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Sourdough is a delicious baking option that continues to take the world by storm, mostly because it’s easy enough to make at home. All you need is the right tools and essentials in tow to perfect the recipe, and you’re all set.

What is sourdough?

It’s a hearty bread that is perfect for lunches, snacks, toasting and for jazzing up with all different kinds of toppings. Did we mention the smell is enough to fill your home with a delicious aroma?

From a nutritional point of view, sourdough is a great option for the health-conscious, boasting plenty of protein, vitamins and minerals. There's also lots of iron for red blood cell production, as well as acting as an excellent boost for your metabolism. Enjoy natural selenium for a healthier immune system, also aiding cell and tissue repair.

Add in the vitamin B, antioxidants and prebiotics for good gut health, and you have a winner right here, one that's both great for your health and super tasty.

Sourdough is also extremely easy to make as well, with just threeingredients involved: flour, water and salt. But to get the best possible results, a banneton is required.

Why do you need a banneton for sourdough?

A banneton is a simple basket made from rattan that perfects the shape of your loaf. This kind of bread is usually too moist to hold its shape during the baking process, which is why it needs to be proofed. Doing so allows the moisture from the outer layer to be absorbed by the banneton. This basket also enables you to create patterns into the dough to make it extra pleasing on the eye.

How do you proof sourdough without a basket?

You can use a regulation bowl to proof your bread by lining it with a thin dishcloth that is coated in flour. It will do the job, but you won't get the same crispy outer shell or the iconic shape/design that’s achieved with the help of a banneton. Trust us – this is a sidekick you’ll want handy in your kitchen when the craving to get baking rolls around again.

Do you need to line a banneton?

This depends on what effect you are trying to achieve. If you want a smoother finish on your bread, you can line the basket with a thin cloth, but you are going to lose some of the benefits of using the banneton. Linen is a better option for lining these baskets if you do want that smoother finish.

How do you keep the loaf from sticking?

Keeping your banneton dry is super important to ensure the proper proofing process. You want the basket to be completely dry, so it is recommended that you only use it once every 24 hours to prevent excess moisture from building up.

Also, make sure you add in a generous mix of flour, and your sourdough will slide straight out.

Haven’t snatched up one of these nifty designs yet? Banneton Man has the perfect range of bread proofing baskets for sourdough and a range of other essentials to help you get started.