The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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Back in May, 2010, bnom posted a reminiscence of the San Francisco Sourdough bread baked by Larraburu Brothers Bakery, which went out of business about 30 years ago after a fire in their plant. (See Divine inspiration--for me it way Larraburu Brother's SF SD. What was it for you?) For many who grew up eating it, the Larraburu bread was the quintessential San Francisco Sourdough. Although the bakery is long-gone (and much lamented), Doc.Dough found a journal article from 1978 describing their formula and process, so we might attempt to reproduce this famous bread.

Doc.Dough's citation is quoted below, as follows:

Title: Lactic and volatile (C2-C5) organic acids of San Francisco sourdough French bread

Cereal Chemistry 55(4): 461-468; Copyright 1978 The American Association of Cereal Chemists

Authors: A. M. Galal, J. A. Johnson, and E. Varriano-Marston

The Larraburu Company produces San Francisco sourdough French bread by the sponge and dough process.  Each day a piece of straight dough or starter sponge known as the "Mother" is saved and refrigerated to be used as a starter sponge the following day.  This starter sponge is used to make more starter sponge as well as sponges for bread production.  The starter sponge consists of 100 parts of clear flour (14% protein), approximately 50 parts of water, and 50 parts of the starter sponge.  The ingredients are mixed and fermented for 9-10 hr at 80°F.  The bread dough is made by mixing 100 parts flour 12% protein, 60 parts of water, 15 parts of sponge, and 1.5-2% salt.  The dough rests 1 hr and then is divided, molded, and deposited on canvas dusted with corn meal or rice flour.  The dough is proofed for 4 hr at 105°F (41°C) and 96% relative humidity and baked at 420°F (216°C) for 40-50 min in a Perkins oven with direct injection of low pressure steam (5 psi).  Oven shelves were covered with Carborundum.

Specific instructions for mixing are not provided, but I would surmise that, because of the very short bulk fermentation and long proofing times, Larraburu Brothers used an intensive mix. This would result in a bread with high volume but a relatively dense, even crumb. I altered the procedure to use an autolyse, a less intensive mix, a longer bulk fermentation with a stretch and fold and a shorter proof. My intention was to bake a bread with a more open crumb structure and better flavor.

The autolyse allows the flour to absorb the water and for gluten to start developing. This head start on gluten development allows for a shorter mixing time to get to the desired stage of gluten development. Less mixing has two principal effects: 1) The gluten strands are less organized, resulting in a more open crumb with a random distribution of holes of varying size. 2) Less oxidation of the carotenoid pigments in the flour, resulting in a more yellow crumb color and better bread flavor.

Note that the fermentation and proofing temperature control was made possible by using a Brod & Taylor Proofing Box.

To make one 1 kg loaf:

Sponge (Stiff Levain)

Baker's %

Wt (g)

High-gluten flour

100

45

Water

50

22

Stiff starter

50

22

Total

200

89

Mix thoroughly and ferment for 9-10 hours at 80º F in a lightly oiled bowl, covered tightly.

Final dough

Baker's %

Wt (g)

AP flour

100

565

Water

60

339

Salt

2

11

Sponge (stiff levain)

15

85

Total

177

1000

 

Procedure

  1. Mix the flour and water in a stand mixer with the paddle for 1-2 minutes at Speed 1.

  2. Cover the mixer bowl tightly and autolyse for 20-60 minutes. (I autolysed for 60 minutes.)

  3. Sprinkle the salt on the dough and add the sponge in chunks.

  4. Mix for 1-2 minutes with the paddle at Speed 1, then switch to the dough hook and mix for 5 minutes at Speed 2. Adjust the dough consistency by adding small amounts of water or flour, if needed. (I did not add either.) The dough should be tacky but not sticky. It should clean both the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl.

  5. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl. Cover tightly.

  6. Ferment at 105º F for 2 1/2 to 3 hours in a humid environment. Stretch and fold once at 1 1/4 hours.

  7. Pre-shape the dough round and cover with a towel or plasti-crap.

  8. Let the dough relax for 15-20 minutes.

  9. Shape as a boule or bâtard.

  10. Proof at 105º F in a floured banneton or en couche, covered, until the dough slowly fills a hole poked in it with a finger. (This was in 30 minutes, for me!)

  11. About 45 minutes before baking, pre-heat the oven to 480º F with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

  12. Transfer the loaf to a peel and score it as desired.

  13. Transfer the loaf to the baking stone. Turn down the oven to 450º F.

  14. Bake with steam for 15 minutes. Remove your steaming apparatus, and bake for another 25 to 35 minutes until the crust is nicely colored and the internal temperature is at least 205º F.

  15. Turn off the oven, but leave the loaf on the baking stone with the oven door ajar for another 10-15 minutes.

  16. Transfer the loaf to a cooling rack, and cool completely (at least 2 hours) before slicing. 

Proofed, slashed and ready to bake

The bread had exuberant oven spring and bloom. In hindsight, it could have proofed for another 15 minutes or so without harm. I baked it for a total of 40 minutes. The crust was very firm, and the loaf sang nicely while cooling. The aroma was that of fresh-baked bread without any yeasty overtones. 

Crackley Crust

Classic SF SD crumb

I sliced and tasted the bread about 3 hours after it came out of the oven. The aroma of the bread was sweet and wheaty. The crust was very crunchy with a wonderful flavor I have had from the crusts of excellent bakery loaves but not before from my oven. The crumb was quite tender and cool-feeling. The flavor was sweet with only a hint of lactic acid, creamy-type sourness. I could discern no acetic acid presence at all, much to my surprise.

Now, that's not "bad!" I'd say this may be the best flavored French-style pain au levain I've ever made. But it does certainly not have the assertive, vinegary tang usually associated with San Francisco Sourdough. In fact, my wife, who is not at all fond of super-sour sourdoughs, said, "This is better than San Francisco Sourdough!" I try not to argue with her, but it's clearly a matter of taste. 

I'm going to give this recipe some thought and may tweak it to get more sourness, but, you know, I may make it just like this again too. It's really outstanding!

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting 

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You could call it "FICTION." (Fraternal Inspiration to Cook The Identical Offerings Nightly) But it's true. Brother Glenn and I end up baking the same breads or cooking the same dishes more often than one would expect by chance alone. 

My barbecued beef sandwiches are, strictly speaking, not identical to Glenn's. He used leftover rib roast. I used braised brisket. He made hoagie-type rolls from the Vienna Bread dough in BBA. I made double knotted rolls from the Medium Vienna Dough in Inside the Jewish Bakery. I served mine with baked yams and Curtido, a South American version of cole slaw.

The ITJB Medium Vienna dough was bulk fermented to triple (2 hours at 78 degrees F).

Yup. That's tripled.

Even though this is a rather low-hydration, stiff dough, full fermentation yields a roll that is light, airy and tender with delicious flavor, yet firm enough to not get soggy and fall apart when used to make a saucy sandwich. I scaled the rolls to 4 oz, 3/4 proofed them, egg washed twice, sprinkled with sesame seeds and baked them at 350 degrees for 17 minutes.

The brisket was prepared as follows:

2 lbs lean brisket, well-trimmed of fat.

3 cups sliced onions

4 cloves of garlic, crushed

2 medium carrots cut in 2 inch pieces

1 bay leaf

1/2 cup of dry wine (red, white or a mixture)

Water to just cover the other ingredients.

Note: No salt. The sauce provides plenty of salt and spice.

Place all the ingredients except the water in a heavy dutch oven with the brisket fat-side up. (I used a Le Creuset oval enameled cast iron oven.) Pour in enough water to barely cover the meat. Cover tightly. Bring to a boil on top of the stove then place in a pre-heated 350 degree F oven and bake until the meat is fork-tender (about 3 hours). Bake uncovered for the last 30 minutes or so to brown the meat and reduce the gravy somewhat.

Transfer the contents to another container to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, skim off any visible fat. Slice the brisket thinly, across the grain of the meat. Mix about a cup of barbecue sauce (I like "San Francisco's Original Firehouse No. 2 Bar-B-Que Sauce.") with a few tablespoons of gravy (without the veggies) to thin it in a cookpot large enough to hold the sauce and sliced brisket. Simmer partly covered on top of the stove to thoroughly heat the meat.

Heap meat and some sauce on rolls and serve immediately with side dishes of your choice.

Enjoy!

This week, I also made Hamelman's "Sourdough Seed Bread." I hadn't made this one in quite a while. It was even better than I remembered. Highly recommended!

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

 

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Pecan Roll

Cheese Pocket 

Both these pastries were made with the Babka Dough from Inside the Jewish Bakery by Stanley Ginsburg and Norman Berg.

My wife and I have fond memories of the Pecan Rolls from the long-closed Fantasia Bakery in San Francisco. Theirs were made with danish pastry and were coated with a sticky bun type glaze. The ones I made today were simpler and less sweet. After mixing and fermenting the dough, I divided it, wrapped it in plasti-crap and refrigerated it overnight. The next day, I rolled out a 16 oz portion, coated it with KAF Cinnamon Smear, sprinkled on toasted pecan pieces, rolled up the dough and divided it into 12 portions. These were placed in a buttered muffin tin, egg washed and proofed. Before baking, I put pecan halves on the tops and egg washed again. The rolls were not glazed after baking.

Pecan Rolls, proofing in a Brod & Taylor Proofing Box

Ready to bake

Baked and Cooling

Pecan Roll Crumb

When I was much younger, my favorite pastry from Karsh's Bakery was their Cheese Pockets. The ones I made today used the same dough as the Pecan Rolls and the Cheese Filling from ITJB. The dough was rolled out and divided into 4 inch squares. About 2 tablespoons of the cheese filling was put in the middle of each square, and the corners were folded in, overlapping to completely cover the filling. The seams were pinched closed. The pieces were egg washed before proofing and, again, after being sprinkled with slivered almonds before baking. A streusel topping would have been more traditional.

Thesse are not the same as Karsh's. The pastry is much more flavorful, and the cheese filling is smoother and richer. In my wife's words, a more "elegant" version. She liked the pastry more and the filling less. For me, it's still "a work in progress." Meanwhile, I will certainly enjoy eating this iteration.

Cheese Pockets

A Sampler

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

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After my recent less than satisfactory experience with gummy rye bread, I returned to an old, reliable favorite of mine - Hansjoakim's 70% Rye Bread.

 

Total formula

Amount

Baker's %

Medium rye flour

436 g

70

First clear flour

187 g

30

Water

467 g

75

Salt

11 g

1.8

 

Rye sour final build

Amount

Baker's %

Medium rye flour

218 g

100

Water

218 g

100

Ripe rye sour

11 g

5

 

Final dough

Amount

Baker's %

Medium rye flour

218 g

54

First clear flour

187 g

46

Water

249 g

61.5

Salt

11 g

2.7

Rye sour (all of the above)

447 g

110

Note: 35% of the total flour is from the rye sour.

Procedures:

  1. The day before baking, mix the final rye sour build. This should ferment at room temperature for 14-16 hours.

  2. I used a KitchenAid stand mixer, but these procedures could be done by “hand.” Mix all the ingredients in the final dough in a large bowl. If using a stand mixer, mix for 3 minutes with the paddle at Speed 1. Switch to the dough hook and mix for 5-6 minutes more at Speed 2. The dough at this point is a thick paste with little strength (gluten development providing extensibility and elasticity). Optionally, after mixing, you can knead briefly on a floured board with well-floured or wet hands.

  3. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover it tightly, and ferment for 1 hour.

  4. Transfer the dough to a floured board and pre-shape it into a single round. Cover with plasti-crap or a damp kitchen towel and rest for 5 minutes.

  5. Shape the dough into a boule and transfer to a well-floured brotform or banneton, seam-side down.

  6. Cover the boule with plasti-crap or a damp towel and proof for two hours. (My loaf was fully proofed in 1 hr and 30 min.)

  7. One hour before baking, pre-heat the oven to 250C/480F with a baking stone and your steaming method of choice in place.

  8. When ready to bake the bread, transfer the boule to a peel. Transfer the boule to the baking stone. Steam the oven. Turn the temperature down to 460ºF.

  9. After 10 minutes, remove your source of steam from the oven.

  10. After 15 minutes, turn the oven down to 225C/440F.

  11. Bake another 40-45 minutes. Monitor the loaf color, and, if it is darkening too quickly, turn the oven temperature down further. It would be well within the rye baking tradition to do this planfully in steps, ending up as low as 205C/400F for the last 10-15 minutes.

  12. The loaf is done when the crust feels firm, it gives a “hollow sound” when the bottom is thumped and the internal temperature is 205F or greater.

  13. When the loaf is done, turn off the oven, but leave the loaf in it with the door ajar for an additional 10 minutes.

  14. Transfer the loaf to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly before slicing. It will be best to leave it 24 hours, loosely wrapped in linen, before slicing.



    This is a delicious bread with a mild to moderate sourdough tang and earthy rye flavor. The crumb is tender and moist, but not at all gummy. It's my idea of a delicious high-percentage rye bread. It will be perfect for tomorrow's breakfast with cold-smoked salmon and for dinner with split pea soup.

    I also baked a couple loaves of the Tartine Basic Country Bread, another of my favorites.




    This time, I did not retard the loaves overnight. I don't recall if I've done this before, but I really enjoyed the result. Tasted two hours out of the oven, still a little warm, the flavor was spectacular. It was very mildly sour with a sweet, complex wheaty flavor. Either with or without retardation, this is a delicious bread.

    David

    Submitted to YeastSpotting

 

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Three years ago, I made Double Knotted Rolls from a formula provided by nbicomputers, AKA Norm Berg, AKA co-author with Stan Ginsburg of Inside the Jewish Bakery. (See: Norm's Double Knotted Rolls) We enjoyed these rolls a lot, especially for sandwiches made with leftover Thanksgiving turkey.

When I received my copy of Inside the Jewish Bakery yesterday, I had already planned to make these rolls today. However, the book had no specific recipe for these rolls and no indication which of the three formulas for rolls should be used for them. I was pretty sure it would not be the "Light Enriched" dough, because that is the one used for Kaiser Rolls, and Norm specifically distinguished between the "soft roll" dough formula and that used for "hard rolls," like Kaiser Rolls. That left two formulas. Neither was the formula I had used in 2008, but I decided to use the "Sweet Egg Dough," because that looked closest. Here is the result (in photos):

Rolls shaped and ready for proofing

Mixing followed the general instructions for mixing roll dough, and it worked well. Instructions (in Norm's words) for shaping can be found in this topic: Double knot roll. There are numerous YouTube videos of this technique, many erroneously presented as the method for shaping Kaiser Rolls. In addition, both Hamelman's Bread and Greenstein's Secrets of a Jewish Baker have good roll shaping illustrations. I scaled the rolls at 3 oz, with one bit of dough left over to make a sort of Figure Eight Roll.

Rolls proofed and egg-washed

Inside the Jewish Bakery has an enlightening discussion of how different degrees of proofing were used for different products made with the same dough. For the Double Knotted Rolls, a 3/4 proofing is necessary to get the right crumb texture.

These rolls can be baked plain or with poppy seeds or sesame seeds. (Onion rolls are a whole other genre!) My wife much prefers sesame seeds. I can go with sesame or poppy.

Rolls proofed, washed and seeded. Ready to bake.

I baked at 350 F for about 15 minutes. The rolls were slow to brown. Next time, I'll use the oven's convection setting, probably at 330 F.

Baked and cooling

These rolls were less rich than I remember, but still very good.  Next time, I believe I would return to the formula Norm provided in 2008. Who's counting calories?

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

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I finally got around to making Hamelman's "Pain au Levain with Whole Wheat Flour." For comparison, I also baked his Pain au Levain. The former was cold retarded overnight. The latter was not. However, I did retard the firm sourdough starter used for both breads overnight, and I believe this resulted in a tangier pain au levain than my previous bakes. 

On to some photos:

Pain au Levain boules

Pain au Levain crumb

Pain au Levain crust

If I were nit picky, I'd say this dough was slightly over-fermented, and I think the loaves were slightly over-proofed. However, it had a thin, crisp crackly crust that I wish I could reproduce at will, and the flavor was delicious, with more of a tang than usual, as mentioned.

Pain au Levain with Whole Wheat Flour

Pain au Levain with Whole Wheat Flour crumb

This bread had a more complex flavor that the "regular" pain au levain when tasted 2 hours out of the oven. There was a slight WW grassiness, which I do not enjoy, and a lingering sourdough flavor, which I do enjoy. This type of bread usually tastes better to me on the day after it was baked, and I trust this bread will follow the pattern.

It's hard for me to say which of the three version of pain au levain in "Bread" is my favorite. Experience suggests it's whichever one I'm eating at the moment. I really, really like all three.

David

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Last week's successful experiment making an “Italian” bread with bulk retardation has made me want to try other types of bread using that technique and other Italian-style breads.

I've been thinking about making a Pugliese bread ever since I first read about it in Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice. Have you noticed that some thoughts take longer than others to get translated into action? Well, this one has taken about 4 years. In the interim, I have accumulated a sizable number of other bread books, and several have formulas for Pugliese. Consulting these, I find amazing variation, particularly in the flours used. Some use part or even entirely Durum. Some use partly whole wheat. What they have in common is 1) Use of a biga, 2) Relatively high hydration. Most recipes specify shaping as a round loaf with no scoring. The lone exception is The Il Fornaio Baking Book which shapes and scores Pugliese like a French bâtard. None of the formulas in the books I consulted use a sourdough biga.

The formula I ended up using is my own notion of a good rustic bread baked as a large round loaf, with a nod to Puglia. I suppose I could call it “Pugliese Capriccioso.”

 

Ingredients

Wt (g)

Baker's %

AP flour

375

75

Fine durum flour

125

25

Water

360

74

Salt

10

2

Active starter (100% hydration)

100

20

Total

970

196

Note: For greater authenticity, one would use a firm starter. If you do, the water in the final dough should be increased and the flour decreased to keep the hydration the same in the formula.

Method

  1. Refresh your sourdough starter 8-12 hours before mixing the dough.

  2. In a large mixing bowl, disperse the active starter in the water.

  3. Add the flours and mix to a shaggy mass.

  4. Cover the bowl tightly and let it rest (autolyse) for 20-60 minutes. (Note: There is no harm in autolysing for longer, but do not decrease the time to less than 20 minutes. I often go out and run errands for an hour or more during the autolyse.)

  5. Add the salt to the dough and mix it in thoroughly.

  6. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled, clean bowl and cover tightly.

  7. After 30 minutes, do a “stretch and fold in the bowl” for 15-20 strokes. Repeat 3 more times at 30 minute intervals.

  8. When the dough has expanded by 75% or so (about 30 minutes more), transfer it to a floured bench.

  9. Pre-shape into a ball and let the dough rest for 20 minutes to relax the gluten.

  10. Shape the dough as a boule and place it seam-side down in a floured banneton.

  11. Place the banneton in a food-safe plastic bag or cover with a damp towel. Proof the boule until the dough springs back slowly when you poke a finger into it.

  12. 45 minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 490ºF with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

  13. Transfer the loaf to the baking stone, seam-side up, steam the oven and turn the temperature down to 460ºF.

  14. After 15 minutes, remove the steaming apparatus. Bake for another 30 minutes or until the loaf is done. The crust should be nicely colored. The internal temperature should be at least 205ºF.

  15. Leave the loaf on the baking stone with the oven turned off and the door ajar for another 10 minutes to dry the crust.

  16. Transfer the loaf to a cooling rack. Cool completely before slicing.

 

Pugliese Capriccioso crumb

The crust was crunchy, and the crumb was quite chewy. The flavor was remarkably sweet, especially given that there was no sweetener in the formula. The nutty flavor of the durum flour came through and was even more present than in the breads I've baked with a higher percentage of durum. There was little sourdough tang, although that might increase by tomorrow.

This is a bread I will be making again. I think it could stand an increase in hydration, maybe even up to 78% or so.

I also made a high-extraction miche today. This followed my formula and procedures for the San Joaquin Sourdough. The only changes were 1) I used Central Milling's “Type 85 Unmalted” organic flour for the final dough, 2) I added 5 g of diastatic malt powder to the mix, 3) rather than pre-shaping and resting for 60 minutes, after cold retardation, I let the dough ferment at room temperature until almost doubled, then pre-shaped and rested for 20 minutes, and 4) I made one large boule with the entire dough.

 

The crust was quite crunchy with a sweet, caramelized sugar flavor. The flavor of the crumb was sweet and earthy with moderate sourness. It was quite delicious 3 hours out of the oven, and I think it will have a long shelf life and make wonderful toast.

This is another bread I expect to be making again.

 

I enjoyed a slice of each with our dinner of Proscuitto with melon and Fedelini with roasted San Marzano tomatoes, garlic, bread crumbs and fresh basel.

David

 Submitted to YeastSpotting

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It has been almost a year since I first made the “80% Sourdough Rye with Rye-Flour Soaker” from Hamelman's Bread. At the time, I said it was my new favorite high-percentage rye bread, and I can't say its status has changed. Actually, it's been a while since I have made a high-percentage rye bread. I've been thinking about it, but Codruta's lovely bake of this bread finally inspired me sufficiently to do it.

There are some surprising things about the dough for this bread. Hamelman describes it as “loose and sticky,” but the last time I made it, I now recall, both the hot rye soaker and the final dough were less loose and less sticky than I thought they should be. Looking back at my notes of last November, I said I would double check the numbers in the “Home” version of the formula, which I used, against the formula Hamelman provides for a larger production. Well, the numbers check out okay. I also looked at the Errata Sheet Hamelman made available in May, 2010, and there are no corrections to the formula for this bread.

Hmmm … Maybe my whole grain rye flour is thirstier than Hamelman's. In any case, I did add an extra 1/4 cup (2 oz) of water during the mixing of the final dough, which took the total dough hydration from 78% to 84% hydration.

 

Overall Formula

Wt. (oz)

Baker's %

Whole-rye flour

25.6

80

High-gluten flour

6.4

20

Water

27

84

Salt

0.6

1.8

Instant Yeast

0.16

1.5

Total Yield

59.76

187.3

 

Rye Sourdough

Wt. (oz)

Baker's %

Whole-rye flour

11.2

100

Water

9.3

83

Active levain

0.6

5

Total

21.1

 

 

Soaker

Wt. (oz)

Baker's %

Whole-rye flour

6.4

100

Boiling Water

6.4

100

Total

12.8

 

  

Final Dough

Wt. (oz)

Whole-rye flour

8

High-gluten flour

6.4

Water

11.3

Salt

0.6

Instant Yeast

0.16

Soaker

12.8

Sourdough

20.5

Total

59.76

 

Procedure

  1. Mix the rye sourdough and ripen it for 14-16 hours at room temperature.

  2. Mix the soaker at the same time as the sourdough. Weigh the rye flour into a 6 cup mixing bowl, and pour the boiling water over it. Cover tightly immediately and let it cc sit at room temperature with the sourdough. (Note: Hamelman says the soaker will be thick and will have absorbed all the water. On both occasions I made this bread, there was dry flour left in the soaker, even when I mixed it. I think, for future bakes, I will add extra water to the soaker – maybe 2 or 3 oz.)

  3. Add all the Final Dough ingredients to the mixing bowl of a stand mixer and combine using the paddle (2 minutes). Then, switch to the dough hook and mix at Speed 2 for about 6 minutes. There will be little if any perceptible gluten development. (Note: I combined the soaker, sourdough and water and mixed thoroughly. In a large bowl, I weighed the two flours, salt and yeast and whisked them to distribute the ingredients. I then added the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl and mixed with the dough hook. I added the additional water mentioned above during this step, but, in the future, I think I would add it to the soaker, as noted above.)

  4. Scrape the dough together. Cover the mixer bowl tightly and bulk ferment for 30 minutes.

  5. Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured or a wet board. With wet hands, shape it into a ball, as smooth as possible on the top side, gathered on the bottom side. (Note: I made one large round loaf. Alternatively, you could divide the dough into two equal pieces to make smaller loaves, and shape as above.)

  6. Place the loaf (or loaves) seam side down into a well-floured brotform (or two). Place in a food-safe plastic bag.

  7. Proof for 50-60 minutes at 80ºF. (Note: I heated a mug of water in the microwave for two minutes, then put the bread in the microwave to proof.

  8. 45 minutes before baking, pre-heat the oven to 490ºF with oven stone and steaming apparatus in place.

  9. When it is proofed, transfer the bread to a peel, seam side up, and then to the baking stone.

  10. Turn the oven down to 470ºF. Steam the oven. Bake for 15 minutes.

  11. Remove the steaming apparatus. Turn the oven down to 430ºF, and bake for another 45-50 minutes, or until the bread is nicely browned and the internal temperature is at least 205ºF.

  12. When the bread is done, transfer it to a cooling rack. When it is completely cooled (2-4 hours), wrap the bread in baker's linen or a clean kitchen towel and leave it on the cooling rack for at least 24 hours to stabilize the crumb texture before slicing.

 

The crumb was dense and a bit sticky. My analysis is that the dough was under-fermented, and the loaf was under-baked. This loaf is larger than what Hamelman specified, and, in hindsight, should have baked longer, probably with an additional lowering of the oven temperature for the last portion of the bake.

The flavor, on the other hand, was assertively sour with a delicious earthy rye flavor. I'm hoping that toasting can salvage this bread. Otherwise, I have an abundant supply to use as altus in future rye bakes.

When well-made, this bread is best, in my opinion, sliced thin and eaten with smoked meats or fish, pickled fish, strong or smoked cheeses and dark, braised meats. It has amazing keeping qualities and also freezes well.

Enjoy!

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

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Yesterday, I made Chicken Cacciatore for tonight, when my sisters would be at our house for dinner. It seemed to me I should be serving some sort of Italian bread with this dinner. I didn't really feel like tackling a brand new recipe, although there are a number of Italian breads on my “to bake” list. I thought about the sourdough version of Reinhart's Italian bread from BBA which I have made many times and enjoyed. However, once the idea of formulating an “Italian version” of my San Joaquin Sourdough occurred to me, I knew that's what I was going to make.

I was delighted with the result, although I don't know that anyone more knowledgable than I regarding Italian breads would recognize it as in any way “Italian.” 

Ingredients

Wt. (g)

Baker's %

AP flour

400

80

Fine durum flour

100

20

Water

350

70

Salt

10

2

Sugar

14

3

Diastatic malt powder

5

1

Active Liquid levain

100

20

Olive oil

14

3

Total

993

199

 

Method

  1. In a large bowl, disperse the levain in the water.

  2. Add the flours, sugar and malt to the liquid and mix to a shaggy mass.

  3. Cover the bowl and let it rest for 20-60 minutes.

  4. Add the salt and olive oil and mix thoroughly. (Note: I squish the dough with my hands until it comes back together, then do stretch and folds in the bowl until it forms a smooth ball and the oil appears completely incorporated.)

  5. Transfer the dough to a 2 quart lightly oiled bowl, and cover the bowl tightly.

  6. After 30 minutes, do 20 stretch and folds in the bowl. Repeat 3 more times at 30 minute intervals.

  7. Refrigerate for 12-36 hours.

  8. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and allow to warm up for 1-2 hour.

  9. Divide the dough into two equal pieces and pre-shape as rounds. Cover with a clean towel or plasti-crap and let rest for one hour.

  10. Shape as boules or bâtards and proof en couche or in bannetons for about 45 minutes. (Note: Optionally, if proofing en couche, roll the loaves on damp paper towels then in a tray of sesame seeds. Alternatively, you can brush the loaves with water and sprinkle with sesame seeds. If proofing in bannetons, you would use the second method but after transferring the loaves to a peel, just before baking.)

  11. One hour before baking, pre-heat the oven to 480ºF with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

  12. Transfer the loves to the baking stone. Steam the oven, and turn the temperature down to 460ºF.

  13. After 12 minutes, remove the steaming apparatus. (Note: What I actually do at this point is switch to convection bake and turn the oven down to 435ºF for the remainder of the bake.) Continue baking for another 12-15 minutes or until the loaves are nicely browned and the internal temperature is at least 205ºF.

  14. Turn off the oven, but leave the loaves on the baking stone and the oven door ajar for another 5-10 minutes to dry the crust.

  15. Transfer the loaves to a cooling rack. Cool completely before slicing.

  

The crust was chewy except for the ear and bottom crust which were nicely crunchy. The crumb was nice and chewy-tender. The crust flavor was sweet and nutty with the sesame flavor we always enjoy. The crumb was sweet and nutty. Absent the rye flour and with the addition of the oil, sugar, malt and durum flour, the flavor was delightful but very different from that of the San Joaquin Sourdough.

The four of us consumed 2/3 of a loaf with dinner. When I was going to slice some more, sister Ruth told me she would prefer to save it for breakfast toast. Her proposal prevailed.

I'm sure this will make delicious toast, even competing with the Hamelman 5-grain Levain I also baked this afternoon.

 

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

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dmsnyder

Three months ago, I made pizzas using Maggie Glezer's recipe for the dough. (See Pizza Napoletana) It made the best thin, crisp pizza I'd ever had. My blog on that pizza elicited many useful comments and suggestions. I incorporated some of them into the pizza I made this weekend. Thanks to Ross for the prompt to make sourdough pizza dough and to Sylvia for the mention of using a combination of bread flour and durum flour in the dough. I have taken Stan's noting the lower hydration of authentic naples-style pizza dough under advisement. I would note that, using bread flour rather than Italian Typo 00, my effective hydration is lower. (Higher protein flour absorbs more water than lower protein flours like Typo 00.)

Final Dough Ingredients

Wt.

Baker's %

KAF Bread Flour

375 g

88

KAF Fancy Durum

50 g

12

Active Firm Starter (50% hydration)

75 g

18

Instant yeast

1/8 tsp

0.1

Salt

10 g

2

Water, lukewarm

305

72

 Note: Since I calculated baker's percentages the “old fashioned way,” with the levain factored in as just another ingredient, the numbers are misleading. There is a total of 500 g of flour, really. Fifty grams of the flour is in the starter. The starter also contains 25 g of water, so the total water equals 330 g. Thus, the true hydration level of the dough is 66%. And, therefore, the durum flour and the pre-fermented flour are each 10% of the total flour.

So, a true representation of the Total Dough (ignoring the fact that the 50 g of flour in the starter consists of 35 g of AP, 10 g of WW and 5 g of rye flour), would be:

Total Dough Ingredients

Wt.

Baker's %

KAF Bread Flour

450 g

90

KAF Fancy Durum

50 g

10

Instant yeast

1/8 tsp

0.1

Salt

10 g

2

Water, lukewarm

330 g

66

Total

840 g

168.1

Method

  1. In a 6 qt mixing bowl, disperse the starter in the water. (Suggestion: Break the starter into marble-sized pieces and let them soak in the water for a few minutes to soften them. This will make dispersing the starter a lot easier.)

  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flours, salt and yeast.

  3. Add the dissolved levain to the dry ingredients and mix with the paddle on Speed 1 for 1-2 minutes until the dough forms a shaggy mass on the paddle.

  4. Cover the mixer bowl and let it stand for 20-30 minutes.

  5. Switch to the dough hook, and mix for 3 minutes at Speed 2. The dough should clear the sides of the bowl but stick to the bottom. The dough will be tacky on the verge of sticky but will form an early window pane.

  6. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured board. Do a stretch and fold to strengthen the gluten a bit more, if needed. Round up the dough then flatten it into a rectangle.

  7. Divide the dough into 4 equal parts, and form each piece into a ball.

  8. Smear about a tablespoon of olive oil on the inside of four 1 qt. ZipLoc bags or other containers that can be sealed air-tight, and place a ball of dough in each. Close the containers tightly.

  9. At this point, the balls of dough can be refrigerated for 1 to 3 days before use or frozen for later use.

  10. If refrigerated, the dough balls should be allowed to warm to room temperature (about an hour) before use. If frozen, they should be thawed overnight in the refrigerator the day before use, then warmed on the bench for an hour before shaping.

  11. An hour before baking, preheat the oven to 500ºF (or hotter, if your oven goes higher). Have your baking stone in place.

  12. Remove one ball at a time from its container and shape it into a 10 inch round by your method of choice. (Optionally, brush the entire surface of the dough with olive oil. This will protect it somewhat from sogginess from wetter toppings.)

  13. Top the pizza as desired. (Note: Very light toppings will result in a crisp crust. Heavier toppings will result in a soft center crust. Yet heavier toppings will result in a soggy center crust.)

  14. Immediately transfer the pizza to your pre-heated baking stone and bake for 8-10 minutes, more or less until done.

  15. Remove the pizza from the oven to a cutting board. (Optionally, brush the exposed crust with olive oil to make it shiny or drizzle olive oil over the pizza for flavor.) Cut as desired and serve.

  16. Repeat steps 12-15 for additional pizzas.

I made substantially the same pizza as last time – olive oil, slivered garlic, chopped rosemary, sliced tomato and parmesan cheese added half way through an 11 minute bake at 500ºF on a pizza stone.

Ready to bake

Ready to slice and eat

The dough stretched thin enough to see through without tearing. It baked crisp with more chewiness to the crust than the original version. The center was crisp and rigid enough to support the toppings. It was delicious.

 Thanks to Ross, Sylvia, Stan and all the others who offerred suggestions the last time I made this pizza dough.

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting 

 

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