Breads (Sourdough) - Open Crumb

Purple Carrot Open Crumb Sourdough Bread

October 28, 2020 | Recipe by Bake with Paws

Purple Carrot Open Crumb Sourdough Bread 
Purple Carrot Open Crumb Sourdough Bread

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I have been using Purple Carrot to bake Purple Carrot Soft Sourdough Bread and the colour turned out to be beautiful. I was thinking I should try it on an open crumb sourdough bread too.  Unfortunately,  I was unable to achieve a good oven spring using carrot puree.  I thought that maybe I added too much carrot puree.  So, I tried it a second time with a reduced amount of carrot puree.  It was slightly better but still lacking oven spring.  I guess it must be the carrot pulp that causes the bread to become dense.  So, I decided to use carrot juice instead and finally, that worked! I got oven spring.  However, the crumb still not as nice as my previous bakes and I am wondering if there is some property in the carrot that causes the bread to be dense.  Please let me know if you know the answer.

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.  Do tag me on Instagram @Bakewithpaws if you attempt on this recipe.

How To Make Purple Carrot Open Crumb Sourdough Bread 

Yields: 1 Loaf


270g bread flour (I used Japanese high gluten flour) - 90%
30g whole wheat flour - 10%
224g purple carrot juice water (reserve 10g for salt) - 77% final hydration
6g sea salt - 2%
60g levain (active sourdough starter - 100% hydration) – 20%

Purple Carrot Juice:
65g steamed purple carrot (from 1 medium carrot)
210g water 
  • Please refresh  your starter several times before baking day in order to get a better result if you do not feed your starter daily or regularly.
  • Please reserve some liquid and not add it all in one go as each flour absorbs water and hydrates differently. 
  • Banneton (proofing basket)'s size - 6.5" oval shape
  • Ambient temperature after adding in levain:  25C 
  1. Feeding starter - Feed ratio of 1:1:1, keep at room temperature (28C – 30C) and wait until tripled, around 3 – 4 hours.  Please feed your starter at the ratio that fit your schedule as long as the starter is at its peak when use.  
  2. Purple Carrot Juice - Peel, cut and steam the purple carrot for about 15 minutes.  Blend the steamed carrot with water.  Strain the carrot pulp through a sieve.  You will get roughly about 224g of juice.  If not enough, just top up with water.   The reason I steam the carrot is to prevent the carrot from oxidise and preserve the purple colour.
  3. Autolyse - Mix flour and carrot juice, stir until there is no more dry flour with a spatula then by hand.  Or use a stand mixer with paddle attachment for 2-3 minutes at low speed.  Cover and leave for 1 to 2 hours.
  4. Levain - Wet your hand, add 60g sourdough to the dough and hand mixing until incorporated, about 3 - 4 minutes. Or use a stand mixer with hook attachment and knead for 6 to 8 minutes.  I used hand mixing for this loaf. Cover and rest for 30 minutes.
  5. Sea Salt - Dilute sea salt with the balance of 10g carrot juice.  Pour on top of the dough, use hand to mix in the sea salt water.  It takes about 5 minutes until it is fully incorporated.  Cover and rest for 15 minutes.
  6. Stretch and Fold (S&F)  - Perform 1 set of S&F.  Please see the diagram.  Cover and rest for about 30+- minutes or until the dough spread.  Please feel and watch your dough and not the clock.
  7. Lamination -  Please watch the video below. Lightly mist the counter top with water and wet your hand.  Pull from centre out to form a rectangle shape.  Pick up one edge and fold into the center.  Pick up other edge and fold into the center over first section.  Fold the top down half way.  Fold the bottom up.  Put dough in a clean dish.  Cover and rest for about 30+- minutes or until the dough spread.  Please feel and watch your dough and not the clock.
  8. Coil Fold 1 - Fold dough in the dish. Cover and rest for about 30+- minutes or until the dough spread.
  9. Coil Fold 2 - Repeat the same.  Cover and rest for about 30+- minutes or until the dough spread.
  10. Coil Fold 3 - Repeat the same.  Cover and rest for 60 - 90 minutes or until the dough rise about 40 - 50%. 
  11. Shaping - Please watch the video below. Flour the counter top.  Shape and transfer to a heavily flour banneton.  
  12. Proofing - Proof at room temperature for 15 minutes.  
  13. Cold Retard - Then retard overnight in the fridge for 12 - 16 hours.
  14. Baking -  
    1. Preheat oven with the dutch oven (cast iron) at 250C (top & bottom heat) fo 30 - 60 minutes before baking.  
    2. Take bread dough out from the fridge, invert onto a parchment paper.  Using a razor blade attached to a lame slash the dough approximately 0.5 inches deep at 45-degree angle.  Immediately transfer the dough with the parchment paper to your preheated dutch oven.
    3. Bake with cover on for 25 minutes.  Remove the cover and lower the temperature to 220C (top & bottom heat), continue bake for another 10 - 15 minutes.
    4. Remove bread from oven and dutch oven. Let it cool on rack completely before slicing.
Usually 3 coil folds should be enough.  But, sometimes you may need extra coil fold if your dough is spread and not enough gluten develop.


Add Levain & Add Salt

Stretch & Fold (S&F)



A healthy starter is very crucial as advised by Baking with Gina.   It is advisable to feed your starter regularly if you want your bread to rise nicely and to use the starter (levain) at its peak.  A starter that is fed regularly will be more active in general.  If the mother starter is not strong, the bread dough will not rise a lot even though the starter is used at its peak.  


The liquid measurement given is also a guide.  It is advisable to always reserve some liquid and not add it all in one go.  This would give you the opportunity to adjust if necessary. If dough is too dry, add the reserve liquid one tablespoon at a time until the right consistency.  This is because each flour absorbs water and hydrates differently. 


Bulk fermentation starts when you add in levain to the dough and ends when the dough is ready for shaping.  


Ambient temperature plays a very important part in sourdough baking.  It will affect the dough temperature and eventually affect your fermentation time.  The cooler ambient temperature will extend the fermentation time.  The greater degree of proof, the stronger the dough will be as explained by Trevor J. Wilson. 

The ambient temperature that worked for me is between 25C - 26C and bulk fermentation time is between 4.5 hours to 5.5 hours.  At the end of bulk fermentation, my dough would have increased 50% in volume.   The dough should look puffy.  It should jiggling when you slightly shake it.  This is the end of bulk fermentation.  

But, my kitchen ambient temperature (without air-conditioner) was 29C - 30C.  So, I have to bring down the temperature. 

How to bring down ambient temperature?
  1. Air-conditioner room - Rest the dough in air-conditioner room during bulk fermentation.  I used this option sometimes.  I turned on my air-conditioner when I added in levain and try to maintain temperature between 25C - 26C.
  2. Home oven (that's turned off) -  Place ice cooler packs inside along with an ambient temperature thermometer.  Then place your dough during bulk fermentation in the oven. Keep an eye on that thermometer and try to keep between 25C - 26C.


Too strong (tension or elastic) dough will take a longer time to increase (proof) in volume.  So too strong dough may not have good oven spring and open crumb.  While too weak dough (extensibility) dough may not hold it shape and rise with good oven spring too.  

So over-working the dough (too strong dough) or under-working (weak dough) may affect the crumb structure and oven spring.  

The number of coil folds is not fixed and very much depends on the strength and extensibility of the dough.  

As demonstrated in an experiment by Kristen (Full Proof Baking) the over-worked dough rose super tall but was smaller in overall size and had a more dense crumb while the control dough rose tall during the oven spring and had a better overall result.

How do we know when it is enough and no more coil folds are needed? 
We usually do 3 coil folds for this method.  However, if by the second coil fold the dough is strong with less extensibility as you lift up a part of the dough then it should be the last coil fold, or just do a half coil folds instead of full. The resistance of the dough to being folded should be an indication to refrain from folding further.

How do we know when to do the next coil fold or stretch & fold?
When the dough spreads. Please do not rely on the time given in the recipe as it is just a guideline.  Please watch your dough and not the clock.