Artisan Sourdough

Yield 1 loaf

I love the sour tang which can be achieved by a longer fermentation process (rise time), but your sourdough starter is just fresh yeast that can create every kind of bread commercial yeast does. This is just the "old way" and in my humble opinion is worth the extra waiting time. Don't get me wrong, dry active yeast is great for when you want those cinnamon buns on Sunday morning and are starting them at 8am but once you get into your sourdough baking rhythm you can use your stater for everything.



Make the Dough:

  1. In the evening, whisk the starter and water together in a large bowl with a fork. Add the flour and salt. Mix to combine, then finish by hand to form a rough dough.
  2. Cover with a damp towel and let rest for 1 hour. Replenish your starter with fresh flour and water, and store according to preference.
  3. After the dough has rested, work it into a ball, about 15 to 20 seconds.

Bulk Rise:

  1. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and let rise overnight at room temperature, about 8 to 10 hours at 70˚F (21˚C). The dough is ready when it has doubled in size, has a few bubbles on the surface, and jiggles when you move the bowl from side to side.

Shape the Dough:

  1. In the morning, coax the dough onto a floured surface. Dimple the dough all over with floured fingertips. Gently shape it into a round and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, line an 8-inch (20-cm) bowl or proofing basket with a towel and dust with flour. Using a bench scraper, scoop up the dough and flip it over so that the smooth side is facing down. Shape it again, and then flip it back over.
  3. Cup the dough and gently pull it toward you in a circular motion to tighten its shape. Place into your lined bowl, seam side up.

Second Rise:

  1. Cover the dough and refrigerate for 1 hour to set its structure (Note: You can chill this dough for up to 6 hours or more).
  2. When ready to bake, let sit at room temperature while the oven heats up.
  3. Preheat your oven to 500˚F (260˚C). Cut a piece of parchment to fit the size of your baking pot.

Score the Dough:

  1. Place the parchment over the dough and invert the bowl to release. Dust the surface with flour and rub with your hands to coat.
  2. Using the tip of a small knife or razor blade, score the dough any way you'd like. (Different scoring techniques are shown at the back of the book.) Use the parchment to transfer the dough into the baking pot.


  1. Place the pot on the center rack, and reduce the heat to 450˚F (230˚C).
  2. Bake the dough for 20 minutes, covered. Remove the lid, and continue to bake for 30 minutes.
  3. Lift the loaf out of the pot, and bake directly on the oven rack for the last 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour before slicing. Enjoy!


This loaf will stay fresh up to 1 day stored at room temperature in a plastic bag.

Emilie includes loads of notes for each step, visual tutorials for stretching and folding the dough, shaping and scoring the loaf, as well as how to create your own starter from scratch in the book.

Recipe by Fare Isle at