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Soft Buttermilk Bread

I recently tried this new recipe that I found and I've totally fallen in love with it. By adding the buttermilk it makes the sourdough bread very soft and easy to work with. It's not particularly sour but still has a good flavor.

To start the bread place 100 grams of ripe starter, 150 grams of all purpose flour and 250 mL of buttermilk in a bowl. I have used both high fat buttermilk and regular buttermilk both work fine. The only difference I saw was it took a bit longer to rise when there was higher fat. Cover the bowl and let it sit over night. This becomes the base or sponge for the rest of the bread.

The next day (8 to 12 hrs) add the remaining ingredients. This is 300 grams bread flour, a tsp of salt and a splash of water. I have found that I often need more than a "splash" to get it all into a cohesive dough. I only add enough to get all of the flour to incorporate and not much more. At this point cover the dough again and let sit for about an hour.

After an hour pull the dough out and fold the dough several times before returning the dough to the bowl. Let it sit for next couple of hours (3 to 4 hours). At the end of time, gently shape the dough into a loaf and place in a banneton, make sure its well floured. Cover it once again and place it in the fridge. At this point how long its sits is up to you. It should rise for several hours for the best result, but I have left it as long as 10 to 12 hours with no issue.

At the end of rise preheat the oven to 450 F with the dutch oven in the oven to preheat as well. I like to preheat the oven for almost an hour before adding the bread. I have found that my oven will say that it has reached the temperature even when an external thermometer says it hasn't reached temp yet. Place the loaf on a sheet of baking parchment and slash it. Once the oven is at the correct temp, Place the loaf in a the dutch oven and keep the lid the on for about 50 minutes. At the end of the time and remove the lid for last 5 minutes to crisp up the crust. And tada! A lovely soft loaf for you to enjoy!

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