I am looking for a sourdough starter recipe for batbout,msemen, marash or any traditional moroccan bread to be eaten with tagine!

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9 Comments

My F. March 31, 2017
I recently made M'Smen from the Hot Bread Kichen Cookbook. They don't use any sourdough starter BUT do say that you can let the dough sit for up to 8 hours after kneading and dividing the dough (for both flavor and more relaxed gluten). Their recipie is at the end of this article about the book: http://www.designsponge.com/2015/10/in-the-kitchen-with-hot-bread-kitchens-moroccan-flatbread.html So good. I recommend using a high fat/european style butter.
 
Nancy March 30, 2017
If you plug in the term "Moroccan sourdough bread" to your search engine you will find many recipes and much advice, including from bread specialists like King Arthur's Flour and regional food specialists.
See what they have to say and how it fits in with your plan.
 
Mikaela F. March 30, 2017
Thanks, Nancy! I did search that and read those before I posted here but I still wasn't sure. I think I have a better understanding now and can go back and understand those sources more.
 
Nancy March 30, 2017
OK good. My suggestion was redundant...
 
PieceOfLayerCake March 29, 2017
I just made a starter with equal parts flour and water (50% bread flour, 50% whole wheat flour and 100% warmish water; understanding that the total flour weight is always 100%) and allowed it to ferment over time. Mine took about a week to be active enough to use. If you're looking for more of a poolish, you'll have to use a sprinkling of dry yeast to active it. That could be done morning of and ready to use in a few hours (as long as its doubled in size and then fallen back a bit). You could rush a starter in a few days by putting it in a particularly warm place, but I try not to do that. Dry yeast and liquid starter are not generally interchangeable in recipe. When I'm making flat bread (which I assume i similar to your moroccan bread), my general outline is 100% flour, 80% starter, 80 - 85% water, 2% salt; all by weight. After that its all feel and time. It's usually quite sticky and you may want to dial back the hydration a bit and add a bit more as you see fit, but it does transform over time, so when I'm trying out new breads, I usually over-hydrate a bit knowing the flour will absorb over time.

You could, in theory, make a flat bread with pretty much any levain bread recipe by simply upping the hydration to make it more pliable, but you'll need to give it some love to make it elastic. I hope this all makes sense.
 
Mikaela F. March 30, 2017
Ah, ok! Makes much sense now...thank you!! I am so new to list and appreciate your help :)
 
PieceOfLayerCake March 30, 2017
Of course! What are we all here for? :)
 
PieceOfLayerCake March 29, 2017
I'm far from an expert on moroccan breads but would a traditional sourdough starter not work? What kind of flours are you using? Starters with some or all of the main flour component of the breads you're making always make a good synergy. I'd try it with a traditional starter at 80% flour weight and then hydrate it to make it slack (80 - 85%).
 
Mikaela F. March 29, 2017
a traditional start would work but I have not found a good recipe that doesn't use active yeast as well. I am using a mix of AP flour and spelt flour.

So I should use a recipe but replace the active yeast with a 80% starter instead of 100%? I was looking at ways to replace active yeasts with starters and they said to use 100% starter (50:50 water flour) and adjust the wet/dry components accordingly. I think it would be able to do it this way but it is the first time I am using a starter so I wanted a recipe that had the ratios out for me if that makes sense? Maybe I am thinking too much about it and should be more liberal in my approach?
 
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