The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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dmsnyder

One of my TFL friends expressed concern that I had not posted for awhile. I can reassure him and you all that I am well and baking as much as ever. The thing is I have settled on a few favorite breads (if "a few" is less than ten), and I have already posted about all of them at least once. 

This weekend I baked something old and something new, so I have an excuse to report that to which I have been up.

Yesterday, I tried a new baguette recipe. For many years, I have used my San Joaquin Sourdough recipe for baguettes. And I can hardly remember the last time I baked "white bread." But the second edition of Jeff Hamelman's "Bread" has a recipe for "Sourdough Baguettes" I have been curious to try. So yesterday I did.

This is an all white flour bread that is yeasted, but it has the addition of some liquid levain. The result is a good traditional baguette in every respect with an added flavor tone of mostly lactic acid tanginess. I made half a recipe using left over liquid starter which I had fed a couple days before. I froze one of the loaves. I think I made pretty good use of the other.

 

For dinner: Sautéed scallops and a butter lettuce salad.  Delicious with baguette and an Anderson Valley Chardonnay from Navarro Vineyards.

For Breakfast, French Toast with powdered sugar and sour cream. I know that's different, but it's the way my family ate it when I was a kid.

For lunch, Onion soup with croutons and cheese.

We are going to a pot luck tonight for dinner, so I baked a couple loaves of multigrain sourdough bread today. (One for the potluck. One for a neighbor.)

I hope you all are having a happy and delicious holiday season!

Happy baking!

David

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dmsnyder

I've been able to bake some pretty nice breads over the past dozen years or so. I give lots of credit to my oven which provided predictable, accurate and evenly distributed heat. It also retained humidity well when set to conventional baking. But it died.

That oven was installed 23 years ago. The KitchenAid folks told me the expected life span of a current production oven is 10 to 15 years. That seems short to me, but I've been told so many times by various appliance sales and repair people that, literally, "They don't make 'em like they used to."

Anyway, after consulting Consumers Report and a trusted appliance sales person, I ended up replacing my old KitchenAid convection oven with the current model of the same oven. It has a few differences, but most of these seem to be improvements to me. Nonetheless, any new oven needs to be tested and, I believe, requires some adjustments in procedures to achieve optimal results. I'm still learning the idiosyncrasies of this oven, but it seems capable of baking good bread.

My first bake was Jewish Sour Rye. This was baked on a pizza stone with my usual oven steaming method.

And, today, I baked a dozen sandwich rolls made with the "Medium Vienna Dough" from "Inside the Jewish Bakery."

The rolls took a long time to brown. I am not yet sure whether the oven temperature was lower than my setting or the oven needs longer to pre-heat after it reaches temperature or I need to place the oven rack lower for conventional baking in this oven.  More tests are called for. I can do that. 

Happy baking!

David

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dmsnyder

I haven't been posting here much of late. I have been mostly baking variations on a multi-grain sourdough - some mix of heritage wheats, rye, kamut and spelt - with the whole grain flours between 30 and 50% of total flour and all home-milled.

The last few days, I've had a hankering for San Joaquin Sourdough baguettes, and this morning we made a run to our favorite Italian deli where I bought some toscana salami and caciocavallo cheese, which makes my favorite sandwich. I got home, took the retarding dough out of the fridge and had that sandwich on very fresh baked bread. As Flanders and Swann wrote in their "Cannibal Song," "A chorus of yums went 'round the table."

But, not content with plain old baguettes, I used the dough to shape 3 different versions of San Joaquin Sourdough - a small baguette, an epi de blé and a fougasse.

And, finally, the sandwich (minus a couple bites):

Happy baking!

David

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dmsnyder

Sourdough Bread: April 30, 2019

David Snyder

This is basically the same bread I baked on March 22, 2019. The only change was to substitute spelt for the rye and some of the all purpose flour in the final dough.

I have been trying different grain blends and anticipate continuing this line of experiments for a while. All the breads have been among my favorites. The long cold retardation really enhances the acid content without resulting in too much gluten breakdown, at least with these flours and this hydration level.

Total Dough

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

147

13

AP flour

653

56

Whole Rye flour

136

11

Whole Spelt flour

234

20

Water

769

65

Salt

23

2

Total

1962

167

 

Starter

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

110

88

Whole Rye flour

15

12

Water

62.5

50

Firm starter

62.5

50

Total

250

200

  1. Dissolve the starter in the water.

  2. Add the flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8-10 hours.

  4. Refrigerate for 12 hours or up to 3 days.

 

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

AP flour

653

Whole Rye flour

116

Whole Spelt flour

234

Water

686

Salt

23

Starter

250

Total

1962

Procedures

  1. Place the flours and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix at low speed to a shaggy mass.

  2. Cover the bowl and let it rest (autolyse) for 1-2 hours.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the surface of the dough. Add the starter in chunks. Mix at Speed 1 for 2 minutes to distribute ingredients then for about 9 minutes at Speed 2 to develop the dough.

  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Shape into a ball.

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl and ferment at 80ºF for about 3 hours with stretch and folds at 50 and 100 minutes.

  6. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Cover and let rest for 10-30 minutes to relax the gluten.

  7. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons. Cover or place in food-grade plastic bags.

  8. Proof for 2-3 hours at room temperature until the loaves have expanded by about 50%.

  9. Refrigerate for 12-40 hours (The longer the cold retardation, the more sour the final loaf).

  10. Remove from refrigerator. Check on degree of proofing. Proof further at 80ºF, as needed. (May need 1-3 hours.) If adequately proofed, proceed to scoring and baking.

  11. Transfer to a peel. Score as desired.

  12. Bake: If baking in Dutch oven, bake at 475ºF covered for 20 minutes, then uncovered at 450ºF for another 10 minutes or until done to satisfaction.

  13. Bake: If baking on the hearth, pre-heat oven at 500ºF for 1 hour with baking stone and steaming apparatus in place. Turn down oven to 460. Load loaf and steam oven. After 15 minutes, remove steam and continue baking for 20-35 minutes, until loaf is baked. (Depends on size and shape of loaf.)

  14. The bread is done when the crust is nicely colored and the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  15. Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.

Today's loaves were cold retarded for 36 hours then proofed at 80ºF for about 60 minutes before being baked.

This bake was quite similar to others in this series. The crust was crunchy. The crumb was mildly chewy. The flavor was complex and very nice with a definite acetic acid tang that did not over-power the flavor of the grains.

Happy baking!

David

 

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dmsnyder

Sourdough Bread: April 25, 2019

David Snyder

This is basically the same bread I baked on March 22, 2019. The changes are to use whole wheat rather than rye in the starter and to substitute spelt for the rye and some of the all purpose flour in the final dough.

Total Dough

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

147

13

AP flour

653

56

Whole Wheat flour

15

1

Whole Rye flour

121

10

Whole Spelt flour

234

20

Water

769

65

Salt

23

2

Total

1962

147

 

Starter

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

110

88

Whole Wheat flour

15

12

Water

62.5

50

Firm starter

62.5

50

Total

250

200

  1. Dissolve the starter in the water.

  2. Add the flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8-10 hours.

  4. Refrigerate for 12 hours or up to 3 days.

 

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

AP flour

653

Whole Rye flour

116

Whole Spelt flour

234

Water

686

Salt

23

Starter

250

Total

1962

Procedures

  1. Place the flours and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix at low speed to a shaggy mass.

  2. Cover the bowl and let it rest (autolyse) for 1-2 hours.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the surface of the dough. Add the starter in chunks. Mix at Speed 1 for 2 minutes to distribute ingredients then for about 9 minutes at Speed 2 to develop the dough.

  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Shape into a ball.

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl and ferment at 80ºF for about 3 hours with stretch and folds at 50 and 100 minutes.

  6. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Cover and let rest for 10-30 minutes to relax the gluten.

  7. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons. Cover or place in food-grade plastic bags.

  8. Proof for 2-3 hours at room temperature until the loaves have expanded by about 50%.

  9. Refrigerate for 12-40 hours (The longer the cold retardation, the more sour the final loaf).

  10. Remove from refrigerator. Check on degree of proofing. Proof further at 80ºF, as needed. (May need 1-3 hours.) If adequately proofed, proceed to scoring and baking.

  11. Transfer to a peel. Score as desired.

  12. Bake: If baking in Dutch oven, bake at 475ºF covered for 20 minutes, then uncovered at 450ºF for another 10 minutes or until done to satisfaction.

  13. Bake: If baking on the hearth, pre-heat oven at 500ºF for 1 hour with baking stone and steaming apparatus in place. Turn down oven to 460. Load loaf and steam oven. After 15 minutes, remove steam and continue baking for 20-35 minutes, until loaf is baked. (Depends on size and shape of loaf.)

  14. The bread is done when the crust is nicely colored and the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  15. Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.

Today's loaf was cold retarded for 40 hours then proofed at 80ºF for about 80 minutes before being baked. The crust is crunchy. The flavor is lovely – complex with a pronounced acetic acid tang. This is the most sour bread of my current series of experiments. It is rather similar to the March 22 bake. I cannot discern to absence of the rye. Even right after cooling when first tasted, the flavor was well-balanced.

Happy baking!

David

 

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dmsnyder

Mixed Grain Sourdough

David Snyder

April, 2019

 

For this week's bakes, I am returning to my variations on Ken Forkish's “Field Blend #2.” The flour mix used is the same as that of several previous bakes, except that the Whole Wheat flour used is “Warthog” hard red Winter wheat. One of the bakers I follow on Instagram swears by this variety, so I though I would try it. What I found right away was that it seems a lot less thirsty than any of the other hard red Winter wheats I have used to date. So I did reduce the hydration slightly and still ended up with a much slacker dough than expected.

I made two loaves with this dough. One was retarded for about 20 hours. The other loaf was retarded for about 44 hours.

Total dough

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

All purpose (AP) flour

700

70

Whole Wheat (WW) flour

125

12.5

Whole Rye flour

75

7.5

Whole Spelt flour

100

10

Water

760

76

Salt

21

2.1

Total

1781

180.1

 

Levain

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

All purpose (AP) flour

144

75

Whole Wheat (WW) flour

36

25

Water (85-90ºF)

144

75

Active Starter (100% hydration)

36

25

Total

360

200

  1. Dissolve the starter in the water, add the flours and mix thoroughly.

  2. Place in a clean bowl and cover tightly.

  3. Ferment at 80ºF until doubled in volume.

  4. The levain can be used immediately or refrigerated for up to 3 days. If refrigerated, I take it out 2 hours before I am going to incorporate it into the final dough. In general, this means I take it out when I am ready to mix the autolyse.

 

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

All purpose (AP) flour

540

Whole Wheat (WW) flour

85

Whole Rye flour

75

Whole Spelt flour

100

Water (85-90ºF)

600

Levain

360

Salt

21

Total

1781

Method

  1. In a large bowl, mix the water and the flours to a shaggy mass. Be sure to leave no dry flour in the bowl.

  2. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 1-2 hours (autolyse).

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the dough and add the levain in 4-6 portions. Mix in with a spatula, spoon or your wet hands.

  4. Continue distributing the salt and levain evenly by squeezing the dough repeatedly between your thumb and fingers, alternating with stretching and folding the dough. (Hint: I find that doing this wearing a food service glove which I dip frequently in a bowl of water works very well. The dough doesn't stick to the glove as much as it does to my hand.)

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl and cover it.

  6. Ferment at 80ºF for 3-4 hours. Stretch and fold in the bowl at 30 and 60 minutes. Stretch and fold on a lightly floured board 50 and 100 minutes later. Note: I bulk ferment this dough in a Brød and Taylor Proofing Box. If you are fermenting at a cooler temperature, it will just take longer. Do additional stretch and folds hourly to redistribute metabolites and equalize dough temperature. Leave the dough alone for the last hour. The dough should increase in volume to about double and be pillowy.

  7. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Pre-shape as rounds and cover with a dish towel. Let it rest for 10-30 minutes.

  8. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons. Place in food-safe plastic bags (or cover with a damp tea towel).

  9. Allow to proof at room temperature for 30-60 minutes, then refrigerate for 8-16 hours.

  10. Remove from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 1-2 hours, depending on degree of proofing.

  11. If baking on a stone, pre-heat the oven for an hour with the baking stone and your steaming apparatus in place. If baking in Dutch ovens (DO's), pre-heat the oven with the DO tops for at least 20 minutes. Note: If baking on a stone, I pre-heat the oven to 500ºF. If baking in DO's, I pre-heat to 475ºF.)

  12. If baking on a stone turn down the oven temperature to 460ºF, transfer loaves to a peel, steam the oven, score the loaves as desired and load them onto the stone. Remove the steaming apparatus after 15 minutes. Continue baking for another 30-40 minutes. If you have a convection oven, set it to 435ºF Convection Bake for the last part of the bake. The loaves are done when they are darkly colored, sound hollow when the bottoms are thumped and have an internal temperature of 205ºF.

  13. If baking in DO's, transfer the loaves into the DO bottoms. Score the loaves as desired. Using good hot pads or oven gloves, remove the DO tops from the oven and cover the bottoms. Transfer the DO's to the oven. After 30 minutes, remove the DO covers. Continue to bake the loaves for another 20 minutes.

  14. Remove the loaves from the oven and place them on a cooling rack. Cool completely before slicing.

Note: These times and temperatures assume 900-1200 g loaves. If using this dough for smaller loaves, use higher temperatures and shorter bake times. If baking larger loaves, use lower temperatures and longer bake times.

The loaf that had been retarded for 20 hours was tasted after completely cooling. The crust was crunchy. The crumb was tender. The flavor was complex, sweet and moderately sour. A very delicious bread.

 

The loaf that was retarded for an additional day seemed a bit over-proofed. It had a weaker gluten sheath and spread more when transferred to the peel. It had less oven spring and less bloom. The crust did brown well though. The texture of the crust and crumb were the same as the first loaf. The flavor was somewhat more sour but also less complex to my taste when first tasted. The next morning, as usual, the flavors had melded and improved.

 

Now, I would not conclude that a 40+ hour cold retardation is a bad idea in general. For this particular bread, it did not provide an improved result. Not bad bread, but the first loaf was better, at least to my palate.

Happy baking!

David

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dmsnyder

Sourdough Bread: April 8, 2019

David Snyder

This is another hybrid bread. It differs from my last bake in the following ways:

  1. I substituted a low-protein white whole wheat for the Turkey Red wheat used previously.

  2. I decreased the total dough hydration to 72% because of the lower protein content of the flour mix. At the lower hydration level, the dough was still significantly slacker than the previous bake. It was also remarkably more extensible.

Total Dough

Tot. Flour=1163g

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

147

13

AP flour

668

57

Whole Wheat flour

116

10

Whole Rye flour

116

10

Whole Kamut flour

116

10

Water

833

75

Salt

23

2

Total

2019

177

 

Starter

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

110

88

Whole Rye flour

15

12

Water

62.5

50

Firm starter

62.5

50

Total

250

200

  1. Dissolve the starter in the water.

  2. Add the flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8-10 hours.

  4. Refrigerate for 12 hours or up to 3 days.

Note: I have maintained my 50% hydration starter with feedings as previously described – a bit of rye and the remainder high-protein flour – with feedings about 3 times per week.

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

AP flour

668

WW flour

116

Whole Rye flour

96

Whole Kamut flour

116

Water

750

Salt

23

Starter

250

Total

2019

Procedures

  1. Place the flours and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix at low speed to a shaggy mass.

  2. Cover the bowl and let it rest (autolyse) for 1-2 hours.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the surface of the dough. Add the starter in chunks. Mix at Speed 1 for 2 minutes to distribute ingredients then for about 9 minutes at Speed 2 to develop the dough.

  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Shape into a ball.

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl and ferment at 80ºF for about 3 hours with stretch and folds at 50 and 100 minutes.

  6. Divide the dough as desired and pre-shape as balls. Cover and let rest for 10-30 minutes to relax the gluten.

  7. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons. Cover or place in food-grade plastic bags.

  8. Proof for 2-3 hours at room temperature until the loaves have expanded by about 50%.

  9. Refrigerate for 12-40 hours (The longer the cold retardation, the more sour the final loaf).

  10. Remove from refrigerator. Check on degree of proofing. Proof further at 80ºF, as needed. (May need 1-3 hours.) If adequately proofed, proceed to scoring and baking.

  11. Transfer to a peel. Score as desired.

  12. Bake: If baking in Dutch oven, bake at 475ºF covered for 20 minutes, then uncovered at 450ºF for another 10 minutes or until done to satisfaction.

  13. Bake: If baking on the hearth, pre-heat oven at 500ºF for 1 hour with baking stone and steaming apparatus in place. Turn down oven to 460. Load loaf and steam oven. After 15 minutes, remove steam and continue baking for 20-35 minutes, until loaf is baked. (Depends on size and shape of loaf.)

  14. The bread is done when the crust is nicely colored and the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  15. Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.

 

I divided the dough into two 250g pieces that were shaped as baguettes and baked after proofing for an hour and two 715g pieces which were shaped as bâtards, proofed at room temperature, retarded for 40 hours, proofed at 80ºF for another hour and 45 minutes then baked.

The baguettes were good but lacked in flavor compared to the retarded loaves.

The bâtard had a more complex flavor and was a little tangier. It was missing the unique and prominent flavor I have come to associate with Turkey Red wheat. It is good, but I have come to enjoy the flavor contribute of whole grain red wheat and miss it in this bread. We'll see how it tastes for breakfast tomorrow.

I do want to experiment more with the low-protein white wheat, but perhaps not in a pain de campagne type bread. How about scones?

Happy baking!

David

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dmsnyder

Sourdough Bread: March 30, 2019

David Snyder

This is another hybrid bread. It differs from my last bake in the following ways:

  1. I have increased the whole grain flour to a total of 30% of the total flour by adding 10% Kamut.

  2. I have increased the final dough hydration to 75%.

Total Dough

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

147

13

AP flour

668

57

Whole Wheat flour

116

10

Whole Rye flour

116

10

Whole Kamut flour

116

10

Water

872

75

Salt

23

2

Total

2058

177

 

Starter

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

110

88

Whole Rye flour

15

12

Water

62.5

50

Firm starter

62.5

50

Total

250

200

  1. Dissolve the starter in the water.

  2. Add the flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8-10 hours.

  4. Refrigerate for 12 hours or up to 3 days.

Note: I have maintained my 50% hydration starter with feedings as previously described – a bit of rye and the remainder high-protein flour – with feedings about 3 times per week.

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

AP flour

668

WW flour

116

Whole Rye flour

96

Whole Kamut flour

116

Water

789

Salt

23

Starter

250

Total

2058

Procedures

  1. Place the flours and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix at low speed to a shaggy mass.

  2. Cover the bowl and let it rest (autolyse) for 1-2 hours.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the surface of the dough. Add the starter in chunks. Mix at Speed 1 for 2 minutes to distribute ingredients then for about 9 minutes at Speed 2 to develop the dough.

  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Shape into a ball.

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl and ferment at 80ºF for about 3 hours with stretch and folds at 50 and 100 minutes.

  6. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Cover and let rest for 10-30 minutes to relax the gluten.

  7. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons. Cover or place in food-grade plastic bags.

  8. Proof for 2-3 hours at 80ºF until the loaves have expanded by about 50%.

  9. Refrigerate for 12-40 hours (The longer the cold retardation, the more sour the final loaf).

  10. Remove from refrigerator. Check on degree of proofing. Proof further at 80ºF, as needed. (May need 1-3 hours.) If adequately proofed, proceed to scoring and baking.

  11. Transfer to a peel. Score as desired.

  12. Bake: If baking in Dutch oven, bake at 475ºF covered for 20 minutes, then uncovered at 450ºF for another 10 minutes or until done to satisfaction.

  13. Bake: If baking on the hearth, pre-heat oven at 500ºF for 1 hour with baking stone and steaming apparatus in place. Turn down oven to 460. Load loaf and steam oven. After 15 minutes, remove steam and continue baking for 20-35 minutes, until loaf is baked. (Depends on size and shape of loaf.)

  14. The bread is done when the crust is nicely colored and the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  15. Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.

Tasting notes: It was severely yummy.

I divided the dough from this mix into 3 loaves. I baked two after 24 hours cold retardation. One went to a neighbor. The third loaf was baked after 40 hours cold retardation. It has a more open crumb than the one pictured above, and the flavor is significantly more sour. 

Happy baking!

David

 

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dmsnyder

Sourdough Bread: March 22, 2019

David Snyder

This bake is a kind of hybrid (high bread?). It utilizes elements of the formula and method shared by Mike Giraudo on Facebook, Peter Reinhart's James Beard Award-winning “San Francisco Sourdough,” as presented in his book, “Crust and Crumb” and various techniques I have adopted over the years, such as autolyse.

The fermentations in a warm environment should enhance yeast and lactobacillus growth and production of lactic acid. The cold retardations and low hydration of the starter and the final dough should enhance acetic acid production. I am hoping the final result will be a moderately sour bread with a pleasing balance of flavors.

Total Dough

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

152

13

AP flour

771

66

Whole Wheat flour

116

10

Whole Rye flour

131

11

Water

769

65

Salt

23

2

Total

1962

167

 

Starter

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

110

88

Whole Rye flour

15

12

Water

62.5

50

Firm starter

62.5

50

Total

250

200

  1. Dissolve the starter in the water.

  2. Add the flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8-10 hours.

  4. Refrigerate for 12 hours or up to 3 days.

Note: Prior to mixing this starter, I fed a firm starter with high-protein flour at 50% hydration every other day for a week. These builds were fermented at room temperature until ripe, then refrigerated until the next feeding. Substituting 10-25% of the white flour with whole grain wheat, rye or a mix will speed fermentation and is generally felt to make the starter “healthier.”

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

AP flour

771

WW flour

116

Whole Rye flour

116

Water

686

Salt

23

Starter

250

Total

1962

Procedures

  1. Place the flours and water in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix at low speed to a shaggy mass.

  2. Cover the bowl and let it rest (autolyse) for 1-2 hours.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the surface of the dough. Add the starter in chunks. Mix at Speed 1 for 2 minutes to distribute ingredients then for about 9 minutes at Speed 2 to develop the dough.

  4. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Shape into a ball.

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl and ferment at 80ºF for about 3 hours with stretch and folds at 50 and 100 minutes.

  6. Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Cover and let rest for 10-30 minutes to relax the gluten.

  7. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons. Cover or place in food-grade plastic bags.

  8. Proof for 2-3 hours at 80ºF until the loaves have expanded by about 50%.

  9. Refrigerate for 12-40 hours (The longer the cold retardation, the more sour the final loaf).

  10. Remove from refrigerator. Check on degree of proofing. Proof further at 80ºF, as needed. (May need 1-3 hours.) If adequately proofed, proceed to scoring and baking.

  11. Transfer to a peel. Score as desired.

  12. Bake: If baking in Dutch oven, bake at 475ºF covered for 20 minutes, then uncovered at 450ºF for another 10 minutes or until done to satisfaction.

  13. Bake: If baking on the hearth, pre-heat oven at 500ºF for 1 hour with baking stone and steaming apparatus in place. Turn down oven to 460. Load loaf and steam oven. After 15 minutes, remove steam and continue baking for 20-35 minutes, until loaf is baked. (Depends on size and shape of loaf.)

  14. The bread is done when the crust is nicely colored and the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  15. Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.

 

I think I finally nailed it. The crust is super crunchy. The crumb is tender but chewy. The flavor has a decidedly sour flavor with lactic acid tones dominating. Except for the flavors attributable to the rye and whole wheat, I could convince myself this was a Parisian Bakery sourdough bread.

Happy baking!

David

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dmsnyder

Sourdough Bread

March, 2019

David Snyder

 

My recent trials of sourdough bread production methods have made some very good breads, but still not exactly what I want. I recall that, about 10 years ago, I baked some breads from a recipe developed by a home baker who was an active participant on The Fresh Loaf at the time, “Susan from San Diego.” At the time, I felt it was the bread I had baked closest to my ideal. So, I thought I would return to that bread, applying some procedures I had adopted with good results since that time.

Of note is that Susan's recipe called for two builds of firm starter before mixing the final dough. As I recall, it produced a rather sour, crusty loaf with a moderately open crumb. Back then, I mixed the dough with a stand mixer. For this bake, I mixed by hand.

I made two loaves. One, I cold retarded for 17 hours then left at room temperature while the oven pre-heated. The second loaf was cold retarded for 40 hours. I was eager to see whether the second would be much more sour, as one would expect.

Total Dough

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

125

11

AP flour

803

69

Whole Wheat flour

138

12

Rye flour

92

8

Water

826

71

Salt

23

2

Total

2007

173

 

Starter 1st Build

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

18

75

Rye flour

6

25

Water

12

50

Seed starter (liquid)

6

25

Total

42

175

  1. Dissolve starter in water.

  2. Add flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8 hours.

  4. Proceed to 2nd build or refrigerate 1st build overnight and continue the next day.

 

Starter 2nd Build

 

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

Bakers' %

High-protein flour

104

75

Rye flour

35

25

Water

69

50

Starter 1st Build

42

25

Total

250

175

  1. Dissolve starter in water.

  2. Add flours and mix thoroughly.

  3. Ferment at 76ºF for 8 hours.

Note: If not ready to make the Final Dough when this starter build is ripe, the starter can be refrigerated for up to 3 days, until you are ready to proceed.

 

Final Dough

 

Ingredient

Wt (g)

AP flour

803

Whole Wheat flour

138

Whole Rye flour

50

Water

743

Starter 2nd Build

250

Salt

23

Total

2007

Procedures

  1. In a large bowl, mix the water and the flours to a shaggy mass.

  2. Cover the bowl and let rest (autolyse) for 1-2 hours.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the dough and add the starter in chunks.

  4. Mix the dough to incorporate the added salt and starter uniformly.

  5. Transfer to a clean, lightly-oiled bowl and cover.

  6. Ferment until expanded by 75% with stretch and folds at 30, 60 and 110 minutes. (I do the first two S&F's in the bowl and the third on a lightly floured board.)

  7. Divide the dough as desired and place in floured bannetons or on a couche. Cover.

  8. Proof at room temperature for 1-3 hours, then refrigerate for 8-40 hours (or more?).

  9. If you think the loaves need it, proof at room temperature for additional time before baking.

  10. Transfer to a peel. Score as desired.

  11. Bake: If baking in a Dutch oven, bake at 475ºF covered for 30 minutes, then uncovered at 450ºF for another 20 minutes or until done to satisfaction.

  12. Bake: If baking on the hearth, pre-heat oven at 500ºF for 1 hour with baking stone and steaming apparatus in place. Turn down oven to 460. Load loaf and steam oven. After 15 minutes, remove steam and continue baking for 30-40 minutes, until loaf is baked. (Depends on size and shape of loaf.)

  13. The bread is done when the crust is nicely colored and the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  14. Transfer the bread to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.

The crust was crunchy in the darker-baked parts and chewy in the rest. The crumb was moderately open and mildly chewy. The flavor was complex, sweet and creamy. There was the slightest hint of acetic acid tang. Interestingly, even though the whole wheat was only 12% of the total flour, the distinctive flavor of Turkey Red wheat came through.

I baked the second loaf 40 hours after retarding it, including the last hour at room temperature, while the oven preheated. It turned out ... well ... it was kind of spectacular, in my humble opinion.

The crust is crunchier. The crumb has the same chewing consistency - what I call tender/chewy - but it is substantially more open, and the flavor is substantially more sour. Interestingly enough, I think creamy, lactic acid flavors still predominate, but there is more of an acetic acid tang. Now, that is all based on a first taste when the loaf was just completely cooled. If the flavor profile evolves, I'll add a note.

As far as I can recall, I have only retarded dough for more than 24 hours once before. That was an experiment with my San Joaquin Sourdough, and the retardation was of the dough before dividing. Today's loaf is so good, that I believe I'm going to stick with this routine for a while. It sure made delicious bread.

Happy baking!

David 

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