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#121 of 123 Old Yesterday, 08:05 AM
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Reviving this thread to report that I have become a slave to sourdough. I figured people here might understand.

I started following the Bourke Street Bakery feeding schedule over a month ago. I am getting beautiful loaves but since I hate just throwing away the starter when I feed it, I have been making endless amounts of waffles, crumpets, apple spice bread, banana bread etc.

Yesterday I made a plain boule, a spiced fruit sourdough loaf, 2 apple spiced cakes and i still have a bucket of discarded starter in the fridge.
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#122 of 123 Old Yesterday, 07:26 PM
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LOL! I don't understand yet but I'm planning to start a sour dough starter once the weather warms up so I'm probably looking into my future :-)

On another matter, how do people get oven spring? I happy with the taste and texture of most of my things now but they are all still much flatter than I'd like.
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#123 of 123 Old Yesterday, 11:26 PM
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Oven spring? Cook it in a Dutch oven. Night and day, seriously.

I use a big oval enamelled cast-iron one. First I heat the oven up HOT - 250C - for about 25 minutes. Then I pop the loaf (boule, usually) in on its square of baking paper. I coat the bottom of my Dutch oven with a layer of coarse cornmeal to prevent the bottom of the loaf scorching - I change it occasionally, but it lasts for several bakes.

Then I sprinkle a bit of water around the sides of the Dutch oven and on the lid, and pop it in the oven for about 40 minutes, turning the oven down a bit to 220ish after the first few minutes. Then I haul it out, take off the lid and inspect. If it doesn't look done, the lid goes back on and it goes back in for 10-15 minutes. If it looks done but pale, it goes back in for 10 minutes or so with the lid off. If it looks done and nicely browned, well, it's done.

You get more oven spring with high hydration doughs, but even fairly 'dry' doughs benefit from this method. Lovely oven spring, slashes open up beautifully, and you can get really great chewy, non-wimpy crusts. I love it.

If decomposition persists please see your necromancer.

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