The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


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kacy's picture

Made a batch of 8 mini baguettes or batards for use in sandwiches. 8 portions from 600g of dough fitted nicely into the table top oven. Baked for 30mins at 220C with steam first ten minutes. Should get me thru the week... It had a crunchy crust and chewy interior with good flavour from the added rye and long proof of 16hrs.

Mebake's picture

It has been quite a while, I know, but commitments and chores of life can have a toll on your time. If anyone is is interested in viewing my weekly and market bakes, here is my instagram id : (with an underscore in the end).

 I’ve been contacting two artisan bakeries, mostly franchises, for a chance of an apprenticeship and received mixed responses. One has refused and the other agreed, in principle, to train apprentices. I’ve yet to confirm whether this works for me, given the circumstances. They take in apprentices as full time job, and so I need to free myself of my current inescapable obligations.

On the other hand, I continue to bake at home for the family and neighbors, in addition to the local crafts market. Two week ago, I baked for the November’s ARTE market. The market has evolved into a fully fledged artisan gathering, where numerous Artisans showcase their exquisite handmade crafts, in addition to home-made food. Anything from  pastries ,preserves and condiments, to crackers and cookies were there, and were absolutely delightful to see, and eat.  Here is a link to their website: .

For bread, I baked 3 types: A whole wheat multigrain with tangzhong (left), a 60% rye sourdough with wholewheat flour, sunflower seeds, old rye bread soaker (middle), and roasted garlic levain (right). The market’s footfall was very good, and I received few compliments on the Rye bread from Austrian buyers. I sold out everything, and probably could have sold twice as much.

My next plan is to purchase a bigger oven, to increase my baking capacity from 6 loaves a day to 18. I’ll blog about it when time permits.

Happy holidays to all!  and keep on baking!


AbeNW11's picture

1-2-3 method. 3/4 white flour and 1/4 whole spelt.

Trying out my new 1kg banneton. Way to big for my mini oven. Salvaged a dough that was hanging off the sides. And again I think I over proofed. My doughs are always quicker than times advised. 

Still tastes great though.

isand66's picture

 I needed to take a break from baking and eating rye bread .  I was in the mood for a nice lighter loaf and since I had some leftover sweet potatoes and roasted fingerling potatoes along with some caramelzied onions the rest fell into place very easily.

I used a combination of European style flour from KAF (you can substitutes bread flour or AP along with about 5% white whole wheat), Durum flour and a little First Clear.

If you love onions you will be very happy with this one for sure.  There is nothing that smells better when baking than a bread with onions and the taste was fantastic.

This formula would also make great rolls for the holidays.  I would probably add some crannberries or cherries and maybe some walnuts if desired.

Hope you get a chance to try these for yourself.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.


Sweet Potato-Potato Onion Bread (%)

Sweet Potato-Potato Onion Bread (weights)

Download BreadStorm .BUN file here.


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.

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours with the main dough water for about 1 minute.  Let the rough dough sit for about 20 minutes to an hour.  Next add the levain, potatoes, (make sure you mash up the potatoes), butter and salt and mix on low for 5 minutes and then add in the onions and mix for one additional minute.   You should end up with a cohesive dough that is slightly tacky but  manageable.  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 550 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.

After 5 minute lower the temperature to 450 degrees.   Bake for 35-50 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.




isand66's picture

Who knew there were so many different styles of rye bread?  This is just the third week of testing and I am continued to be amazed and impressed by the recipes in the new yet to be published book on international rye breads.

This week's breads included one from Poland called Wroclaw Trencher bread which is meant to used as a plate to hold your meal.  This was by far the most sour tasting of any of the breads to date and would go great with a nice beef stew.



The second bread for this week was the Weinheim Carrot bread.  Main

I have to admit I wasn't sure how I would feel about a bread with carrots in it since I'm not a big fan of carrot cake, but you really don't taste them very much.  This bread includes a whole bunch of seeds and other goodies and is a real nice and hearty loaf.  Definitely something I can see being very popular in Germany.




So far all of the breads I have made have been well received by my own gang of taste testers and I look forward to baking the next batch this week.


PY's picture

Couldn't find lye to make laugenbrotchen that I so missed from Austrian. Nope didn't work out as you can see! Anyone tried using kansui and had succeeded?


emkay's picture

I just finished reading "In Search of the Perfect Loaf" by Samuel Fromartz. As a "bread geek", I enjoyed the book very much. In one chapter he writes about his rye journey in Berlin. That chapter along with all the rye bread photos I am seeing posted by Stan's testers made me crave some rye bread. I missed the opportunity to become a recipe tester since Stan's reply to me ended up in my spam folder and I didn't see it until it was too late. I guess it was flagged as spam because it was a bulk email to all who signed up. Oh well.

I tried to buy some rugbrot from Bar Tartine when I was there for brunch, but they were running low and couldn't sell me a loaf. I just couldn't catch a break. So I whipped up a 100% rye using Andy's Rossisky formula. Of course "whipped up" is a relative term. There's not a lot hands on time at all. It was pretty much... Mix. Wait. Mix. Wait. Spread. Wait. Bake. Wait. Cut. Eat.

Overall hydration was about 84% and prefermented flour was about 37%. I scaled my ingredients for a 750 gram loaf. I didn't include bakers' percentages like I normally would because I didn't know how to calculate the percentages when so much of the flour was prefermented. But please see Andy's post ( for the percentages.


Rye SourGrams
Whole grain rye150
Rye SD starter culture22.5

I mixed all ingredients for the rye sour and let it ferment at room temp for about 18 hours. I like to wait until it has peaked and has just fallen back a bit.


100% Rye Sourdough BreadGrams
Whole grain rye252
Rye sour375
FINAL DOUGH750 grams

I mixed my final dough and bulk fermented it for about 20 minutes at room temp.


Then I spread the mixture into a loaf pan ...

and let it proof at room temp for 90 minutes.

I stage baked: 450F for 15 min, 425F for 20 min, 375 for 10 min. Total bake time was 45 minutes. I covered the loaf pan during the first 10 minutes of baking. After the loaf had cooled a bit, I wrapped it in a tea towel to let it rest for 24 hours before slicing. 


:) Mary

Edo Bread's picture
Edo Bread

Had some pressure on this bake. This loaf was requested by my teenage girl for her high school leadership meeting. She likes this particular formula that uses equal parts of my wheat and rye starters.

It usually ends up being a nice big loaf with lots of flavor and it looks like this won't disappoint. It sang to me for the longest time after pulling it out of the oven. Wish I could go see the crumb, but that isn't going to get to happen. 


ElPanadero's picture

Decided it was time for my first foray into the world of sprouting grains.  Rather than jump straight into a bake from PR's latest book I decided to conduct an experiment to firstly see if I could actually sprout some grains and secondly to bake some test loaves with different quantities of sprouted flour.  Here's how it went.

The Sprouting

Took a bunch of organic spelt grains, rinsed them thoroughly 2-3 times and then put them in a pot and covered with water.


They were left this way for about 5 hours after which time they were rinsed again and then spread out on my baguette trays thus:

I kept these in the oven (more for space than anything else) and with the oven light on to provide gentle ambient warmth.  Periodically I sprayed the grains with water to keep them from drying out.

There now followed a longer period than I was expecting.  There seemed little or no activity for 2 days.  The odd grain started to sprout but not much else.  I kept spraying and kept the grains gently warm and waited.  By day 3 things had improved greatly and by day 4 I was as far as I dare go since I didn't want to start malting the grains.   This is how the grains looked at this point:

This looked perfect.  Not fully sprouted but simply "chitted" as DA likes to say.

At this point I rinsed the grains once again and then spread them onto the special plastic sheets that came with my food dehydrator.  3 trays in all and there I dried them at 100 degrees F for a full 12 full hours.

When finished they were crispy dry, and I would guess they were probably drier than the normal organic grains that hadn't been sprouted.   Job done !

The Baking

For my experiment with this new sprouted flour I decided to make 3 separate mini-boules with slightly different quantities as follows:

Loaf A -   50g normal spelt, 50g white flour, 66g water, 2g salt, 1g fresh yeast

Loaf B -   50g sprouted spelt, 50g white flour, 66g water, 2g salt, 1g fresh yeast

Loaf C -   25g sprouted spelt, 25g normal spelt, 50g white flour, 66g water, 2g salt, 1g fresh yeast

Nothing special, just 3 simple loaves at 66% hydration, Loaf A being the "normal" benchmark.   I was put off doing a 100% sprouted flour loaf due to other people's reports of difficulties.  In the event, I honestly think I could have made one without any difficulty and I will try it soon.

The sprouted spelt berries went through the grain mill without incident, just like ordinary berries.   I mixed up the loaves and left them to proof and this is where notable differences began, as expected and as documented by others.   Loaf B, the one with the most sprouted flour, was clearly proofing ahead of the others and Loaf C was ahead of Loaf A.  I was pleased to see this, it meant my sprouted flour was good.   Here's a picture of the proofed boules where you can see the difference:

Thus I baked them separately in the order B, C then A as and when they were ready for baking.  They all rose in the oven just fine, no problems at any stage with dough structure.

The crumbs were all good and from the shot below you can see the slightly extra height of Loaf B, with the 50% sprouted flour in it.

The Tasting

My wife & I ate small samples of the 3 loaves in the order Loaf A, Loaf B, Loaf C.   All the loaves tasted just fine, however we both agreed that loaf B was the best tasting.  However, the taste surprised me.  I'm not sure what I was really expecting, perhaps too much from all the good things I have read.   Loaf B turned out to have the mildest taste of the 3 but at the same time it had it's own unique taste.  Regrettably I find myself hopelessly unable to put into any words what that taste was like.   I think I need to eat a lot more of it to frame a description.  Either way though, the 50% sprouted loaf was our preference.

Summing Up

Was it all worth it?   The jury is out here for me at the moment.  Yes the loaf tasted better with sprouted flour, but, it took some 4 days to soak, germinate and dry the grains and all that needed space in the kitchen that was frankly . . .inconvenient.   On pure taste alone, I would not make grain sprouting part of my weekly regimen, I would certainly do it occasionally but not religiously.  However . . .  if the additional health benefits and claims of sprouted grains are proven to be correct then I would certainly create my own sprouted flour for all my breads.  As mentioned in another recent thread though, I would not buy commercial sprouted flour because at this time it is so ridiculously expensive.  Therein lies a significant problem for the future of the "sprouting revolution".    Not everyone will have a grain mill or a food dehydrator at home to grind and thoroughly dry the grains.  It's a bit of a "faff" all round but if the nutrition and health benefits are there then it's worth it.

For those of you who have already sprouted your own grains, do you know how long the sprouted and dried grains can be stored for at room temp?  I understand than once milled it's best to store the flour in the freezer but I'd like to understand how long the sprouted/dried grains will last.  If I can make up a large batch and leave them in a sealed mason jar for weeks then I am much more likely to use sprouted grains.


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