With autumn already in full swing and Halloween around the corner, we felt like it was time to play around with shapes and spices a little more and came up with this pumpkin spice sourdough bread.

So rather than baking another sourdough bread with pumpkin seeds, we wanted to integrate this kind of autumn feeling using a different approach – and spices.

If you scroll further down in our recipe, you will see how we created the “pumpkin-like” shape.

It was a test but it worked really well and see how beautiful this bread turned out. Also thanks to the pumpkin spice, the taste is quite unique as well.

Things to know before you start

Time Schedule

Steps Work time Waiting time
Mix ~15 minutes
Bulk Fermentation, Stretch & Fold ~10 minutes 3 hours
Pre-shape ~5 minutes 20 minutes
Shape ~5 minutes
Proof 12-14 hours
Wrapping dough with twine ~15 minutes
Score ~5 minutes
Bake ~5 minutes 40-45 minutes
Cool 3 hours
Remove twine ~10 minutes

In about 20 to 22 hours you will have a pumpkin spice sourdough bread that looks like an actual pumpkin.

Total ingredients

Weight Ingredient
250 g Mature sourdough starter – From high gluten flour
410 g All-purpose flour
10 g Salt
10 g Honey
1 g Yeast – Fresh (optional)
1 g Pumpkin spice
250 g Water
~10 g Canola or sunflower oil

You will have a dough of about 932 g in total.

Make sure to have a mature sourdough starter that is active and healthy. If you think your starter is not, then you can add 1 g of fresh yeast to help with the rise.

Difficulty

As the hydration level is at about 70% the dough is easy to handle and which makes this sourdough bread a simple one to make. Wrapping the dough with twine is a step we never did before, but it is also simple.

You can have a look at our sourdough bread for beginners recipe that contains a lot of details for the different steps used here.

Baking tools

round banneton proofing basket is needed in order to get the bread in a good round shape and 3 to 6 meters of twine. You can also have a look at our should have baking tools to find some more baking tools we are constantly using.

Regarding the twine: If you have thick twine (the thicker, the better) you will need about 3 meters. If you only have thin twine (like we did), you will need to have 6 meters so you can make the twine thicker by doubling.

Steps

1. Mix

Weight Ingredient
250 g Mature sourdough starter – From high gluten
410 g All-purpose flour
10 g Salt
10 g Honey
1 g Yeast – Fresh (optional)
1 g Pumpkin spice
250 g Water – 24°C (75,2°F)
  • Mix all of the mentioned ingredients in a stand mixer for 5 minutes on speed level one and 7 minutes on speed level two
  • The dough should be smooth after mixing and not stick to the bowl a lot

2. Bulk Fermentation, Stretch & Fold

  • Cover the dough and let it rest for a total of 3 hours at 20-22°C (68-71,6°F)
  • During that time stretch & fold the dough every 30 minutes (4 times in total) and after the 4th time, let it ferment further for 1 hour until 3 hours are reached in total
  • After each stretch and fold put it back to the bowl and cover it again so it doesn’t dry out

3. Pre-shape

  • Get the dough in shape by roughly rounding it
  • Afterwards look for a dry spot on your surface and flour it
  • Transfer the pre-shaped dough ball on the floured surface
  • Cover it with a towel and let it rest for 20 minutes
  • Tip: If you realize that the dough starts sticking to your hand or bench knife, just clean the bench knife of any dough and flour it a bit again

4. Shape

  • Get the dough in the final shape by rounding it again

5. Proof

  • Dust your proofing basket with all-purpose flour
  • Put your previously shaped dough seam-side-up in the dusted proofing basket
  • Add flour on top and cover it with a towel
  • Let it proof for 12 to 14 hours in the fridge at 5°C (41°F)

6. Wrapping The Dough With Twine

  • Take your proofed dough out of the fridge and place it on the counter
  • Cut the twine into 4 pieces of 75 cm length
  • If you only have thin twine, cut the twine into 4 pieces of 150 cm length and fold each one in the middle so you create thicker ones
  • Fill a small bowl with about 10 g of canola or sunflower oil
  • Pull each twine through the oil and press some of the oil out so the twine is not too soggy

  • Now we are going to create a pattern like we would prepare a pizza or cake to be divide into eight even parts
  • To do this place the first twine horizontally, the second one vertically, the third one diagonally from bottom left to top right and the fourth one diagonally from top left to bottom right on top of the dough so the middle of the twine is in the center
  • Place parchment paper on top of the dough and the pizza peel on top of that
  • Gently take your dough out of the proofing basket by flipping it upside down on the pizza peel

  • Dust the top and sides of the dough with all-purpose flour
  • Take each twine and tie it on top so it pushes in the dough a bit to the center creating a pumpkin shape
  • Be careful not to push too much as you only want to create a little dent and don’t want your dough to break down
  • Cut of any loose ends

7. Score

  • If is up to you what cuts you want to make, but they should not be too deep (max 1 cm)
  • In every eighth make either one cut from top to bottom or several small cuts so it looks like the strands of a small leaf

8. Bake

  • Preheat oven to 260°C (500°F) for ~45 minutes with the upper and lower heat function
  • Put the loaf in the oven, create steam and bake for 40 to 45 minutes
  • After 10 minutes lower the temperature to 220°C (428°F), let the steam out by opening the oven door for ~45 seconds and close it again

9. Cool

  • Let your pumpkin spice sourdough bread cool for 3 hours on some kind of grid

10. Remove Twine

  • Cut each twine at the top and gently remove it so you don’t damage the crust
  • Don’t panic if your bread wrapped around the twine (we had the same “issue”)
  • Because we oiled the twine, you can easily pull it through the dough on the bottom side
  • You just need to find a starting point from where you can start to peel the twine out of the dough

Conclusion

Crust

Little crunchy and firm but not extremely hearty in flavour.

Crumb

This pumpkin spice sourdough bread has extremely fine and even pores. You can see the spices we used in the dough which gives the crumb a unique look.

Taste

When enjoying this sourdough bread, you can clearly tell the spices we used for the dough. It tastes a little sweetish which is due to the pumpkin spice that includes cinnamon and cloves amongst others. Still this spicy taste is kind of hearty.

Goes good with

As always: Butter! For this bread even more than for the others as the butter supports the spices very well. Apart from that we felt that this bread is better in combination with sweet toppings like honey and marmalade or cream cheese instead of adding hearty cold cuts on top of the hearty taste this bread already has.

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