I've been on a sprouted wheat kick for the last couple weeks. Here's one of my beginner Dutch oven loaves from this week. I love how the crust splits during baking--it looks so rustic and good. The bread has a tighter texture and a classic sourdough flavor. My youngest was all over it once I finished snapping a picture. :)
My mother is four weeks old and isnít quite ready for the frig. She didnít pass the test today. Alas, I forgot to name her. I just call her mom. Iím making my second attempt at Dutch oven bread. The first attempt the dough was very wet and just didnít do well. On baking day it was just a little firmer than cake batter. This time Iíve added an extra half a cup of flour, (Iím using unbleached white flour from King Arthur). Itís still seems very wet to me and Iím used to making an artisan bread with a very wet dough in a Dutch oven type pan with great success. If itís still very wet tomorrow when I bake it can I continue to add flour until itís a little dryer? Iím sure Iím overthinking this and feeling very intimidated. Just from the comments on this subject it appears you all are very comfortable working with your mother to make it come out right. I like the flavor of the breads Iíve been making but I donít like the texture. I want it to come out more like my artisan bread, with big holes and nice crispy crust. I use the Jim Lehey method for artisan bread. It just doesnít get much easier than that but I really love the flavor of sourdough bread. Fingers crossed and any suggestions are appreciated.
It could be that the flour you're using tends to soak up less moisture than the flour we used for recipes in Wild Bread. I think since you're an experienced bread baker, you should trust your instincts on adding extra flour. A side note about King Arthur flouróit used to have barley malt added, which caused problems for us when creating a mother with it. Double checking on this might be a good idea if problems with your mother persist.
I think using whichever pans and bowls work best for you is great! I respect a kitchen rogue.
Thanks for the reply Ashley. I'll look into the King Arthur issue. It seems to be a much finer flour than I'm used to so that makes sense. I bought some organic rye flour to try, either starting new or adding to. I love the taste of rye so we'll see. My bread came out better but I learned size does matter when rising/proofing. I had my dough in the oven with the light on which has worked well in the past. My dough literally "exploded" out of the bowl. I had dough everywhere! I was able to use what was left in the bowl to bake. If I hadn't been so impatient I think it would have been even better. This was my best effort so far but I think a little more time rising would have improved the texture. The taste is great though. Patience is a virtue I am still learning.
Oh no! Hopefully it wasn't a terrible mess to clean up! Rye flour is delicious and is known to be a good fermenter. Patience is a virtue, but I've had my fair share of impatient kitchen moments too. :)