By Hussina Raja

This week we bring Just Bread to you in pictures to illustrate the baking process from ancient grain to sourdough loaf.

Week 2 with all its science can feel a little overwhelming, but once we get our heads around it things fall into place and make sense. It helps to have Diane’s yummy Ukrainian pastries at hand for comfort.

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We start the morning in Just Bread tradition with a taste of e5’s signature Hackney Wild and Multi-grain loaves. The bake of the day is a slightly larger 100g loaf of Hackney Wild.

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Kate our wonderful baker, with wheat in hand, begins the session introducing us to grains, flour and how to make a sourdough starter. As the day progresses we discover the benefits of making your own starter instead of buying supermarket yeast which is commonly used to make regular bread.

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Flour and water combined with the starter are where it begins, the wild yeast and bacteria in the starter produce a lactic acid that ferments giving sourdough it’s distinct taste. During this process, gluten structures develop trapping air in the dough, helping it to rise and expand like a balloon.

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At 9am a batch of dough prepared by our bakers Kate and Carmen has doubled in size and is now ready to cut at 12pm.

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Everyone with their 100g of dough starts off with the folding process which helps to strengthen the loaf. Kate shares in the video below the folding technique used to make a compact ball dough.

 

 

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The trainees all get to practise how to fold the dough and in no time everyone is eager to keep going.

Once folded and dusted in flour, the dough is set in baskets to rest and grow a little more over lunch.

Fast forward to 2pm and the dough has risen and is now ready to be baked. The baskets are emptied onto a baking sheet that is quickly transferred to where the oven is and in a swift move, the dough slides onto the hot floor.

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Twenty minutes in we have a sneak peek to see how the loaves are doing. Looking pretty good so far.

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Shortly after, the beeping of the oven signals it’s time for us to retrieve our loaves. They look superb, Kate proudly pulls out the warm, large and dusty bread, the aroma is beyond welcoming.  It’s been a great day, we’ve successfully baked our first loaf of delicious sourdough bread!