Barrio Grains Signature Sourdough Bread

Barrio Grains Signature Sourdough Bread

Since 2009, Don Guerra has been feeding his community with old-world style sourdough bread at his bakery, Barrio Bread in Tucson, Arizona. He has gained national attention in publications, like The New York Times, and has won several awards, but the most notable is his recent James Beard Award for Outstanding Baker. Barrio means "neighborhood" in Spanish, and represents Don's commitment to serving his community and working with Arizona farmers, chefs, and other food producers to strengthen the local grain economy and grow the local food network. Follow Don on Instagram @barriobaker @barriobread.

What You'll Need


Kitchen scale


Dough Scraper

Tea Towel

9 1/2-inch Oval Proofing Basket

Parchment Paper

5-quart (or larger) Dutch oven


50 g ripe sourdough starter

150 g Barrio Grains Flour

150 g water


800 g water

1,000 g Barrio Grains Flour

250 g levain (from above)

24 g salt


Sample Weekend Baking Schedule

The timing below are only estimates. As you practice the art of sourdough baking, you will start to get a feel for how to adjust time and ingredient ratios depending on your climate and environment.

Fermentation is based on time and temperature. The warmer the temperature, the faster the fermentation and vice versa. Desired Dough Temp (DDT) is 75-80 degrees. The best variable to control DDT is the temperature of the water and the environment. If you want to extend the time of fermentation, cooler water or cooler environment should be considered.

Friday @ 8pm

Prepare Levain

To make the levain, mix the levain ingredients in a jar, cover, and allow to sit overnight in a warm temperature, 74-76°F, for 12 hours.

Saturday @ 8am

Mix Bread Dough

  1. With a spoon or your hands, mix 250 g of your levain with 800 g water.
  2. Add flour and salt.
  3. Gently mix, then rest dough for 30 minutes.

Stretch & Fold Technique

Wet your hands and give the dough a stretch and fold: take hold of the underside of the dough at one quadrant and stretch it up over the rest of the dough. Repeat 3 more times, rotating bowl a quarter turn for each fold.

PRO TIP: If dough becomes too dry, continue to wet hands while working to add moisture. If dough is too wet, add a little more flour. Do not overmix dough.

Saturday @ 8:30am

Stretch & Fold #1

  1. Stretch & fold dough using technique above
  2. Cover and rest for 1 hour

Saturday @ 9:30am

Stretch & Fold #2

  1. Stretch & fold dough using technique above
  2. Cover and rest for 1 hour

Saturday @ 10:30am

Stretch & Fold #3

  1. Stretch & fold dough using technique above
  2. Cover and rest for 1 hour

Saturday @ 11:30am

Stretch & Fold #4, Long Ferment

  1. Stretch & fold dough using technique above
  2. Cover and rest for 4 hours (dough should double or triple in size during this long fermentation)

Saturday @ 3:30pm

Scale Portions

  1. Lightly flour your counter.
  2. Turn the dough out of the bowl onto floured counter.
  3. Using a dough scraper, cut the dough into two equal portions (use kitchen scale to weigh).
  4. Gently shape the portions into an approximation of an oblong loaf.
  5. Let portions rest for 30 minutes.

Saturday @ 4:00pm

Shape Batard Loaves & Proof

  1. Place linen cloths into two oblong proofing baskets and dust generously with flour.
  2. Work each portion of dough into a batard loaf. Using both hands like paddles with your fingers pointed toward each other, lift and fold the top of the dough farthest from your body and fold it down just a bit at the top to begin a small roll, pressing the seam to seal with your fingers. Repeat this pattern until you come to the end of the dough, forming a long cylinder in front of you. Repeat for second portion of dough.
  3. Using a dough scraper, gently lift the shaped batards, seam side up, and place it into the floured proofing baskets for the final rise.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap or tea towel and let rest for 1 hour. (For a cold proof, you can put the baskets in the refrigerator and allow to proof for 12-36 hours.)

Saturday @ 5:30pm

Preheat Oven and Score Loaves

  1. When you're ready to bake, place a Dutch Oven in the oven and preheat to 450 F.
  2. After oven is preheated, remove the Dutch Oven and place on a heat proof surface (like your stovetop).
  3. Tip one batard dough out of the proofing basket (seam side down) into the middle of a 12 x 18 inch sheet of parchment paper.
  4. If using a stencil, center stencil on loaf, sprinkle loaf generously with flour. Gently lift stencil. Score loaf above and below stencil in an "X" pattern.

Bake Loaves

  1. Remove the Dutch Oven lid.
  2. Grab the edges of the parchment paper and lower batard into the Dutch oven.
  3. Replace lid on the Dutch Oven and place in oven.
  4. After 30 minutes, remove lid and bake an additional 10 minutes until the crust is golden brown (or until bread reaches an internal temperature of 190 F).
  5. Remove the Dutch Oven and place on a heat proof surface.
  6. Carefully grab the edges of the parchment paper and lift bread out and onto a cooling rack.
  7. Thump the bottom of the loaf - a hollow sound means the bread is done. Allow loaf to cool completely (1-2 hours) before slicing.
  8. Replace lid on Dutch Oven and return to oven for 10 minutes to reheat, then repeat stencil, scoring, and baking steps for second loaf.

Makes 2 loaves.

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Barrio Grains Flour


Proofing Basket


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