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White Sourdough

495 gms Flour
305 mls water
11 gms salt
100 gms sourdough starter
A small amount of Poppy seeds

Feed your sourdough starter a good four hours before you being making the bread, so that it is active bubbly. Take two table spoons of started and mix in 50 gms of flour and 50 mls of water. Cover and leave for several hours until the starter has grown and is bubbly.

Mix the active starter and the other ingredients together, folding in the mixture on itself until it has all combined - no kneeding necessary. Cover and leave for 1 hour. Kneed the dough in the bowl by stretching from the edge and folding over for two or three minutes until the dough smooths out. Put into a well oiled bowl and leave for 4 hours. At this point the dough can be left in the fridge overnight.

The dough will not rise as much as yeasted dough, but it should have risen a little. Gently tip out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and shape by folding and rolling lightly. Turn the dough seam side down and leave on the worktop, uncovered for 30 - 45 mins. Now finally shape the dough by rolling the dough in on itself (gently). Scatter some Poppy seeds on the worktop and roll the dough in them to light cover the surface. You can also scatter some seeds into the proving basket.

Prepare a proving basket by flouring it (I like to use Rye flour for this) and place the dough seam side up into it. Cover and leave for a couple of hours. If you did not refridgerate the dough before you can now pop it into the frigde overnight.

Put a dutch oven or large metal pan and lid in the oven and heat it to 260 degrees C for 45 minutes. Take out the pot, gently tip the dough out of the proving basket onto non-stick paper and score it is with shape blade. Lift the dough on the non stick paper and place it gently into the pot and cover with the lid. Put the pot into the over and turn down the heat to 220 for twenty minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook for another 20 minutes. Remove the pot from the oven and place the finished loaf onto a cooling tray. Stand back and marvel at what you have created. Don't cut into it until is is properly cool!