CARE AND KEEPING of your sourdough boules
Bread is a dish best eaten fresh... so here are some hints about storage, rebaking and using stale bread so you don’t waste a crumb.
SOURDOUGH BREAD STORAGE
First off, if you can't resist, eating the whole loaf immediately is my first recommendation.
Sourdough is a moist bread and should be keep in a linen or cotton bread bag. Moisture breads bacteria, so let it breath.
DON'T STORE bread in the refrigerator. It gets stale and there's no hope for it. If you can't eat it all right away, freeze it. If you are by yourself, slice it and double wrap and freeze. That way you can remove one slice at a time and toast it... Homemade bread makes the best toast ever. Especially with homemade jam or jelly.
FRESHEN YOUR LOAF
If you have a day or two-old loaf of bread you can re-bake it. This method works for kuchen, pie and cookies also. Use a lower oven temp, like 250 ° and wet your baked goods. Pass them under the faucet or use a sprayer and add some moisture. Then bake them in the oven until you appreciate the crust, and allow to cool before serving. Well, okay, I never do.
You can also make toast, french toast, stuffing or bread pudding from stale bread. Just slice or cube and allow to dry off a bit on a baking sheet.
If you like salads, you can make the best-ever croutons from stale bread. Put 1/2 to a whole stick of butter (NEVER MARGARINE) on a baking sheet with a high side and allow to melt in the oven at 350°. Then dump your cubed bread in the pan and stir. You can add ranch seasoning to the butter or any type of seasoning you like. Stir and bake until properly browned and cool before storing - or serving.
You have to try this cheesy pull apart sourdough bread
Serves 6 to 8
- 1 round loaf artisan bread (16- to 20-ounce loaf)
- 1 1/2 to 2 cups (6 to 8 ounces) shredded cheese, like Monterey Jack, mozzarella, provolone, cheddar, or a mix
- Optional mix-ins: cooked bacon or sausage, minced chives or sliced green onions, red pepper flakes, chili powder
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- Bread knife
- Cutting board
- Mixing bowls
- Aluminum foil
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Slice the bread into cubes: Slice the bread horizontally and vertically into 1-inch cubes. Do not slice all the way through the loaf — leave bottom of the loaf intact with the bread pieces still attached.
- Combine the cheese with any mix-ins: Toss the cheese and mix-ins together in a small bowl. This helps make sure the ingredients are evenly distributed when you stuff the bread.
- Stuff the cheese into the bread: Gently stuff the cheese into the bread between the slices. Stuff between the vertical slices first, then go back and fill in the spaces between the horizontal cuts — it's a bit easier this way! It also helps to have a helper who can hold the slices apart while you stuff.
- Pour melted butter over top: Transfer the stuffed loaf to a sheet of foil. Melt the butter in the microwave, then pour evenly over the loaf.
- Wrap the loaf tightly in foil.
- Bake the loaf: Bake the loaf for 20 minutes. Uncover the top and bake for another 10 minutes, until the cheese is totally melted and the top of the loaf is crispy.
- Serve immediately: Serve the loaf while still hot from the oven.