The Chocolate Cult: Sourdough Adventures Include Chocolate

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Sourdough Adventures Include Chocolate

Monday, April 1st, is National Sourdough Bread Day! My family loves sourdough bread but other than from baking mix, I'd never made it before until March 2018. I got a cookbook about sourdough that has 4 chocolate variations that I hope you'll enjoy reading about as I learned to make all types of sourdough bread including my own starter. Let me tell you, this took time and commitment so please do leave me a comment and let me know if any of these breads look good to you or if you have any suggestions on how I can improve my own baking.  I received a free copy of Artisan Sourdough Made Simple: A Beginner's Guide to Delicious Handcrafted Bread with Minimal Kneading via the Amazon Vine Program to test out and write about on their website, this article is a bonus for them. No other form of compensation was received.

If you want to see my general review of this cookbook you can find it on Amazon and Goodreads but today we're going to focus on the chocolatey recipes in the book. I'm going to talk briefly about the experience of making the loaf and give you a photo of what mine turned out like. I found 4 bread recipes that used cocoa and/or chocolate and I was able to test

The first recipe I tried was "Decadent Chocolate Chip" (pp. 42-43). I had mini semi-sweet chocolate chips from Enjoy Life Foods so I used those. Keeping those in the dough was a bit tricky but Emilie Raffa (the author) warned me that might happened so I only lost a few of them in the process. Not including the month it took to finally get the starter right, this recipe took over 14 hours to make and get to the point that it was cooled down enough to slice to eat. The biggest issue with this bread with the amount of time it was suppose to bake. Either Raffa's oven runs cold or mine runs hot because this started to burn. Luckily I smelled that, there was still nearly 2 minutes to go but I took it out anyway. How to salvage it for my brunch with my friends? I don't have a lot of money, right when I was testing this cookbook my husband lost his job; I couldn't afford to just go get more ingredients to try again nor did I have that amount of time.

The next recipe I tried was "Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip" (pp. 52-53) was easier in some ways but again it started to burn about 10 minutes before the time was up according to the recipe. I turned off the oven, opened the door, and just let it set for those last 10 minutes because a toothpick test suggested it was still doughy inside. If anyone reading this has an idea about what might be going on, leave a comment and tell me please. I had to made one big change to the recipe and that was that I could not put almond flakes on the outside so I left it plain figuring that I'd sprinkle it with powdered sugar before serving as suggested to add some color to the outside.

The  No-Knead Chocolate Chunk Focaccia with Cream Cheese and Nutella" (pp. 100-101) was a very long process but it was so unique I just really wanted to try it out. I changed the toppings to fit into my family's allergy issues. I also made it in two pans, one that everyone could eat and one that was of limited use because of my hubby's allergies. But the bread itself was made according to directions in the cookbook. I made this a weekend when I had strawberries and blueberries on hand. I tried it with two spreads -- chocolate and cashew nut cheesecake. My biggest complaint is that the sides got very firm I believe because of the butter you use in such a large quantity. For others the cheesecake topping was too strange in texture and too sweat and I agree. I ended up scraping it off and just putting cream and berries on it to finish. In the photo you can see a slice with both spreads on them.

There is one chocolatey recipe in the book, "Raspberry Gingersnap Twist" (pp. 138-141) that I didn't test because I was so frustrated at this point by the quality of the starter I kept getting no matter what I tried. This recipes uses chocolate chips as several of them do but it also uses jam. To be blunt, we aren't jam or jelly in my house so unless I'm sent some to test out, it wasn't worth the ingredients and time to try out this recipe. However, the dough is the same used in the final recipe I tried so I did half-way test out this recipe.

I really wanted to try out the "Salted Chocolate Caramel Knot" (pp. 142-143) but I became so frustrated by the the failures of the starter and the resulting food waste that I gave up. I don't do that often but I think I've done far more than this publisher, this cookbook author, or Amazon Vine has any right to expect at this point.

Maybe you have a family connection to sourdough so you'd be ahead of the game compared to me but you're interested in the multitude of recipes in this book -- 70 of them in total but not all are for breads. If that is the case, please follow our links and check out the book yourself on Amazon. Remember if you use our link you give a little back to Your Chocolate Priestess that she can turn into other products or adventures to tell you about. Plus, for a cookbook with so many photos (1 for each recipe) this is very reasonably priced.

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