Baking at home: Annie’s sourdough recipe!

With so many people turning to baking over the lockdown, sourdough (closely followed by banana bread) has emerged as the baking champion of the lockdown! Ashridge House Weddings & Events Sales Executive Annie Tolputt has been practicing her baking skills and shares her recipe for a delicious sourdough loaf. Once you have mastered the classic recipe below, Annie recommends experimenting by adding olives, seeds, nuts, cheese and herbs. 


Makes 1 loaf


250g strong bread flour

150g sourdough starter (Annie uses the BBC sourdough starter recipe – link below)

125 ml water

2 tsp brown sugar

1 tsp sea salt

1 tbsp sunflower oil



Step 1

Mix together the flour, starter, water, brown sugar and salt in a large bowl. Once the mixture has formed a dough tip out onto a clean surface and knead for ten minutes. If the dough is sticking to the surface dust a small amount of flour on the surface.



Step 2

Once you are happy with the dough, lightly oil a large bowl with a small amount of sunflower oil and place the dough in the bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp tea towel or cloth and set aside for three hours. This is the first proving stage.

Step 3

Lightly dust a surface with flour and tip out the dough onto the floury surface and knead for another five minutes or until the air has been knocked out of the dough. Once you are happy with the dough, place the dough in a floured proving bowl or in a mixing bowl lined with a heavily floured tea towel. Cover the loaf with the cloth/tea towel from the proving bowl and leave to prove for another two to three hours.

Step 4

Pre heat your oven 230C. Whilst the oven is warming up place the loaf on a baking tray. I always dust the tray with some flour to ensure the dough doesn’t stick. Once the oven is hot, place a small baking tray in the oven with some ice cubes to create steam. When the ice had melted, remove the baking tray with the water and place your baking tray with the dough in the oven. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the dough is golden and the loaf sounds hollow when you gently tap the base.

Either leave your sourdough to cool, or my favourite – serve warm fresh out the oven! 



Please click link here for the BBC starter recipe


For information on hosting an event at Ashridge please contact our friendly events team or call 01442 841027 



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