Join us for the BIG BAKE-A-LONG!

Let’s bake together all over the world, in our own kitchens, all at the same time!

What’s happening:

On Saturday 1st July, Angela (see below) and I invite to join us in our kitchens for a zoom ‘Bake Along’ : join us as we make the stuffed sourdough pizza rolls from my new book, Easy Everyday Sourdough Bread Baking. Watch us as we make, share, chat, swap tips, and mostly, HAVE FUN with all of YOU 🌟🌟🌟🌟

A perfect opportunity to make my new recipe with me and Angela, make it in your kitchen with friends, family, children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, anyone who fancies playing with dough…lots of fun AND tasty food!!! Perfect to eat IMMEDIATELY, for your Saturday night, weekend plans, or 4th July celebrations. I highly recommend making a couple of doughs ready to play with – I will!

🌟 Join us at 10am EDT US time/3pm UK time/please convert to your time zone 🌟

What we will provide:

The full recipe for my stuffed pizza rolls, Angela’s recipe, and tips for her homemade tomato sauce.

Details of everything you will need for the event including the dough and at what stage it needs to be, details for fillings, utensils, baking tray etc. and alternative options. If you don’t fancy a pizza filling, I’ll provide alternative ideas for using the same dough.

If you are not a sourdough baker, you are welcome to join in with a yeasted dough.

🌟 Make and bake and learn and share 🌟 and as you’re making and baking/once you’ve baked them, post online and tag us so that we and the world can see the fun we’ve had!

We look forward to welcoming you into our kitchens!

Timing: 60-90 mins.

You will see Angela and I onscreen, and the brilliant Keanu will be on hand behind the scenes to read and forward any questions during the event.

How to book a place:

Click on this link to book your place. There is no charge for this event. If you want to join and just observe you’ll be very welcome.

Who we are:

Angela Ferraro-Fanning is a permaculture homesteader in central New Jersey. She believes in regenerative homesteading practices that mimic patterns in nature. The six-acre historic farm is home to Clydesdale horses, honeybees, sheep, ducks, geese, guinea fowl, a small orchard, hobby vineyard, and food forest gardens. Angela is the author of several books including The Little Homesteader series, The Harvest Table Cookbook, and The Sustainable Homestead. She also co-hosts a podcast called HOMESTEADucation.


IG, TikTok: @AxeAndRootHomestead

YouTube: Axe And Root Homestead

Elaine from Foodbod Sourdough, is a sourdough baker, cookbook writer and teacher, but mostly a sourdough ‘simplifier’. The key focus of everything she does, and shares, is to show how truly simply sourdough can be made. Elaine removes the complication and unnecessary steps, and often the fear, that can come with making sourdough, and shows bakers all over the world how they can easily make their own healthy, tasty bread, week in, week out, in their home kitchens, to suit their lifestyle and timings.

Elaine also hosts a podcast all about food, The Foodbod Pod.





🌟 SEE YOU ON 1st JULY: Click on this link to book your place 🌟

It’s often about the dough, not the lame…

A question that I am often asked is: where can I get a better lame, mine doesn’t seem to work that well?

And as much as I have a very beautiful new branded lame I might very happily wish to sell you, usually the issue isn’t actually the lame, it’s the dough.

If you are having issues scoring your dough, it truly is unlikely to be an issue with the lame. Instead my questions to you would be:

Was your dough soft and sticky after the overnight proof?

When you turned your dough out from the banneton did it spread?

When you tried to score your dough did the lame just drag through it?

Did the dough collapse and not hold any shape?

But first and foremost, I would ask, how did your loaf bake?

The answer to all of the questions that I get posed about dough and loaves, is always, how did the loaf bake; because if your dough bakes to a wonderful loaf that you thoroughly enjoyed, then it doesn’t matter how the scoring went, or how your dough behaved.

However, if you feel you would like your loaf to be somewhat enhanced or different, then read on…

If you have a nice sharp lame, or a thin sharp blade that you use, and still it drags through your dough, your dough needs some input. If your dough is soft and sticky it either needs less water from the start, or it over proved, or just needs to be pulled tighter for the banneton.

And in which case, this post will help you.

If you’re happy with your dough but would like an cleaner surface to score, or more time to score pretty patterns, before baking, place your banneton full of dough into the freezer for 30 minutes, then turn it out, score and bake.

If you would like to purchase one of my lames, of course you’d be more than welcome and you can find them here. But to get the best out of using them, or whatever you’ve got, work on firming up your dough first. Then score slowly, be decisive, and score deeper than you probably think you need to. If I can help, get in touch.

Happy scoring!

Why hasn’t my dough grown?

There are certain rites of passage when it comes to making sourdough, we make our starters, there may be some bumps in the road, but in the end, we get there. Then we make our first doughs, again, lots of learning, and even when we think we’ve sussed it, suddenly something can throw us. This is why I constantly share whatever tips I can to try and anticipate your questions, so this is another one in case it’s useful:

What prevents dough from growing?

Peoples immediate response is to blame the starter, and it’s rarely actually the case. If your dough grows your starter works. If it’s slow, it could be for other reasons, or…

BUT if your starter has become thin for any reason, it is therefore weak and will struggle to lift itself, let alone a dough. So keep an eye in the consistency. If it has become thin as a result of heat, or weak flour, just spoon in some more flour and thicken it back up to give it some body and power. Let it respond before using.

A young starter is not by default a weak starter; I have used a 3 day old starter and it’s worked perfectly. Yes, they gain flavour and power with age and use, but a young starter is again, rarely the reason.

A big culprit is cold temperatures, they slow down the proving, so your dough hasn’t ‘not grown’ it just hasn’t finished growing. Give it more time. That’s all it needs.
If you want to put it in some warmth go for it, but don’t leave it for too long, and keep an eye on it.
(Don’t forget to look at the boost on page 61 of The Sourdough Whisperer if you’ve got it).

Another issue that people often overlook is a dry surface. If your dough has got a dry surface as a result of not being covered properly, only being covered with a dry tea towel, or you live in a dry place, the dough underneath cannot grow (this also works the same for a starter). Remove the dry surface and let the dough continue to prove and next time cover it with a shower cap or similar. It needs the moisture and protection.

Heavy doughs also struggle to grow. If your dough has a lot of add ins, it won’t grow as much as a dough without additions, and that’s fine. Let it get to double if you can.
A heavy wholegrain dough may take longer to grow, especially if you’re using home milled flours and haven’t allowed for it needing extra water.

These things are all fixable, as is everything with sourdough, hopefully they’re useful tips. If you’ve got your own to add, please feel free in the comments xx

Blueberry and goats cheese waffles…

How about a special breakfast, or just a great snack, or brunch, or lunch, or any meal really? I give you my blueberry and goats cheese waffles…

If you don’t like goats cheese, swap it for cream cheese or leave it out completely. If you don’t have a waffle maker, use the batter to make pancakes instead. If you prefer something sweeter, throw in some chocolate chips, the possibilities are endless…

Have fun!

Fast sourdough flatbreads/naans…

How about some fast tasty sourdough flatbreads? These can be used as naan breads, wraps, manaeesh, and easy fast pizza bases. They are great eaten immediately, or can be reheated and refreshed perfectly in the toaster!

You can feed your starter for the job, or use discard if you’ve been making a new starter. The starter provides flavour and texture in these flatbreads rather than lift.

Find full details here…

Have fun! Let me know if you try them xx

Top knot loaf…

I give you my top knot loaf. With this loaf you will be handling the dough in a way and at a point that may feel a bit scary, but go with it, it’s great fun, and worth being brave…you’ll find step by step photos in the recipe…

Have fun!

PS you can use any grains, there’s full details on how to cook them in my first book, or, if you can’t find any grains, you can use seeds. I have been asked if you could use oats, but if you use oats they will soak up water and change the consistency of the dough.

Sourdough herby fougasse…

A tasty flatbread, with a perfect mix of soft pillowy holey parts and equally lovely crunchy edges, ideal for eating on its own, teamed with cheese, or dips, antipasti, soup, chili, or anything it can be dunked in!

I hope you like it!

By the way, the fougasse freezes and defrosts perfectly…allow it to fully cool then wrap it to freeze it. To defrost, place it, uncovered, on a rack to defrost for 2-3 hours then serve. For best results heat it briefly in the oven to crisp up the edges again.

Click here for the full details:

Cheese and chilli flake loaf..

If you like bread, and you like cheese, you’ll love this! Add in a bit of chilli heat, to a level of your choice, and you’ve got this loaf of joy!

In this recipe, the dough is laminated, and spread with small chunks of cheese, rolled up into a fat sausage to prove again, before baking. The cheese creates pockets of melted brilliance inside the loaf…I challenge you to eat only one slice!

This loaf was created as an oval, but will also work as a round loaf or in a large loaf tin.

Download your copy of the recipe here, print it out and keep it to go with your book:

I hope you’ll give this a go, and please do tag me if you post it online and come back and comment here and let others know how you got on…