Artisan Cheddar Jalapeño Sourdough Bread

Artisan Cheddar Jalapeño Sourdough Bread

Artisan Cheddar Jalapeño Sourdough Bread: A Step-by-Step Guide

Embarking on the journey of sourdough baking can be as rewarding as it is therapeutic, offering a slice of patience and craftsmanship in our fast-paced world. Today, we're taking this artistry a notch higher with an irresistible Cheddar Jalapeño Sourdough Bread recipe. This bread combines the tangy complexity of sourdough with the sharp bite of cheddar and the subtle heat of jalapeños, resulting in a loaf that's as delicious as it is beautiful.


  • For the Sourdough Starter:

    • 50 grams all-purpose flour
    • 50 grams water
  • For the Dough:

    • 330 grams water, plus 30 grams for dissolving salt
    • 100 grams active sourdough starter
    • 50 grams whole wheat flour
    • 450 grams bread flour
    • 10 grams salt
    • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
    • 2 medium jalapeños, finely chopped


  1. Prepare Your Starter: Begin your bread-making journey by reviving your sourdough starter. Combine equal parts flour and water in a clean jar, stir until smooth, and let it rise until bubbly and doubled in size. This crucial step ensures your bread has the lift and tang sourdough is known for.

  2. Autolyse the Dough: In a large mixing bowl, mix 330 grams of water with your active sourdough starter. Add in the whole wheat and bread flours, combining until no dry flour remains. Let this shaggy dough rest for 1 hour to hydrate the flour fully, making it easier to work with and enhancing the final texture.

  3. Incorporate Salt: Dissolve salt in the remaining water, then work this into your dough. This step is vital for flavor and gluten structure. Allow the dough to rest again, giving the salt time to distribute evenly.

  4. Bulk Fermentation and Folding: Now begins the bulk fermentation, a period where the dough will rise and develop flavor. Over the next 1.5 hours, perform three sets of stretch and folds, incorporating the cheddar and jalapeños during the second set. This technique improves the dough's strength and evenly distributes your mix-ins.

  5. Shape and Final Rise: Gently shape your dough into a boule and place it into a floured banneton, seam side up. Allow it to rise until it's noticeably puffed but not quite doubled. This rise can be done at room temperature or in the fridge for a slower fermentation.

  6. Bake to Perfection: Preheat your oven and Dutch oven to a blazing 500°F. Carefully score, then bake your loaf at 450°F, first covered to create steam, then uncovered to achieve a golden, crispy crust.

  7. Cool and Savor: Resist the temptation to slice into your bread fresh out of the oven. Allow it to cool on a rack to ensure the perfect crumb structure and flavor.

Notes and Tips:

  • Safety First: When handling the hot Dutch oven, always use heat-resistant gloves to protect your hands and forearms.
  • Watch the Proof: Keep an eye on your dough during the bulk fermentation, especially in warmer conditions, to prevent over-proofing.
  • Scoring: A confident, decisive slash will not only beautify your loaf but also help it expand evenly in the oven.


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