These medium-sized Pumpkin Shaped Sourdough Boules are so adorable and if you have mastered making a regular sourdough bread boule this is easier to make than you might think!
A few tools that you will need to make the process easier are baking twine, high quality parchment paper, a lined proofing bowl (I used unlined but lined will work better with less rice flour needed),a sharp bread lame, and kitchen scissors.
To make 3 medium sized sweet pumpkin boules, use the following formula:
- 816 grams water, divided
- 240 grams active sourdough starter
- 240 grams whole wheat flour
- 960 grams bread flour
- 24 grams sea salt
You will follow the process of my Sourdough Rustic Bread Master Recipe through step 8.
9. After the bulk ferment, divide the dough into 3 pieces. Preshape into a round shape.
10. Let the dough rest for 10 to 20 minutes while you prepare 3 round proofing bowls.
11. Shape the dough rounds into boules (round loaf shape) and flip into the prepared proofing bowls.
12. Proof for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until a finger pressed into the dough leaves an indentation. Place one (or two) proofing boule(s) into the fridge in case your oven can only fit two (or maybe only one) at a time.
13. Preheat the oven and Dutch oven(s) to 500 degrees F.
14. Cut 12 24-inch long pieces of baking twine. Coat them well in flour or rub them generously with coconut oil. (I preferred flour in my tests)
15. Lightly flour the dough in the proofing bowl. Take 4 pieces of twine for each bowl of dough. Lay piece #1 over the top of the bowl. Lay piece #2 over the top of that one to make a cross pattern. Lay piece #3 and 4 over those ones and space evenly apart with their middles intersecting over the center of the dough. Cut a large piece of parchment paper and lay over the top of the arranged twine and proofing bowl. Hold the edges tightly then flip the bowl over so the dough rests on top of the arranged twine. Remove bowl. Take the ends of each piece of twine and tie them at the top of the round of dough so that the twine is just slightly pressing into the dough but not too tight. When you tie the last piece of twine, wrap it around the other tied pieces of twine so they are joined together in that final knot. Repeat with the any rounds of dough that you are baking at the same time. Any bread rounds that aren’t ready to bake, place in fridge until time to bake.
See the final shaping process in this video:
16. Use a bread lame to score each section of your “pumpkin”. I like the simplicity of a vertical line down the middle of each section.
17. Take out the two Dutch ovens. Open each one on a safe work surface. Carefully transfer each bread into a Dutch oven by carrying with edges of parchment paper. Tuck string into Dutch oven to minimize risk of burning or fire. Cover with the lid. Put Dutch ovens with bread inside into the oven.
18. Reduce oven temp to 475 degrees F. Bake 18 mins.
19. Carefully open Dutch ovens and place breads directly on the rack to finish baking. Reduce oven temp to 450 degrees F. Bake for 15 additional minutes, keep an eye on the bake and the string to minimize fire risk.
20. Allow loaves to cool on a cooling rack for 5-15 minutes or until cool enough to handle. Cut each string and carefully pull off of your loaf.
21. Repeat steps with the third medium loaf.
22. For the finishing touch, add a stem. You can use a cinnamon stick, toasted almond, or something else you have available.
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