Basic Wholemeal Tin loaf

A versatile, open textured golden tin loaf recipe. This is a staple base recipe for budding and seasoned sourdough bakers alike.

Makes 1 large loaf

  • 500g organic stoneground wholegrain flour (11.5% protein)
    (use 250g of wholegrain and 250g organic strong white flour for a 50:50)
  • 375g water (27°)
  • 10g of sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • Bubbly active starter / 7g dried yeast

Sourdough Method

In a large bowl, mix together 350g of water with your active sourdough starter. Stir the mix vigorously to encourage air bubbles.

To the watery mix, add the flour and salt. There’s no better taste if using a grain mill to mill fresh flour. In-house, we mill around 1.75 pints (0.99 l) of grain in a Mockmill to produce 500g of flour and also grind sea salt through it. Be careful about the temperature of your flour though if milling fresh. It pays to leave the flour to cool for a while.

Continue mixing for 2 minutes and then set aside at room temperature for a total of 30 minutes.

By this time the gluten will have developed, and it’s now time to add the remaining water. Gradually adding water in this way is known as Bassinage. Bassinage helps to hydrate your dough and assist with a truly open baked crumb! Submerge your hands in some lukewarm water. This will help minimise sticking. With your fingers spread wide apart, now poke into the dough and twist as if your fingers were mixing hooks. Repeat this for around a minute.

Cover the dough with a damp towel and leave at room temperature for another 30 minutes.

Carefully place the dough mix into a greased 900g 2lb loaf tin and cover with a shower cap or wax cloth. Move the tin and contents to a clean microwave and leave to prove for 12 hours.

It’s quite important to bake at the right point. Yeast or sourdough reacts with the oven heat for a final spring. If the dough has proved for too long, the yeast might be too spent for a final spring. Too little time, and the yeast may not have had time to react. 12 hours at room temperature should be suitable for this. Temperature can affect the proofing time and a thermometer is useful to keep track.

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