Equipped for Sourdough
We are just a couple of days away from our first Sourdough Bakealong. In continuing our discussion of what you need to get going, other than a starter and some flour and salt, you need a couple of other key pieces of equipment to give you the best chance of getting great loaves.
Overwhelmingly, we advocate for using what you have in your kitchen to bake bread. Its always a more realistic endeavour if you don't have to make a huge upfront investment when starting on a new craft. Your main equipment is:
Scales (most bread recipes are done by weight)
Jar - for starter
Baking Parchment - for sliding your dough into the oven
Baking tray without a lip or a pizza peel
A razor or sharp knife for scoring your bread
Optional, but great to have:
Banneton: a lined basket used for rising your bread. If you don't have one, try using a colander or sieve, lined with a tea towel. A normal bowl will work in a pinch, but ideally you need something that can breath so your bread doesn’t stick.
Bowl Scraper: a tool to help with folding your bread and cleaning up tables and bowls
Dutch Oven/Cast Iron Casserole: Keeps the moisture of the bread in to develop an excellent rise before the crust is formed. Also protects from uneven temperatures in the oven. Use an inexpensive one as it may scorch as part of the baking process. I keep an eye out for them in the supermarket sales. If you don't have one, a stainless steel bowl upside down on a cookie sheet is a good alternative.