We run popular monthly BREAD-MAKING COURSES, making 4 different types of bread by hand using our own 25 year old sourdough starter.
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June 29th - Start It Up - sourdough home baking
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One day classes are from 10-4 with lunch included and 4 loaves to take home cost £95 pp.
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Friday, 21 September 2012

Sourdough bread with a TEFF starter

Heard of TEFF? It's a plant originating in Ethiopia, with absolutely tiny seeds, that makes a nutty flour a little like buckwheat. It doesn't have gluten, but is very lively and will ferment very quickly, and can be used to make your usual wheat or rye loaves - or added in for extra flavour. TEFF is a very nutritious grain.

I got my TEFF flour from my friend Zee, fermented it with 50% flour, 50% warm (30c) water, and within 24 hours it was bubbling and after 48 ready to use to ferment a wheat loaf. I used it in the usual proportions for a sourdough wheat loaf. The recipe follow.

Sourdough is based on the natural process of fermentation - it is not just one kind of grain, or one kind of loaf - enjoy experimenting! I have eaten TEFF with Zee in Ethiopian cuisine - where it is used to make INJERA, a spongy sourdough pancake. You can buy it from some wholefood or world food outlets, and it is sold in the UK wholesale by Suma.

 1. The Tef starter after 72 hours
 2. The Tef starter and white flour dough
3. The loaf - a bit flat but nice and spongy!


  1. For a loaf, make TEFF starter up over 72 hours, starting with four tablespoons of flour and water each, adding a tablespoon of water and flour every 24 hours, and keeping warm. Keep in a loose top plastic container.
  2. Take 25 grams of the starter, and mix with 110 grams of water, 110 grams of good quality white flour. Leave overnight for 8-12 hours, covered.
  3. Add a further 290 grams of flour - white or a mix of white and wholewheat, plus 170 grams of tepid water. Mix into a dough. Leave to rest for 20 minutes and then stretch. Leave to ferment for 4 hours.
  4. Place into a proving basket, or a tin, and leave to rise for 2-4 hours.
  5. If in a basket, turn onto a hot tray or stone, and pop into a hot 220c oven, turning down after 10 minutes to 200c (fan ovens take off 20 degrees from those figures). Bake for 45 minutes.
  6. Turn out , cool, and enjoy.
The starter will keep in the fridge if you look after it - but it is really easy to make a new batch. You could also use the starter to make a pancake batter. Spongier than blinis but with good flavour.

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