I made a bread

Using Jim Lahey’s “foolproof” overnight method

3 cups bread flour
1/4 tsp fast-acting yeast
1 tsp salt
1 3/4 cups lukewarm water

Mix all ingredients until shaggy dough forms. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm-room-temp location for 12-18 hours (this loaf got an 18 hour ferment, and it might be slightly over fermented, but my apartment runs 75+ degrees in the afternoons even in winter).

Turn onto a floured surface and let rest 15 minutes. Shape into a ball, place on a piece of floured parchment. Flour top of loaf and cover for 60-90 minutes.

Preheat oven to SCREAMING HOT (my dutch oven lid will only take up to 450, so 450 is what I used) with the dutch oven in the oven. Once bread is approximately double in size, remove pot from oven, place bread (parchment and all) in the pot, add the lid, put back in the oven for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake another 20-40 minutes or until deep brown and hollow sounding.

Cool on a wire rack.

Once it’s done cooling, I’ll eat half the loaf and we’ll see if I get sick. The dough smelled and tasted just like the sourdough I made with my friend in San Francisco last fall, so I’m hopeful.

On Gluten, IBS, Celiac, and Fermentation

So I’ve long wondered if the suspicion that folks have about “bread” making people sick (including me!) has as much to do with HOW we make bread and WHAT we make bread out of as it does with the supposedly evil gluten. There’s long been some anecdata that says that fully fermented wheat doughs are easier on the stomach than regular commercial bread.

As with all things n=1, so your mileage may vary, but so far this is what I have discovered:

I can eat naturally leavened, fully fermented sourdough without any issues. I cannot eat pasta, regular bread, or crackers. I can handle a small amount of soy sauce (which is fermented), but not tempura (which has flour in the batter).

This has been revelatory for me, as it means I have SOME bread back in my life, but I’ve been buying sourdough, and I miss the very primal act of MAKING bread myself. So I am experimenting now with a very-long-rise, fully fermented dough, but which doesn’t require a sourdough starter.

This is the recipe I’m using – it’s got great reviews, and I have made similar breads in the past, so I think it should turn out okay. Only thing is to figure out if my tum will be okay with it!

It’s a 20 hour ferment, so I’ll be starting it soon (it’s currently almost 2pm here), and then finishing it tomorrow morning. My apartment is on the warm side, so I doubt I’ll have any problems getting yeasty beasties going.

I’ll post pictures when I’m done!