80% Levain in Final Dough

Graham's picture

Jeremy Shapiro from [url]http://www.stirthepot.org[/url] has provided a sourdough recipe from an old teacher of his, Nick Greco.

[b]View the original recipe here:[/b] [url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/gallery/main.php?g2_view=core.ShowItem&g2_itemId=1914[/url]

Please feel free to offer questions and advice on ways of interpreting this recipe.

A weights and measures converter is available here: [url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/tools/metric.php[/url]

268 users have voted.


Graham's picture
Graham 2005 October 29

Hi Dave

It appears that salt in this recipe is expressed as a percentage (3.1%) of the flour used for the final dough only (does not include flour used in chef and levain). Adding up all the flour in this recipe (inc. chef and levain) it comes to 15600g. Salt is 310g. As a percentage this is 1.987%. That of course makes a lot more sense. Graham

doughman 2005 October 30


If your calculations are correct (based upon the amount of flour used for
the levian as well as in the final dough), then the % of salt should be correct.
I suspect the salt is high because the % of levain in the final dough is high.
This is the first time I've ever seen 80% of levain in the final dough. The
highest amount of levain I would put in the final dough is 40 to 50%.

By the way this formula looks almost identical to SF sourdough bread, so
this bread should be really sour.


TrevorM-L's picture
TrevorM-L 2005 November 3

Thanx Dave... I was always wondering what they were...

By the way... thanx for assistance earlier with my questions about the dough consistency... it proved to be a great help

My wife and I caught a workshop with Kingsley Sullivan of New Norcia Bakeries in WA as a part of the Tasting Australia week in Adel...

that was a REAL eye opener as to the proper consistency of the dough... much much much softer and moister than we ever imagined it should be...

no wonder we ended up with so many bricks over the many years we have been trying...

now we are at last getting somewhere much closer to what is good bread... not great but much closer indeed... as our new domestic gas oven does not want to brown the top of the breads as much as we would like... but at least the bottom is not a soggy mess now we are using pizza stones

again thanks

dave 2005 November 3

Hi Trevor, ask as many questions as you like.
What temp are you baking at? Aussie flour is well known for being low in sugars (needed for colour). Don't be scared to turn up the temp, sourdough loves a high temp. I've made great bread in an electric oven at a holiday home, had to turn it up to flat chat though. Loaves baked on bricks need a high temp to stand up (defeat gravity) & colour up.

TrevorM-L's picture
TrevorM-L 2005 November 3

thanks Dave

been baking at around 220 to start with (about 15 mins) and then drop down to 200... altho often have the oven preheated at max and then 200-210 when the bread goes in

dave 2005 November 3

Try 250 for the whole baking time, every oven is different, don't bother dropping the temp, you'll have to learn your oven by trial & error.
If you stuff up, burnt bread tastes much better than pale bread.

TrevorM-L's picture
TrevorM-L 2005 November 6

Thanks yet again Dave... tried a fig and aniseed and an olive and rosmary and baked them at almost 270 and they baked with nice brown crusts and rose rather nicely... still need to get the texture more open but at least it is getting better...

I know what you mean about a burnt bread tasting better than a pale one... had too many of them over the years...


Post Reply

Already a member? Login