After the pear bread worked so well, I got it into my head to try some other fresh fruits in breads. I really like strawberries so they were the fruit that immediately came to mind, even if this isn’t the best season for them (ones that are only a bit ripe actually work better for bread due to their crispness). Then when I thought of strawberries, bananas came to mind too, they make such a wonderful pair. So, banana puree providing hydration, and strawberry chunks in the dough. But it could really use a nut in it too, so I chose macadamias, the only nut that really felt to me like it went with the two fruits. I also took that inspiration a step further and added macadamia oil and butter to the dough. This bread is quite moist, and a bit heavy, though not in the stone in the stomach manner!
Strawberry Banana Macadamia Nut Sourdough
Makes: 2 medium, or 3 small loaves
Time: Day 1: Elaborate starter. Day 2: Mix final dough, fold dough and retard. Day 3: Shape, proof, and bake. If using commercial yeast, you can do this in 2 days. Day 1: Make preferment. Day 2: Mix final dough, fold and ferment, shape and proof, bake.
|Bread Flour||8 oz||230 gm||100%|
|Water||5.25 oz||150 gm||67%|
|66% Levain||3 oz||85 gm||38%|
|Starter||16.25 oz||460 gm||87.8%|
|Bread Flour||18.5 oz||525 gm||100%|
|Water||6.5 oz||185 gm||35.1%|
|Banana Puree||9.5 oz||270 gm||51.4%|
|Diced Strawberries||7 oz||200 gm||37.8%|
|Macadamia Nuts||3.5 oz||100 gm||18.9%|
|Chopped Macadamia Nuts||3.5 oz||100 gm||18.9%|
|Macadamia Butter||1 oz||28.35||5.4%|
|Macadamia Oil||.5 oz||14 gm||2.7%|
|Salt||.25 oz||7 gm||1.4%|
|66.5 oz||1900 gm||359.5%|
- Elaborate your starter however you choose, but ending up with the same flour and water weights. (or make a commercial yeast preferment) Allow it to rise overnight.
- The next day: Puree the bananas, dice the strawberries, and chop half of your macadamia nuts..
- Stir together the flour and salt in a large bowl. Cream the starter or preferment with the water, macadamia butter, macadamia oil and banana puree. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry, and mix until the dough forms a loose ball.
- Let the dough sit for 20 minutes, they knead it very briefly to make sure everything is well incorporated. Flatten the dough out and spread as much of the strawberries and macadamia nuts. Fold the dough over itself, give it a few kneading turns then add as much of the remaining strawberries and macadamias as possible, continue you’ve used all of them up. You will probably need to add a fair amount of flour during this step, the strawberries will be adding a lot of water to the dough.
- Form the dough into a ball and put it in a covered and oiled bowl to ferment. Give the dough a stretch and fold at the first and second hour marks, immediately after the second fold make sure the dough is well covered and retard it overnight in the refrigerator.
- The next day, gently remove the dough from the bowl and slowly degas it. Seperate the dough into two or three pieces, and shape them into whatever shape you are planning on making, this dough works well as boules.
- Place the shaped loaves in a couche, towel lined bowl, or brotforms to proof. The dough is a bit too slack to rise well on just a baking sheet.
- When the loaves are proofed, preheat the oven to 500° with a baking stone (and a cloche bell if you plan to use one, or a cast iron pan for steaming) on the middle shelf. Just before the loaves go in the oven, give them a quick scoring.
- Place loaves in the oven, reduce to 450, and bake for 15 minutes covered if using a cloche (if not using a cloche, pour 1/2 to 1 cup of almost boiling water into the cast iron pan when you put the loaves in the oven), then rotate the loaves 180° and continue baking for another 10-20 minutes. When the loaves are finished, remove from the oven to cooling rack and cool at least one hour before slicing.
One thing I was surprised about with this bread is the strength of the macadamia flavor. I was hoping for a bit more strawberry and banana flavor, but as it is they provided a nice backdrop for the macadamia flavor that infuses even parts of the bread with no nut pieces in it. So, it wasn’t exactly what I set out to create, but it ended up being delicious in an entirely different way.
As a note, if you don’t have macadamia nut butter, you can probably make your own in a food processor, blender, magic bullet, etc. with nuts and just a little bit of oil. You can also substitute another oil for the macadamia oil, but it won’t add quite the same flavor.
And this is, of course, my weekly submission to YeastSpotting!