The Fresh Loaf

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Sourdough Potato Bread

dmsnyder's picture

Sourdough Potato Bread


I baked Hamelman's Roasted Potato Bread a few months ago ( Floyd commented that he had used leftover mashed potatoes to make bread. That sounded interesting. And I had admired the sourdough roasted potato bread about which SusanFNP had written in February of this year. See:

So, today I made Sourdough Potato Bread with mashed potatoes left over from last night's dinner. (No seconds on potatoes for dmsnyder! <whine>)

Sourdough Potato Bread, shaped in the "Fendu" style.


Mashed potatoes

Boil 750 gms of yukon gold potatoes in their skins until a knife goes into them without resistance. Peel the potatoes and put them through a potato ricer. Mix with 1/3 cup of chopped shallots sautéed in 4 T good olive oil. Add salt (just a few dashes from a shaker) and fresh-ground pepper (12 twists of a mill) and mix thoroughly. Add more olive oil to taste. Reheat in a sauce pan over a low fire, turning frequently to minimize sticking. (I have also heated them in a covered enameled cast iron casserole in the oven.) Serve and enjoy, but set some aside to make bread the next day!




Bread flour

400 gms

Whole wheat flour

166 gms


215 gms


12 gms

Mashed potatoes with shallots

157 gms

Active levain (100% hydration)

200 gms


  1. In a large bowl, dissolve the levain in the water.

  2. Add the mashed potatoes and mix. The potatoes can have some clumps, but they should be cherry-sized or smaller.

  3. Add the two flours and mix to a shaggy mass.

  4. Cover the bowl tightly and let the dough rest for 20-60 minutes to hydrate the flour and allow gluten to start developing.

  5. After the autolyse, sprinkle the salt over the dough and mix it into the dough using the method of your choice. I used the “stretch and fold in the bowl” technique. See;

  6. Let the dough rest, covered, for 20 minutes, then repeat the “stretch and fold in the bowl.” Repeat the rest and stretch and fold twice more at 20 minute intervals.

  7. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled glass container. (I use an 8 cup glass measuring pitcher.) Cover tightly.

  8. Bulk ferment until double in volume. Stretch and fold on the counter at 50 and 100 minutes. Then allow fermentation to continue until the dough has doubled. (About another 50 minutes.)

  9. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Gently pre-shape into rounds. Cover with plasti-crap and allow to rest for 10-20 minutes to relax the gluten.

  10. Shape the pieces into boules, batârds or, if you want to be traditional with the potato bread, into fendu shapes.

  11. Proof the loaves in bannetons or en couche, covered with plastic to prevent drying of the surface. If you shaped fendus, proof with what will be the top of the loaf down. Allow the loaves to expand to 1.5 to 1.75 times their original volume.

  12. About 45-60 minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 500F with a baking stone in place and prepared for your oven steaming method of choice. (I currently place a metal loaf pan and a cast iron skillet, heaping full of lava rocks, on the bottom rack of the oven. About 3 minutes before loading the loaves, I dump a handful of ice cubes into the loaf pan and shut the oven door. Just after loading the loaves in the oven, I pour ¾ to 1 cup of boiling water over the lava rocks and shut the oven door fast. I remove the containers 10-12 minutes into the bake. This process also “vents” the steam, so the loaves finish baking in a dry oven.)

  13. Score the loaves as desired. (You don't score fendus, of course.) Load into the oven. Steam the oven immediately. Turn the oven down to 460F, and set a timer for 10 minutes.

  14. After 10 minutes, remove your steaming hardware.

  15. Turn down the oven to 440F. Continue baking until the loaves are done – internal temperature of 205F and the loaves give a hollow sound when thumped on the bottom. This should be about 20 minutes more. Monitor the loaves frequently for the last 20 minutes. The oil in the potatoes and, maybe, the sugar in the potatoes will cause the bread to brown more than a lean bread.

  16. Cool the loaves completely before slicing.



Submitted to YeastSpotting


SylviaH's picture

Beautiful tasty looking loaves...the Fendu style just adds so much personality to these lovely loaves.  The crust and crumb look just lovely!  Great write up!


dmsnyder's picture

I had a slice for bedtime snack. As expected, the potatoes resulted in a very moist, tender crumb but still with some chewiness. The flavor was moderately sour. I really couldn't pick out any distinct flavor notes from the potatoes or shallots.

The last potato bread I made made wonderful toast, and I expect this will be even better because of the soudough flavor.


SylviaH's picture

I've noticed that mashed and instant potatoes just add a nice tender chewier crumb and don't have a potato flavor!  I think if a potato flavor is desired it would work best with the roasted chunks in the crumb so using a firmer  boiler type potato instead of a baker would work nicely.  Roasting brings out so much flavor and holds the potato together so I guess that's why it calls for roasted chunks in some recipes....either way makes for great loaves and I think I prefer the way you did your loaves.  It does make for great toasting or just plain.


Floydm's picture

Beautiful as always, David. 

Potatoes do keep it moist, don't they?

dmsnyder's picture

Between the potatoes and the sourdough, I expect this bread will have great keeping quality.

Thanks for the mashed potato suggestion, by the way.


ehanner's picture

Very nice David.


dmsnyder's picture


Soundman's picture

Beautiful job, David! (As usual, of course!)

I haven't done a fendu-shape yet. When did you do what to your boule?


dmsnyder's picture

You shape a boule in the usual fashion, then use a rolling pin to make a very deep and wide crease down the middle. You should dust the top with flour before making the groove to keep the two halves from sticking together. 

Then, you fold the loaf together and place it, top down, in a banneton to proof.


susanfnp's picture

Beautiful loaves -- I'm delighted you sent them for YeastSpotting!

dmsnyder's picture