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BBC Good Food: Sourdough at home

Taught by Barney Desmazery

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Course Description

BBC Good Food

Study under BBC Good Food’s Food Editor at Large, Barney Desmazery, in this highly popular course on sourdough bread. Barney will guide you towards making sourdough a part of your life: from the basic equipment needed right up to what to do with leftover, stale bread. You will learn the key terminology associated with sourdough preparation: including levains and starters, the differences between the two and how to treat them.

The first lesson will also ensure you are well grounded in the different types of flour and the importance of measuring. From here, you will study the no-knead method, and the role that temperature and the environment play in making sourdough. Lesson two will ensure that you have a comprehensive understanding of baking, scoring, and fermentation.

You will then learn how to shape and flavour your sourdough, creating boules and batards using an array of grains. This course will also give you the skills to transform your sourdough into pizza bases, sweet buns and even pancakes. By the end of this four-week course you will be able to wow your friends and family with your own variety of sourdoughs, thanks to Barney’s brilliant guidance.

Course outline

  • Making and maintain your starter, understanding the process

    The basic equipment you will need and the importance of measuring. What sourdough is, why make it, why his prefers it to commercial bread. Basic baking tools, what to buy for your first attempts, what to leave until you are sure you want to make sourdough often. Terminology: everything you might come across from levain to hydration. What is a starter and how it’s made – the difference between a starter and a levain. The different types of starter and flours.
  • Basic sourdough loaf

    The no knead method and why it works. Step by step to make a basic loaf – making a levain. The role temperature and the environment plays Autolyse explained - why it’s a game changer and how to use it to your advantage. Adding salt and more water. Folding rather than kneading, the action of folding and what you are trying to achieve. Bulk fermentation – temperature. Bench rest and tight shaping. Second prove – and your options. Baking and scoring – why the pot method is best and alternatives. Cooling and storing, my way. Schedules and timing, how to plan sourdough into your life, what to think about when time planning, making a basic schedule and finding a rhythm.
  • Sourdough next steps

    Varying hydration, shaping doughs into classic shapes including boules and batards, how to score. Adding different flavours and grains and when to add and how other flours will affect your bake and learn how each will change the outcome of your bake.
  • Beyond loaves and theory

    How to replace yeast for starter in other breads. Bakers maths and scaling up or down. Use sourdough to make pizza bases, sweet buns and pancakes. Make frying pan pizza. Using sourdough and yeast together. Make the most of your learning to move beyond slicing loaves to other types of bread recipes you eat often. Sourdough leftovers, what to do with stale bread and recipes using bread. How to plan sourdough into your life.

Choose how you want to learn

  • The Expert option


    Develop your learning further with marked assignments and personal tuition from Barney Desmazery

    • Start course whenever you like
    • 4 weeks tutor access for personalised assignment feedback & coaching
    • 4 assignments marked by Barney Desmazery
    • Certificate of completion from Barney Desmazery
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • Group chat & direct message with tutor & classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
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  • The Peer option

    Discover the benefits of group learning in an online interactive classroom of no more than 20 people. Get the most from shared knowledge and community study

    • Start course whenever you like
    • Practise what you learn with your peers
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • 4 course assignments
    • Group chat & direct message classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more

How it works

About Barney Desmazery

Barney Desmazery began his career as a chef working all over the world, in Australia and France as well as the UK.. During this time he picked up a wide variety of culinary skills, recipes, and ingredient knowledge. Keen to share this with the world, Barney joined BBC Good Food, Britain’s biggest food media brand where he now works as Food Editor at Large. The self-titled ‘Dude from BBC Good Food’ draws on his culinary background to produce a huge range of recipes for the best-selling monthly food magazine and award-winning website. These vary from restaurant-worthy steaks to 10-minute meals for a student budget. He’s even produced a recipe for sloe gin, perfect for a relaxed night in or parties. Barney has worked alongside several leading celebrity chefs, including Tom Kerridge, Gordon Ramsay and Raymond Blanc. He is a popular presenter at all BBC Good Food Shows, where he and his colleagues demonstrate recipes and teach cookery masterclasses. Such passion extends to his home life, where, at weekends, Barney enjoys cooking with his children and encouraging them through his expertise. He’s now excited to bring his approachable teaching style to a much wider demographic through working with Learning with Experts.

Frequently bought as part of this collection

  • BBC Good Food Collection

    Master the entire subject and SAVE 15% when you buy this collection

    2 Courses • Taught by 2 Expert Tutors
    BBC Good Food

    BBC Good Food is the UK’s number one food media brand. It comprises the best-selling food magazine, award-winning which attracts 25 million monthly visitors and the ever-popular BBC Good Food Show live events. In our unique course collection from this trusted source you will study under BBC Good Food’s Senior Food Editors, Cassie Best and Barney Desmazery, gleaning from them all the skills you need to cook with confidence.

    Cassie Best has been Good Food’s Senior Food Editor since 2015 and her approachable style and expertise will help you master a vast array of culinary skills. She will take you through everything from knife skills to baking, and by the end of her course you will have a greater depth of food knowledge and have mastered new cooking techniques.

    When you’ve tackled all these concepts, you’ll be ready to specialise through an in-depth look at sourdough bread. Barney Desmazery has worked alongside leading celebrity chefs for BBC Good Food and he’s excited to bring you this much-anticipated course. By the end of this part of the collection you’ll be left able to make and flavour your own sourdough, presenting it in a variety of different forms, from pizza bases to pancakes, and from boules to batards.

    Whether you are new to cooking or you’ve spent years in the kitchen, everyone has something to learn from this excellent cookery course collection from BBC Good Food.

    Learn more

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