Did you know making black sesame sourdough bread was a breeze? This black sesame sourdough is not only easy to make but it’s absolutely delicious. Black sesame differs from white sesame seeds and has a stronger, nuttier flavor. This simple recipe will produce foolproof artisan bread sourdough right at home.
Want to learn how to make a light airy loaf with the perfect crisp crust perfumed by black sesame seeds? Click the jump to recipe button or stick around to learn more about these topics:
- What Is Sourdough Bread
- Baker’s Schedule
- How To Make Black Sesame Sourdough Bread
- How Do You Get Sesame Seeds To Stick To Sourdough?
- What is T65 Flour & Substitutes
- Black Sesame Sourdough FAQ
Alright, before we get into making and baking black sesame sourdough bread, let’s talk about what sourdough bread is and why it’s special.
What Is Sourdough Bread
Sourdough bread is the original method of bread making before commercialized yeast was created. Essentially, it’s naturally leavened bread. There is no commercial yeast and it takes about 12-15 hours (sometimes even 24 hours) to rise. Sourdough bread is great because it only takes 3 ingredients: sourdough starter, flour, and water.
A sourdough starter is the special ingredient that helps the bread rise. Made from flour and water that’s left to ferment over days, weeks, months, and even years! This fermented mix cultivates wild yeast and bacteria that replaces commercial yeast. Click here for a sourdough starter guide from scratch (with pictures from day 1-10).
We admit, we were intimidated to start sourdough baking since sourdough bread has artisan bread written all over it but it’s definitely possible to get artisan homemade sourdough bread. All you need is the right sourdough bread recipe.
There are hundreds of different sourdough recipes on the internet and everyone has their own measurements and techniques. This black sesame sourdough recipe is based on our basic one day sourdough bread recipe and it has always worked for us. We’ve had 0 (nada, zilch, zero) fails following this recipe and method.
Another intimidating aspect we were worried about when it came to sourdough baking was the time. 12-24 hours seemed like a lot of work but we’re going to help break this down with something called a baker’s schedule.
It only takes about 10-15 minutes for sourdough dough to come together. The majority of the time is spent waiting for the loaf to rise for about 12-24 hours. The sourdough baking schedule will help you fit the sourdough bread into your schedule, rather than the other way around.
Proofing time is important to produce a light and airy bread with a crisp crust. The longer you allow your bread to proof, the more sour your bread will be. Some recipes call for a 4-24 hour rise and we’ll talk about that below when we cover the difference between a cold and warm rise.
Cold Rise (24 Hours)
A cold rise is when the sourdough bread spends its first 4-12 hour rise at room temperature. The loaf is shaped and set in a proofing basket and then transferred to the fridge for an additional 12 hours.
What we like about this method is that you can bake your sourdough directly when it comes out of the fridge. This method is ideal if you don’t want to spend the evening baking or rushing in the morning to get your loaves shaped and proofed.
Here’s an example of using the cold rise method: Start by mixing your ingredients to form a dough at 7am on a Friday. Cover the sourdough mixture with a damp towel and leave at room temperature for 12 hours.
Shape your loaf in the evening at 7pm and transfer to a proofing basket. Move this basket to the fridge and allow it to proof for 12 hours. Preheat your oven the next morning, toss your sourdough loaf into a bread pan and bake for 45 minutes and voila. Sourdough bread for the weekend.
Warm Rise (12-15 Hours)
Try the warm rise method if you have a bit more time on your hands and don’t want to wait 24 hours for your black sesame sourdough. A warm rise is done in 12 hours at room temperature. After 12 hours, the sourdough is shaped and proofed for an additional 2-3 hours before it’s baked.
We like to use this method when we work from home and want freshly baked bread for lunch.
Here’s an example of using this method: We like to start making the dough at about 8pm in the evening. After that we clean up, turn in for the night. Wake up, have a cup of coffee, get ready for the day and after it’s been 12 hours, you have a beautifully risen sourdough.
Now it’s time to shape the dough, add black sesame seeds to turn this basic sourdough recipe into a black sesame sourdough bread. Let that proof in a proofing basket for 2-3 hours before baking.
Which baking schedule do you prefer? Now that we’ve covered how to fit sourdough baking into your schedule, let’s start making our black sesame sourdough loaf.
How To Make Black Sesame Sourdough Bread
We used our basic sourdough bread recipe as the base to make this black sesame sourdough. Black sesame seeds have more flavor than white sesame seeds and are more crisp. They give a very distinct and nutty flavor to this black sesame sourdough bread.
Start by mixing the flour, sourdough starter, and water in a bowl.
Bring the mixture together until it forms a loose dough.
You can add a few folds and twists but we’ve found that this isn’t very necessary. Leave the dough to rest for 12 hours.
Now we can move on to shaping the dough once it has proofed for 12 hours. Flatten the dough and fold in the black sesame seeds 2–3 tbsp at a time.
Add more black sesame seeds onto a plate. After you’ve shaped the dough into a round, roll it onto the sesame seeds and make sure the entire dough is covered in black sesame seeds.
Transfer your black sesame sourdough bread into a proofing basket and allow it to proof depending on your chosen method. The next step is baking. Personally, we’ve found the best sourdough baking temperature to be 220c or 428f. Bake it covered for 25 minutes and uncovered for 20 minutes.
Having trouble getting your seeds to stick to your sourdough? The next section will solve this problem.
How Do You Get Sesame Seeds To Stick To Sourdough?
Sourdough is a lot wetter than traditional bread doughs. Dusting your counter with flour is necessary so the dough doesn’t stick. But if you’ve over floured your work bench then that’s likely the reason why the sesame seeds won’t stick to your sourdough.
To fix this, start by brushing off the excess flour. After that, lightly spray or mist your sourdough dough with some water and roll it directly onto the black sesame seeds.
What is T65 Flour & Substitutes
Our recipe uses T65 type flour. T65 flour is a coarse bread flour made from wheat grown in France and it is perfect for making sourdough bread. T65 bread flour is known for producing incredibly light loaves with a super crunchy crispy crust. It’s got a high protein content and amazing fermentation tolerance that makes it perfect for sourdough bread.
The ‘T’ and number indicates how much of the original grain is still present in the flour. Wheat flour ranges on a scale from T45 to T150. T45 is the finest flower and T150 is more commonly known as whole wheat flour as it contains the whole grain.
Living in Europe means we have access french flours like T65 but if you’re in the US, here are some alternatives to this flour:
- High gluten bread flour
- Type 1 Italian flour
- Whole wheat flour
- Euro 650 flour
You can use all purpose flour in place of bread flour BUT remember that substituting all purpose flour for bread flour means that you need to reduce the amount of water. This is because all purpose flour absorbs less water compared to bread flour. This can result in a gooey and sticky dough. Add the water a little at a time and stop when the mixture forms a dough.
Now that we’ve covered the type of flour we’ve used for our sourdough and what makes it so special, let’s end with some FAQ about this black sesame sourdough bread.
Black Sesame Sourdough FAQ
Making sourdough bread can be easy but there’s a lot of information out there and we found it overwhelming. That’s why we’ve included a FAQ section for making our black sesame sourdough loaf.
Can I substitute black sesame seeds for white?
Yes, you can use white sesame seeds in place of black sesame seeds. The flavor will be more subtle. Black sesame seeds are more fragrant and stronger in flavor than white sesame seeds. You can also substitute black sesame for a nut of your choice if you’re not a fan of black sesame seeds.
Do I need to soak sesame seeds before baking?
No, this step isn’t necessary for two reasons. First, soaking and rinsing removes nutrients from the black sesame seeds. Secondly, soaking the seeds will cause them to absorb moisture. This will affect the hydration of your loaf and will take them a little longer to crispen and brown when baking.
Can I just add seeds to my sourdough?
You can make seeded sourdough or black sesame sourdough by adding your seeds to the dough. We can’t attest to the million methods out there to add seeds into your sourdough bread but the general consensus is that it’s best to add the seeds into the dough after it’s risen.
This has to do with how the seeds will affect the moisture content and getting an even rise through the sourdough.
How do I put seeds in sourdough bread?
We prefer to add seeds to our black sesame sourdough after the first 12 hour rise. Begin by flattening your dough, and folding the black sesame into the dough. Shape the dough into a round, spritz it lightly with water and roll it onto more seeds.
We hope that you try and make this black sesame sourdough loaf and have fun making it in the process. The first introduction into sourdough bread making can be intimidating but you’ll find your groove once you try it for yourself.
Try out different methods, ratios, and recipes to see what works for you. That’s exactly what we’ve done and this black sesame sourdough is the fruits of our labor. Feel free to leave any questions you have about this recipe in the comments below!
Try out our other sourdough recipes:
Or have a look at our basic one day sourdough bread recipe for beginners with a guide on how to make sourdough starter from scratch. Wanna make sourdough bread but don’t have a dutch oven? Try using one of the 9 ways to make sourdough without dutch oven guide!
Black Sesame Sourdough
This airy crisp black sesame sourdough is deeply savory with lots of nutty notes. It's also the perfect introduction to making flavored sourdough bread for beginners.
- 407 grams flour (we used T65 french flour) *see notes if substituting with all purpose flour
- 225 grams cold water
- 50 grams sourdough starter
- 8 grams of fine salt
- 5 tablespoons sesame seeds and more for coating
Add the flour, water, salt and sourdough starter into a bowl and mix everything together until it forms a dough.
Leave this dough to rest for at least 12 hours at room temperature.
After 12 hours, you can shape the dough into a loaf. Ideally, you want to fold the dough into itself to create a round shape.
Heavily dust your proofing basket or a bowl lined with cloth. This will prevent the dough from sticking to the proofing basket or cloth. Don't worry about using too much flour, it can always be brushed off later.
Flatten the dough and fold through 4 tablespoons of the black sesame seed.
Add the remaining black sesame seeds to a plate.
Shape the dough into a round ball and roll it the black sesame seeds.
Transfer the sourdough loaf into a proofing basket and let the dough rest for 2-3 hours and cover with a damp cloth.
Preheat your oven to 220c or 428f with your dutch oven or bread pan inside for 30-40 minutes.
Transfer your sourdough loaf onto a piece of baking paper.
Before placing the sourdough loaf into the pan, score the surface with a sharp blade.
When the bread pan is hot enough, lift the baking paper and place the sourdough in the dutch oven or bread pan and bake with the lid on for 25 minutes.
Remove the lid and continue baking for an additional 20 minutes or until a deep shade of brown.
Allow to cool on a rack for 10-15 minutes and enjoy!
You can use all purpose flour in place of bread flour or T65 flour. BUT substituting all purpose flour for bread flour means that you need to reduce the amount of water. This is because all purpose flour absorbs less water compared to bread flour. This can result in a gooey and sticky dough. Add the water a little at a time and stop when the mixture forms a dough.