Week 124: Garlic sourdough loaf

Roasted garlic is a staple in my freezer. It is my go-to condiment to give every savoury bake that extra flavour boost. So it is only appropriate that sooner or later, I bake a sourdough loaf flavoured with roasted garlic.

I used the same proportion of starter, flour, oil, water and salt as my earlier loaf, substituting roasted garlic for caramelised onions. I have also discovered a new schedule for my weekly sourdough baking. Take note that since I don’t bake more than once a week, I kept my starter in the refrigerator and had to refresh it before each use. By the way, my starter now officially goes by the name “pangzhi”, which means “fatty” in Mandarin. Here’s hoping “pangzhi” makes all my future sourdough loaves fat and round.

Sourdough baking schedule

Wednesday evening: Remove 1/4 of the weight of the required starter from my jar and feed equal amount flour (bread, wholemeal, rye, depending how I feel that Wednesday) and water to replenish “pangzhi”. Put “pangzhi” back into refrigerator. Feed equal amount of flour and water to removed starter. Stir and cover bowl with cling wrap, poking a few holes for air. Now, the new starter is 1/2 the weight of required starter. Put new starter back into the refrigerator.

Thursday morning: Remove new starter from refrigerator and allow to activate in room temperature (30C to 33C).

Thursday evening: (Depending on how active the new starter is, you can delay the feeding time by a few hours.) Feed equal amount of flour and water so now you have the required weight of starter for the loaf. Cling wrap and put it back into the refrigerator.

Friday morning: Remove new starter from refrigerator and allow to activate in room temperature (30C to 33C).

Friday evening, late: (Preferably just before going to bed), mix starter, flour, oil, water and salt to form dough. Put it into proofing container and allow to proof in room temperature (20C to 23C) while sleeping (~7 hours).

Saturday morning: (If you love your sourdough loaf like I do, set your alarm so you don’t oversleep and over proof your dough. You can always go back to sleep afterwards.) Shape dough and allow to final proof (1 to 3 hours) at room temperature (30C to 33C).

Saturday afternoon: Ready to bake once final proof is done.

I know if seems like a very long process, but it’s mostly off-hand time. And I think it’s slightly longer for me as I had to “break” my starter activation into 2 days as it is too rushed for me to feed the starter before I rush off to work in the mornings. But, it’s all well worth the effort.

The crumbs are not quite there yet, and I need to work on my hydration and filling distribution. But, at least I get to enjoy the learning process. And, here’s my breakfast for the coming week.

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