Mighty Multigrain

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Artisan Sourdough Made Simple: A Beginner's Guide to Delicious Handcrafted Bread with Minimal KneadingFor this recipe, you’ll need a bag of Harvest Grains Blend or other 10-grain multigrain hot cereal mix to add to the dough. Both typically contain a blend of rye flakes, oats, barley, seeds, and sometimes cornmeal for a hint of mellow sweetness. These grains not only add depth of flavor but offer a brilliant textural element, too. The inside crumb will have a delightful, bouncy feel when you poke it. This sourdough is fantastic on its own or toasted, piled high with any leftovers you see fit.

About the Dough: If your grain mix contains flax or chia seeds, they will gel when soaked, making your dough stickier than usual. Lightly oil your work surface (in lieu of flouring) so it’s not like prying chewing gum off the bottom of your shoe. If you happen to see lots of bubbles on the surface of this particular dough, it’s an indicator of healthy fermentation.

  • Yield: 1 Loaf


  • 50 g (¼ cup) bubbly, active starter
  • 325 g (1⅓ cup plus 1 tsp) warm water
  • 40 g (2 tbsp) honey
  • 150 g (1½ cups) whole spelt flour
  • 350 g (scant 3 cups) bread flour
  • 9 g (1½ tsp) fine sea salt
  • 70 g (½ cup) Harvest Grains Blend or 10-grain hot cereal
  • 240 g (1 cup) hot water
  • Oil, for coating
How to Make It
  1. A few days before baking, feed your starter until bubbly and active. Store at room temperature until ready to use.
  2. Make the dough
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the starter, water, and honey together with a fork. Add the flours and salt. Combine to form a rough, shaggy dough, and then finish by hand to fully incorporate the flour. Cover with a damp towel and let rest for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Replenish your starter with fresh flour and water, and store according to preference.
  4. Meanwhile, soak the grains in 240 grams (1 cup) of hot water while the dough is resting. Drain well before using.
  5. Add the grains
  6. Add the grains to the bowl. Knead them into the dough, using both hands as needed to incorporate, about 1 minute. The dough will feel wet and slippery but will become more manageable as you move it around.
  7. Bulk rise
  8. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and let rise until double in size. This will take about 6 to 8 hours at room temperature, about 70°F (21°C). Optional Step: About 30 minutes into the bulk rise, stretch and fold the dough for added structure and height. Repeat this technique, about 2 to 3 sets, spaced 45 minutes apart.
  9. Shape
  10. Remove the dough onto a lightly oiled work surface. Shape it into a round and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, line an 8-inch (20-cm) bowl or proofing basket with a towel. Sprinkle the inside with flour. With floured hands, gently cup the dough and pull it toward you in a circular motion to tighten its shape. Place the dough into your basket, seam side up.
  11. Second rise
  12. Cover the dough and let rest until puffy but not fully risen, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  13. Preheat your oven to 450°F (230°C). Cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit the size of your baking pot.
  14. Score
  15. Place the parchment over the dough and invert the bowl to release. Sprinkle the surface with flour and rub gently with your hands to coat. Using the tip of a small knife or razor blade, score the dough with the bird wings pattern, or any way you’d like. Use the parchment to transfer the dough into the baking pot.
  16. Bake
  17. Bake the dough on the center rack for 20 minutes, covered. Remove the lid, and continue to bake for 30 minutes. Lift the bread out of the pot, and finish baking directly on the rack for the last 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 1 hour before slicing.
  18. The moisture from the grains will keep this loaf fresh for 1 to 2 days. Store at room temperature in a plastic bag.

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