About this recipe:I like to drink dry cider especially in the summer and I have created this recipe to capture the apple cider flavour in a sourdough bread. The recipe makes 2 loaves of bread. I like to bake the sourdough bread in a tin and for this recipe I use an 18cm (7 in) loose bottomed tart tin and an 18cm (7 in) loose bottomed high sided cake tin. However, you can bake the bread in the traditional way on a baking tray. I like the variation of shapes you get using cake tins.
Put all the ingredients, except the salt, into a mixing bowl and mix. Once the dough comes together add the salt and continue to mix to create a smooth sticky dough. Knead for 10 minutes and then place in a lightly oiled bowl or container, cover, and leave to rise for 6 hours or until doubled in size.
You have a choice of baking the bread free standing on a baking tray or using a baking tin. I have used two different tins; one is an 18cm (7 in) loose bottomed tart tin and the other an 18cm (7 in) loose bottomed high sided cake tin. See the photo of the breads as they came out of the oven. Whatever you choose, lightly oil or grease the tins. Lightly oil the work surface and tip the dough onto it and divide in two.
With each piece of dough, knock back and fold the corners of the dough into the middle and do this folding twice. Shape the dough and place in the dough for the cake tin directly into the tin. The dough for the tart tin is placed into a well floured 500g Banneton/proving basket. Cover them both with a cloth and leave to rise for 6 hours. I often let the second rise happen overnight.
Preheat the oven to 230 C / 210 C fan / Gas 8. Place a roasting tin into the bottom of the oven.
Tip the dough out of the Banneton into the 18cm (7 in) loose bottomed tart tin. Using a razor, or very sharp knife, make two cuts into the top of each loaf.
Bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes. Pour 250ml of water into the roasting tin at the bottom of the oven. The bread is ready when it is dark golden in colour and sounds hollow when the base of the loaf is tapped. Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack and leave until the bread is cold. Now it's time to enjoy your labours with a cuppa and slice of the bread with butter and jam. Fabulous!