This recipe makes a little over two pounds of dough. For a sandwich loaf I bake it in a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan, but it also works well when proofed in a brotform. I have also used my French bread pan to make baguettes. It is a versatile recipe, to say the least. Which is exactly what I was wanting when I set out to create it!
This recipes uses both yeast and a sourdough starter. If made with a whole grain sourdough starter like I use, this bread winds up containing around 70% whole grains. The sourdough starter not only adds to the taste and leavening power of the bread, but also make it stay fresh longer.
Using a bread machine’s dough cycle is the easiest way to do the kneading and bulk fermenting for this bread. Alternately, I sometimes use my Kitchenaid stand mixer for the kneading and then let the dough rise in a bowl on the counter. This bread usually gets a good oven spring for me, so carefully slashing of the dough just before you put it in the oven will help to keep it from splitting or ‘blowing out’ in unwanted places. For a softer crust, you can brush the top with a little melted butter after baking.