Tartine’s Basic Country Bread

Yes, finally the best sourdough bread I’ve ever made, and basically the best bread out there. I’ve broken down the instructions into very easy bullet points. If you need full instructions, please refer to the recipe all over the internet. Or buy the book because you’ll never regret it!

Tartine’s country bread

Day 1 (evening)

1 tbsp mature sourdough starter

200 g warm water

100 g bread flour

100 g whole wheat flour

Mix all these ingredients together in a bowl. Cover with a cloth and leave overnight. I left the dough in the refrigerator because my city tends to be too warm. But the recipe calls for it to be left outside.

Day 2 (morning)

200 g leaven starter (that stuff you made last night. You need only 200 g of that. The rest of it will become my new starter. Put the remainder in an airtight container and put back into the refrigerator).

700 g water

900 g bread flour

100 g whole wheat flour

Mix the above ingredients until all incorporated and no dry bits of flour remain.

Rest the dough for 40 minutes.

Add 20 g salt which has been dissolved in 50 g of water.

Incorporate the salted water by pinching it into the dough. This is a very important step.

Stretch and fold the dough on itself from all sides. Transfer to a clear container.

Stretch and fold every half hour for the first 2 hours (so 4 stretch and folds in total).

After the fourth and last stretch and fold, leave the dough to rest for a further 2 hours.

Transfer the dough to an unfloured surface or table top. Flour the top of the dough and cut in two equal pieces.

Shape loosely into a round. Rest for 30 minutes covered.

Shape the halves into boules, invert them into bannetons and cover.

Let the dough rise for 2 hours.

Meanwhile preheat the oven to 260 deg C, with a Dutch oven with a tightly fitted lid preheating in the oven too.

Remove the Dutch oven and quickly transfer the dough into the pot. Score the bread with a sharp knife and replace the lid and put it back in the oven.

Reduce oven temperature to 230 deg C.

Bake for 20 minutes.

Remove the lid of the Dutch oven and bake for a further 10 minutes.

Remove, allow to cool, slice and lather with some delicious goodies and eat!



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