Buttermilk sourdough bread recipe

 

Just a quick post to share my newly developed buttermilk bread recipe with you. I had a purposeless tub of buttermilk sitting in the fridge and didn’t really fancy baking any of the usual options like scones or soda bread. So, I decided to make a buttermilk-based sourdough loaf, using predominantly white bread flour, but providing depth of flavour and taste by adding dark wholemeal rye flour. The resulting loaf tasted delicious (and has been baked five times since), so do give this a try if you like the sound of a buttermilk sourdough bread.

Buttermilk sourdough bread
Buttermilk sourdough bread

Buttermilk is traditionally a by-product of butter-making – the liquid that is left over after butter is churned from cream. However, what we find in supermarkets nowadays is often made by adding an active bacterial culture to skimmed milk. These cultures convert some of the sugar in the milk (the lactose) into lactic acid which causes the milk to thicken. When used in bread making, buttermilk adds a pleasing tang and tartness and makes the crumb more tender. You’ll also find that the dough has a soft and creamy quality while kneading.

I always use organic ingredients for cooking and baking and although it is not readily available in supermarkets, organic buttermilk can be found in the UK. Daylesford Farm offers the real deal. Creamy and tangy organic buttermilk, made in the traditional way as a byproduct of the butter they produce.

Buttermilk sourdough bread recipe

I used only a small proportion of dark rye flour in my recipe as buttermilk tends to work best with mild flours in order for the tangy flavours to come through and the crumb to remain soft. Add herbs or spices to this buttermilk sourdough bread to play with different flavour combinations.

Ingredients

Sourdough

Main dough

  • 450g strong white wheat flour
  • 100g wholemeal rye flour
  • 300g buttermilk (at room temperature)
  • 120g water
  • 12g salt

How to make buttermilk sourdough bread

  1. On day 1, prepare the sourdough by combining the sourdough starter, wholemeal rye flour and water in a medium bowl. Mix well, then cover and leave to rest for 16 -24 hours at room temperature.
  2. On day 2, once the sourdough starter is ready, combine 260g of the refreshed sourdough (the rest goes back into the fridge for your next bake), the strong white wheat and wholemeal rye flours, the buttermilk (ideally at room temperature), water and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Combine to form a dough, then turn it out onto your work surface.
  4. Knead for 10 minutes.
  5. Place the dough back into the bowl, cover and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  6. Turn out the dough and knead for 1 minute.
  7. Place back into the bowl again, cover and leave to rest for a further 30 minutes.
  8. Turn out the dough and shape into a boule.
  9. Bathe the boule in a flour bath so it’s no longer sticky on the outside, then place seam-side up into a pre-floured proofing basket.
  10. Proof for several hours until risen – it takes about 3 hours in my kitchen – then preheat the oven to 200°C, and – if using – your baking dome at the same time.
  11. Turn out the fully proofed loaf onto the preheated baking plate or a baking tray lined with baking paper. Put the cover on the baking plate.
  12. Make several decorative slashes with a scoring knife.
  13. Bake for 15 mins at 200°C, then turn the temperature down to 180°C and bake for a further 40 mins. Take off the baking dome cover for the last 10 minutes.
  14. Cool on a wire rack.

Grape seed flour bread recipe

 

I stumbled upon grape seed flour in a small farm shop in Austria and was intrigued by this little known ingredient. Of course, I had to have it to use it in bread baking 🙂 Here are my notes on baking bread with grape seed flour.
Grape seed flour can be made from any variety of grape, each with its own characteristic taste. When added to bread dough, the resulting loaf benefits from the grape flour’s richness of colour and flavour. I’ve noted down my grape seed flour bread recipe for those of you interested in giving this a go!

Grape seed bread
Grape seed bread

Grape seed flour (which is actually more like a fine powder) is produced from pomace i.e. the skins, seeds and pulp generated during wine-making. Typically, only 80% of the total harvested grape crop is used to make wine, so it’s a nice way of using the ‘waste’ of the wine-making process. The seeds are pressed to extract the oils, and then, along with the grape skins, dried and milled into flour. Grape seeds have long been used to produce grape seed oil, and grape seed flour is just another alternative.

Grape seed flour bread
Grape seed flour bread

How to use grape seed flour

  • Grape seed flour can be added to baked goods. The recommended ‘dosage’ is 5-7% based on the bread’s flour content.
  • Grape seed flour pancakes are another great option. Just use your standard pancake recipe and add a tablespoon of grape seed flour into the batter mixture.
  • It can also be added to yoghurt or smoothies and used to thicken and flavour soups or salad dressings.
  • It adds rich colour and flavour with a slightly astringent yet fruity taste. White wine grapes will lend a tan colour to baked goods, while red wine grapes will add a darker, purple-brown colour to them.
  • Grape seed flour provides a boost of antioxidants and is high in fibre.
  • Finally, it’s a gluten free ingredient.

Grape Seed Flour Bread Recipe

Have fun baking with grape seed bread and pairing it with wine. I used this grape seed flour from the Urkornhof in Austria, but you can buy it online too. The cold-pressed grape seed flour I used combines seeds from both white and red grape varieties into one flour.

Ingredients

Sourdough

Main dough

  • 265g strong white bread flour
  • 35g wholemeal wheat flour
  • 15g grape seed flour
  • 8g salt
  • 180g water

How to make grape seed flour bread

  1. On the day before baking, refresh your sourdough by combining the sourdough ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix well, cover and keep at room temperature for 12 – 16 hours.
  2. On the day of baking, combine 200g of the refreshed sourdough starter (the rest goes back into the fridge until your next bake) with the main dough ingredients.
  3. Knead for 10 minutes and you should have a smooth dough at this point.
  4. Place the dough back into the bowl, cover and rest for 1 hour or so until visibly risen.
  5. Punch down the dough and, on your work surface, shape it into a boule.
  6. Lightly dust the loaf with flour on all sides, then place it into a suitable proving basket.
  7. Cover the proving basket with a polythene bag (to prevent the dough from drying out), then leave to prove at room temperature for several hours until fully proved.
  8. Preheat the oven and your baking dome (if using) 20 minutes before the bake.
  9. Turn out the dough onto the baking dome plate or a baking tray lined with baking paper. Score a pattern with a scoring knife if you like.
  10. Bake at 180°C for 35 minutes and a further 10 minutes without the baking dome lid (if using) to brown the crust.
  11. Cool on a wire rack.