Updated: May 17
Love California Country Gal bread mixes, but hate using all those eggs whites? Bake Anabelle's bread with my LFG starter as the leaven and skip the eggs.
California Country Gal bread is delicious! Annabelle has come up with a wonderful Paleo bread mix made with grain-free ingredients like almond flour, coconut flour, dehydrated sweet potato and psyllium husk. The dough can be shaped into sandwich bread, cinnamon rolls, hamburger buns, a rustic loaf and so much more.
But the one beef I had when I first started using this bread mix is that it requires about six egg whites to get a good result. I was going through a lot of eggs just to make bread. I quit using the mix for a while. There had to be a better way.
Having studied old world sourdough methods, I started experimenting with paleo bread making. Harvesting wild yeast from the air intrigued me. And I was successful at making beautiful crusty sourdough bread with just flour, water and salt using the "wild yeast" I'd harvested. LFG sourdough starter as the leaven in paleo breads is a game changer.
So, I had a hunch that I could alter the directions for Annabelle's bread using just my own LFG sourdough starter and water. No eggs, and no vinegar! LFG sourdough takes about two weeks to ferment, but once you have it, you just keep feeding each once a week to keep it alive.
To make the bread, all you have to do is create the leaven, which involves mixing the LFG starter with water and a little of the bread mix. After about four hours, the leaven is ready to use. The bread I got using my LFG sourdough starter came out a lot loftier and airyer than the original version with eggs. I love the soft, light and airy result, and I think you will too.
For even better results, use a good baguette pan. A baguette pan has two huge advantages over a regular baking sheet. First, it has little holes to keep the air flowing through the bottom of the baguette. And second, it has a round bottom instead of a flat bottom. So you get a pretty, round baguette shape. I bought my baguette pan on Amazon, and I love it. I can make up to four baguettes at a time, and they always come out perfect. Buy Kristine's baguette pan on Amazon and get a better looking loaf.
Now let's bake bread!
LFG "Wild Yeast" Bread
(1) 275 g Package California Country Gal Bread Mix (divided)
1/2 C LFG Sourdough Starter (divided)
2 C Distilled Water (divided)
Step 1: Make the Leaven
In the bowl of a stand up mixer, dissolve 1/4 cup of LFG sourdough starter in 1/2 cup water. Whisk in 6 tablespoons of bread mix. You'll notice the mixture bubbling. That's the wild yeast working with the oxygen and bread mix to ferment. Cover with a bread cloth, and let sit at room temperature for four hours. This will create a leaven that replaces the need for any eggs or vinegar.
Step 2: Make the Dough
After four hours, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In the stand up mixer bowl, dissolve the leaven and another 1/4 cup of LFG starter in 1 1/2 cups distilled water. Do this with a wire whisk to incorporate lots of air. With a dough blade attached and the mixer on low, slowly add the rest of the bread mix. A wet dough ball will form.
Step 3: Shape the Dough
Turn off the mixer and remove the dough blade. Punch the dough ball in the center and fold. Punch and fold. Punch and fold. Do this about 10 times. Then pick up the dough ball. Stretch and fold five times. On a flat surface roll the dough into a long baguette. Or form whatever bread shapes you desire, like sandwich bread, dinner rolls, hoagies, soft pretzels, etc.
Step 4: Bake Bread
For one large baguette, bake for about 70 minutes. I live at high altitude, so you may need to adjust time. For smaller shapes, like dinner rolls, bake for about 50-60 minutes. You will be amazed at how high and airy this bread is with the LFG starter as the leaven.
Thank you Anabelle Lee for the great bread mix. I'm just so happy we have options for real bread. I love to dip slices of this delicious bread in olive oil, balsamic vinegar and Herbes de Provence from Trader Joe's.
If you love bread making, you will also enjoy baking my LFG sourdough baguette. It's a crusty sourdough french bread made with just lectin free flour, water and salt. It's great for making Vietnamese banh mi and other dishes that require a real French baguette.
Enjoy the bread!