Rosemary Olive Oil Sourdough Bread
- 1 1/3 cups sourdough starter
- 2 ¼ cups cool water, about 70 degrees Fahrenheit, plus a little more only if dough is dry
- 6 cups bread flour, plus more only if needed
- ½ cup wheat germ
- 1/3 cup flax seed meal
- 4 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the hook attachment, combine starter, water, flour, wheat germ, flax seed meal, and rosemary. Mix on medium speed until well blended for approximately 2-3 minutes. If dough is too dry, add up to 1 tablespoon more water. Turn mixer off and cover with a clean kitchen towel, allowing the dough to rest for 10-15 minutes. This is known as the autolyse.
- Remove the kitchen towel and while the mixer is on medium speed, sprinkle in the salt followed by the oil. The dough will appear oily and may not absorb all of the oil.
- Place dough onto a work surface and knead until smooth and elastic.
- Spray a large bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Place the dough into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Place in a warm location for 3 hours, or until doubled in size.
- Divide the dough into two equal pieces and place onto a work surface. Allow to rest, covered lightly with plastic wrap, for approximately 10 minutes.
- Have 2 well-floured bannetons ready. Shape each half of the dough into a round boule and place upside-down into bannetons. Lightly cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for one more hour. Dough will not rise much.
- Lightly flour the top of each boule and cover each tightly with plastic wrap. Put baskets into the refrigerator for 12-15 hours. This is known as retarding the dough.
- Remove baskets from the refrigerator and take off plastic wrap. Lightly cover boules with a clean kitchen towel and allow to come to room temperature for approximately 2 hours.
- While dough is warming up, preheat oven with your pizza stone (if you are using) on the bottom-most rack, to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. It can take approximately 1 hour for the oven to come up to temperature.
- Lightly flour a pizza peel and gently pour one boule (boules will be baked separately) onto the center of the peel. Using a straight razor or a lame, decoratively make cuts on the top of the boule.
- Slide the boule into the oven and spritz the top of the boule with water. Immediately close the oven door and turn the oven temperature down to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for 5 minutes, spritzing up to 3 more times.
- Continue baking for 15-20 minutes without opening the oven. Using the peel, rotate the bread 180 degrees and continue baking for another 15-20 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and sounds hollow when gently thunked with a fist.
- Remove the bread and allow to cool before cutting and eating.
- Repeat with other boule, putting the oven temperature back up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
Makes 2 round boules