No Knead Sourdough Bread

Do you want to learn how to make no knead sourdough bread? I have wanted to learn for years and I'm thrilled that I was able to find someone to teach me.

No Knead Sourdough Bread

A few months ago, my friend and neighbor, Janis, had me over to her house to teach me her method for baking artisan no knead sourdough bread. It came out so well — I'm very excited to share it with you. You can make this bread in your own kitchen for only $1 per loaf, just using a Dutch oven.

No Knead Sourdough Bread

No Knead Sourdough Bread: The Lazy Way to Make Bread

This no knead sourdough bread is so easy to make. It is no knead, people. No stand mixer or Bosch. No kneading or mixing whatsoever. Just put the flour and the starter in a bowl and let it sit there overnight (well, 18-19 hours to be exact). Then you shape it, let it sit out while the oven preheats, and then bake. What could be easier?

No knead bread appeals to me because I'm inherently lazy. Yes, I'm a crazy, driven workaholic who averages 10-12 hour workdays. But when it comes to cooking, gardening and housekeeping, I like to keep things as simple and easy as possible. (So I can work more — ha!)

This bread is beyond delicious. Not only that, as you can see from the photo above, it's also beautiful. You will love it!

And it's easy to make. Just follow the directions exactly. I took very detailed notes when Janis taught me, and I worked hard to be very precise with the recipe. Do not fool around with this — just do exactly as I have outlined and you will have perfect, delicious bread.

No-Knead Sourdough Bread

Ingredients

Sourdough starter (1/4 cup)
Filtered water (12 oz + extra to activate starter)
Unbleached, all-purpose white flour – I used King Arthur (16 oz + extra to activate starter and some to put on your board)
Sea salt (1/2 tsp)
Rice flour, for dusting

Equipment

Large glass or ceramic [easyazon-link asin=”B00004SZ7H” locale=”us”]mixing bowl[/easyazon-link] (not stainless steel)
[easyazon-link asin=”B00063RWYI” locale=”us”]Dutch oven[/easyazon-link] or [easyazon-link asin=”B00008CM6K” locale=”us”]stock pot[/easyazon-link]
Very large [easyazon-link asin=”B000E1S08O” locale=”us”]cutting board[/easyazon-link] or [easyazon-link asin=”B0032UXSTK” locale=”us”]wooden bread board[/easyazon-link], or a very clean countertop
[easyazon-link asin=”B000KEJQIS” locale=”us”]Banneton[/easyazon-link] or [easyazon-link asin=”B00555ETXY” locale=”us”]Colander[/easyazon-link] lined with a dishcloth
Optional: [easyazon-link asin=”B001BOELT0″ locale=”us”]plastic dough scraper[/easyazon-link]

Directions

1. Follow directions (see below) on making and activating a sourdough starter, feeding it every 8 hours until it is super-bubbly and active. It should look like a flour-and-water version of Champagne. You should see lots of bubbles and holes on the top. (This is really the key to a good loaf of sourdough. If your starter is not active enough, your bread will not rise.)

No Knead Sourdough Bread

2. Put 12 ounces of filtered water (at body temperature — not ice cold) in a bowl or glass measuring cup. Add 1/4 cup of active sourdough starter to the cup and set aside.

3. In a large glass or ceramic (not stainless steel) mixing bowl, stir or whisk together 16 ounces white flour and 1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt.

4. Add sourdough starter and stir together with a wooden spoon.

5. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave on the counter for 18-19 hours. If your kitchen is very cold, set your bowl in a warm place. You can make a note to yourself on a sticky and put it on top of the bowl, or set an alert on your iPhone (Janis uses the stickies — I use the iPhone).

No Knead Sourdough Bread

6. 18-19 hours later, sprinkle white flour on a wooden board or large cutting board (or a clean countertop). With clean hands, gently scoop the dough out of the bowl and carefully set it on your floured surface. It helps to have a dough scraper to do this. You can get a plastic dough scraper for less than a dollar at gourmet shops or restaurant supply stores. You can also use a wooden spoon or your hands (it can help to put a little flour on your hands).

7. Fold the dough on top of itself three times. 1-2-3, that's it. There is no kneading required — you're just helping to disperse the gluten a bit.

No Knead Sourdough Bread

8. Cover with a dishtowel and let sit on the board for exactly 15 minutes (set your timer).
15 minutes later, sprinkle a little rice flour into the bowl of a banneton (pictured below) or colander lined with a thin dish cloth (not one of those big thick terrycloth ones — use a thin cloth).

No Knead Sourdough Bread

9. Very carefully put the dough into the banneton or cloth-lined collander, top side down. In other words, the top of the blob of dough should go down into the banneton, where the sprinkled rice flour is. That is going to be the top of your loaf when it bakes.

10. Cover the banneton or colander with another dishcloth and let it sit on the counter or in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours.

11. After one hour has passed, preheat oven to 500 degrees F and set the Dutch oven with lid on inside the oven, on the middle rack. You will let the Dutch oven, lid on, heat up in the oven for 30 minutes.

12. When 30 minutes have passed (and the dough has risen in the banneton or colander for a total of 1 1/2 hours), carefully take the very hot Dutch oven out of the oven.

13. Sprinkle some rice flour on your hands and very gently transfer the dough into the Dutch oven. The top of the loaf, which was facing down in the banneton or colander, will be facing right-side up in the Dutch oven.

14. Cover and put in the oven, immediately turning the heat down to 450 degrees (You may have to go as low as 400 — all ovens are different. Start with 450 and see how it goes — 450 worked great for me.).

15. Let bake for 1/2 hour, then take the lid off and turn the oven down to 400 degrees. Bake for 15 more minutes.

16. Serve warm with lots of grass-fed butter.

No Knead Sourdough Bread

How To Make a Sourdough Starter

See my post: How to Make a Sourdough Starter from Scratch (video included)

How To Activate a Sourdough Starter

Janis does not feed her starter every day. She keeps it in her fridge. She just lets it sit in there, with the “hooch” liquid on top, indefinitely. When she wants to make bread this is what she does.

No Knead Sourdough Bread

1. Take 2 teaspoons of sourdough starter and put it in a glass or ceramic bowl.

2. Stir in 1 ounce or 2 tbs each of room temp filtered water and flour. (Janis uses a digital scale to do this. You put a bowl on the scale, reset the weight to zero, then adds the starter.)

3. Around 8 hours later, measure your sourdough starter. (Again, it's good to use a digital scale.)

4. Add equal parts flour and filtered water. In other words, if you have 2 oz starter, add 2 oz flour and 2 oz water.

5. Let sit for 8 hours, repeat the feeding one more time.

6. Let it sit for another 8 hours. You may have to feed it even one more time after that. See how bubbly it is & use your discretion.

To keep your starter active & bubbly, you need to continue to feed it at least every 12 hours and it has to be equal parts (1/3 starter, 1/3 filtered water & 1/3 flour). I feed my sourdough starter when I wake up in the morning and when I go to bed at night.

Recipe Notes: White Flour – Best for Sourdough Newbies

Janis spent a long time researching and perfecting this recipe. I think that's why it comes out so well — she really paid attention to details. She uses white flour in this recipe because her family prefers it. You can try using part whole wheat flours, but Janis recommends starting with white flour the first time you bake sourdough bread. It is easier for most folks to get the hang of.

No Knead Sourdough Bread

Janis has since informed me that she worked on it and she got great results with 100% plain spelt flour (not sprouted). Since the sourdough starter breaks down the phytic acid and other anti-nutrients, it's fine to just use plain spelt or whole wheat flour. But try it with white flour first. If you succeed, then move on to a whole grain flour (ideally, freshly ground — it's more nutritious).

I also plan to make a gluten-free version of this bread… check back.

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No Knead Sourdough Bread

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Ann Marie Michaels

I have 25 years of experience in digital and online media & marketing. I started my career in Silicon Valley and Los Angeles, working at some of the world’s top ad agencies. In 2007, after my first child was born, I started this little food blog which I grew to over 250K monthly unique website visitors and over 350K social media followers. For nearly 15 years, I've helped my audience of mostly moms and women 25-65 cook for their families and live a healthier lifestyle.

 The year after I started the blog, I founded a blog network in the health & wellness space called Village Green Network. I started the company on my coffee table and bootstrapped the business to over $1.3 million in annual revenue within 5 years. During that time, I helped a number of our bloggers become six figure earners. After being censored on almost every social media platform for telling the After being censored on almost every social media platform from Facebook and Instagram to Pinterest and Twitter, and being deplatformed on Google, I am now deployed as a digital soldier, writing almost exclusively about politics on my blog Cheeseslave.com. Because who can think about food when we are fighting the second revolutionary war and third world war? Don't worry, there will be more recipes one day. After the war is over.

157 thoughts on “No Knead Sourdough Bread

  1. Yay!! Thanks so much for sending this out to the general masses πŸ™‚ I can’t wait to fire up my starter and get going with this.

  2. For feeding the starter, you said use 1 oz or 2 Tb of each water and flour, but equal amounts of flour and water by weight will be about twice as much flour by volume.

  3. **Gorgeous** loaf! I’m intrigued by baking it in the Dutch oven… can’t wait to try it. Thanks! πŸ™‚

  4. I just got some sourdough starter flakes from Carl’s Friends. Just send them a self-addressed stamped envelope and they’ll send you some for free. It’s from the Oregon Trail days, 1847. My sister (a VERY accomplished bread baker) said her loaf was the best bread she’d every had!

    https://www.carlsfriends.org/

    I also love www.breadtopia.com. It’s all about baking beautiful sourdough no-knead, with LOTS of instructional videos.

    My family is just starting to move off of GAPS so last week (since I didn’t have my starter yet) I baked no knead with a tiny bit of yeast and added whey and apple cider vinegar to ferment the loaf. It rose in my fridge for two days before I baked it and it was DELISH! The flavor really develops with such a slow ferment. I’m so excited because we were all able to digest it beautifully, which means that GAPS has worked for us! I can’t wait to try baking bread with my new sourdough starter!

    1. What she means is that since water and flour have different densities, equal volume (e.g. Tb) of ingredients would result in different quantities of each ingredient than equal mass (e.g. oz) would.
      Remember the old riddle, which weighs more a pound of bricks or a pound of feathers? Well, of course they weigh the same (mass), but the certainly take up different amounts of space (volume).

  5. I make all my bread with sprouted wheat flour–it works (and rises) beautifully! This is the recipe I use: https://www.kitchenstewardship.com/2010/03/12/sourdough-recipes-galore-honey-whole-wheat-sourdough-bread/

    …except that I use all sprouted wheat flour–even for my sourdough starter. It’s delicious! There is 5-7 minutes of kneading involved, but it can also be made no-knead and it comes out okay. We make all our bread in a dutch oven or in stoneware bread pans.

    Rachel

  6. Oh I want to try this! My boyfriend is a big fan of sourdough and he’s gradually won me over. I am lazy, too!
    .-= Jeanmarie´s last blog ..Surviving a Fall β€” and Committed Relationships =-.

  7. Thanks for posting the recipe. I’ve been experimenting with sourdough recently. Some has been successful and some hasn’t. I’ll definitely give this recipe and the one Rachel linked to a try.
    .-= Lovelyn´s last blog ..Typing Spanish =-.

  8. Ann Marie – Thank you for finally posting this. It’s been a long wait but looks like it’s been worth it. Will be trying this soon along with others over at Kitchen Stewardship.
    Thanks again, Pamela
    .-= Pamela´s last blog ..Getting to know your Local CSA’s: =-.

  9. I think what Rachelle ment was that the recipe calls for 2 tsp of starter and 2 TBS of both water and flour. Was that a mistake? Should it be 2 TBS starter?
    Thanks! Can’t wait to try this!

  10. Oh you mean at the bottom where it tells how to activate the starter?

    Sorry that is confusing. Yes, in my notes, it says to start with 2 tsp of starter and 1 oz each of the others.

    I’ll let Janis correct me if I’m wrong on that.

    1. She was looking for clarification in the quantities. You said 1 oz or 2 tbs of flour and water. But weight/volume is not the same for both of those. Flour requires twice as much volume as a liquid to match weights. I think maybe it supposed to read “1 oz of both, or 4 Tbs flour and 2 Tbs of water”

      1. From my own starter – I always feed it with equal parts *by weight* of flour and water. So yes, I expect Nicole has the volume estimates correct. I just use a food scale and pay no attention to the volume.

  11. I’m moving soon and can’t get sprouted flour around here. But, I would love to try this recipe before I pack up. Can I make it w/o sprouted flour?

    Also, if I always like to have two cups of sourdough on hand (I use it for more than just bread – also in cakes, etc), what amounts would I feed it to keep it healthy? I’m not sure I’m getting this ratio “thing.”

  12. Oddly enough, I actually enjoy the kneading process (releases pent up frustrations!) and have had great luck using the sourdough bread recipe in Nourishing Traditions. I make the starter just the way Sally says, except I use sprouted flour from To Your Health Sprouted Flour Company. I start with sprouted rye, then make the actual bread with sprouted spelt flour. I let the bread rise 16-24 hours, and it rises fairly high.

    The loaves are of course denser than white flour loaves, but the flavor is outstanding! Even my seventeen year old looks forward to bread baking day. It lasts on the counter for over a week (if we restrain ourselves!) and tastes delicious toasted and drenched in butter.

    I recommend giving the spouted flour a try, as the bread is so easily digested; especially with the long fermentation.

    Happy baking!
    .-= Annie Dru´s last blog ..Dirty socks?… No! It’s fermentation! =-.

  13. @ Natalie

    YES you can make it without sprouted flour.

    The ratio thing is just 1/3 starter, 1/3 filtered water and 1/3 flour. I know she said to start w/ 2 tsp and 2 TBS of water and 2 TBS flour. Confusing — and maybe I wrote it down wrong.

    But if you already have your starter going, just measure it on a digital scale. If you have 2 oz of starter, add 2 oz of water and 2 oz of flour and let it sit for 8 hours. Then measure it again and add more — every 8 hours.

    What I noticed about sourdough baking is that you have to bake very regularly and bread and bread products really have to be a part of your routine to keep your starter going. For me right now, I’m too busy so I’ll keep buying bread from Jack Bezian (excellent local sourdough bread in LA).

  14. @ Paula

    I’m very curious about the teff flour. Is it truly gluten-free? I want to make the fermented Ethiopian bread from the teff — injera bread.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Injera

    I love it!

  15. @ Nora
    We are going to experiment making this with Teff flour soon.
    We use it for pancakes, and have no need for any of the extra binders that most gluten free recipes call for, so I think it will work out just fine.
    Paula

  16. Teff flour is gluten-free, and delicious! It’s a bit expensive, but makes great gluten-free graham crackers as it has that dark flavor. However, although it makes great pancakes, I doubt that you would get satisfactory results with sourdough bread. Pancakes don’t need to rise much, so they don’t really need a binding agent. However, in order for bread to turn out light enough and not brick-like, it needs something to hold the grain together. It has to hold together enough for air pockets to be created, all the way through a heavy loaf. This isn’t a problem with a thin pancake, but a loaf would be much heavier.

    About the measuring for the starter, both measurement methods are used, it just depends on whether you want a stiffer starter or a more liquid, runny starter. It’s a matter of personal preference. If you measure by volume you’ll get a stiffer starter; measuring by weight yields a runny starter.

    If you haven’t had success with sourdough before it may be that your starter wasn’t mature enough. A really mature starter will be much more stable and produce a much better bread. It can survive the refrigerator much better, for those of us without much routine :-).

    Free, mature starter: www.carlsfriends.org

  17. I admit I haven’t had much luck with sourdough. I’ve tried it a half dozen times with absolutely no luck. I’ll give this recipe a shot, but I think I may be sourdough challenged.
    I indulge occasionally and buy a loaf of real sourdough bread from Whole foods or Trader Joe’s, but it would be great if I could do it myself!
    .-= Satisfied Belly´s last blog ..Can’t cook in chaos =-.

  18. I just mixed the starter with 16oz of water and 16 oz of flour. Should I be doing that by weight? Because I did it by volume and it is very liquidy almost between a batter and dough and I can’t imagine this folding. Did I do something wrong or would you add more flour if it was measured by weight or something?

  19. Hi, Patrick,

    It’s fine to measure by volume — in other words, with a measuring cup.

    How much starter did you use? The recipe calls for 12 oz flour and 12 oz water — not 16 oz.

  20. Why rice flour? Can I use the same white wheat flour instead? That is what I always did for regular no-knead bread.

  21. Hi Anne Marie- quick question for you. I am 2-3 hours away from folding my loaf, hence my question… when you folded the dough, did you fold and push down or did you fold it gently trying not to push out air?

    and then I wanted to address Tierney’s question about rice flour. I had a great loaf going one time and tried to let it do its final rise in a light weight cloth lined bowl sprinkled with wheat flour. So sad. It totally stuck when I tried to remove it from the bowl for baking. Rice flour is used on cloth because the dough will not stick to it.

    Thanks for the recipe! I’m hopeful! πŸ™‚

  22. Thanks Erin! I did always have a little bit of sticking with the wheat flour, although the loaves always came out ok they had some kind of rough spots on the top where it had stuck to the towel. I will try the rice flour.

  23. @ Erin

    Fold it gently! Just 1-2-3 folds and that’s it.

    And yes, you are right, the wheat flour is sticky. This is why people commonly use corn flour when making pizza. However the rice flour is much less assertive.

  24. Whoops, I wrote that wrong.

    I used a 1/4 cup of starter. I didn’t have any sprouted flour so I just added 4 more ounces of flour so I had 16 ounces of flour and then 12 ounces of water. All done by volume and it is really runny. Maybe my starter was too runny. Should I just add a little more flour until it is like a wet dough? Also if I add more flour should I let it sit 18 hours again?

  25. Patrick – I am still not sure what you mean when you say “by volume”.

    Start with a very bubbly starter (pictured above). It shouldn’t be runny. It should be somewhere in between a dough and runny. But very very bubbly. You need 1/4 cup of that.

    Add that 1/4 cup of bubbly starter to 12 oz filtered water. If you do not have a digital scale to use for measuring, use a glass (Pyrex) measuring cup to measure 12 ounces.

    Put 16 oz of flour (best to measure by digital scale, but you can also measure by cup) in a large glass or ceramic bowl. Add salt and then add the starter and water.

    I don’t know if I would try to add more flour at this point. Why don’t you see how it goes.

    If it doesn’t work, I really recommend getting a digital scale. I got mine — Escali — for about $25

    https://www.amazon.com/Escali-Primo-Digital-Multifunctional-Chrome/dp/B0007GAWRS

    1. I had the same results as Patrick and I measured using a scale. 16 oz flour plus 12 oz water and 1/4 cup starter. After 18 hours I have a big bowl of bubbly goop. Soupy and runny. I added some more flour until I got something resembling dough (about 10oz measured on a scale. It’s now back in the bowl and I’m letting sit again to see if it will rise.

  26. Early on, I used to let my starter go dormant in between uses and then revive as needed. The bread came out so-so and since I’m not picky, we always ate it happily.

    Then, with advice form another site, I began to keep my starter out and fed everyday. I usually feed it about 25 grams of water and 25 grams of flour a day. I do of course take some of the starter out (usually throw away–I know, not the best but it works) everyday when I do this. Since I have started doing this, about 6 months ago, my bread is coming out fantastic. I think the healthy, active starter is really the key for me.

    1. I really don’t recommend leaving starter out for prolonged periods of time particularly in the warm months. you will have a kitchen full of fruit flies! Sometimes in the summer months I have to secure an elastic around my dish towel to keep them out. I am in New England not CA, so maybe you are fortunate enough to not have this issue.
      Not in direct reply to your comment, but the thread on a whole, I am not understanding why everyone is purchase.g their starters. they will eventually go wild and adapt to your native flora. you can start your own faster and cheaper than it can be shipped. one method is by starting it with commercial yeast and allowing it to go wild. that is how I started my own and it is 3 years old and strong and sourat. another method is by using wild grapes which I hope hope hope to try this summer. there is a plethora of info about sourdough

      1. Cont …. (my android didn’t like something), you can learn a lot about eight dough and its history, travels across the pond to the USA how it had more value than money on the frontier and lots of other fun stuff at king Arthur s webpage. kingarthurflour.com. unfortunately, they don’t tell much on the health benefits which is how I found this page. one of our family favorites is the extra tangy furlough recipe fro explains m Kaf . that recipe explains how refrigeration makes the yeast produce more of a mac**** resulting in a more sour flavor. good luck, sourdoug h rocks!

  27. @ Patrick
    When I make No Knead I always use 1 1/2 cups water to 3 cups flour. I am not a scale-user. The dough comes out a little wetter or stiffer depending on how fluffy the flour was, or if it was more settled in the cup, but after baking a lot of bread you can tell by the feel how your loaf will come out and you don’t have to use a scale. I always use a scant cup of flour and then if it is too wet, I add a little more. Personal preference really determines whether your dough should be wet or stiff, so just experiment and don’t worry about getting it perfect every time! I’m sure no one will complain as long as they have fresh sourdough in their mouths! The humidity also affects the dough so bread is not an exact science anyway. Laura’s mother, Ma Ingalls, never had a scale, or an exact oven temperature, and we’re all going traditional anyway, right? πŸ˜‰

  28. P.S. You don’t even have to keep your sourdough starter measurement consistent. If you want a sour loaf, use less starter; for a loaf that ISN’T sour, use MORE starter. The longer it ferments, the more sour the bread will be, so MORE starter makes a LESS sour loaf because the dough rises faster. Just play around with it to see what you like!

  29. @ Kaylin

    Thank you so much – that is so helpful!

    LOVE the Ma Ingalls reference — Laura Ingalls Wilder is one of my very favorite authors. One of my best friends actually named her firstborn daughter Laura after her!

  30. Thank you cheeseslave and Kaylin.

    Sorry if my post was hard to understand. By volume I just meant I used a measuring cup. So for the water I put a cup an a half in and for the flour I put two cups in (12 fl.oz and 16 fl oz respectively) as compared to using a scale. I have one so I guess I will try that next time.

    So based on Kaylin’s suggestion I would need about another cup I guess. I wonder if I should let it sit and ferment again after I add another cup? All this weighting might kill me though.

  31. Ann Marie, I completely agree! I frequently think of Ma, and how capable she was, raising her three little girls out in the middle of nowhere, and having to make everything they had. She’s one of my heroines! When I was a kid there was an elderly lady, Mrs. Burkheiser, who taught “Little House on the Prairie Classes” in her basement. My mom enrolled us several times, mostly because she loved the classes so much. We wore the “Little House” dresses she made us. We read the books and Mrs. Burkheiser would show us the kinds of things they used (she had a large collection of antiques from that time period) and we did things like make soap, eat venison, and make nine patch pillows. I’ve loved reading the books again to my children and I learn so much from Ma!

    Patrick, since flour is significantly less dense than water, two cups of flour doesn’t weigh 16 oz, so yes, you should add more flour. If you let it ferment longer the flavor will be more developed, but I would put it in the fridge. You can let bread dough ferment for days by keeping it in the fridge and “deflating” it every 12 hours or so. Just fold it over a couple of times in the bowl. It should be delicious!

    1. What a great idea to have Little House on the Prairie classes! Might put that on the To Do list for when I give up being an employee! It was popular here in New Zealand too. I am surprised by all the concern here about looking after your starter just so. I leave mine in the firdge most of the time as I only bake every second week. I taker it out 24 hours in advance and feed it twice before baking time-once to reactivate, then to make the sponge. I don’t measure-just guess. Scales are far easier to use than measuring cups too. Off to convert to grams and celcius now and try this recipe thanks.

  32. Jed –

    I bought a starter culture from sourdo.com, and in the instructions he emphasizes the importance of a “fully active starter”. To fully activate a refrigerated starter, he recommends taking your jar of starter from the fridge (which would probably be stored with about 1-1.5 cups in it) and filling it up the rest of the way with warm filtered water. You stir this watery mixture vigorously, then pour out all but 1 cup and add enough flour to give it a pancake batter consistancy. You leave this for 12 hours or so and you should have an active starter. I tried it last time and it worked quite well.

  33. Jim,

    Thanks for your response and I hear what you are saying and I’ve heard and done pretty much as you mentioned for almost 6 months. Maybe in my case my starter is responding to the daily love, affection and attention it gets while being out amongst the action of the kitchen as opposed to being kept in the dark, cold fridge.

    Sounds silly, but I’m kinda serious that this may be the key for me. Since being out the last 6 months, my starter has acted like the champ it is and my bread is coming out really good.

  34. I am very excited about this recipe. I just bought a spelt sourdough stater from Cultures for Health, and I am not sure if that means that I can only use spelt flour or if I can use other flour. But I am going to look into it. We are moving in less than two weeks, so I will have to wait for a few weeks before I can start experimenting! I have ridded my house of white flour and sugar, and won’t be re-introducing them into my kitchen, so I am going to have to come up with something else! πŸ™‚

    Question: You have talked about sourdough in the past being OK for some people who are gluten sensitive. Would this way of preparing sourdough be in that category, do you think? I am gluten (and to some degree grain) sensitive and I would love to be able to enjoy bread again.

    But this is a good jump off point for experimentation! Janis did a great job showing you both how to make beautiful bread! πŸ™‚

  35. wonderful recipe!!! with you and kitchen stewardship and nourishing kitchen i was so inspired i created a photo sourdough tutorial that can be viewed here…https://amoderatelife.blogspot.com/ but i love your instructions! Viva la sourdough!!! Your website is amazing! thanks for sharing all this wonderful information!!!
    .-= oystergirl´s last blog ..The GREEN MONSTAH!!!! =-.

  36. Hi again Anne Marie,

    No, I don’t use any vital gluten; just the sprouted rye for the starter, then the sprouted spelt for the bread.

    I taught a class on how to make the sprouted sourdough last week, and one of my students took a photo of her loaf and sent it to the rest of the class… beautiful!

    It does work, it does rise, just not as high as you’d get with white flour. Obviously much more nutrient dense though… not to mention digestible!

    Give it a go!
    .-= Annie Dru´s last blog ..Dirty socks?… No! It’s fermentation! =-.

  37. I have been wanting a good and easy recipe…I am always stuck at the first step, the starter!! Now I know where to go to find it in your resource pages, thanks for that! I can’t wait to get some sourdough going…gotta go order my starter!

  38. Hi! Just checking back in to see if you finally were able to put up the recipe for the no-knead version of sourdough, which we all Do-need πŸ™‚ Really excited to try this after I finish the two loaves I took out of the oven today. If anyone is interested in a 100% whole wheat sourdough, with a slide show tutorial I have put it up here:
    100% Whole Wheat Sourdough Tutorial I hope the wonderful cheeseslave doesn’t mind! Thanks again for this great lookin recipe!!! Happy baking everyone!
    .-= oystergirl´s last blog ..Its all for the birds! =-.

  39. Pingback: Links I’ve Liked 5/8-5/15 « A Well-Armed Laura Ingalls Wilder
  40. I am trying to understand the quantities involved. I have to convert them into metric but I would need to know whether the water and the flour quantities are weight or the water is actually 12 fl oz? Thanks. G.

  41. To Annie Dru
    I would like to make this bread in western Canada, but we are very dry with very high altitude (i am about 5000 near a ski hill which is higher than normal for my area) and am having a tough time with breads especially gluten free.
    So I am considering the sprouted sourdough (instead of GF breads…sigh!…they just do not work for me! up here) as i was told it might be better to try that.
    I have to order the sprouted flour from the US, so i want to research before spending small bags of money.
    I was wondering what altitude you are at to compare to see if that would work for me…..or if anyone else has problems with high altitude and zero humidity.
    My breads n the past i have tried from KIM (the lady who won best bread for GF bread in Arizona) “the loaves have come out dense, dry and heavy”
    soooo….if anyone also can help me please?…much appreciated.

    1. Jo-Anne, I live in Arizona at about 5800 ft and it’s usually very dry here (other than monsoon season)…so I know what it’s like to get bricks. I used to make wedding cakes and did a LOT of baking…and I’ve done some gluten free also. I’m just starting my sourdough adventure…but here are some tips that will carry over from cake baking: 1. Raise the temp in the oven about 25 degrees (you will need to adjust the actual baking time so that it doesn’t burn)…this will help the bread set before it falls. 2. Use more leavening (about 1 1/2 x what the recipe calls for). In cakes this would be baking soda or baking powder depending on the recipe…in this, I’m guessing the starter. 3. If you’re using sprouted flour, add a little more flour (a Tbsp or 2)…it will need that to hold the bread together and not have HUGE air pockets. 4. Add a little more liquid. I know it sounds funny to say add a little more flour and a little more liquid…but because of our dry environments a couple extra Tbsp of liquid (up to 1/4 cup depending on how dry it is) goes a long way in keeping things moist. I would also recommend with sourdough bread to brush with melted butter either before baking or as soon as it comes out of the oven.

      I’ll keep you posted on how my adventure turns out. Also, it’s much less expensive to sprout your own wheat, dehydrate it, and grind it…than to buy sprouted wheat berries or flour.

  42. you state in the ingredients that it is 1/2 tsp of sea salt. but later, in the directions you say 1 1/2 tsp sea salt. Which is the correct amount? thanks!

  43. I use 1 1/2 tsp salt. Salt slows down the fermentation process. If you use too little salt it may ferment faster and your results may not be the same. Longer ferment = better flavor and more nutritious.

  44. Well I finally got my bread using sprouted flour or organic wheat flour, with Rye, spelt in different combinations, using my starter in western Canada to work beautifully.
    After much research, and many, many failures, got my bread to work for my family.
    Oh, and I use 2tsp salt to compensate for high altitude problems!

  45. Pingback: Fermented foods – the missing link « The Grecian Garden
  46. Just realised I skipped the 15 minutes on the board step and put it straight into the lined colander :-S also leaving it to rise in a cool place as won’t be back until it’s proofed for much longer than the 1 1/2 hours. If God is willing there will still be bread in the end!

    1. Maria, how did your bread turn out? If I run out of time to bake my bread, I often put the dough to rise for the final proof in the fridge overnight and bake it in the morning. It bakes up just fine.

      1. Sorry Janice, I thought i’d already replied! The bread turned out very well, but I think I might have added a bit too much flour, I didn’t get that bubbly, open crumb that I got when I used only white flour. Or is it just the way it is with whole wheat flour and bread?

        1. Haha, I skip the 15 minute rest almost every time now. I only do it if I forget that I had bread on the table! Never found a problem.

  47. I’m still new to baking. I made this today and the texture is great, but the crust is very hard–pretzel hard. Any tips for getting a softer crust? Maybe I let the dough dry out too much? I am at 9,100 ft in the Rockies, so the altitude and dryness is definitely an issue for us up here.

    Thanks!

    1. Softer crust- try adding about 1-2 tsp of dry milk powder (or regular milk), or add an egg to your mixture. Both will soften the crust a little bit. I’m in Denver and I’ve had that problem at times. Also, when you bake it and it cools, just place it in a plastic bag after 2 hours of cooling, and the crust will soften in about 3 hours, just in case you don’t want to mess with the recipe!

  48. I followed this recipe exactly – – however, although the first rise was very bubbly (and a bit liquidy), it never rose the second time (I then added extra flour, and even left it overnight)… What went wrong? No loss, though… I spread the dough thin on a parchment covered cookie sheet and made some fantastic crackers with it (3 sheets). I would like to know what might’ve gone awry, though…

  49. My dough does not rise much during the second rise either. It will even deflate further when you put it in the preheated pot to bake. In the oven though, it usually gets terrific “oven spring”. (This is the term bakers use to describe the rise that occurs while the bread is baking.) This is the beauty of baking your bread in a very hot pot. When you take the lid off after it’s been in the oven for 1/2 hour it’s a lovely surprise to see a beautifully risen boule staring back at you!

    Next time, I wouldn’t be concerned if the dough doesn’t rise much during the second rise, and definitely don’t add flour at that point. This is a wet dough but that’s OK because you don’t have to handle it much. You can also try adding just a little less water next time if you think it’s too wet.

    Leaving the dough overnight for the second rise would only be a good idea if you refrigerate the dough. The cold temperature retards the dough. It still rises in the fridge but very slowly.

    In general, the longer the dough ferments, the better the flavor. But letting it ferment too long (as would happen if you didn’t refrigerate overnight) will cause the bread to get very little rise because all the food for the yeast has been consumed and the gluten strands (that hold the bread together and trap the gasses within) break down.

    Your idea of using the dough to make crackers is a good one! I make pizza dough that I keep in the fridge for a week or more, breaking off a chunk whenever I want to make pizza. Eventually, the gluten degrades and I know it won’t make good pizza, but boy, does it make a nice cracker, spread with olive oil and sprinkled with fresh rosemary and coarse sea salt!

  50. I’m not sure my message got through the other day, so I’ll repeat it.

    I’m having trouble getting my sourdough no-knead dough to rise appreciably. I have tried a few different recipes and the only variable I am not certain of is the starter. I purchased it from King Arthur Flour, followed their directions for starting it, and it seems to have the odor and bubbly appearance that I have been given to look for in an active starter. I have tried anything from 1/4 cup to a full cup of starter (adjusting the water amounts accordingly) and still no luck. The finished birck (loaf9 has the sour taste, maybe a little too sour, but I’d live with that if I could get it to rise anywhere as high as my regular no-knead bread, which seems to be never fail, no matter what I do with it. I have been weighing the portions on a digital scale (which I never did with the basic no-knead recipe) and am using bottled water rather than our chorinated tap water.

    Any ideas?

    1. I wonder if your starter is bubbly enough. It really does make a huge difference how warm or cold your kitchen is. The warmer it is, the easier and faster it is o get your starter to be active/bubbly.

      If your starter is not cutting it, you might want to start over with a new starter.

    2. Hmmmm…what exactly is the recipe you’re using? I only get bricks when my starter is way over-risen before I use it in the recipe, or when the dough itself is over-risen. Try a shorter proof time, maybe 8 hours instead of 12-36.

  51. Thanks for the detailed instructions and tips! This will be my first go at no-knead breads, and am excited that I’ll still be able to use my 3-month old sourdough starter for it.

  52. Pingback: BMB: No-Knead Wild Sourdough Boule | The World This Week
  53. Thanks so much for this recipe! I think I will get it right eventually. Although, delicious, it came out flat. Any thoughts? I know you said follow exactly, but I did not have spelt, so used whole wheat flour instead. I still don’t think this would cause such an inability to rise. The other concern is that my 18-19 fermented dough was so wet and sticky that I couldn’t really do any folding. I had to add quite a bit of white flour to get it solid enough to just stay on the cutting board and not run off the sides! In your recipe, you say oz for both liquid and the flours. Do you mean fl oz for liquid and weight for the flour, or are you using volume for flour as well? I interpreted as volume for both. Thanks for any guidance…have been trying to get the sourdough loaf down for quite some time!!

    Erika

    1. I think you may have over-risen your dough. When it pours out like that, the gluten strands have broken! Try a 12 hour ferment…and if it’s still happening, try 8 hours. It’s better to get it into the oven an hour before it’s fully risen rather than an hour after it, since you’ll get what’s called “oven spring” and it should pop right up! Let me know if that helps…

  54. hi, i don’t have a dutch oven in order to make your no knead sourdough bread, so i gathered from the recipe that i can use a stockpot, is that correct? how would i use it instead of the dutch oven? can i still put the stockpot in a 500 degree oven?? thanks!

    1. you’d want to heat the stock pot w/ the oven. I wonder if putting it in a hot oven could damage your pot. i wouldn’t do it.

  55. I’ve been making sourdough for years, but it always turns out too heavy (which is great for biscuits by the way, not so much for bread). I’m excited to try this recipe. Thank you!

  56. When you said that she leaves her starter “indefinitely” without feeding it in the fridge. . . how long does it actually go without being fed? Does she only feed what she takes out of it for a recipe? How do you know when starter has gone bad? I am new to sourdough and I am a bit confused.

    1. That is correct. I only feed the starter that I remove from the jar to make my bread. The rest stays in the jar in the fridge. I don’t feed it and have left it there for a year or more. It will develop a hooch on top. I reach below the hooch with a spoon to remove a teaspoon of starter below to make my current bread. I never had a starter go bad on me. It can happen if it becomes contaminated, at which point it will turn strange colors or smell off, but it’s unlikely to happen in the fridge if it’s kept well covered.

      I make bread so often that I invariably end up with extra starter on the counter that I can’t use. Nowadays, every few months I’ll replace my fridge starter with one that I’ve been feeding on the counter.

      My point though is that it’s not necessary to regularly feed a starter that you keep in the fridge if you are not getting ready to bake bread. Just leave it there undisturbed and save yourself some work!

      By the way, it only takes a tiny bit of starter to make a new batch. I often make a new batch of starter by adding a small amount of equal parts flour and water to the residue in the bowl after I’ve scraped the starter out to make my bread. Then feed again with equal parts flour and water about 8 hours later. Repeat again if necessary until you have a nice bubbly starter.

      1. Hi janis,
        am brand new to sourdough making, and have my first one in the oven as we speak! Am still a little confused with how you keep your starter in the fridge…obviously if you keep taking a couple of tablespoons each time you want to activate it, it will eventually deplete your starter in the fridge, no? Do you add more water and flour to your starter in the fridge? I feel like I am missing something here?! thankyou!

  57. Thank you! I tried this recipe and it really works!

    I figured out why the other recipes didn’t work. They called for too much starter and too little flour, then called for a 36 hour rest for the dough. The poor yeastie beasties were starved to death by the time it came time to raise the dough in the oven 2 days later. So your proportions of 1/2 c starter to 3 c flour give the yeastie dears plenty of food to expand their little hearts out.

  58. Hi!

    Just saw this recipe. I have a few thoughts since I make sourdough bread a LOT:
    1) This recipe is great for making pita bread! That’s right friends…sourdough pita bread. So yummy and tasty. During the second rise step (when it’s supposed to be in the banneton), you instead deflate the bread and break it up into equally sized balls. I use a digital scale for this and make them anywhere between 50-100g (100g makes huge pitas). Then you roll them out to about 1/4 inch thick, and you preheat a pizza stone instead of your dutch oven. The pizza stone should be pre-heated to 500degrees. Next, when it’s preheated for at least 30 minutes, you’ll toss the lightly floured discs onto the stone- be careful, it might get smoky- and close the oven door. Let it cook for about 3-4 minutes. I usually turn my oven light on so I can watch and make sure they don’t over cook. Just flip them over quickly (tongs work for this) and then let cook for one more minute. I can usually cook about 20-30 pita pockets with this (or more if I make mini ones). When you take them out of the oven, just gently deflate them and stack them. You’ll never buy store-bought pita again! I hear they freeze well, but we’ve never let them get that far.

    2)If you start measuring all your ingredients in grams/oz. (on your digital scale again), you’ll get very accurate results every time. I don’t know where my measuring cups are half the time anymore. I just use a flour scoop and measure. At high altitude, I measure 17oz of flour (usually about 10-15oz of whole wheat, the rest white), but for you sea-level dwellers, you can just do 16oz. That extra ounce at high altitude prevents the dough from rising too quickly. I also do 2 tsp of himalayan pink salt (helps give it a slower rise so it ends up taking about 8-12 hours instead of 4!), although you can stick with the 1 3/4 tsp salt. Such a small measurement (under 2Tbsp) I don’t weigh, it’s easier to scoop with the measuring spoons.

    3) Whole wheat and whole spelt sourdough. I use the recipe found on https://www.breadtopia.com/ for whole spelt. It has VIDEOS, which is uber helpful. Not 100% no-knead, but it’s really close and still fun. The bread turns out AMAZING every time. When I make 100% whole wheat sourdough, I’ll use about 75g of 100% hydration starter (100% hydration starter is the way Annemarie tells you to feed it above, so that’s what you’ll have if you follow her directions). My starter is a whole wheat starter so it’s pretty stiff, which seems to work best. I’ve found that a wobbly watery starter is a weaker starter, just FYI.

    4) If you underfeed your starter (as in not enough flour or waited too long and it fell) or you overfeed your starter (too much flour, right amount of time), your starter did not die. It might smell weird, and it will have a much more tangy taste, and it might even mean that it could be weaker, but it’s probably not dead. The only sure way to kill your starter is to leave it sitting on a hot stove or in an area over 110degrees. So, some starter troubleshooting:
    -I will make sure, when I’m using a new flour, that I pay attention to my starter, and watch it every few hours or so. You’ll notice, as it begins to activate (after 2 or so feedings), that it will have a dome shape on the top, and light bubbles, kind of like when you make pancakes. I keep watching it and time about how long it takes for that dome to flatten out. Just before it flattens or when it flattens is when you want to feed it. After that, you can still feed it, but your starter will begin to over-ferment, so it will taste more tangy. If you want that, let that happen a few times, and then your dough will always be nice and tangy. You don’t want to get into the habit of doing that though, because it will weaken your starter over time. I used to think that feeding my starter 8-12 hours apart was adequate, but I have to deal with thinner Colorado air, AND a different kind of flour. I have found that my starter is much happier when fed every 5-6 (or 8 when I’m feeding it overnight) hours! It’s quite frequent…so you may need to take the little guy to work with you, haha πŸ™‚
    -Next, if you have over-risen or over-fermented your starter a few times (same thing), and you’re not a fan of uber tangy flavor, just do the following: Scoop out about 25g of starter from the middle of your container that has been in the fridge (it will be lighter colored, the hooch will turn the top layer a little dark) or from your currently-being-fed starter and start feeding it every 4-6 hours with WHITE flour. Trust me on this one. It will decrease the over-fermented flavor, and it will liven up your starter again in no time. Just 3-6 feedings should do the trick. The following website has been super integral in my sourdough education: https://www.sourdoughhome.com/index.html

    5) Lastly: experiment! Flat over-risen dough can always be eaten with extra butter or fresh hummus…or when all else fails, dice it up, coat it in coconut oil and bake them until they turn into lovely croutons! I started baking sourdough with white bread initially because it was easiest, but eventually I use almost exclusively whole wheat or whole spelt bread. I don’t have easy access to sprouted flours, so it was the next best thing here. The www.breadtopia.com website has been extremely helpful as well, especially since I used his directions to GROW MY OWN STARTER FROM SCRATCH. Yep. You got it. I’ve never purchased a starter! It is 100% Colorado starter, and so tasty! It just takes a week to get it started (no pun intended), which would be about the same amount of time if you had yours shipped to you.

    Also be sure to check out the wild yeast blog, she has some good recipes there πŸ™‚ I now make sourdough pizza dough (from the farmgirl fare blog), sourdough pita (as mentioned above), sourdough sandwhich bread (I use an oblong shaped stoneware dish purhcased through sassafrass), sourdough couronnes, etc. So many options!!!

    Alrighty…that was really long, but there ya go!

    1. By the way, I saw that Janis made a great point. I NEVER throw out any extra starter anymore. I just use extra-almost-alive-but-not-quite-there starter in my pizza dough or I make pancakes that are SO good (full of eggs, coconut oil, fresh raw milk butter, etc), and those toast quite nicely on the second day. In fact, I am currently obsessed with those pancakes! Somebody, let me know if you want that recipe and I’ll post it. So tasty…mmmm…getting hungry.

      1. Do mind if i ask the actual websites you quoted, especially for the sandwich bread as my clay baker is covered for a french loaf….love it!
        I really need a covered sandwich loaf baker, please?
        The websites would be nice for “the farmgirl fare blog”,”oblong shaped stoneware dish purhcased through sassafrass), sourdough couronnes”.
        thanks
        majomor

          1. The Breadtopia site is where I found this recipe. It’s not listed as one of his main recipes. I found it in a string of threads under variations of the no-knead bread (he uses sourdough most of the time…you should try the cranberry pecan one!). Here you go (with some of my own twists):

            Jacki’s (and now Melody’s) Rich Sourdough Pancakes:
            3 large farm fresh eggs
            1 cup whole raw milk
            2 cups of sourdough starter (can be straight from the fridge, does not have to be recently activated…this is how I almost always make it)
            1 3/4 cup all purpose flour (makes a lighter pancake, but I’ve made it before with spelt flour, which was also pretty tasty, but heavier than most people like pancakes)
            1 tsp aluminum free baking soda
            2 tsp baking powder
            1 1/2 tsp pink himalayan salt (you can use sea salt)
            1/4 c. granulated sugar (rapadura, sucanat, whatever floats your boat)
            1/4 c. raw butter, melted (I’ve used organic salted butter before, works fine)
            Also, for more health benefits, I add about 2-3 Tbsp melted coconut oil, which you can use instead of the butter or just use both (I totally use both).

            -Beat eggs in medium bowl
            -Add milk and starter, stir well
            -Sift together flour, baking soda and powder, salt and sugar and add to egg mixture, mixing well (I just dump it all in actually and then stir like a crazy lady for a few seconds, haha)
            -Stir in melted butter/coconut oil.

            **Note** I follow this recipe exactly at high altitude, it just makes the pancakes fluffier! I noticed (at least here in CO), that that bowl has to be large…it bubbles up a lot.

            These freeze very well if you want to store some, and then are extremely tasty in a toaster oven for a few minutes…crunchy on the outside, a light sweet tangy flavor of fluffy goodness on the inside. Yum πŸ™‚

        1. Farmgirl Fare:
          https://www.farmgirlfare.com/2005/06/three-onion-three-cheese-pizza.html

          Everything else is from Breadtopia actually! The oblong clay baker is from the Breadtopia store (as is the bannetone and cover that I purchased there), the Couronne is from there as well.

  59. Help – what am I doing wrong? I’m following this recipe. The first rise (the 18-19 hour one) goes great – the dough at least doubles in size. But when I take it out to fold it 3 times (its pretty wet dough) it doesn’t rise much. Then when I let it sit in the colendar for the extra 1 1/2 hours — it doesn’t rise at all. What is happening?

    1. How does it do when you bake it? Does it have a nice “oven spring” ? If it doesn’t it may be that the dough has risen too much or too fast during the first rise, depleting the food for the yeast, basically stopping the fermentation process. I find that in the summer I need to shorten the first rise to prevent that from happening. It helps to keep the dough in a cool place.

      I like to use 1 1/2 tsp salt for this recipe. I think Ann Marie wanted to use less and her recipe reflects that. The salt helps slow down the fermentation. A long slow fermentation (or rise) is what you are after.

      If, on the other hand, your dough rises well in the oven, you’re fine. My dough often doesn’t rise very much during the second rise, in the colander or banneton, but then has a nice final spring in the oven.

      You may need to experiment with your rising times in different seasons of the year.

      1. thanks janis…
        I have made this recipe before and its come out fantastic (just like the picture!) – but we moved and I dried my starter and just revived it. I wondered if I screwed that up, so I’m reviving a 2nd batch of dried starter now…

        But, when I made this recipe this time. What happened was that the first rise (in the bowl) went great. Then I dumped it onto the floured board to fold it 3 times. I noticed then that the dough seemed much wetter than I remember it having been during other times that I made the recipe. No matter, I went ahead and folded it 3 times, let it set for 15 mins, then attempted to put it in the floured towel lined collendar. But it was so gooey that some didn’t even get into the collendar! I let that sit for 2 hours to rise – but it didn’t. Not one milimeter! I still baked as directed, but the bread didn’t rise at all in the oven. It was very dense and when i cooled it and cut it open I noticed that it did have some nice air bubbles in the bread, but it was still moist on the inside…

        1. Things to consider when moving: Air pressure, temperature, etc. All of these could have contributed to your over-risen dough. When it’s gooey like yours was after the folds, it means the gluten fibers have already broken down. The structure to your bread has decreased, so you will not get oven spring like most of your other loaves. Instead it will kind of bake as is, and have a dense moist center. I have made plenty of loaves like this! I usually cut the loaf lengthwise, instead of vertical (like most sliced bread) and can get multiple slices of bread this way. Great for sandwiches.

          Try shortening your rise time and check the temp in the room where it’s rising. If it’s too warm, the sourdough can over-activate and also cause it to rise too quickly. I’m a fan of about 70-75 degrees, although at lower altitudes I hear 80 is fine as well. If it’s cooler than that, expect a longer rise time, if it’s warmer, watch it carefully.

          Here’s how I tell the first rise is done: There are bubbles on top (like the photo above in the tutorial), and I also look at the edges of the dough along the bowl. If it’s dome-shaped (as in the dough is coming up from the bottom), then it’s still rising or just done rising. If it’s bowl-shaped (the center of the dough is lower than the edges of the dough sticking to the bowl) then it has fallen. At that point, I know it’s over-risen and I’ll be getting a watery/moist dough. I skip the fold and the second rise. Instead I pre-heat the oven and my baking dish of choice, for at least 30 minutes, use a dough scraper to get it nice and even into the dish, and then I pray πŸ˜›

          You might have to try a few loaves before you find the knack of your new rise time. Also remember, sourdough works differently in different locations. For example, if I took my starter to my mom’s home (I live in Colorado, she lives in Massachusetts), it would act differently and it would eventually taste differently.

          I hope this helps!

  60. Pingback: Bread: make it, save it. « 2 adults, all meals, $35 a week
  61. Thank you so much for this recipe. I recently found a recipe for No-Knead bread, but I’ve been reading so much about sourdough lately that I really want to incorporate it into as many things as possible. I love the fact that it uses so much less flour, 16 oz. compared to 3 cups. I really appreciate all the pictures as well.

  62. I was wondering what kind of dutch oven Janis uses to bake? I make a lot of sourdough rounds using a cast iron dutch oven, but was wondering if a Sassafras La Cloche or something else would work better?

  63. I must try this! I have recently started working with sourdough but I have yet to produce a successful loaf. This looks so easy even I can’t mess it up!

  64. Thanks so much for the recipe. I have tried sourdough and it came out to be a brick. I do not enjoy kneading!
    So I don’t have a dutch oven nor a stockpot that could go in the oven. Hmmmm… What to use. Any other ideas?

    1. @Amy If you don’t have a Dutch oven you can buy a cloche (look up on Amazon or google) or you can try to do one preformed just on a baking sheet. You could also do a loaf pan. Give it a shot!

  65. But why do you use oz. for flour (I use a scale, too) and then use 1/4 cup for the starter, which is a volume measurement? What is it in weight (oz or grams?)

  66. Made this today. Didn’t rise in the oven basically at all; a total bust. Sticking to my recipe from Urban Farm magazine. My starter was bubbly and worked fine in a different loaf I made using the same starter but using the other recipe; that one rose fine. This one just is flat. I think it may be more sour, but too dense. Not sure if the starter needed to be increased or the dough is too wet or what, but this recipe just did not work for me.

  67. This is the best sourdough I have ever made!! I have heard about the no knead methods for a while, but I was skeptical that they would develop the texture that I wanted. Oh was I wrong! This is the best ever! Thanks πŸ™‚

  68. Is it ok to split this and bake in 2 loaf pans? Maybe it will fit in 1 loaf pan?? I’d like to have it for sandwich bread, but didn’t know if touching too much (to split in loaf pans) would be too much for the dough.

    THanks!

  69. I made my first sourdough starter last week, and baked my first loaf today–eating some butter with a slice right now (I always make jokes that I “bread my butter”, not the other way around.) For anyone who is interested in an easy 100% whole wheat sourdough, I would recommend the following recipe. I let mine rise for five days, which is not necessary, but if you have gluten problems, will probably help.
    https://artistta.blogspot.com/2011/11/easiest-sourdough-bread-recipe-i-know.html

  70. What if I wanted to make it loaf shaped? Do I have to bake it in a dutch oven?
    I like the no-knead plan! I am actually going to KA Flour next weekend for a sourdough class! Very Excited!! Although I am sure we will be using plenty of white flour, looking forward to learning some tricks. I started my own starter a couple weeks ago. It is doing well.

    1. So I have tried this method today. The dough after the 18 hours was very soupy. I did the 3 folds but had a hard time getting my hands on it. It has been rising for over 1 1/2 hours now and it does not seem to have done anything! Only 1/4 cup of starter seemed so little? I am getting ready to put it in the oven. How am I going to keep it from sticking in the dutch oven?

      1. Your dough was over-risen. Do you know what the temp was in the room/locatin where it was rising? If I put my dough in the oven with just the oven light on (somewhere around 90 degrees I think) for an overnight rise, 8 hours is just enough, 9 is pushing it, and 10 is too long. The oven-light method may be too warm for sourdough though, and it will over-rise too quickly, so you may have to have the door open. If I have it in a 60-65 degree room, about 12-15 hours is about right – that works for both sourdough and yeasted no-knead. Whenever it just “pours” out, and you aren’t able to fold it, it’s definitely over-risen. I still bake it (turns out flat and dense) and cut it horizontally instead of vertically, so that the bread is more like a thick focaccia than holey artisan bread. You should see bubbles on the top of your dough when it’s ready, and it should be puffed up looking. If you see strings pulling along the sides and your dough looks caved in slightly, it’s over-risen. Try decreasing your rise time to 12 hours and see what happens then. When I first started, I kept a little notepad by the dough bowl and wrote down temp, rise time, and how it turned out, so that I was able to replicate great loaves in the future without much thought once I got the hang of it all. When the dough is properly risen, it will be wobbly and still have a doughy substance to it rather than batter-like….hope this helps.

        1. I think that will help me! Thank you! My kitchen is 75-80 degrees, so I’m thinking it will only need a 9-10 hour rise…I’ve been doing 13-14. It turns out okay, but doesn’t have enough of a rise when it cooks. Has a bit of rise, but not enough to eat a sandwich with or anything else. Thanks! πŸ™‚

  71. I feed my starter, affectionately named The Fountainbread, once a day and he is thriving! He is about 3 weeks old now and is starting to smell like really good beer. I have made two really lovely loaves so far using whole wheat flour, though I want to get some spelt and rye for next time. My dear friend is going to get gifted with some of my starter this weekend. Thanks for all the great tips.

  72. I have another starter question. It may have been answered, but there’s so many comments I don’t have the time to read them right at the moment. This is my first time making sourdough and I’m a bit confused at getting the starter… started. I used 2 oz of each, starter/flour/water. When my first 8 hours was up I actually was a bit confused. Did I add another 2 oz of each for the feeding or did I now add 6 oz of each? The instructions were to weigh it at the feeding, so I figured something must change. I don’t know. So, what I did was add 6 oz of each this time. That just seems like so much though especially if I keep multiplying each feeding. Totally confused! (Can you tell??? LOL!)

    1. If you are trying to start a starter, I would go to www.breadtopia.com and use his video for that information. I found it really helpful. If you are just talking about feeding started that you pulled from the fridge to start a new loaf, you don’t need a room to start off with. I usually do 8g (oz are too much for these small measurements), & them go from there. For ex. I will do 8g of starter, 8g flour, 8g water (for a total of 24g). I use a .5 pint wide mouth mason jar and the white plastic lid. On the jar, I mark with a dry erase marker where the start line is so that I know when it doubled. On the lid I write the feed amount (like i just wrote at the beginning of this comment), and total amount for next feeding, and the time. So you will see 8/8/8 and then 24 for next feeding. Which means at the next feeding, I add 24g water, mix that in first, then I add 24g flour. On the lid I now write 24/24/24, 75g for next feeding (Its close enough and the math is easier). Next feeding: 75/75/75… and at that point I think it is the perfect amount to make a 1lb loaf and a 2-lb loaf. No starter is left over. If you start off with more, them yes traditionally you toss half and then feed (and repeat) until it is wonderfully bubbly. I don’t love tossing the extra so I have a container in the fridge where excess starter goes. My original culture that I started on my own is almost two or three yrs old now! I use that extra starter in pancake recipes, to make sourdough crackers, etc, you name it. Hope this helps!

      1. Perfect! That’s what I wasn’t sure of. I wasn’t sure how the math went. I measured in oz weight like the instructions said. (2/2/2) Then, at the first feeding I did 6/6/6, but it seemed like so much and then my bowl had so much in it! I waited over 8 hours though because I was sleeping. LOL! BUT.. it was bubbly this morning. Before I read this post though I just did 2 oz each flour/water because doing 18/18/18 seemed like soooo much! I don’t know. I probably just screwed it up. Maybe since it’s nice and bubbly I didn’t mess it up too much? I’ll check in a few hours and try again if I did. Cheeseslave, I’m sorry I confused you. If it helps, I do it to everyone!

        1. Bubbly is good. Just start with less next time or toss out/reserve 1/2 each time you feed so that it doesn’t grow into the sourdough beast. I didn’t understand this concept when I first started and literally had gallons of starter in my fridge. And just fyi, when you store it, and it gets a dark liquidy beer smelly stuff that forms on top, it’s fine – it’s called “hooch”. You can either mix it in, or just pour it off (I do) and then scoop from your reserve to get the feeding frenzy started.

          1. I agree with Melody. In fact I usually start with a scant tsp of starter when I first start to feed it. After you feed it several times you will end up with more than you need if you start with too much in the beginning. Like Melody says, you can toss some if it gets to be too much. I also used to keep jars of extra starter in the fridge, but now fridge space is too dear with all the fermented vegetables and kefir I do. I toss it in the compost or incorporate it into other baking projects, but don’t feel bad about it.

  73. Question R/T Sourdough Bread…..12 oz of APF 4 oz of Wheat Flour correct?
    1/4 c of started into the 12oz of water….mixed into the flour salt mx and this sets for 18 hours….

    Am I reading this properly?

    1. I have been making my sourdough 100% spelt for sometime now at high altitudes with zero humidity here in Canada in the mountains.
      I basically followed the Breadtopia site and the Fresh loaf site and tweaked it to work.
      I use organic APF for starter as the others would just not have the strength with my location weather issues and altitude.
      I also add Chia gel and water to my dough, and I use egg white powder (huge difference).
      I cannot do any folding and kneading at my altitude as after many many tries I gave up on second rises….I just heat up my clay baker isert my dough which i have rising in parchment in a basket, lift out and insert in hot baker and bake her.
      I also had to increase the liquid alot which is like almost the same amount as the water (huge difference again!).
      I use light spelt which is low in gluten(which I like) so it does not take long to lose its strength. I let it ferment for 14 – 18 hours (covered in a plastic bag to control dryness and increase moisture)or it will drop if I go further.
      I got all of this from the Fresh loaf site by someone who had had success with using Chia seeds, as spelt flour likes to bleed off liquid as it ferments, the Chia gel just keeps absorbing that liquid!…and you get a great Chiabatta Spelt loaf.
      I also add OO to soften the crust, and honey for my yeasties created from fermenting.
      I don’t want to post the recipe (to confuse others) but I can be PM’d at morrison jo jo at hot mail dot com if any other high altitude folks are interested, as this is “only” for high altitude over 3800ft locations with huge issues on getting a decent loaf of no-knead light spelt sourdough bread!
      I also had issues with my starter thats why i switched to APF organic. I feed this only when I need it and always bake after it has fermented for 8 hours with lots of bubbles…..When feeding, I basically always use a1/3 cup APF to 1/3 cup bottled water stir and leave on counter. If I decide I don’t want to bake, I just put in Fridge.
      I used to measure out equal amounts of starter, flour, and water—-what a royal Pain!…I quit that and just usually keep it at about 1cup height level of a mason jar, and feed that, It gets too high I just scoop out maybe 3 tbls down the drain…..I waste way way less flour doing this way….also I use the mason jars as they are not air tight using the plastic lids. I also use an old pickle jar , which does not have a tight lid……this is easier that the saran wrap—again for my zero humidity (very very dry location) which caused me huge headaches when I first started.
      Hope that helps some folks in High altitudes like me!!!???

  74. The whole concept of the starter is confusing to me. It doesn’t SEEM like it should be confusing but it is. A video on activating the starter would be helpful. I think I’m just a visual learner and no one seems to show how to activate the starter, assuming we’re all just pros and know what we’re doing T.T Do you just activate some of the powdered starter and then keep it in the fridge and then when you’re ready to bake you take some of THAT from the fridge and feed it? I feel so confused I don’t even know how to explain what I’m confused about!

    1. From what I can gather from all the previous comments…you let it rise too long. How long it will take depends on altitude and temperature in the room. Some people added more salt to get a slower rise…some people just baked it after 8-10 hours of rising (when it was done)…best of luck on figuring it out…it truly is an experiment for each locale…

  75. Thanks for this recipe! It was just what I needed to take the plunge into making my first loaf of sourdough! That loaf turned out well with a nice crunchy crust and excellent taste, however there was almost no rise! I could not shape it into anything when it was time to back, so I poured it in a loaf pan and set that in my dutch oven. 2 more tries so far, and the dough after the initial 18+ hour rise is VERY wet…pourable wet, not at all possible to fold on itself. It is full of bubbles and smells great though. I let the 2nd and 3rd batch rise for almost 24 hrs in nice warm conditions and they were very bubbly, but still no rise and totally liquid. I just put them in the fridge to hangout overnight…what should I do next?! Thank you!!

  76. Well that was a fail. It actually created more liquid on top and was really wet after the ferment. I am adding more flour and starter and letting that sit to see if I can save this dough, so far it’s looking like a possible maybe but could also turn into a brick. Why did I think sourdough was easy?

  77. I have been underwhelmed with my sourdough efforts in the past but this worked beautifully, I think I have been using too much starter. ANyway I live in a hot climate so after the batter had almost doubled after 7 hours I put it in the fridge over night and yes that did make it much easier to shape and I think less likely to stick to the banneton too.
    This was super easy and super flexible and I will be adding it to my baking schedule and can finally make a sourdough to be proud of, thank you

  78. Is there a reason why rice flour is used for dusting? I would hate to buy it just for trying out a recipe. Can I use wheat flour for dusting? Sorry if someone already asked this…just so many comments to read through. Thanks!

  79. I have some starter just about ready to use and can’t wait to make this bread! I just love that cloth-lined basket. Where do you get those?

  80. I’m a complete bread-making novice and find myself confused. “Starter” is something you buy, and “starter” is something you leave in the frig until you want to make bread, and “starter” is the thing that makes bread rise. “Activating” starter – I THINK – means taking the store bought thing and feeding it every 8 hours. This is the thing you put in the frig indefinitely. Keeping it cold slows down the fermentation (is it fermentation?). Then, when you want to make bread, take 2 tsp of the stuff in the frig, and feed it every 8 hours. So, is the feeding of the starter you buy the same as feeding the starter you take out of the frig? Is it all the same process? You’re just growing more every time you use it? THANKS!

  81. Hi,
    Unfortunately, I am allergic to wheat, gluten, eggs AND dairy (including goat’s milk!!) …is there ANY way you can make this bread with gluten-free flour?? I like that this recipe doesn’t have eggs or dairy (not the same thing, as most people mistakenly think), and if I could make it with “Bob’s Red Mill” G-free flour, it would be perfect! I’m dying to eat bread, again! Any recipes you can offer for that would be great, too…thank you!! πŸ™‚

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