Since March, I have been baking two loaves of sourdough bread every week. I’ve definitely improved my skill level with this bread compared to when I first started. Over the past couple of months I’ve been experimenting with adding fillings to my loaves. My favourite? Jalapeno-Cheddar!
My husband and I are avid spicy food eaters in general. Anytime we can add some hot peppers or hot sauce to our food, we do! I love the combination of jalapeno and cheddar so I had to see if I could successfully add this filling to my bread.
Trying to get the recipe right
The first couple of loaves weren’t so successful. The cheese adds a lot of weight as well as fat to the bread and seemed to affect the oven rise of the loaves. One time I tried extending the proofing time. This backfired and the bread became over proofed. Instead of a nice fluffy loaf of bread, I ended up with a flat brick of dough. Yuck!
Since then, I’ve experimented with adding the filling at different stages of the process as well as narrowing down the best timing. Now I’m able to bake loaves that I’m pretty happy with. They don’t come out as perfectly round as my regular loaves (I think because of the cheese melting) but the crumb looks great inside.
Boy are they tasty! I can’t wait to make a bacon and tomato sandwich with this bread for lunch tomorrow!
Jalapeno-Cheddar Sourdough BreadThis recipe jalapeno cheddar is filled with a pleasing combination of cheddar cheese and enough jalapeno peppers to be able to taste them but not make the bread spicy. This bread does require some more advanced sourdough techniques. You can see the techniques demonstrated in my video for Cranberry Walnut Sourdough Bread. I have put some sample times in the recipe to guide you. This recipe makes 2 loaves. If you don’t have banneton proofing baskets, you can use a colander or baskets lined with lined dish towels.
For the Levain (raising agent)
- For the Dough
- For the Filling
9:00 am - Make the Levain
- Stir starter, both flours, and water together in a small bowl until fully combined. Cover bowl and let rise at room temperature until doubled in size, 4-5 hours. (Rising time will vary depending on the temperature of the room.) 12:00 pm - Autolyze the Flour
- One hour before adding the levain, mix both flours with 580 g of water. Stir to combine. Cover and let rest at room temperature. 1:00 pm - Mix the Levain with the Dough
- When levain has doubled in size, pour it over top of your autolyzed dough along with about 50 g of your remaining water. Use hands to squeeze and mix the levain into the dough. Cover and let rest 15 minutes. 1:15 pm - Add the salt and knead bread
- Sprinkle the salt over the top of the dough and pour on remaining water. Using your hand, squeeze and mix the dough to incorporate all the water. It will be very wet.
- Turn the dough out onto a clean counter and use the slap-fold technique to knead your dough for 4-6 minutes until the dough is not longer stringy and it starts to catch some air.
- Use a wet bench scraper to pick up your dough and move it back into the bowl. Scrape off any excess dough left on the counter and add it into your dough. Cover and let rest for 15 minutes. 1:40 pm - 5:25 pm - Add fillings, 6 stretch and folds and bulk rise
- You will now perform 6 stretch and folds. Perform first stretch and fold. Cover and let rest 15 minutes.
- Perform 2nd stretch and fold. Cover and let rest 15 minutes.
- Perform 3rd stretch and fold. Cover and let rest 30 minutes.
- Perform 4th stretch and fold. Cover and let rest 30 minutes.
- Perform 5th stretch and fold. Cover and let rest 30 minutes.
- Perform 6th stretch and fold. Cover and let rest for 90 minutes. Shaping the Loaves
- Turn dough out onto clean counter. With a wet bench scraper divide the dough in half. Pre-shape the loaves by pulling and turning the dough, to form a round loaf shape with a taut surface. Let rest 10-15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare two proofing baskets by spreading a few tablespoons of flour over the linen towel and optionally sprinkling with some seeds.
- Working with one loaf at a time, spread some flour over the surface of the dough. Use a floured bench scraper to loosen the edges of the dough from the counter, then turn the dough over.
- Fold the bottom of the dough toward the centre, then fold each side toward the centre. Finally, fold the top of the down toward and over the bottom of the dough to form a log shape.
- Flip the log upside-down and transfer to your proofing basked. Spread with a bit of flour and more seeds, if you wish. Cover and let rest in the fridge overnight for 16 hours.
- One hour before baking, put your dutch oven, with lid, in the oven and heat to 500 F/260 C.
- You can bake both loaves at a time if you have two dutch ovens or bake one at a time. Keep second loaf in the fridge while you bake the first loaf.
- Just before baking, cut out a 12-inch/30 cm square of parchment paper for each loaf. Turn loaf out onto parchment paper. Using a serrated knife, score a 1/2 inch deep cross into the top of your loaf (this helps the bread rise evenly).
- When ready to bake, remove your dutch oven from the oven. Carefully lift your loaf on the parchment paper into the the dutch oven and cover with the lid.
- Place in the oven and lower the oven temperature to 450 F/232 C. Bake for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, remove the lid and bake for a further 20 minutes, until the crust is brown and the internal temperature of the loaf is 210F/98.5 C.
- Remove loaf to a cooling rack. Let cool to room temperature (about 2 hours) before slicing.