The Fresh Loaf

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garyhardy's blog

garyhardy's picture
  1. Well after reading Benito’s blog with his glorious milk loaf it got me thinking. While I love traditional sourdough bread it’s still nice to have a slice of soft white bread every now and again. 

So in my normal keep it simple mantra I decided milk loaf for tea.


building my starter I started with

Morning 10g starter 10g plain flour 10g water

Evening add to starter 75g plain flour and 75g water 

Bring to boil 300g milk let it cool in fridge.


use 150g starter into stand mixer

add 300g of the cooled milk 

add 550g strong white bread flour.

30g olive oil

11g salt 

kneading till smooth.

Bulk prove in oiled glass bowl 

important don’t let it grow more than 30%

shape and put in proving basket for overnight proving in fridge.


Heat up cast iron casserole dish with lid 45 mins 235deg c

Tip dough out onto baking sheet, slash top.

place in casserole dish, drop a cup full of ice at the back of the baking sheet so it doesn’t come into contact with dough. lid on

Cook with lid on same temp for 20 mins

Remove lid drop temp to 220 deg c

cook for a further 20 mins remove from oven

if not dark enough crust return loaf on its own on the rack for another 5 mins at 200 deg c

The results were tremendous, the crumb was so soft exactly how I wanted it.


thanks for pointing me in the right direction Benito





garyhardy's picture

Well it’s been a very long break in my sourdough journey. Work pressures and family life always made it difficult to have another demanding baby that was my starter. Now after early retirement I decided to start again. 

There is an old saying that a lazy engineer is the best engineer, as they will always find the quickest, easiest and least wasteful way of doing anything.

so with the cost of everything going through the roof I decided to plan a way to bake a few times a week with no waste. No fancy stuff had to be simple as time is precious.

I don’t throw away starter I don’t do complex builds. I build the starter over a few days from a very small amount and use that for baking when it’s at the right size.

My recipe calls for 150g of starter. So I start the build with

Day 1

10g starter

10g plaid flour

10g water

Day 2 morning

30g starter

75g plain flour

75g water

Day 3 morning 

I pour 150g of starter into the mixer bowl

followed by 300g water. Swill this around.

550g of good quality flour I mix this up either full white, or part wholemeal.

11g salt.

mix in stand mixer for ten minutes till smooth.

slightly oil glass storage container mark level

with a pen. 


I let the dough rise approx 30% takes approx 3 hours, after this shape and put straight into bread proving basket with shower cap on then into fridge for overnight proving

Bake day 

I bake around 8am

cast iron casserole pot in the oven at 235 deg c for 45 mins

Dough out of fridge, tip onto a baking sheet score, drop into casserole dish, I add some ice under baking sheet. Lid on back in oven for 20 mins


After 20 mins remove lid and bake reduce temp

to 220 deg c cook for a further 25mins


Start over with 10g of starter and so on. 



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