This Sourdough Sandwich Bread is fluffy and hearty. It is a yeasted loaf bread that uses either sourdough discard, leaven, or faux starter for flavoring. It can be made with varying percentages of whole wheat flour for extra substance.
If you don't have sourdough discard to use up, make a leaven the night before. Stir together flour, water, and a tablespoon of sourdough starter (or instant yeast). Cover and let sit overnight (6-12 hours).
In the morning, dissolve the sourdough discard or leaven in 3/4 cup of water. Then stir in the honey, oil and instant yeast.
To a large bowl add the both types of flour, flax meal, and sea salt. Pour the liquid ingredients over top and start to mix everything together in the bowl.
Once the bread dough starts to form, turn it out on a floured surface. Knead the dough for about 15 minutes by hand until stretchy and elastic. Alternatively, you can use a stand mixer with dough hook for about 5 minutes.
Add the dough ball to an oiled bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled for about 45 minutes. Or let the bread dough rise in the oiled inner liner of your Instant Pot on the Yogurt setting until doubled (20-25 minutes).
Grease a loaf tin with a little oil or line with parchment paper.
After rising, turn the dough out on the counter. Flatten gently, then fold over 1/3 from the right, then 1/3 from the left. Now roll the dough up tightly from the bottom to form a loaf shape. Tuck under the ends slightly.
Place the dough loaf in the greased tin. Cover the loaf and let rise for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 350°F (190°C). If desired, brush the risen loaf top with water and sprinkle seeds/oats all over. Make diagonal cuts across the top. Then place the loaf in the oven and bake for about 40 minutes until it looks golden brown and sounds hollow.
Optionally, brush the top of the sandwich bread with melted butter as soon as you take it from the oven. Then unmold from the tin and let the sourdough sandwich bread cool completely (on a wire rack) before slicing.
To store the bread for longer than a couple of days, slice it, then freeze airtight. Toast the frozen slices as needed, for a freshly baked taste.
To make this sourdough sandwich bread without any yeast, you need to long-ferment it with 200g active sourdough starter (not discard).
Around mid-day/early afternoon make the leaven with 100g flour, 100g water, and 25g starter so that it is active and bubbly at night time when you make the bread dough.
When the leaven is at its peak (6-8pm), combine it with the other loaf ingredients (water, honey, olive oil/butter, flours, flax meal, and salt - NO yeast).
First stir them together with a wooden spoon, then once a dough forms, knead it by hand (10-15 mins) or with a stand mixer (5 mins) until soft and elastic.
Shape the dough into a ball and add to a large oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with a lid/plate/plastic bag, and let the dough ferment at room temperature for about 12 hours.
In the morning, the dough should have at least doubled in size. Spread it on your counter in a rectangular shape, fold in the sides, then rolls it up tightly from the bottom.
Place the dough roll into a parchment lined loaf pan (8x4 or 9x5). Cover it with a towel or plastic bag, and let rise at room temperature until doubled (1-4 hours depending on your kitchen's temperature).
Then preheat your oven to 350°F.
Once the loaf is doubled in size, you can score the top with a few diagonal lines. Bake the sandwich loaf for 40-45 minutes until golden brown on top.
Remove from oven and optionally brush the top with melted butter. Then remove from the baking pan and let the loaf cool completely before slicing.