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Light Rye Sourdough Loaf

Makes 1 loaf

A Rye starter will take 3 to 4 days to develop and then another 4-12 hours to be transformed into the ferment necessary for sourdough bread making.  The finished loaf will have appealing and complex sour notes that are an ideal complement to Rye flour. There is no salt in this recipe but you can add half a teaspoon when you are making the dough.

For additional guidance with hints and tips, see our Guide to Sourdough Making alongside our handy Sourdough Starter Chart

Free from Egg, Soya, Dairy, Nuts
Vegetarian, Vegan, Without crystal sugar

Ingredients

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Starter – use this handy chart to help you keep track of your feeding times.

  1. On the first day, put one tablespoon of flour and one of water into a 500ml glass bowl and mix together. Cover loosely with cling film and leave in a warm place for about 12 hours.
  2. After the 12 hours have passed, add another tablespoon of flour and another of water, mix together, cover loosely and leave for another 12 hours.
  3. On day two (24 hours since beginning your starter), stir in a third tablespoon of flour and a third spoon of water, stir to mix, cover loosely and leave in a warm place for 12 hours.
  4. For the second feed of day two, add a tablespoon of flour and one of water, stir to mix, cover loosely and leave in a warm place for 12 hours.
  5. For the first feed of day three (36 hours since beginning your starter), increase the feed by adding two tablespoons of flour and two of water, stir to mix, cover loosely and leave in a warm place for 12 hours.
  6. On the second feed of day three, add one tablespoon of flour and another of water, mix together, cover loosely and leave for another 12 hours.
  7. At this point your starter should be bubbly and ready to create your ferment. If the starter is not showing bubbles, repeat the 12-hour feed and water routine, and ensure the starter is kept in a warm place.

Ferment

  1. Once your starter is bubbly, stir the starter and then measure 50g of the starter into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add 100g flour and 150ml water, stir to make a paste, cover loosely with cling film and leave in a warm place for 4-12 hours until bubbles appear. When bubbly, your ferment is ready to use (you can either dispose of any unused starter after bread making or keep and feed it regularly until your next baking session).

Dough

  1. Line a 1kg/2lb bread tin with parchment or rub the inside with oil.
  2. Add the flour and water to the bowl containing the ferment and stir to mix.
  3. Using your hands gather everything, gently pressing into a sticky ball of dough.
  4. Knead the dough in the bowl for 100 presses without adding flour.
  5. Put the dough into the prepared tin, cover with oiled cling film and leave in a warm place until double in size which may take 4 – 12 hours.
  6. Pre-heat the oven.
  7. Remove the cling film and bake for 45 minutes until golden brown.
  8. Leave to cool on a wire rack.

Click this link to find a handy Sourdough Starter Chart which when printed has space for you to enter the day and time that you feed your starter with flour and water and to help monitor progress.

This Guide to Sourdough Making contains lots of hints and tips for successful sourdough bread making.

Equipment

1kg/2lb loaf tin, parchment and glass bowl

Temperature

220˚C, Fan 200˚C, 425˚F, Gas 7

Cooking time

45 minutes
This is my 1st attempt at a rye starter and loaf. I wonder if the starter should be a bit looser - maybe add a bit more water. Likewise the dough seemed to need more like 200ml water to be loose enough to rise. My loaf is a bit too sour, possibly I fermented the ferment (!) too long. I scattered a bit of sea salt on the crust and also poured boiling water in an oven tray to help the crust form. My oven is quite hot so 35 mins was enough to bake the loaf. Looking forward to another go!
By Sophia Hill
22 Mar 2018

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