Sourdough - using discard for a sandwich loaf

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We've all been there. We've taken a portion of sourdough starter from the 'motherlode' in the refrigerator and refreshed it the night before baking. 

The following day, we've used what we need and then we've put the rest back in the fridge for 'another day'...and slowly we begin to realise that there's a growing volume of discarded starter and we really can't see it being used...

What to do? Pour it down the sink? Put it on the compost? Make military-grade slug traps for all the neighbours? 

Or we could use it to make more bread? 

This is what we're doing today. We're making a Sourdough Discard Sandwich Loaf. 

INGREDIENTS (for 2 x 2lb loaves) - I'm doubling up to make 4 (see the photo) 

100 gms of unfed sourdough starter

500 gms of strong bread flour

250 mls of filtered water

10 gms sea salt

1 tablespoon of demerara sugar

50 gms unsalted butter

7 gms yeast

I'm also adding 1 tablespoon of chia seeds. These are optional, you can add different / more seeds or don't bother at all. 

I'm also using the discard from my 1898 starter - it's yellow and creamy....I'm expecting it to add to the lightness of the finished loaf. 


Using a bread machine

Add the flour, discard and the salt to the pan and cover with the liquid. Leave to autolyse for fifteen minutes. Add the remainder of the ingredients and choose a Basic Dough programme (2hrs 20 minutes). Then proceed to the next stage. 

Mixing by hand

If you're mixing by hand or using a stand mixer, add the softened butter and the salt to the flour and mix thoroughly. Then add the remainder of the dry ingredients (except the yeast). Slowly add the liquid, the discard and then the yeast until you have a sticky mix. Turn the mix out onto a floured board and knead until you have a silky and pliable dough. (There are 'Help' videos and articles in the 'Useful Web and YouTube links' on the left hand side of this page). Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover. Leave for an hour somewhere warm until the dough has doubled in size. 

1. Lightly grease  2lb loaf tins or pullman tins. 

2. Tip the dough out onto a floured worktop and knock it back. By now it will have already had a first proof. Try and keep the sticky side to the top. 

3. Gently tease the dough out into a rectangle.

4. Take the long sides and fold them inwards so that the dough is the roughly the same width as your sandwich tin. Then fold the farthest short side a third of the way in and do the same with the short side nearest to you.

5. Roll the dough into a log shape - make it a tight roll and keep the seam underneath. Drag the log towards you without taking it off the worktop - this will tighten the roll. 

6. Place into the greased sandwich tins. 

7. Place the dough (covered with parchment paper) somewhere warm until it has risen just above the top of the tin. This should take between 45 - 60 minutes. 

8. Mist the dough and place in a preheated oven (180⁰C) for 40 - 45 minutes until it is golden brown and hollow when tapped on the underside. 

9. Remove from the oven and the tin and cool on a rack. 

Happy baking....


  1. This is a great read! Very informative, clear and precise. I know this will be a blessing to all who read it. Thank you so much.


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