• Leigh

Need a Special Treat? Use Your Discard in Sourdough Bishop's Bread

This is a great treat for the holidays or beyond. Bishop's bread is a sweet bread, almost a cake, and it's full of dates, pecans, chocolate, and maraschino cherries. A version of this bread is what got me through my December graduate school exams (and paper writing) years ago--thanks, many times over, Mom! Not only is the bread great tasting, but it's also incredible comfort food with a cup of coffee or tea. The original version of the bread isn't made with sourdough starter/discard, but this one is. The sourdough keeps the bread--which is quite sweet--from being too cloying and also gives the bread extra flavor. Plus, you get to use up some of your discard. The bread is accommodating, too. If you run out of time during the busy holiday period, just pop the dough in the refrigerator overnight and then let it rise the next day. It will be just fine and even more flavor-packed. Try the bread as a special breakfast treat, with your afternoon tea or coffee, or for dessert--as is, or accompanied by ice cream or a puff of whipped cream. Enjoy!

Need a Special Treat?  Use Your Discard in Sourdough Bishop's Bread
Need a Special Treat? Use Your Discard in Sourdough Bishop's Bread

Sourdough Bishop's Bread -- Makes 2 Loaves


1 cup of sourdough starter/discard

1/3 cup of canola oil

1/3 cup of orange juice

1/3 cup of sugar

1/3 cup of dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1/2 cup of white whole wheat flour (or use all-purpose, if that's what you have)

1/2 cup of all-purpose flour


Whisk the starter/discard, oil, juice, sugars, and vanilla well. Then stir in the flours and let the mixture sit for at least an hour (I usually let mine go for four hours while I work). When you're ready, add the following:


1 cup of chopped dates (about 25 dates)

1 cup of chopped pecans

1 cup of chopped chocolate (milk or dark)

1/3 - 1/2 cup of maraschino cherries (reserve 2-3 tablespoons of cherry juice)

1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon of salt


Mix everything well, then pour the mixture into two loaf pans that you've sprayed well with non-stick cooking spray (or line the pans with aluminum foil and spray the foil for easy removal and storage of the baked breads). Loosely cover the pans with plastic wrap and let the breads rise for a few hours or place the covered breads in the refrigerator overnight and let them rise at room temperature the next morning. The breads won't rise much. They will only increase by about a quarter to a third in size. Bake the breads at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes or until golden brown. Let the breads cool in their pans for 15 minutes before removing them. Drizzle the tops of the warm breads with the reserved cherry juice and let the breads cool completely before serving them.

Need a Special Treat?  Use Your Discard in Sourdough Bishop's Bread
Need a Special Treat? Use Your Discard in Sourdough Bishop's Bread


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