Sunday 6 October 2013

Sourdough with Garlic & Parsley

When thinking about what to add to this garlic flavoured dough, parsley seemed the obvious choice, since whenever I make garlic butter to use in making garlic bread, I always chop up and incorporate a little fresh parsley. I decided upon baton as the final shape simply because slices of this narrow loaf work perfectly as crouton,  having been brushed lightly with olive oil and toasted in a hot oven.

To make this bread you will need;
for the ferment,
1 tablespoon of starter from the fridge
200g of strong white flour
200ml of cold water.

For the main dough,
half of the ferment (the other half can be returned to the fridge or used to make other bread)
500g of strong white flour
300ml of water
10g of salt
1 head of garlic
a small bunch of fresh parsley
1 tablespoon of olive oil.

Begin by putting together the ferment. Mix the ingredients and place in a large enough bowl for the ferment to double in size. Cover with clingfilm and set to one side for 12 hours. My kitchen is cool, if the ambient temperature of your kitchen is warm, adjust accordingly. Watch for a healthy foaming consistency.

Make the main dough by mixing half the ferment with the flour and the water. Knead or mix with a food mixer to achieve a soft but not sticky dough. Leave the dough for an hour or two while you prepare the garlic and parsley mix. Simmer the peeled bulbs from an entire head of garlic in water for 10 to 15 minutes until completely tender. drain and allow to cool. Chop the parsley up finely and add the cooled garlic. Mash into a paste like consistency with a tablespoon of olive oil.

Add the garlic/parsley mix along with the salt to the dough and knead in until evenly distributed. Leave the dough to rise for 3 to 4 hours, stretching and folding the dough every hour. You should find as the gluten strengthens, the dough will become more lighter and more springy. Divide and form into whatever loaf shape you choose, I decided upon baton and this amount of dough made 4. Leave for a final rise for 1 to 2 hours, depending again on how warm your kitchen space is. Bake at 220C for 25 to 30 minutes.

You can certainly consider doubling the amount of garlic, I found 1 head between 4 loaves a bit on the light side.
This bread can be made using commercial yeast for a lighter texture with with a flavour that has less character.

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