Cheddar and dill is a classic combination. In this recipe, the cheddar is grated, not cubed, so it melts seamlessly into the dough when baked. This brings out the tangy notes of sourdough, and when paired with fresh dill, the flavor will knock your socks off. Try a few slices toasted with a warm winter stew or zesty vegetarian chili.
About the Dough: This dough is sticky but well worth it, as the increased amount of water and gentle shaping helps to develop a more open crumb. To deepen the flavor and make it easier to score, the dough is chilled overnight after it has been shaped.
- Yield: 1 Loaf
- ¼ cup (50 g) bubbly, active starter
- 10.33 cup (400 g) warm water
- 4 cups plus 2 tbsp (500 g) bread flour
- 1½ tsp (9 g) fine sea salt
- 3 tbsp (10 g) chopped fresh dill
- 1 cup (100 g) grated sharp white cheddar cheese
- A few days before baking, feed your starter until bubbly and active. Store at room temperature until ready to use. MAKE THE DOUGH
- In the morning, whisk the starter and water together in a large bowl with a fork. Add the flour and salt. Mix to combine, finishing by hand until no lumps of flour remain. Cover with a damp towel and let rest for 1 hour. Replenish your starter with fresh flour and water, and store according to preference. ADD THE FILLINGS
- After the dough has rested, add the chopped dill and cheddar to the bowl. Gently knead the fillings into the dough to incorporate, about 1 minute. It will smell fantastic. Cover the bowl and let rest for 30 minutes. BULK RISE WITH STRETCH AND FOLDS
- With lightly wet hands, grab a portion of the dough, stretch it upward, and fold it over toward the center of the bowl. Give the bowl a one-quarter turn and repeat until you have come full circle to complete your first set. Repeat this technique, about 3 to 4 sets, spaced 15 minutes apart.
- Once your stretch and folds are complete, cover the dough with a damp towel and let rise at room temperature, 70°F (21°C), for about 8 to 10 hours. The dough is ready when it has doubled in size and has a few bubbles on the surface. SHAPE
- Coax the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Shape it into a round or oval and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Line an 8-inch (20-cm) bowl or 10-inch (24-cm) oval proofing basket with a towel and dust with flour. Cup the dough and gently tighten according to your desired shape. Place into your proofing vessel, seam side up. SECOND RISE
- Cover the dough and transfer directly to the fridge. Chill overnight, up to 8 to 12 hours.
- Preheat your oven to 500°F (260°C). Remove the dough from the fridge while the oven heats up. Cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit the size of your baking pot. BAKE
- Place the pot on the center rack, and reduce the heat to 450°F (230°C). Bake for 20 minutes, covered. Remove the lid, and continue to bake for 30 minutes. Lift the loaf out of the pot, and finish baking directly on the oven rack for the last 10 minutes. Cool for 1 hour before slicing.
- This loaf will stay fresh up to 1 to 2 days stored at room temperature in a plastic bag.