- 1 cup active sourdough starter
- 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
- 4 cups bread flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- Prepare the Starter:
- Ensure your sourdough starter is active and has been fed within the last 4-6 hours.
- Combine Ingredients:
- In the bread maker pan, add the active sourdough starter and lukewarm water.
- Add Flour and Salt:
- Add the bread flour on top of the liquid, covering it completely. Sprinkle the salt over the flour.
- Select Dough Setting:
- Set your bread maker to the “Dough” or “Manual” setting. This setting usually includes a mix, knead, and rise cycle but does not include baking.
- Allow Kneading and Rising:
- Let the bread maker run through the kneading and rising cycles. This typically takes 1.5 to 2 hours, depending on your machine.
- Optional Additional Fold:
- After the first rise, you can optionally remove the dough, perform a gentle fold, and place it back in the bread maker for a second rise. This can enhance the structure of the bread.
- Shape the Dough:
- Once the dough cycle is complete, turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Shape it into a round loaf.
- Second Rise (Optional):
- Allow the shaped dough to undergo a second rise on a floured surface or in a proofing basket for about 1-2 hours, or until it has doubled in size.
- Preheat the Oven:
- Preheat your oven to 450°F (230°C). If you have a Dutch oven, place it in the oven to heat as well.
- Transfer the risen dough into the preheated Dutch oven or onto a baking sheet. Optionally, score the top of the dough with a sharp knife or razor blade.
- Bake in the Oven:
- Bake for approximately 20-30 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the internal temperature reaches about 200°F (93°C).
- Allow your bread to cool on a wire rack before slicing.
- Customize Flavors: Feel free to experiment by adding ingredients like dried fruits, nuts, or herbs to the dough for added flavor.
- Monitor Consistency: Depending on your bread maker, you may need to adjust the hydration level of your dough. If it seems too dry, add a little water; if too wet, add a bit more flour.
Remember that bread makers vary, so it’s essential to refer to your specific machine’s manual for guidance on using it for sourdough. Additionally, some bread makers have specific sourdough or artisanal settings that you can explore for a more tailored experience.