Breaking all the rules



Hi everyone

This is such a great site. I just love all the enthusiasm and advice available here.

I first got involved with the bread making thing because we are building a house in the country and the nearest good bread is 40 km away at Giant Steps in Healesville. And they have very good bread indeed.

I needed to be able to make bread at home stress free and as simply as possible.

I started with Jim Lahey's 'miracle' bread, and let me tell you, if your starter dies or you need an alternative to sourdough, this bread is fabulous. Not as fabulous as sourdough of course.

Then I took a long time and some wrong turns and finally made my own starter using a combination of Sourdom's method along with extra info in the La Brea bread book.


I now have a kick arse white starter that doubles in size in 6 hours. I am very proud of this baby.

To start with I bought only pricey flours with high protein % even though I had to go out of my way to get it.

Then I started to wonder what would happen if I used plain old Aldi white flour at 79 cents a kilo to feed my starter and make a loaf.

Well all I can say is that I got my best results ever, and more compliments than before. A better crumb and beautiful grigne, and a fantastic crust. 

Then I got even more incautious and wondered if I could get a result going no knead, no nothing. And what do you know, it got even better. For those of you who are not making the sign of the devil at me (!) here is what I do. Any requests and I will take photos and upload.

I use the 1, 2, 3 method. Mix starter with water, add the salt, then add the flour. Stir a couple of times with a knife and let it sit covered for half an hour. Tip out onto a floured bench, sprinkle a little flour on top as it is quite sticky, then form into a rough batard and put seam side down in a banneton that I have prepared with semolina. Place in a plastic bag for about 6 hours then into the fridge overnight. Turn out onto baking paper, slash the top and then into a romertopf (I have buggered my good cast iron casserole with all the bread making and want to preserve it now for other stuff). I bake in 250 degree oven preheated about half an hour. Lid on for 30 minutes, lid off for about 12 minutes. Then let it cool a couple of hours. It is even great next day, when previously my bread was just so so a day later.

Today I baked a half rye, half Aldi white loaf. I did not expect much, but wow, it is great. Still no knead and still1 2-3. I used my killer white starter and added a tiny bit more water and 10g molasses. It cracked a bit, but nothing serious. Here are a couple of images. Still shot on the iPhone unfortunately, so the quality is suss.


28 users have voted.


farinam's picture
farinam 2012 May 12

...than choke it with butter!

As my dear departed mother was wont to say.

Would love to see some pics, if only to reinforce the fact that you shouldn't get too caught up with the merits of one method or another, this flour or that.

It's not so much the journey  as the destination.

Good work, Ceilkaye.


Cielkaye 2012 May 14

 Should have pics on Wednesday folks. I am also going to use the method to make a light rye with lots of toasted walnuts through it. Who knows?

Robear 2012 May 16

I am very new to sourdough baking and am just starting to get some good results.

Recently,  I too tried the Aldi flour. It seems a bit light on at 10.5g of protein but actually makes  pretty good bread.


See what you think. I will try and upload a piccie of my latest loaf.

Cielkaye 2012 May 16

Hi, I tried to upload pics today of a loaf I made today and they only seemed to upload as thumbnails to the home page. How did you get the image to upload here? Your loaf looks lovely, and I bet it tastes really good too.

farinam's picture
farinam 2012 May 16

Hello Ceilkaye,

Ideally you should have your pic stored on the web somewhere - your Gallery here is OK.

Then you have to copy the URL  and click on the 'mountain and sun' icon on the toolbar above the edit box.  Then paste the URL where indicated and fill out the alternate text etc and Bob should be your uncle.  Make sure you reduce the size of the file first to save bandwidth.

The other alternative is to copy the file (reduced as above) and paste it into the  edit box - just a slightly clunky way to do it.

Look forward to your pic(s).


Cielkaye 2012 May 29

I baked two loaves today using my same recipe and method except that only one was plain white, the other was a bit of an experiment, but I am very pleased with the results. This is a white with two tablespoons each of LSA and wheatgerm. I reduced the flour a little to compensate. Here are a couple of shots of it.

And here are a couple of shots of the plain white Aldi flour loaf.

Cielkaye 2012 May 30

Farinam they taste fabbo. My little loaves have many fans. And so easy.

I know a lot of people find the more drawn out process therapeutic. I wish I was one of them! I always want to do six things at once. I am really pleased I have found that this simple and inexpensive way is so successful.

However, I am going to make Sourdom's bagels over the next few days. No short cuts.

amber108 2015 May 4

Actually I never knead really. My doughs are moist, I mix/squish well by hand (leaven, flour, water) autolyse about 1/2 an hr to 45 mins add salt with stretch/folds oand let rest 1/2hr or so and fold 2 or 3 times more, thats it. Works well for me and I dont have a mixer, dont seem to need one - maybe for comercial mixes I would.

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