This is how your bread is made:
Firstly I need to crank up the sourdough quantity. That happens on Thursday evenings – hence I need your orders by then. This is when the ways part – the rye and the wheat loaf are slightly different production processes. Ideally they would also have different starters at different temperatures but I leave this to the big commercial sourdough bakeries.
My first task is to get a ‘soaker’ ready. That is, there is a need to soak the malted rye and the sunflower seeds with boiling water for a couple of hours – this makes them nice and soft and integrated with the structure of the bread.
The rye this week required me to grind some rye kernels and make the flour (picture of mill attached). This took about 3/4 of an hour for 1.5 kg.
Now it comes to mixing the dough: take a portion of starter, the required amount of water with some extra in reserve if needed, a smigeon of yeast to aid vigorous fermentation, the required amount of the soaked malted rye and sunflower seeds, rye flour and strong wheat flour,and a little bit of salt, and put all this in the mixer with the dough hook. My little kitchen mixer never makes a perfect mix so I then take it out and knead it a bit – messy with the rye. Then it gets ‘scaled’ to the loaf weight, and put in tins sprayed with non-stick baking oil (see attached picture of tins). Then each tin gets provided with a ‘night cap’ consisting of a plastic bag. (see picture). Ideally I would have biggish shower caps with rubber strings but the bags work fine. The tins get put in the oven as is at high temperatures, then temperature gets lowered. Overall time approx 45 mins to 1 hour.
For the wheat loaf, it is a simpler process:
Take a portion of sourdough, add water, then yeast, then flour (a mix of some homeground wheat which I had, some wholemeal and some strong white), then salt (always keep yeast and salt separate). Then mix this – long enough to make into a nice manageable dough. Let rest for a moment then divide in the right portions for loaves, shape the loaves (requires a little bit of technique) and put them in floured bread baskets/bannetons. Again give each one a cap for the night (Plastic bag).
Next morning I put the oven on (top temperature) and put in it the under-pot of a flower pot (ceramic) while the top part (the pot) gets soaked in cold water (picture of the gadget attached). The underpot is seasoned and I put a baking sheet on it when hot, and then on that the loaf from the bread basket, then put the cold, wet top on and put in the hot oven. Leave well alone for 1/2 hour, then remove the top, and bake for another 10-20 minutes before turning down the temperature to around 230 or lower. Overall one hour is reasonable but can be longer.
Then it needs to all cool down on a rack and get made ready for you to pick up.