Sep 2, 2014

Pear and Cherry Sourdough Bread

Pear and Cherry Sourdough Bread

This pear and cherry sourdough bread is loaded with chunks of fresh Asian pear and dried cherries. In fact, shaping this pear and cherry sourdough bread was kind of like playing whack-a-mole in order to keep all of the bits of fruit inside the loaf. Even so, once the loaf was allowed to rise and bake, it developed little open craters of fruit on top. They looked like little mini pear tarts on top of the bread.

To make this bread, you will need a sourdough starter, either fed or unfed. If you don't have one, you can create a poolish of equal parts of flour, water, and a very small amount of yeast. Just let it sit out overnight to develop flavor.

The contrast of the sweet pear and the tangy dried cherries in this bread is pretty tasty. The trick is to use a firm pear, such as an Asian or Bosc pear. These pears will stand up to the mixer without getting blended into the dough.

In this case, I used an Asian pear. Don't you love the way these are dressed up in little mesh outfits?

Pear and Cherry Sourdough Bread

I toasted slices of this bread and buttered it. Amazing. Mr. Kitchen agrees.

Pear and Cherry Sourdough Bread

I also think this bread would make amazing grilled goat cheese and sliced pear sandwiches. Don't those chunks of baked fresh pear in the bread slices look delicious?

Pear and Cherry Sourdough Bread

156 g fed sourdough starter
3/4 C lukewarm (100 degrees F) water. You may need to use a bit less in hot and humid weather
1 T olive oil
1 T sugar
1 1/4 tsp salt
269 g unbleached all purpose flour
43 g potato flour or potato flakes (I used Betty Crocker Potato Buds)
35 g rolled oats, instant or traditional
2 tsp instant yeast
113 g Asian or Bosc pear, unpeeled, cut into pieces about the size of raisins
143 g dried cherries

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the starter, water, olive oil, sugar, salt, flour, potato flour, oats, and yeast. Knead with the dough hook for about two minutes. The dough should be sticky. If the dough is too dry, add a bit more water. 

Add the fruit to the mixer and knead for about 6 or 7 minutes. 

Spray a bowl or dough rising bucket with spray oil and add the dough. Let rise for approximately 90 minutes, until a little less than doubled in size. 

Remove the dough and pat it down into a 7 by 12 inch rectangle and roll into a log. Place the log into a lightly greased bread pan. Spray the top of the loaf with spray oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap. 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and allow the loaf to rise for 45 to 90 minutes, until the middle is 1 inch above the rim of the bread pan. 

Place the loaf in the oven and bake for 40 t0 45 minutes, until it reaches 190 degrees F in the center. Tent the loaf with foil if it appears to be getting too brown. 

Remove the loaf from the oven, let it cool in the pan for two minutes, and then turn it out onto a cooling rack. Let cool completely.

I made another version of this bread almost two years ago with apples, raisins, and cranberries.

Check out what our amazing #TwelveLoaves members baked this month:

Asian Pear Bread by NinjaBaking
Pear and Almond Muffins by Basic N Delicious
Pear and Cherry Sourdough Bread by Karen's Kitchen Stories
Pear and Walnut Sticky Buns by Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Pear, Banana, and Quinoa Muffins by Rhubarb and Honey
Pear Streusel Sweet Rolls by Try Anything Once Culinary
SavoryPear Flatbread with Gorgonzola by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Sour Cream Pear Bread by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Turkish Pear Coffee Bread by A Shaggy Dough Story

    20 comments:

    1. Oh, Karen, this much make the BEST toast! Love the pear/cherry combination!!!

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      1. It does, Liz. My husband and I are fighting over the last slices.

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    2. Oh wow, that toast looks beyond amazing! What a lovely combination, Karen.

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    3. Karen, that photo of the toasted slices has me wanting to lick my computer screen. That is seriously one gorgeous looking and sounding bread. Pinned and printed. I hope to try your recipe one day soon!!!
      Renee - Kudos Kitchen

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    4. Mini pear tarts on top of a loaf of bread sound like the best loaf ever, Karen! What a great loaf with the pears and dried cherries. I need to get my hands on a sourdough starter!

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      1. I always have extra to share. If only I could figure out how to dry it and send it to you!

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    5. Simply gorgeous, Karen. Those cherry chunks are calling my name (I adore any thing with cherries). A super pear bread for our Pear September #TwelveLoaves month!

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      1. Thanks Lora! Me too. You are appreciated.

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    6. Oo-la-la you got the fancy kind, Karen. The nashi - Asian pear - is dressed up in exclusive markets in Japan. Love the combo of the sourdough and and the cherries =)

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      1. I love these pears! Great minds think alike!

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    7. I am super bummed that I can't bite into one of those toasted slices. Your bread is beautiful!! I haven't made bread with a poolish in a very long time but I am inspired to get back into the kitchen and bake.

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      1. Oh you must Dionne. It's so relaxing to take time to build a loaf like this.

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      1. Thanks! I have just discovered them. So good.

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    9. I'm cracking up at the whack-a-mole reference. Been there, done that! Another gorgeous bread, Karen. And the toast…swoon. Gotta try this one.

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      1. Thanks Robin! Thinks were popping out all over!

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    10. Karen, this is so interesting, I never think of making a sourdough type bread in a loaf pan, and now I don't see why not ;-)

      never bought an Asian pear either, they intimidate me.... I am pinning your post so I don't lose it....

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      1. Asian pears are so delicious Sally! You must try them. I'm pretty sure I have a nice sourdough sandwich bread on here too! Perfect for grilled cheese or tuna melts!

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    I love comments and questions and read every one of them.