The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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If you keep your bread ends around to use up, here's a great way :) Hint: weekend breakfast or brunch is in the bag!


Weekend Breakfast Strata


http://www.brightbakes.wordpress.com


Love, 


Cathy B.


 

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breitbaker

http://www.brightbakes.wordpress.com


The latest bake...I used an overnight starter with a pinch of SD, then finished off the dough the next day. Nothing complicated, but this sure was tasty!


Love,


cathy b. @ brightbakes

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breitbaker

Give this a try for a comforting Sunday Supper...and enjoy using all those crusty loaf ends to soak up the smoky juices!


http://www.brightbakes.wordpress.com


Love,


Cathy B. @ brightbakes

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breitbaker

I've made these flour tortillas for the past year or so...and with the approach of fall, and things beginning to slow a bit, I'm on a mission to find my "perfect" version.....take a look and give me your ideas....Thanks!


http://www.brightbakes.wordpress.com


Cathy B.

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New Blog Post


The favorite pan bread of my kitchen


http://www.brightbakes.wordpress.com


Cathy B.

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breitbaker

Hi everyone...I've been MIA the past few months...certainly not from baking, but mostly from commenting on this site. I still consider this an invaluable resource though!


Somehow, summer overtakes.


I have begun blogging at a separate domain though, so come on over and see what I've been up to! It's my adventures in the kitchen along with snippets of the things I grow and create....


See ya there!     http://www.brightbakes.wordpress.com


Cathy B.pane siciliano.JPG

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gave Reinhart's Pane Siciliano a go yesterday...followed formula pretty much to the letter...I absaloutely LOVED the flavor of this loaf...something about it was remniscent of hot buttered popcorn....of course there was no cornmeal, or butter involved in the formula. So i'm guessing it was the combo of the 3 day fermentation/proofing process and the sesame seeds and semolina, that evoked that flavor........



the crumb was a (i think) a little more closed than what I could see in the picture of BBA...but I baked straight out of the refrigerator on the third morning, and Reinhart mentions that you may have to let the bread proof at room temp for a bit before baking if the bread hasn't fullen risen...however, I am far from being a pro at judging over/under proofing and I tend to err on the side of underproofing....the whole "poke and spring back" thing I "sorta" get...but it seems that each formula responds a bit differently...oh shoot, guess that means i'll just have to bake more bread...awful trial, isn't it? :) :)




oh, and i forgot to mention that the recipe makes 3 loaves...I made 2 loaves in the morning  and stuck the remaining dough back in the fridge...pulled it out before supper and shaped into 2 baguette-style loaves...let them rest while i heated the oven to 500...sprayed loaves with water and slashed...then baked with steam for a total bake of about 20 min. or til nice n brown...After 2 min. in the oven i turned it down to 450 for the remaining bake...served 'em up at supper and they were GONE. Thin crispy outer crust and creamy insides.. Reinhart mentions that this dough makes great breadsticks..which is essentially what this was (albeit a single, long breadstick)..i would definitely make this again and serve them with a good pasta dish!

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My latest bake........and no, I don't usually bake 24/7...it's just that I had the time and the urge the last few days to bake a slew of breads.. and decided that now, was as good of a time as any, to start a blog, since I would have a smattering of photos to post...Also Mondays tend to be my big bake day for the week..but enough excuses for all the bread:)...I took the advice to bake a bit longer on this one....glad i did.....yum!


add about 25g semolina and 40 grams soaked 7 grain cereal to this one. Remainder of flour was Wheat Montana Natural White Hi-Protein


and here's the crumb shot:



Any helpful questions or comments are appreciated!


 P.S. Yes....this was another big reason why i felt like holing up and baking bread today....can you believe the sight that met our eyes as we peeked out the windows of our cozy lil house this morning? Behold the weather on Oct. 12 ...if you live in N. Wisconsin!!!



 


 

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last night I pulled these out of the oven...and then headed outside with my husband for a foray into the woods....leaves crunching underfoot and a crisp 38 degrees!  Made it absaloutely wonderful to come back in to the smell of these babies....:)  


I realize that somewhere i must have  crossed over into artisan baking territory, when I consider a recipe like this to be almost "pillsbury pre-made" in its simplicity.........simply because I used commercial yeast!!! :)  


I also think this baby should've stayed in another 5 min. or so to deepen her "tan"..but I was getting impatient to head out into the woods before it got dark, so I skimped just a bit on bake time...



decent crumb.. perhaps a bit more closed than i would prefer, but I tend to get pretty firm with my shaping on these babies, as I despise the spirals separating.....I normally flatten out dough, then spritz with water...sprinkle w/ cinnamon and sugar, spritz again with water...then roll...as long as I am firm with my shaping they stay together...as soon as I try a gentler hand, they separate...so if  any of you out there in loaf-land have any better methods to keep the spirals from separating, while maintaing the air...let me know...


final shot....


yes, it's made with commercial yeast...and yes...I do love my sourdoughs......but sometimes there's nothin like a good ole slab of cinnamon swirl bread...:)


formula: (mom's recipe, so still in volume....I WILL convert to weights here sometime, as I go mostly by "feel" on this dough, as the formula is very simple. I normally half this for us, making 2 9x5 loaves)


5 cups water


12 cups flour(i use wheat montana unbleached)


3/4 cup butter (very soft)


3/4 cup sugar


1 1/2 T yeast


2 T salt


*I generally do the following for better flavor:


Whisk together all of water, half of flour, half of the yeast, and 1T of the sugar. Probably about 2 min. til frothy. Do this in a very large bowl or tub. In a seperate bowl whisk together the remaining flour, yeast, and sugar.  Sprinkle over the top of your frothy mixture, just so it is like a blanket.  Let sit for 1 hr at room temps. Then refrigerate for at least 8 hrs.  Take out of refrigerator and dump all of mixture into mixer along with the butter. Mix until rough. Cover and let rest 20 minutes.  Add Salt and knead for  6-8 min. or until dough windowpanes.  Put into greased container and ferment about 1 hr. low 70s or til almost double.  S&F, return to container and press gently down, to even out the dough. Cover and ferment until doubled.  Divide into four portions, if you handle it gently you  can shape immediately..otherwise let relax, then pat out into rectangles, spritz with water, sprinkle with cinnamon and white sugar, and spritz once more with water.  Roll up tightly from short side, and seal ends. Place in 9x5 loaf pans and proof til almost double.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven.  I spritz tops lightly wiht water before loading into oven, and i place them in the lower third of the oven, on top of my baking stones. Bake around 40 minutes.....your house will smell heavenly, too! :)

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breitbaker

Hi everyone...I've lurked, listened, and learned for the past 20 some weeks...and now I decided to bite the bullet and actually start a blog. Now that summer is slowing down here (the summer that we never had here in the North this year) I have a little time to introduce and log some bakes...


So here it is, my name is Cathy.


I live in N. Wisconsin where the summers are heavenly and the winters are...well...not warm OR short. 'nuf said.


I love to cook and bake and do so pretty close to every day. Who am I kidding? I live in my kitchen. Occasionally I step outside of it to deal with the 14 acres of beautiful land and gardens that surround our place in the country...where I tend to my gardens and glean the tasty produce  that I take BACK to the kitchen and concoct more lovely things...:)  Like most of you here..Baking is my passion......I've been baking since i was a kid..my mother, I am still firmly convinced, can bake the socks off of anybody. And she's one of these "dumper and feelers" no measuring no fancy equipment...I, on the other hand am far too type A for such and love my little Escali with all my heart...:)


I am a homemaker and decorative artist and my husband runs a commercial sign business and is a contractor. Anyway..Enough about me...I'm excited about learning more and posting my baking escapades.... off to the oven......cathy in wi


My latest Sourdough (thanks to susan for the formula..and to all the rest for the helpful comments for further improvement)


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