Great recipe if you are thinking of baking a softer sourdough bread. Oat porridge did the magic here. For so long, I have been adding different types of root vegetable puree into my bread dough knowing that they help to make my Pullman loaves and buns really fluffy. No chemical bread enhancer, no packaged dough conditioner, just steamed vegetables, how natural and nutritious does that sound?
So when I heard that there is a sourdough recipe out there enriched with oat porridge that makes it softer, of course, I want to try it. See how soft it turned out.
I used instant oatmeal to make the porridge instead of cooking rolled oats porridge over the stove. I also stick to baking my dough cold straight from the fridge and shaping my loaf just before baking. As for the rest of the instructions, I followed to a T, down right to coating the crust with rolled oats and giving the top with 4 snips with scissors to create that “zipper” look.
OAT PORRIDGE SOURDOUGH
adapted from the perfect loaf for oatmeal porridge: 250g boiling hot water 125g instant oatmeal 75g fed starter 350g+12g+12g water 350g of plain flour 150g whole wheat flour 10g sea salt
To prepare oat porridge, mix hot water to instant oatmeal and stir until a thick consistency is formed. Leave it aside to cool completely.
In a large mixing bowl, add fed starter to 350g of water and stir with a wooden spoon to mix well. Next, add plain flour, whole wheat flour, and mix with hand to form a dough with no dry flour is visible. Cover the bowl and leave this aside for 60 minutes.
Sprinkle sea salt over the dough and pour the remaining 12g water on top, and mix the salt, water into the dough by hand using squeezing action. The dough by now will appear very stretchable and doesn’t stick to the side of the bowl. Leave this aside for 30 minutes, cover the bowl with a lid or tea towel.
After 30 minutes, incorporate oatmeal porridge to the dough in 4 separate additions, with each addition, folding the dough so that the porridge get mixed as uniformly as possible. The remaining 12g water can be added bit by bit if the dough feels too dry. You may not need to use up all the remaining water, stop once the dough feels wet enough since the oatmeal porridge is also providing hydration to the dough.
Do a series of turns 6 times at 30 minutes interval. With each turn, reach the dough from the bottom of the bowl and pull it up to tuck it to the opposite side of the bowl. Turn the bowl and repeat for another pull-stretch-tuck action for about 3 more times till one round is completed. Rest for 30 minutes and repeat this again till you complete 6 sets.
By the end of the 6th turn, cover the container and put the dough into the fridge for overnight retardation.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 250C. Take out the dough from the fridge and shape the cold dough tightly into a ball, while remaining careful not to break up too much of the air pockets that has built up inside the dough. Invert the dough onto a tray of rolled oats to coat the top part of the bread. Place the dough inside a floured dutch oven pot seam side downwards. To score, hold a pair of kitchen scissors almost parallel to the surface of the bread, making 4 snips across the top to create a “zipper” look.
Cover the pot and put it into the preheated oven bake for 40 minutes.
After 40 minutes, remove the cover, reduce the oven temperature to 220C and bake for another 30 minutes.
Cook on rack completely before slicing. I waited for 4 hours, as recipe suggest the bread need a longer “setting” time due to its higher hydration.