Apple bread with Cider and Calvados – October bake with BBB

For October bake with the Bread Baking Babes. The choise couldn’t be better. First, the apples are in season. Also it has such wonderful aroma and taste!
I used Kelly’s recipe and followed it with small substitution. Instead of poolish, I made sourdough slevain replacing 1/4 teaspoon of yeast with 50g of sourdough starter (100% hydration). Apples were Ambrosia which are tender and juicy with a sweet, honeyed flavor and low acidity. They also hold their shape and flavor when cooked making them perfect for pies, tarts and baked apples. That’s why i used them for this recipe.
The rest is as according to the original recipe.

Apple Bread with Cider and Calvados


makes 1 loaf
150 g strong white flour (bread flour), preferably stoneground (I used all purpose)
0.7 g (¼ tsp) instant yeast*
150 g dry cider
*or 50g of mature sourdough (100% hydration)
-Add the flour and yeast to a bowl and mix thoroughly. Whisk the cider into the flour/yeast mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at cool room temperature overnight, 12-16 hours. Poolish will be bubbly and should have risen and fallen slightly in the center when ready.
Final dough:
300 g strong white flour (bread flour), preferably stoneground (I used 150g bread flour and 155g fresh ground sifted sprouted white wheat)
50 g whole meal (dark) rye flour, preferably stoneground (I used 55g fresh ground sifted rye)
0.9 g (¼+ tsp) instant yeast
150 g water (I added an additional 20g water to make up for the extra bit of flour)
9 g (1½ tsp) sea salt

-mix the yeast and flours thoroughly in the bowl of a stand-mixer fitted with a dough hook. Heat the water to lukewarm (approximately 35°C/95°F). Add the water and poolish to the flour/yeast mixture and knead on low for 13 minutes. Add the sea salt and knead for 7 more minutes at med/low speed.

-cover with plastic wrap or a shower cap and leave in a warm place (ideally at 24ºC, 75ºF) for about 90 minutes, until doubled in size. Meanwhile, prepare the apple mixture to give the apples time to cool before you need to use them.

Filling and baking:
Apple Mixture:
5 g (1 tsp) unsalted butter
150 g cored, peeled and diced eating apple*
5 g (1 tsp) soft dark brown sugar
25 g calvados

*Choose a more tart, firm variety, such as a Cox (I used 2 Fuji apples, delivered that morning in my CSA box)

-heat up the butter in a pan, add the diced apple and then sprinkle over the sugar. Sauté until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Pour over the calvados and continue cooking until the pan is dry. Set aside to cool.

-tip the dough on to a lightly floured surface and knead lightly. Add the cooled diced apple and fold it into the dough. Do this in stages to ensure that the apple is mixed in as evenly as possible. Shape the dough into an oblong loaf round and place it in a lightly floured lined proving basket or floured cloth. Cover with a cloth and leave in a warm place for 75-90 minutes until doubled in size.

-add a baking stone to an oven and preheat to 250ºC (475ºF) for at least 30 minutes. Cut up a thin apple slice for the top of the bread. Gently turn the loaf onto a parchment lined baking sheet or peel and gently press the apple slice in the middle. Slide the loaf onto the baking stone. Heavily spritz your oven with a water spray or cover the loaf with an inverted roasting pan sprayed with water. Bake for 15 minutes, turning down the temperature to 200ºC (400ºF) after 5 minutes. Remove roasting pan and continue to bake for another 25-30 minutes until the bread is golden and hollow sounding when thumped on the bottom and has reached an internal temperature of about 205ºF.

-remove to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.


8 thoughts on “Apple bread with Cider and Calvados – October bake with BBB

Add yours

  1. That is so cool that you used your levain!! And look at what beautiful bread you made too!

    Do you think you could have gotten away with omitting the commercial yeast in the final dough? Would your levain have been enough to raise the bread?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Elizabeth! I used the commercial yeast in the final dough. For two reasons: 1. Time. But 50g would be definitely enough to rise the bread, though fermentation would be maybe twice longer. 2. It’s less sour with yeast.


  2. Your loaf looks truly amazing! Love the beautiful apple slice and that you worked it with your sourdough. Did you omit the yeast in the final dough as well? I know some of our BBBabes really like sourdough best!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Kelly, you know, I wouldn’t say that I put my sourdough into the bread out of love for it. Mostly, because I have it and need to use. hate to discard it. 🙂 But I added the yeast according to the recipe to shorten the fermentation time and also to lower the acidity of the final dough.


      1. Ha! I love this answer! I hate discarding wild starter too.

        But I find it really interesting that you say adding yeast will make the bread less sour. I thought the sourness in sourdough had to do with temperature. (We don’t notice any sourness at all in our wild bread.)

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s not i usually do with my sourdough when I bake it. But here I thought if I omitt the yeast, it will make fermentation longer=>bread will be more sour. So I have tried to keep the original idea in final dough. Also, it’s all relative and based on the persoanl taste palette. The bread was slighty sour to my husband’s taste but only to him. I had a few people over next day and nobody was complaining about it. I guess it’s just him. ))


      3. Oh yes, I love the recipes I have that call for unfed starter! I am actually posting a muffin recipe tomorrow that uses unfed starter. I have a handful and am always looking out for more. I think my kids’ all time favorite is chocolate waffles though. I keep them in the freezer and use for quick breakfasts before school. Love that one because I use fresh ground whole flour and you can’t tell at all.

        Liked by 1 person

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