There are not too many fig hazelnut sourdoughs floating around in the web so I decided to develop my own recipe. I’ve yearned for a really flavourful bread for cheese and I think I finally found the perfect balance with wheat and rye. To me fig & hazelnuts are a match made in heaven! If you share a similar feeling with me, give this bread a shot. Below you’ll find the recipe for the bread as well as for a starter if you don’t have one yet. Hope you enjoy it!
Fig Hazelnut Sourdough
RECIPE FOR FIG HAZELNUT SOURDOUGH | Makes one bread
90 g figs (moist or soaked)
130 g toasted hazelnuts
250 g water
200 g ripe starter (see end of the post)
150 g rye flour
200 g wheat flour
50 g spelt flour
25 g honey
8 g sea salt
Heat the oven 200°C. Carefully toast the hazelnuts for -10 minutes on a baking tray. Do not leave them in oven unobserved as the nuts burn easily. Let the nuts cool for a while & then rub the skins off either with fingers or within a tea towel. Using a mixer or a knife, finely shred a portion of the hazelnuts (1 dl). Randomly chop the rest but you can leave few nuts full-sized, too. If you don’t have moist figs, you can soak dry figs and rehydrate them in 30 minutes.
Prepare the dough with a stand mixer. Weight and add all the ingredients into the bowl except salt. Keep mixing the ingredients on a slowest speed for 10 minutes. Add salt & the finely shredded hazelnuts and keep mixing for 5 more minutes. Grease a container or a bowl that you can cover with a wrap (I used avocado oil). Keep the dough resting in room temperature covered in the bowl. After first 30 minutes, gently press and fold the dough down. The dough should be ready for shaping after 1-1,5 hours resting (depending on room temperature).
Work and shape the dough on slightly floured surface. First shape the dough into a long rectangular so that you can add the figs and rest of the hazelnuts. Fold both edges from left and right into the middle so that you now have a smaller rectangular. From here, you start working on your batard or any other method you prefer to make a longer bread. I pressed a clean seam on edge closest to me & then started working the dough from the opposite edge. Rolling and tucking, rolling and tucking until I was at the end to seal the shape with the seam. Check the shape and fold the pointy sides inside. Work the dough carefully because you don’t want any figs or nuts come to the surface.
If you don’t have a proofing basket, you can flour a tea towel and tuck the bread firmly to any other kind of kitchen box. Main point is that the structure supports the shape. Remember to place the bread seam side up and finally cover the bread with a wrap so that it won’t get dry during proofing. My fig hazelnut sourdough looked ready after 50 minutes, yours can take longer or shorter time. However, do not let the dough rise over 2 hours in room temperature.
Pre-heat the oven and baking stone 250°C. (Also add an extra baking tray in the bottom level of the oven if you want to use it or a cast-iron skillet for steaming. Do follow your stone’s instructions & use whatever method you prefer to create steam. I use these techniques and you can read about the tray here. ) Place the bread on the stone and give it steam. Bake it for 10 minutes on this highest temperature, then open the oven door and lower the temperature to 200°C . Bake for another 10 minutes and give the oven air again. Bake the bread for 40-50 minutes until fully done (98°C inside). Let the bread rest on a cooling rack.
This bread was amazing! It’s moist, rich in flavour and has a long age. The crust in really crunchy & beautiful golden brown thanks to honey. The first half of the bread is gone already but I reserved the second half into the freezer for a proper get-together around a cheese platter & wine.
Oh and the starter! This time I had a basic 50-50 wheat starter that I’ve taken with me from Heléne Johansson’s bread book Bröd. When you follow these steps, you have starter for the dough and some little extra which you can keep feeding until your next baking day.
WHEAT SOURDOUGH STARTER
60 g wheat flour + 60 g water mixed, covered & kept in room temperature.
1. EVENING FEEDING
30 g wheat flour + 30 g water mixed, covered & kept in room temperature.
2. MORNING FEEDING
30 g wheat flour + 30 g water mixed & covered. If not bubbles showing yeat, add little bit of honey or grated fresh apple. Let the starter rest 2 more hours in room temperature after feeding, then place it the fridge.
3. MORNING FEEDING
30 g wheat flour + 30 g water mixed, covered & kept in the fridge.
Ready for baking!