Soft Honey Sourdough Bread

Total Time: ~28 hours

Working Time: ~30m


  • 400g of T80 flour
  • 80g of 100% hydration sourdough starter, fed (20%)
  • 300g of water (75%)
  • 40g of honey (10%)
  • 40g of butter (10%)
  • 8g of salt (2%)
  • 20g of Buttermilk powder (5%)
  • 20g of vital wheat gluten (5%)
  • Cooking spray, butter, oil, or other fat to coat the inside of your bread pan
  • ~2 tablespoons buttermilk


  • 2x medium sized work bowls (one for dry, one for wet)
  • Kitchen scale that supports grams
  • Spatula
  • Ramekin
  • 2 gallon ziplock bag or similar air tight bag
  • Loaf pan that fits in the ziplock bag. This is the pan I’m using.
  • Spray bottle filled with water
  • Razor blade or bread lame
  • Whisk or fork
  • Pastry brush


  1. Get your starter to the optimal fed state, where it has 80g to contribute to the recipe. This typically means feeding it a few hours before use. The exact timing will vary based on your starter, the temperature of your kitchem, and how you store your starter. I store my starter in the fridge, so I take mine out of the fridge between 6 and 9AM (depending on my schedule for any given day), feed it with 40 to 45g of water and an equal amount of flour, and then let it sit on the counter until between 12PM and 3PM, at which time it is ready for use.
  2. Place the first bowl on your scale, zero it, and add 400g of flour.
  3. Zero the scale and add 20g of buttermilk powder.
  4. Zero the scale and add 20g of vital wheat gluten.
  5. Combine the dry ingredients with a whish or fork and remove the bowl from the scale.
  6. Place the second bowl on your scale, zero it and measure 80g of starter into it.
  7. Zero the scale and add 300g of water. Using your spatula, break up the starter into the water.
  8. Zero the scale and add 40g of honey, stir a little with the spatula to combine.
  9. Melt the butter in a ramekin or similar vessel in your microwave. Don’t over heat it, just enough to melt it.
  10. Take the bowl with the dry ingredients and pour them on top of and into the bowl with the wet ingredients.
  11. Pour the melted butter over the dry/wet ingredients.
  12. Using a spatula, mix & fold to combine until there isn’t any more dry flour.
  13. Cover the bowl and set aside for 30m to autolyze.
  14. Put the bowl back on the scale, zero it and sprinkle 8g of salt over the dough.
  15. Use the stretch and fold method to combine the salt into the dough and to start building gluten. Stop when the dough becomes tight and set the bowl aside for 30m to 1hr.
  16. Perform 2 more stretch and folds, set the bowl aside for 30m to 1hr between each one.
  17. Cover the dough and let it rest between ~3 and ~9 hours until it roughly doubles in size and has reached a “nice consistency” (with practice you’ll come to know what this feels like). The exact amount of time will vary based on the temp of your kitchen, if you have a proofer / oven proofing cycle, the amount of vigor in your starter, etc.
  18. Lightly spray a clean counter with water from your water bottle. Take the dough out of the bowl and streatch it out onto the counter as if you were going to perform a lamination, until it is roughly as wide as your bread pan and about 3 to 4 times as long.
  19. Lightly coat the inside of the bread pan with cooking spray, butter, oil, or some other fat.
  20. Roll the dough up length wise and place in the pan.
  21. Proof the bread in the pan until it rises to nearly the top of the pan, but doesn’t crest above it.
  22. Place the pan inside the 2 gallon ziplock bag and leave space in the bag above the pan.
  23. Place the pan in a bag in the fridge for ~9 to 12 hours / overnight.
  24. In the AM preheat your oven on to 400F.
  25. Take the bread/pan out of the ziplock bag. It should have risen a little more and just be about to crest the pan.
  26. Pour the buttermilk into a ramekin and using the pastry brush, cover the top of the loaf with buttermilk.
  27. Use the razor blade or bread lame to slice down the middle of the loaf.
  28. Put the loaf into the oven and right before closing the door spritz a few blasts of water from your spray bottle into the oven (aim for the sides).
  29. Bake for ~30m and check the bread. Bake for up to ~10m more until the top is dark brown (the sides will be a lighter brown).
  30. When the bread is done, remove it from the loaf pan and place on a wire rack to cool for at least 30m before cutting into it. Enjoy with some cultered butter, slice for sandwiches, toast it up, etc.


I typically feed my starter between 6 and 9 AM, mix between 12PM and 3PM, roll and form the loaf between 5PM and 8PM, bag it up into the fridge around 10PM, and bake by 8AM the next morning. I use a Brod and Taylor folding proofer for all non refrigerated rising/proofing steps. Before that I used the proofing function on my oven and the timing was the same.

If you don’t have a proofer/proofing function, you will likely need to increase the rising / proofing times. How much depends on the temperature of your kitchen and how mature/vigorous your starter is. You can also try doubling the amount of starter, which should reduce the rising/proofing times as well.

You don’t have to use T80 flour, but that is what I like and the recipe is adjusted for. If you use a different flour you may need to adjust the water a bit. If you use a stronger (higher protien) flour, you may not need / want the vital gluten.

I have found that adding 20g of diastatic malt powder (5%) to the dry ingredients increases the sour taste of the bread, probably because there is more sugar/enzymes in the mix.

After a day on the counter, if there is any left, I slice it up, put the remains into the ziplock bag, and place it in the fridge. We’ll typically toast slices once the bread is cold.

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