How to Make Sourdough Bread from Start to Finish:Warm Climate, Tropics

So you live in the tropics, where it’s mostly wet and warm. And you’re thinking, "I wanna make sourdough bread!"

But you just keep failing.

Is it me, or is it the weather? What is it?

Today, I show you how to make sourdough bread from start to finish! And you’ll never need to fear failing again, I promise!

I started making sourdough bread a little over a year ago now and I was always failing. Like, I’ll be diligently following a well known, tried and tested recipe dutifully doing what it says to do but in the end, I would still fail.

And I recall feeling so disappointed, so discouraged and flat out defeated. I even remember thinking to myself, maybe I’m just not cut out to be a baker, but you know what? That’s a lie!

Now if you’ve been telling that to yourself, stop!

You can be as good a home baker as anyone else, the trick is really to keep the dough cool instead of keeping it warm like you see in a lot of other videos. Especially, if you live in the tropics where you have a persistently warm climate, where it’s just hot and humid all year round. I was just describing Singapore, by the way in case you haven’t noticed. It’s summer 365 days a year and if you don’t get the dough temperature right, you pretty much can’t get anything else right.

So the first thing you gotta remember is this - you have to start with cold ingredients, straight from the fridge. If you can, even your flour must be cold, if possible.

Another way to ensure you achieve that is to get an infra-red food or cooking thermometer. With the thermometer in hand, you can then monitor the dough temperature, at every stage, and make sure that it never exceeds 25°C, ever!


Bread flour 240g
Whole wheat flour 60g
Ice cold water (8°C) 210g
Sourdough starter 60g
Pink salt 6g



Feed sourdough starter at least once (the night before) or twice (morning and night) so it's active and vigorous.


Step 1

Mix flour and water in stand mixer, at low speed, for three minutes. Cover and leave it in the fridge for one hour.

Step 2

Add LSD to the above in stand mixer, at low speed, for a further three minutes. Cover and leave it in the fridge for 15 minutes.

Step 3

After 15 minutes, add salt. Mix it in using stand mixer, at medium speed, for five minutes or until it comes together in a ball. Cover and leave it in the fridge for a further 15 minutes.

Step 4

After 15 minutes, stretch and fold (1), with wet hands, to strengthen the dough. Set timer for 15 minutes.

Step 5

After 15 minutes, stretch and fold (2), with wet hands, again. Set timer for a further 15 minutes.

Step 6

When the alarm sounds after 15 minutes, stretch and fold (3) it with wet hands a final time. Transfer the dough to an oiled container and set the timer for 30 minutes.

Step 7

After the dough has rested for 30 minutes, coil fold (1) with wet hands. Set the timer for a further 30 minutes.

Step 8

When the alarm goes off, coil fold (2) again with wet hands. Let dough rest for a final 30 minutes.

Step 9

After final 30 minutes, do a final coil fold (3) with wet hands. Leave dough to rest for one hour.

Step 10

When alarm rings after one hour, lightly flour your clean work surface, and pre-shape the dough. Leave it to rest for a final 30 minutes.

Step 11

After 30 minutes, final shape the dough. Line banneton with disposable hair net, lightly flour it with semolina or rice flour then cradle the dough into the banneton, seam side up. Cover with another hair net, a tea towel, put it into a zip lock bag. Fridge it, overnight.



Step 1

Oil the dutch oven (DO) with flaxseed oil, place it in oven and preheat at 250°C for 45 minutes to 60 minutes.

Step 2

Once it reaches an internal temperature of 250°C, remove dough from banneton and onto a floured breadsling. Score it.

Step 3

Remove DO from oven, place dough inside, spritz some distilled water, cover and bake at 250°C for 20 minutes.

Step 4

After 20 minutes, remove the lid, and bake at 230°C for a further 20 minutes or until desired browning is achieved.

Step 5

Remove sourdough from oven and onto a cooling rack. Leave it to cool for at least 5 hours or better still slice it the next day.


Serving suggestion

Eat sourdough with curry, wild-caught sardines, pulled pork or scrambled eggs or diced tomatoes and herbs. It’s really up to your imagination.

And that’s how to make sourdough bread from start to finish and this method is especially great for persistently warm climates or tropics.

I hope you learnt something useful today and if you did hit that like button and share it with your friends especially those who are still struggling to make a good loaf of sourdough bread.

It’s easy once you get the hang of it, I promise. Share your loafly bakes with me @lovelynettetan. Meanwhile, you have a beautiful day!

Love Lynette Tan

About lovelynettetan

Lynette Tan is Mrs Singapore Universe 2016 and she believes in being beautiful and healthy, naturally. Her mantra? You're most beautiful, when you're You!


  1. Kay on July 15, 2022 at 03:47

    Thank you for the recipe. Will surely try it. What does “add LSD…” in step 2 mean?

    • lovelynettetan on November 24, 2022 at 18:40

      Hi Kay, you’re most welcome! LSD stands for liquid sourdough meaning sourdough starter. Hope that clarifies and happy baking!

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