No Knead Courgette sourdough Bread

Been wanting to redo the beetroot bread I did ages ago unfortunetaly I missed the season and so no beetroots until July here in the UK. Until then maybe I could try hibiscus sourdough bread at some point to get my red bread fix.

Anyways today instead I decided to experiment as well as celebrate the end of the dire courgette shortage we’ve been having with courgette sourdough bread. I more or less use the same recipes as the beetroot bread, but because courgette is much more watery, I added some wholemeal flour.

I slightly miss the bright red dough from when I make beetroot bread; the courgette bread dough is looking much more civilised, lot less murdery.

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There isn’t a taste of courgette per se, but it has this really nice freshness and it super soft and moist.

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As you can sort of see the texture and crumbs of it was really lovely, it is just light and airy.

It pairs especially well with savoury food. I had it with some gorgonzola which really brought out the flavours.I then proceeded to eat the entire humongous piece gorgonzola and half of the loaf which was not the greatest decision but super delicious nonetheless. And when life gives you a bad but delicious option, you take that option my fellow epicurean.

so all in all actually really happy with this bread even though it does not have a fantastic lurid hue of the beetroot bread.

Ingredients

  • 550g white bread flour
  • 100g wholemeal flour
  • 335g water
  • 200g starter
  • 15g salt
  • 1 medium courgette

Recipe

  1. In a small cup add 10g of hot water and dissolve the salt. Leave to cool.
  2. With a grater finely shred the courgette and set aside for the moment.
  3. In a large bowl add water + the starter and mix to dissolve.
  4. + add all the flour + courgette + the now tepid 10g salt water 
  5. Mix until combined
  6. Cover with a plastic freezer bag and leave in the fridge for 20 hours.
  7. Scoop out your dough on a clean floured surface and shape your dough. Withe the seams bottom down, push and rotate your shaped dough to really close the seams.
  8.  And leave the dough at room temperature for another 2 hours. Preheat the oven at 260C˚ with the Dutch Oven inside. Leave the dutch oven for a least 30 min at 260C˚.
  9. Slash the top and Bake at 260C˚ for about 30mins with the lid on. Take off the lid and lower the temperature to 230C˚ for another 15min.
  10. Take it out of the oven and let cool for an hour.

Who needs to knead? No knead sourdough

The kneading of the sourdough at 20 min interval for so many time is alway the most time-consuming and annoying part (I get flour and dough everywhere in the kitchen). I had heard about no knead technique, but I had a slight suspicion that it was mostly to make pun-ny book titles like “kneadlessly simple” and the title to this post. It is also the least used methods in sourdough recipes that I have seen. Although it’s a great for people who dont have a proofing basket as you don’t need one for this no knead recipe as the dough rises in a mixing bowl.

The biggest contention with no knead is the flavour. Many argue that it doesn’t taste as good, as the flavour has less depth. I slightly agree with that the no knead method did not taste bad but it was different, a bit more like normal white bread…. Here is a post that argues why kneaded bread is better not only because of the taste but other points I hadn’t thought about. I think though it is mostly comes down to personal preference. I am definitely going to try some more no knead breads.

The best book for the no knead method is My Bread: The Revolutionary No-Work, No-Knead Method by Jim Lahey and Rick Flaste. Also for a bit more science and why the no knead method works a post can be found at serious eat. Or also on here, Bodnant welsh food website, which also did two loaves to compare kneading vs no knead. Basically, the dough as it rises kneads itself. Also what is crucial is that you use a dutch oven.

But it actually works! You don’t need to knead! I used the New York Times recipe and to see if it made any difference as a comparison I also made my workhorse loaf recipe which is very similar. I made two different loaves with my workhorse recipe and kneaded them to different degrees. I kneaded one loaf with 20 min  4 times and another 8 times. The best result was kneading it 4 times at 20 min intervals (which is what the standard practice seems to be in most recipes). Kneading it 8 times did not make any difference to the loaf compared to kneading it 4 times.

Here are the loaves just out of the oven

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The left is 4 times, the bottom middle is no knead and the right is 8 times
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here is an intersection of all three of the loaves. Can you tell which is which?

A couple thing I have discovered and have started to do is: one dissolve the salt in 15grams of water from the recipe and dissolving the starter in the water before adding it to the flour which makes everything easier to mix. I also have started using plastic bags to cover the dough while its rising which is really good to prevent the bread from drying out. After shaping  I have also started to twist the bread on itself on to close the seems on the bottom.

Ingredients

  • 300 grams white bread flour
  • 125 grams wholemeal bread flour
  • 300 grams water
  • 180 grams starter
  • 6 grams salt

recipe

  1. feed your starter 8 hours before.
  2. In a cup with 10 grams of hot water add the salt and mix to dissolve.
  3. With the rest of the water at luke warm temparature add the starter and mix.
  4. add the flour and the cup of salty water to water/starter mixture and mix until combined.
  5. Wrap the bowl using a plastic freezer bag or cling film.
  6. let it rise for 24 hours in the fridge
  7. On a well floured surface scoop out the dough and fold and shape into a loaf.
  8. Leave the dough for 2 hours for its final rise.
  9. Heat the oven to 260Cº and place your dutch oven inside for 30 in.
  10. Put your loaf in the dutch oven seams up.
  11. Bake for 30 min at 260Cº and take the top of and cook at 245Cº for another 10 min.
  12. take the bread out and leave to cool for 45 min at least