Tomato Cheese Sourdough with Rosemary

Tomato Cheese

Processed with VSCOcam with m5 preset

This bread came out a tasty success of adding in some mix-ins. We all know tomato and cheese taste great together, so add in the bread and you basically just have pizza in a (marginally) different form. It’s probably all more or less the same inside you right? In any case, this bread was fun and easy to make, despite little cheese cubes trying to run away during kneading. And bonus: it makes your apartment smell amazing and will make all of your neighbours jealous.

2015-02-21-tomato cheese bread sliced2

I was inspired by this post on The Fresh Loaf, which is, by the way, a great resource for bread tips and troubleshooting. I made some adjustments to the recipe, mainly because I wanted a longer overnight rise so I could start making it the second I saw the post at night and be able to bake it the next morning. That is how almost all breads end up being made in my home: while putting off work and procrastibaking.

photo (2)

Tomato Cheese Sourdough with Rosemary

Yield: I made one standard-sized loaf, a small oval loaf, and a fougasse out of this batch

110 g sourdough starter (at 100% hydration)
450 g white bread flour
150 g whole wheat flour
410 g warm water
12 g salt
1 tsp dried rosemary
50 g gouda, cheddar, any cheese you have
50 g parmesan, grana padano, or some other kind of hard salty cheese
70 g sun-dried tomato (mine came packed in oil)

Combine the flours, water, and sourdough starter, and leave at room temp for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, cut the cheeses and tomato in small cubes.

Add the salt to the dough and knead 5 minutes by hand. Then add the rosemary and knead another 5 minutes by hand until the gluten is moderately developed. Now add the diced cheese and tomato, and knead another 5 minutes to incorporate. Put the dough into a clean bowl, cover, and leave to rise at room temperature for 2 hours, folding the dough every 30 minutes. Then, place in the fridge overnight.

The next day, the dough should have risen a fair amount and look quite poofy. Take it out of the fridge and let it sit at room temp for about 1 hour, then shape it however you please. Preheat the oven to 475F, and bake with steam for 10 minutes, then in a dry oven for another 15ish (baking times will depend on what shape and size you’ve made). Let it cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

And lastly, here is a friendly reminder to line your pans! I forgot, and this is what I’ve been left with:


More Tales of Bread

2015-02-19-mini baguette

I’ve been obsessed with making bread lately. Ever since I realized just how easy it was to make a sourdough starter, I’ve been constantly whipping up batches of naturally leavened bread (no literal whipping involved). I like my bread with a chewy crust, an open crumb, and a light sourdough flavour, so I’ve been on a mission to create just that: my favourite form of carbs.

After doing some research, I learned that the large irregular holes are created with a high hydration, or ‘wet’ dough. Working with a baker’s percentage, this means that the 100% flour is mixed with about 75-85% water by weight. A lower hydration dough would be something more like 50% water to 100% flour, and would produce a finer crumb (think sandwich bread).

Boule Crumb

The only thing about working with wet doughs is that they are very sticky, and I mean very sticky. But, with the right techniques, they can be easy to work with. No knead breads are also very wet doughs, and are made with very little handling (and therefore, very little sticking to your hands). But there are also ways to knead wet doughs that help to minimize the sticking.

Here is an absolutely stellar video demonstrating the French folding technique, sometimes referred to as the “slap and fold” method. Though you can get basically the same end results with just a gentle stretch and fold of the dough in the bowl (great example here), I actually really enjoy kneading dough. No knead breads may be easy, but for me, it also takes away all of the fun! I’ve recently been making my way through all the QI episodes, and kneading dough has been the perfect accompaniment.


Continue reading More Tales of Bread

Adventures in Bread

I’ve been trying my best to document my bread experiments as of late. I am relatively new to bread baking and I still have a LOT to learn, but so far it’s been so much fun!

Challah à la Smitten Kitchen


English Muffins
English Muffins: Christina Tosi’s very thoroughly written recipe with progress photos available here.
The English Muffins became a part of this heavenly brunch.
The English Muffins became a part of this heavenly eggs benedict brunch.
After a week of feeding, my sourdough was finally ready for some bread baking.
After a week of feeding, my sourdough was finally ready for some bread baking.

Sourdough Breads
Sourdough Breads
Bread turned breakfast! Topped with sauteed mushrooms and creamy scrambled eggs.
Bread turned breakfast! Topped with sauteed mushrooms and creamy scrambled eggs.