Because of the lactic acid produced by the bacteria, it has a slightly sour taste. This also helps to stay fresh longer. "
Sourdough nutrient content
The exact nutritional profile of sourdough bread depends on the type of flour from which it is made.
On average, however, a medium slice of sourdough bread (56 g) contains:
Calories: 162 calories
Carbohydrates: 32 grams
Fiber: 2-4 grams
Protein: 6 grams
Fat: 2 grams
Selenium: 22% of the FEI
Folic acid: 20% of the FEI
Thiamine: 16% of the FEI
Sodium: 16% of the FEI
Manganese: 14% of the FEI
Niacin: 14% of the FEI
Iron: 12% of the FEI
Sourdough health benefits
With so few ingredients, sourdough is as natural as bread can be. But what are the health benefits?
It is easier to digest than regular bread
Good news for those struggling with digestive problems or IBS.
"Part of the gluten is fermented in the manufacture of sourdough, which means it is easier for people with IBS and other digestive problems to digest if gluten is normally fermented in the colon, causing bloating and sometimes diarrhea," says Medlin. "As always, everyone is very different, so if you normally avoid bread due to digestive problems, please put in a small amount at a time and monitor your symptoms."
Photo credit: Macau Photo Agency / Unsplash
It is very nutritious
If it contains only three ingredients - flour, sourdough starter and salt - how can sourdough bread possibly be more nutritious than normal stuff, we hear you ask.
It all comes down to this clever fermentation process.
Sourdough - like all wholemeal breads - contains minerals such as potassium, magnesium and zinc, all of which are essential for our health. The difference is that normal whole grain bread also contains a high phytate content. Phytates bind to the minerals in our food, reducing our ability to absorb them properly.
However, the long fermentation process required to make a sourdough starter destroys most of these phytates, which means that the minerals in bread are more easily absorbed by our body. Clever what?
It contains less glucose
Many breads contain a lot of glucose, which can cause your blood sugar level to rise sharply after eating. However, sourdough contains far less glucose, since a large part of it is used in the production of wild yeast.
Is sourdough good for gut health?
"Lactobacilli, the bacteria found in the leaven, are probiotics, which means that they have health benefits if taken in the right form and dose," Medlin reveals.
These are the same bacteria that are found in other fermented foods like yogurt and kefir. They help promote the good, friendly bacteria in our digestive system.
“Although these bacteria are unlikely to get into our large intestine, where we mainly focus on our probiotic efforts, and since every batch of sourdough will be different, you are unlikely to be able to demonstrate health benefits, but our mouth and neck will have all microbiomes that do so benefit from adding some friendlier bacteria, ”says Medlin.
How to make sourdough bread at home
Before you start making your bread, you must first prepare your sourdough starter.
Then follow this delicious Medlin recipe for a delicious sourdough bread:
Sour Dough Bread
With chia, poppy seeds and toasted sesame seeds, this bread smells delicious and is full of taste. The crust is cracked, while the crumb is soft and tough.
Photo credit: Dovile Ramoskaite / Unsplash
Preparation time: 50 minutes (without fermentation and proofing time)
Cooking time: 40 minutes
500 g bread flour
375 g water for autolysis
80g sourdough starter
100 g water to soak the seeds, do not drain when adding to the dough
30g poppy seeds
30 g chia seeds
25 g toasted sesame seeds
9 g salt
10 g of additional poppy seeds, chia and sesame seeds each to decorate the top of the bread
Roast the sesame seeds in a dry pan over medium heat for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown.
Combine all three types of seeds in a small bowl and add the 100 g of water so that the seeds can soak up the water (especially the chia seeds) during the dough's autolysis stage.
Mix the flour, water and sourdough starter and cover the dough to autolyze for about 1 hour.
Knead and pinch the salt and add to the dough. Mark the time, cover the dough and let it rest for about 30 minutes.
Begin a series of 4-6 stretches and folds 20 to 30 minutes apart, covering between each stretch and crease and adding the watery seed mixture on the second stretch and fold.
Leave to ferment until the dough is swollen and bubbly. From the specified time when the leaven was added, this mass fermentation can only be 3-4 hours if your room temperature is above 26 ° C, or 10 to 11 hours if your room temperature is below 21 ° C. My dough fermented in 5.5 hours at 25 ° C.
Scrape your fermented dough on a floured countertop. Squeeze out the gases while creating a rectangular shape with the dough, then fold the dough in thirds on the long side and then in half to get a tall square shape.
Cover with plastic and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
Prepare your counter with additional chia, sesame and poppy seeds in a circle when you make a ball and an oval when you make a batard. Prepare your spell tone with flour too.
If you line a bowl or basket with a tea towel, you have the option to lay it flat on your counter, flour it and then coat it with seeds. Shape your dough into a boules or batard by knitting the sides together and then rolling the top several times and pressing in the middle until the dough is completely turned over. OR Turn your dough over and stick it in the sides while turning it in a circle.
Leave the dough to rest for a few minutes to close the seams at the bottom, then moisten the top of the loaf with a damp hand or by spraying. Use your dough scraper to lift your boules / batard off the counter and turn it over the layer of prepared seeds. Roll it up a bit to catch as many as possible.
Transfer the dough to your floured basket. Cover and check until it has expanded and does not rebound as easily when stinging. This can only take 45 minutes at room temperature and up to 10 hours in the refrigerator. My dough was cooked in the fridge for 2.75 hours.
30 minutes before the end of your proofing phase, preheat your oven to 500 ° F (or the recommended temperature for your baking vessel) with the baking vessel inside.
Bake for 30 minutes at 260 ° C, open the lid, then bake for 10 minutes at 230 ° C, remove the lid (or until the inside temperature of the bread is around 95 ° C).
Last update: 19-06-2020
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