The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


Bread1965's picture

Hi Everyone.. we're going to see a friend for dinner this weekend and I'm going to bring dessert. But it's complicated.. I need to bring something that is vegan, gluten free, has no dairy, peas, corn or wheat.. I could pass and bring a salad but figured that someone on the board has an idea..  I thought I could make a toffu based cream cheese pie and make a non-gluten free graham cracker crust, but any other ideas?  I've never done that before an am not sure how good the toffu cream cheese would taste.. Thanks.. frank!

tortie-tabby's picture

Hi, so this is my 6th round of baguette baking. Overall, much much better oven spring and crumb than before. I think the next big thing to work on is my scoring technique. I documented the process pretty meticulously this time, so let me know if you spot anything I can improve on. Thanks! Recipe is at the bottom of the post.



French folds number 90-100. My weighing scale turned off while I was measuring the water so the dough probably ended up around 76% hydration, I don't think this negatively impacted the outcome and I like playing with high hydration dough anyways.

Gluten development was o.k. I did 300 french folds and 4 S&Fs spaced between 20 minute intervals. Windowpane could've been better but the crumb turned out fine so maybe it doesn't matter.

Portioned out for 20 hr cold ferment. Dough isn't super smooth.

A misstep? After the cold ferment I took the dough out of their containers warmed them up for 1 hr. Initially I had just let them fall out of their boxes and rest like that (see smaller image). But I realized I was losing a lot of bubbles, so I did one gentle letter fold to each dough. The consequence of this fold is that the dough was already really elongated by the time I did the final shape, so I only did one fold during the final shaping before rolling them out. I thought this was a mistake, but it might've actually contributed to the openness of the crumb.

Only needed one fold for the final shaping. Means the skin of the loaves weren't tight enough, but that I could minimize handling which helped the openness of the crumb.

Post final 50-minute proof.

Feedback please? Post-scoring. This is probably my worse scoring yet haha. The dough was more hydrated and bubbly than in previous rounds so I really struggled. Experimented with doing just one long score (far right), which actually turned out to be my best, probably mostly because it was the deepest and most angled.

Final product. Baked these at a higher temperature for an even shorter amount of time. Oven preheated at 500 ˚F, baked with steam for 10 minutes at 470 ˚F, then steamed removed and baked for a further 10 minutes at 470 ˚F with convection.

By far my best crumb yet. This isn't even the loaf with the one long score above!

Some scores didn't open up as much.



I've basically been modifying the KAF classic baguette recipe, at this point its only vaguely like the original. I've been sticking to this recipe just because I don't have a miligram scale for yeast and repeating and modifying one recipe is a good way for me to keep track of what changes I'm making.


    113 g cool water
    1/16 tsp SAF instant yeast
    120 g KAF AP flour


    All of the starter
    1 1/2 tsp SAF instant yeast
    274 g lukewarm water (for 72% hydration, probably added more)
    418 g KAF AP flour
    1 1/2 tsp salt



  1. Mix everything to make the poolish, cover and rest at room temperature for 13 hrs.
  2. Add all the other ingredients except for salt into the starter and mixing until incorporated, then autolyse for 40 mins.
  3. Incorporate the salt and make 300 french folds with 5 minute rests between every 100.
  4. Place dough into a large bowl and S&F every 20 mins 4 times.
  5. Portion dough into 3 equal parts (roughly 300 g each), shape lightly and place seam-side down into container.
  6. Cold ferment in refrigerator for 20 hrs.
  7. Remove dough from fridge, make one gentle letter fold and let rest, covered, on counter for 60 mins.
  8. Preheat oven to 500 ˚F (regular bake) with a cast-iron pan in the bottom rack.
  9. Shape the dough with just one fold where you bring the edge of the dough to the countertop. Rolled out gently only once to prevent de-gassing.
  10. Rest, covered, on floured couche for 50 minutes.
  11. Boil 2 cups of water and transfer all three loaves to a well-floured peel, change oven temp to 470 ˚F.
  12. Score the loaves (see image) and load into oven, close oven door.
  13. Pour boiled water into cast iron pan and spray the loaves and oven walls generously with water.
  14. Close oven and bake for 10 minutes.
  15. Remove steam, set oven to 470 ˚F at convection and bake for another 10 minutes.
  16. Remove from oven immediately and let cool.



Everything bolded above is a step that I've significantly changed since last timeI basically used a higher baking temperature, an additional S&F, let the dough warm up for longer, and a different order of shaping steps. I think I will actually keep this shaping sequence- doing a letter fold immediately after cold ferment and before the 1 hr bench rest- as it helped with the crumb.

Things I need to work on include gluten development and scoring (I think).

ifs201's picture

Despite only moderate success with my previous squash loaf, I decided to try again! I upped the hydration to 65% this time (not including liquid from the squash). I roasted the kabocha squash and pureed it and incorporated so that the dough was 40% squash, 2% salt, 70% organic stone-ground T85, and 30% KAF, 20% levain. I also added a bit of honey. 

During the lamination, I turned half of the dough into squash/walnut/raisin/cranberry and the other half into squash/cumin/coriander/chipotle chili powder rolls. 

I'd never made rolls before and I'm also getting used to baking in such a cold kitchen. The bulk went for 5.5 hours, but perhaps I should have pushed it longer. I'm also hoping I baked the rolls for long enough. These are definitely some rustic looking rolls! 


isand66's picture

I'm really loving purple bread!  I've made a similar bread a few months ago, but this time I decided to also add freshly ground purple corn.  I also used Kamut instead of the previously used Spelt.

I was very happy with how this turned out.  The crumb was semi-open, nice and soft and flavorful.  This one is a keeper and worth trying if you dare.

Here are the Zip files for the above BreadStorm files.

Levain Directions

Mix all the levain ingredients together  for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled.  I used my proofer set at 83 degrees and it took about 4 hours.   You can use it immediately in the final dough or let it sit in your refrigerator overnight.

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours  and the sweet potato with 90% of the water for about 1 minute.  Let the rough dough sit for about 20 minutes to an hour.  Next add the levain, olive oil, salt and the balance of the water and mix on low for 5 minutes.   Remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds.  Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold.  Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold.  After a total of 2 hours place your covered bowl in the refrigerator and let it rest for 12 to 24 hours.  (Since I used my proofer I only let the dough sit out for 1.5 hours before refrigerating).

When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1.5 to 2 hours.  Remove the dough and shape as desired.

The dough will take 1.5 to 2 hours depending on your room temperature and will only rise about 1/3 it's size at most.  Let the dough dictate when it is read to bake not the clock.

Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 540 degrees F. and prepare it for steam.  I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf.  I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.

Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, score as desired and then add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.

Lower the temperature to 450 degrees.  Bake for 25-35 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 205 degrees.

Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.

Below is the nice moist and colorful crumb.



















pmccool's picture

Some things are worth repeating.  Horst Bandel's Black Pumpernickel from Jeffrey Hamelman’s Bread is solidly in that camp. 

We had arranged dinner with friends who will move away soon. During that conversation, I offered to make a bread for them as a going away gift.  Since they enjoy dark, hearty breads, I knew a rye bread was in order.  It took a while to peruse various recipes in several books but Bandel's pumpernickel kept drawing me back.  

This is a bread with a lot of moving parts.  Rye berries are soaked overnight and then boiled.  There’s an old bread soaker.  Rye meal forms the basis for a rye levain.  And if that isn't enough rye, there's also cracked rye in the final dough. 

Before making the bread, I dug back through the TFL archives.  One of the most important finds was Andy's (ananda's) advice that the final dough should be about 85% hydration.  Hamelman is uncharacteristically vague about the water content of this bread, so that was a helpful data point.  

The other iffy part of the instructions for this bread is the baking profile.  Hamelman baked this bread in the dying heat of a commercial oven in his bakery.  There really isn’t a way to replicate those conditions in a home oven.  More about that later. 

This past Friday evening, I began by milling the rye meal and the cracked rye with my Komo Fidibus grain mill.  My starter was already primed for action after two refreshments, so it was mixed with the rye meal and water and left to work overnight.  The altus was combined with warm water to form a soaker.  Finally, the rye berries were covered with water.

On Saturday morning, the rye berries were boiled for an hour, then drained and cooled.  I also wrung as much water as possible from the altus soaker.  After that, it was time to put everything together.  There was just one small concern: the retained water in the rye berries and the altus pushed the overall dough hydration to 97%. 

Since I was making two loaves (hey, I like it too!), I used my 7-quart KitchenAid mixer.  While it had enough power to handle the load, the extra water in the dough made it very sticky and caused it to cling to the sides of the bowl.  In effect, it received more of a massage than mixing.  I found it necessary to use a spatula repeatedly to shift the dough back toward the center of the bowl where the dough hook could grab it.  Even so, I found some dry flour in the bottom of the bowl at the end of mixing and had to work that in manually.  

After the short bulk fermentation, the loaves were shaped and placed in Pullman pans.  When the top of the loaves were nearing the top of the pans, lids were put in place and the pans deposited in the preheated oven.  Because the dough was wetter than recommended, I chose to not seal the pan lids with foil.  I wanted that extra water to bake off.  

The baking profile I adopted was an educated guess.  The first hour was spent at 375F, per Hamelman's recommendation.  The second hour was at 325F, the third hour at 275F, and the next five hours at 225F.  Then the oven was switched off at about 10:00 p.m., with the bread remaining in the oven for the rest of the night. 

The pans were still slightly warm when I took them from the oven at about 7:30 Sunday morning.  Upon opening the pans, I found that the loaves had pulled away from the pan walls, slightly.  There was quite a bit of condensation on the inside of the lids and the pan walls.  Since I wanted to drive off some of the water, that was a welcome sight.  The crust was quite firm but not rock hard as happened with one of my earlier bakes.  I placed the loaves in plastic bags immediately after removing them from the pans.  The risk was that too much moisture would be retained.  The reward was that the crusts would soften.  

It was Wednesday before I cut into one of the loaves.  It is very moist and gums up the knife blade but fully baked.  

The flavor and fragrance are marvelous.  That long slow bake converts some of the starches to sugars and then caramelizes those sugars.  In the process, the grayish dough turns a deep mahogany brown; not quite black but close enough.  The crumb is barely aerated and packed with chewy, plump rye berries.  This is seriously good bread. 

Our friends were delighted with their loaf.  And I am delighted with mine. 


Ejay's picture

Nobody warned me and I didn't see any labels regarding this when I bought flour and basic baking equipment. They really should have......

Last night I told my housemate that I had been feeling really strange all day. I have various medical conditions relating to childhood cancer, so straight away he offered to take me to hospital. My reply was and what exactly  do I tell them ? I'm an addict with withdrawal symptoms.....

The weird look on his face was quickly replaced,  and accompanied by loud laughter as I explained I hadn't baked any bread that day and really missed kneading.


I AM AN ADDICT , and it has only been 3 months.

I am mostly housebound, a wheelchair user and  I love crafting.  I have discovered baking bread  is just another craft and gathering supplies, books, watching videos and reading forum and FB group posts is just as addictive. 
I home educate my youngest , soon to be 12 year old daughter, and she is so chuffed to be able to make a loaf from start to finish by herself. We normally bake side by side and have found baking to be filling all sorts of curriculum requirements both on food education and science .  We have even found ourselves repeating the mantra, " Glutenin and Gliadin " as we knead, lol.

Angelica Nelson's picture
Angelica Nelson

Multigrain Bread Machine Experiment 7

Whole wheat cycle 3 lbs dark crust  + 45 min baking cycle (207 *F baking alarm)
For oven baking:  the equivalent is baking at 350*F for approximately 1 hour 45 minutes.

100g ground flax seeds   2/3 cup
50g chia seeds                 1/4 cup
40g collagen                   1/4 cup

----  190g "GF soaker" flours total, about 1 1/3 cup
------------% soaker flour: 22%  (of total flour)

115g coconut flour            1 + 1/3 cups
 250g Namaste flour         2 cups
150g almond flour            1 + 1/2 cups
150g ground buckwheat   1 + 3/4 cups

---- 665g  total dry flours, about 6 2/3 cups
----------  855g  total all flours

15g salt
14g 2 packets Instant Yeast, mixed into dry flours
70g sugar

---- these don't count toward liquid or flour

150g water 2/3 cup  , heated in microwave 30 sec, to mix with sugar
690g water, 3 cups, to mix with "GF soaker" flours
200g eggs 4 large
70g oil 1/4 cup
20g vinegar 2-3 tsp

---- 1130g all liquids

Hydration:  132%  !!!  (I can hear baking pans falling to the ground all over the Midwest.)
              I pushed the hydration all the way to 169% which is close to the hydration of a "levain" but the result is longer and longer baking time without any visible benefit. It doesn't ruin the bread but there's not much point in it either. 

Grind flours that need it (flax, buckwheat)

Measure and combine flours, with salt and yeast.

Measure and combine soaker ingredients.  Add 690g warmed water (about 110*F) and mix very well. You may need to use a food processor if it clumps up.  Beat some air into it.

Beat eggs, oil and vinegar together.

Warm  the water for 30 sec in microwave. This is to hot for yeast, but it will cool when it's mixed with the other ingredients. For instance, in this recipe, you don't need to warm the eggs. When the liquids mix together, they will be just lukewarm.

Assemble the paddles in the bread machine pan.  To avoid spills, fill the pan with all ingredients except 1/2 of the flour mixture while it's out of the machine.

Start the cycle and add the rest of the flour in batches over the next 5 minutes.  When needed, help the machine to mix.  Once the bread is mixed, this recipe doesn't have many other problems, except baking time may need to be extended.

Use a thermometer with an alarm for best results, it may take a long time to get the bread up to 205*F or higher.



Ideas and suggestions welcome :)


yozzause's picture

I'm going to be in Sydney from the 18th of November before a cruise starting 22nd  around New Zealand calling at Dunedin 27th Nov , Akaroa 28th, Wellington 29th, Napier 30th , Tauranga 1st . Auckland 2nd  and the Bay of Islands 3rd Dec. back to Sydney for  3 days  5th.6th and 7th flying back to Perth Sunday the 8th.

If there are any TFL folk that might like to catch up for a chat and a coffee lets see if we can make it happen.

Kind regards Derek


johnny boy's picture
johnny boy


Having issues with tartine sd . I live in Tampa fl, so I am careful with the amount  of h2o.

I am following the recipe in the tartine bread book

The dough is very difficult to form for first forming. 

Any and all help is greatly appreciated. 


Dsr303's picture

Will be starting sourdoughs again as it’s cooling off. This Italian boule came out great


Subscribe to RSS - blogs