Our version of the forest's bread and butter. Natural water from our well. 100% sprouted spelt flour. Wild mushrooms. Salt. Wild fermentation.
This bread is earthy and rustic, a real homestyle loaf. It's packed full of nutrition in all its simplistic goodness.
WILD PORCINI SPELT SOURDOUGH
1 TBSP SOURDOUGH STARTER
1/2 CUP SPROUTED SPELT FLOUR
1/3 CUP WATER
5 1/4 CUPS SPROUTED SPELT FLOUR
1/4 CUP DRIED POWDERED WILD PORCINI MUSHROOM
1/2 CUP DRIED WILD PORCINI MUSHROOM
1 TBSP OLIVE OIL
SPRINKLE OF SALT
2 CUPS WATER
1/2 CUP WILD PORCINI MUSHROOM LIQUOR
1 TBSP SEA SALT
Take a tbsp of your active sourdough starter and stir in flour and water. Cover loosely and leave to get comfortable overnight (12 hrs) in a warm spot.
After the leaven has had time to rest stir in water and dissolve any lumps of the leaven. Stir flour and powdered mushrooms together and add to the dissolved leaven mixture. Mixture will be quite dry and shaggy, covered with a towel and set in a warm spot for give or take 2 hrs, just don't let it dry out!
While you're waiting, rehydrate dried porcini in warm water for 15 minutes. Drain (but save) and chop mushrooms into small pieces. Sauté in pan with olive oil over medium heat until golden and crispy. Set aside. Take 1/2 cup of the mushroom liquor and mix in sea salt and set aside for salt to dissolve.
When time's up massage in salt and mushroom liquor mixture into the dough until all liquid is soaked up. Mix in sautéed mushrooms and cover with a towel and place in a warm spot.
Let dough rise 1 hour.
After the hour fold 4 times every 30 minutes for 3 hours.
After the 6th fold, shape the way you'd like to, divide in 2 if you want to, cover and rest for 30 minutes. After the 30 minutes place in proofing baskets and let rise overnight in the fridge or a cold place.
Bake at 500 C in the morning in a hot dutch oven or heavy lidded pot for 30 minutes with lid on and 20 minutes without. Let cool outside the pan on a rack.
Leave butter out at room temperature to soften. Rehydrate dried oyster mushrooms in warm water for 15 minutes. Drain well, keep mushroom liquor in fridge for future use if desired. Heat up a pan at medium/high heat with 2 tbsp of olive oil. Sauté mushrooms in oil until golden brown and crispy. Take pan off the heat and stir in green onions. When mushroom and onion mixture is cool, fold into butter until completely mixed. Salt butter if butter is unsalted or however you like!
As a graduated student of microbiology I was surprised at some of the old notes I discovered while browsing my old documents. A presentation on the benefits of sourdough bread over quick-baked you say?
Well seems like things are coming full circle here as we dive into the world of wild food and fermentation in our house. Things are constantly being "fed" and "kept alive" on our kitchen counter now a days. A sourdough starter for one. Besides being easier on the gut for those gluten-sensitive individuals, sourdoughs have a range of other benefits.
Here they are, as adapted from my food microbiology class notes:
ADVANTAGES OF SOURDOUGH PRODUCTION?
Increased amounts of essential amino acids
Flour is naturally deficient in amino acids. Lactobacillus cultures actually produce amino acids within sourdough bread, lysine producing pediococci.
Better achievement of the aromatic bread flavour
Due to the increased amounts of free amino acids produced by lactobacillus fermentation, an enhanced intensity of overall bread flavour occurs. The formation of ornithine during fermentation is particularly accredited to the enhanced roasted flavour of the bread. Lactobacillus fermentation also improves the volume and softness of bread which is obtained at moderate acidity levels and favourable enzymatic activity during fermentation.
Increased shelf-life expectancy
What makes bread stale? As time goes on the starch-protein matrix of the bread begins to become rigid and undergo retrogradation. It is reported that sourdough bread that is fermented with lactobacillus has a slower rate of starch retrogradation. This could be due to exopolysaccharide producing lactobacillus that harbor potential anti-staling
pH decrease during fermentation
resistance of the gluten network
inhibition of the gluten amylases"
With the advantages of sourdough comes the added benefits of adding wild mushrooms. Porcini is a mushroom high in protein, iron, and fibre. It adds a rich earthy flavour to the dough and texturally enhances the crumb of the bread.
My partner and I had exceptional sandwiches and avocado toast for a week! Making use of our dried mushroom stores just became a bit more interesting.