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Norm's Onion Rolls

Norm's Onion Rolls

  These Kaiser Rolls (AKA hard rolls, vienna rolls, bulkies) were made with the same dough used for onion rolls.

Norm's Kaiser Rolls: These Kaiser Rolls (AKA hard rolls, vienna rolls, bulkies) were made with the same dough used for onion rolls.

I didn't grow up in New York. We did have a Jewish Bakery in Fresno when I was younger. They got me addicted to Sour Rye and Jewish Corn Rye and pumpernickel and cheese pockets. They made onion rolls, too, but I never liked them much. They were fluffy with a boring crust and no "tam."

 The carryings on about how wonderful onion rolls used to be by folks on TFL who hail from NYC and environs made me think maybe I'd missed something, so when Norm posted his formula, I thought I should try making them. I got distracted by other baking projects, but the recent postings about these rolls re-activated my intention to make them. Thanks to Eric, Elgins, RFMonaco and Eli. I am delighted to join you!

These onion rolls are, as Norm said, "only onion rolls." Yeah. Like a stradivarius is "only a fiddle." 

 Kaiser rolls are made from the same dough as onion rolls. What is most different is the elaborate shaping. Ever since I read Greenstein's description of the old-time bakers sitting around the bench "klopping" hundreds of vienna rolls every night for the breakfast rush, I've wanted to try doing this. Well, the rolls are delicious, with a substantial crust and  sweet, chewy crumb. We had them tonight with "hamburgers" made with ground chicken. These are not your fast food joint's soggy, tasteless buns. What they really need is a pile of thin sliced juicy roast beef, or roasted brisket, better yet, or maybe chopped liver. 

My klopping needs some work. They will be prettier next time, but I can't really imagine them tasting better.

The hamburger was good. But the best part of dinner was dessert - An onion roll sliced in half with sweet butter.

Thanks, Norm! 

 FYI, all the rolls were scaled to 2.55 oz. I think this was just right for the onion rolls. Next time I make Kaiser Rolls, I think I will scale them to 3 oz.

David 

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San Joaquin Sourdough & Friends

San Joaquin Sourdough & Friends

San Joaquin Sourdough

San Joaquin Sourdough

San Joaquin Sourdough Crumb

San Joaquin Sourdough Crumb

This boule is made with my Pain de Campagne formula. (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/8454/pain-de-campagne) I used KAF French Style Flour with 5% KAF Organic Whole Wheat and 5% Giusto's whole rye flour. I formed one boule which weighed 860 gms baked. I baked at 480F for 18 minutes under a stainless steel bowl, then another 22 minutes at 460F uncovered. The shine on the boule is real. I assume this is gelatinized starch from the covered baking. I thought it was a nice effect.

 The "friends" are baguettes made with the Gosselin pain a l'ancienne formula.(http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/8524/philippe-gosselin039s-pain-à-l039ancienne-according-peter-reinhart-interpretted-dmsnyder-m) There were 4 of them, but I devoured one with dinner. It did not have as open a crumb as my last batch, but the taste was wonderful - very sweet, classic baguette flavor.

David

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Sourdough Italian Bread

Sourdough Italian Bread

Sourdough Italian Bread crumb

Sourdough Italian Bread crumb

This bread is based on the Italian Bread formula in Peter Reinhart's "Bread Baker's Apprentice." The only change I made was to substitute a biga naturale (sourdough starter) for the biga made with instant yeast in Reinhart's formula. I still added the instant yeast to the final dough.

I also employed the "stretch and knead in the bowl" technique during bulk fermentation, even though I used a KitchenAid mixer for mixing beforehand.

Intermediate starter (Biga naturale)

3 oz. Active starter

9 oz. Water

12 oz. KAF Bread flour

Final Dough

18 oz. Biga naturale (Note: save the remaining 6 oz. for another bread.)

11.25 oz. KAF Bread flour

o.41 oz. (1-2/3 tsp) Salt

0.5 oz. (1 T) Sugar

0.11 oz (1 tsp) Instant yeast

0.17 oz. (1 tsp) Diastatic barley malt powder

0.5 oz (1 T) olive oil

7 oz (¾ cup) Water at 80F

Sesame seeds for coating.

Semolina to dust the parchment paper.

Mix and ferment the biga.

Mix the biga naturale the evening before baking. Dissolve the starter in the water in a medium sized bowl, then add the flour and mix thoroughly to hydrate the flour and distribute the starter. Cover the bowl tightly and allow to ferment for 3-6 hours, until it doubles in volume. Refrigerate overnight.

The next day, remove the biga from the refrigerator and allow it to warm up for an hour or so.

Mix the dough

Mix the flour, salt, sugar, yeast and malt powder in a large bowl or the bowl of your mixer. Add the biga in pieces, olive oil and ¾ cups of tepid water and mix thoroughly. Adjust the dough consistency by adding small amounts of water or flour as necessary. The dough should be very slack at this point.

I mixed the dough with the dough hook in the KA mixer for 10 minutes then transferred it to an 8 cup/2 liter glass pitcher that had been lightly oiled.

Fermentation

I stretched and folded the dough in the pitcher with a rubber spatula then covered it tightly. I repeated the stretch and fold again 20 and 40 minutes later. I then left the dough to ferment until it was double the original volume. This took about 60 minutes. (Approximately 2 hours total bulk fermentation.)

Divide and form

Divide into 2 pieces and pre-form as logs. Allow the dough to rest 5 minutes or more, then form into bâtards. If desired, spray or brush the loaves with water and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Prepare a couche – either a floured piece of baker's linen or parchment paper sprinkled with semolina.

Pre-heat the oven to 500F with a baking stone on the middle shelf. Make preparations for steaming the oven.

Place the loaves in the couche, cover with plastic or a towel and allow to proof until 1-1/2 times their original size.

Baking

Score the loaves and transfer them to the baking stone. Bake with steam, using your favorite method. After loading the loaves and steaming, turn the over down to 450F and bake until done (about 20 minutes). If you want a thicker crust, use a lower temperature and bake for longer.

Cooling

Allow to cool before slicing, if you can.

Enjoy!

David

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Susan from San Diego Sourdough


Susan from San Diego Sourdough


Susan's Sourdough Crumb


Susan's Sourdough Crumb

It was time to get back to basics. My wife and I love sourdough bread. I have been having lots of fun exploring other breads, especially rye breads and baguettes of late, but I was missing "plain old" sourdough bread.

 The formula that Susan from San Diego developed has been made by many on TFL, and, if there is anyone who has not loved it, they have kept it to themselves. So, Susan's sourdough has been on my "to bake" list for quite some time. Here is how I made it:

450 gms Giusto's Ultimate Performer (High Gluten Flour)

50 gms Giusto's (Whole) Rye Flour

340 gms Water

50 gms Active Starter

10 gms Sea Salt

 

Mix the water and flour in a large bowl until they form a shaggy mass. Cover tightly and allow to rest (autolyse) for 15-60 minutes.

Add the starter to the autolyse and mix it in. Then add the salt and mix it in.

On a lightly floured bench, do 4 or 5 French folds. Cover the dough for 30 minutes. Repeat the folds and resting for 30 minutes. Then, do the folds a third time. (At this point, I had moderate gluten development.)

Place the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl and cover tightly. Allow to rise until doubled. (I used my favorite Anchor Glass 8 cup/2 liter glass pitcher with a tight-fitting plastic cover. My dough doubled in 6 hours.)

Divide the dough into two equal pieces and pre-shape as rounds. Cover and allow to rest for 10-20 minutes.

Shape as boules and place in floured bannetons. (I used French linen-lined wicker ones.) Spray lightly with oil and place in food-grade plastic bags or cover with plastic wrap.

Proof for 1 hour, then place in the refrigerator over night (8-12 hours).

Take the loaves out of the refrigerator at least 4 hours before you plan to bake them. Allow them to warm up and rise to 1-1/2 times their original size.

45-60 minutes before baking, pre-heat the oven to 450F with a baking stone on the middle shelf and a cast iron skillet and metal loaf pan on the bottom shelf.

When the loaves are ready to bake, bring a cup of water to a boil and place a handful (4-6) ice cubes in the loaf pan. Shut the oven door.

Sprinkle semolina on a wooden peel. Transfer a loaf to the peel. Score it, and load it on the baking stone. Do the same with the second loaf. Then pour the boiling water into the skillet, being careful not to scald youself, and shut the oven door.

After 10 minutes, remove the two water recepticles from the oven. Bake another 10-15 minutes, until the loaves are nicely colored, the bottoms have a hollow sound when thumped and the internal temperature of the loaves is at least 205F. When they are done, turn off the oven but leave the loaves on the baking stone with the oven door held open 1-2 inches for another 5-10 minutes to dry the crust.

Remove the loaves from the oven and cool them thoroughly on a rack before slicing. (2 hours, if you can stand it.) You are allowed to smell the loaves and listen to them sing while they are cooling.

Notes
1. My sourdough starter is "1:3:4" (starter:water:flour). If your starter is more liquid or more firm, you should adjust the amount of water you use in the dough accordingly.
2. The 2-pan oven humidification and steaming method is from Hamelman's "Bread." Susan bakes her loaves under a stainless steel bowl for the first 1/2 to 2/3 of the time. I would have done this, if I had made a single large boule. But Hamelman's method gives me the second best oven spring and bloom.
3. With overnight cold retardation, this bread was moderately sour when first cool. The crust was thin but crunchy. The bread had a firm chewiness but was in no way "tough." It was, in short, what I regard as a "classic San Francisco-style Sourdough." Since this is precisely what I wanted, I am delighted with this bread. I am moving it from my "to bake" list to my "bake often" list.

David

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San Joaquin Light Rye 1

San Joaquin Light Rye 1

San Joaquin Light Rye 2

San Joaquin Light Rye 2

San Joaquin Light Rye Crumb

San Joaquin Light Rye Crumb

 This bread evolved from Anis Bouabsa's formula for baguettes which he generously gave to Janedo when she visited his bakery in Paris. I have had fun applying Anis' long cold primary fermentation to variations on his baguette formula.

I have enjoyed the breads made with added sourdough starter and about 10% rye in particular.I have written about my pain de campagne made with these modifications. However, the second time I made it using a flour that absorbed more water, the crumb was less open. I decided to try the same formula but with a somewhat higher hydration. I added an additional 15 gms of water, boosting the hydration from 74% to 77%. This resulted in a dough of almost identical “feel” to the original dough made with the less absorbent flour.

Formula

Active starter                        100 gms

KAF French Style Flour           450 gms

Guisto's Rye Flour                    50 gms

Water                                    385 gms

Instant yeast                           1/4 tsp

Salt                                        10 gms

 The method I used was otherwise identical to that described before: (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/8454/pain-de-campagne )

Jane opined that this could no longer be called a “pain de campagne.” I'm not sure why, but I accept her authority in matters of French terminology. So, I am calling it “San Joaquin Light Rye.” I also am not sure what to call the shape of the loaf. Maybe it is “a stretch bâtard.” Or “an obese demi-baguette.” In “Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Vol. II,” Julia Child pictured a French loaf shape called a “Jaco.” I have not heard of this shape otherwise, but it looks sort of like what I made today.

 If asked to describe the crust and crumb, I would say it is close enough to Nury's Light Rye that I would have difficulty telling which was which in a blind tasting. And that's not bad!

David 

 

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Hamelman's 40% Rye with Caraway

Hamelman's 40% Rye with Caraway

Hamelman's 40% Rye with Caraway Crumb

Hamelman's 40% Rye with Caraway Crumb

This is the second of Hamelman's rye breads I've made. The first was his Flaxseed Bread, which I thought was pretty terrific.

 Eric Hanner's photos of Hamelman's 40% rye looked so great (as did SteveB's), and others who had made it gave it such rave reviews, well! How could I not make it?

Eric and Steve both used AP flour and Medium Rye Flour. On reading Hamelman's formula, I found he calls for Whole Rye Flour and High-gluten flour. Since I had both of those, I used them. (Actually, I chickened out and used 2/3 high-gluten and 1/3 bread flour for the wheat flour.)

The good news is that this is one of the best tasting rye breads I've ever had. It is moderately sour with a pronounced flavor of rye and  caraway. The crust was chewy, except the "ear" which was crunchy. The crumb was rather dense in appearance but with a lovely mouth feel and chew.

The bad news is that I think I must have under-proofed the loaves. I let them expand by about 50% before baking them, and I got explosive oven spring and bloom. The loaf I do not show had the biggest side-blowout I've ever had (and I have had pretty extensive blowouts with my ryes before).

I expect I'll be making this one again. Maybe I'll let it double before baking next time, though.

David

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Pain de Campagne variation

Pain de Campagne variation

 

Pain de Campagne variation, crumb

Pain de Campagne variation, crumb

 A couple of weeks ago, I baked a pain de campagne. The formula evolved from that for baguettes which Anis Bouabsa had shared with Janedo. It had some sourdough starter and some rye flour added to Bouabsa's original. Of course, I didn't have any French T65 flour, so I used KAF "French-style Flour," which is their T55 clone. Also, rather than forming the dough into baguettes, I made one large bâtard. The mixing method was also changed somewhat. After a 20 minute autolyse of the flours and water, the other ingredients are added. The dough is mixed using a method I learned from Hamelman via proth5, although I have since found a very similar method in Reinhart's BBA (see his formula for Pugliese.) The dough is stretched and folded in the mixing bowl with a plastic scraper for 20 strokes, repeating this 3 times over an hour. (20 strokes. 20 minutes rest. 20 more strokes. 20 mintutes rest. 20 strokes.

The critical  method I retained from the original was how the dough was fermented: After the autolyse and "kneading," the dough is refrigerated for 21 hours before dividing, shaping and baking. 

 See my TFL blog entry of August 31, 2008 for more details. (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/8454/pain-de-campagne)

 King Arthur Flour sells a "specialty flour" they call "European-style Artisan Flour." They have told me this is their approximation of French T65 flour, which is what Ansi Bouabsa actually uses for his baguettes. The European-Style Artisan Flour is a blend of Spring and Winter wheats with some ascorbic acid and some white whole wheat. It is 11.7% protein.

 This week, I made pain de campagne again. The only changes from my bake of two weeks ago were 1) I substituted KAF European-style Artisan Flour for KAF French-style Flour, and 2) I made two boules rather than one bâtard.

 The European-style flour absorbed more water, resulting in a drier dough. It was also slightly less extensible, but still more so than, say, KAF Bread Flour. 

 I baked using the same method as before. For the two boules of about 480 gms each, I preheated the oven to 500F and turned it down to 460F after loading the boules and pouring the hot water in the skillet. The water was removed after 10 minutes. After another 10 minutes, the loaves were "done," but I wanted a darker crust, so baked them for an additional 5 minutes, then left them in the turned-off oven for another 5 minutes.

 The crust did not stay as crunchy as the previous version. The crumb was about what I expected. The dough acted like a 68% hydration dough, and the crumb looked like it. The aroma of the sliced bread, 3 hours after baking, had a pronounced smell of wheat bran, and the taste of the whole wheat in the flour really came through. It was only slightly sour. The texture of the crumb was quite nice. It was tender and chewy. My experience suggests the flavors will meld by tomorrow morning, and the taste will change. I'm looking forward to tasting it.

 

Personally, I prefer the previous iteration, at this time but others may differ. Certainly, both are very nice. 

 David 

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Hamelman's Rye with Flax Seeds1

Hamelman's Rye with Flax Seeds1

Hamelman's Flaxseed Bread - crumb

Hamelman's Flaxseed Bread - crumb

Jeffrey Hamelman's Flaxseed Bread from "Bread" is a 60% sourdough rye. It is almost exactly the same formula as his 66% sourdough rye, with the addition of flaxseeds added to the dough as a soaker. This is a delicious bread, but the wonderful flavor really comes together the day after baking.  One day 2, it is mildly sour with a prominant, hearty rye flavor mixed with a very distinct flavor of flaxseed. The seseme seeds on top, which Hamelman says are traditional, add another nice flavor and a nice additional crunch.

I have made many rye breads before and love them, but this is my first attempt at one of Hamelman's German-style rye breads. I must give credit to Eric (ehanner), whose beautiful rye breads from Hamelman inspired me to take the plunge.

 David

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Gosselin Pain a l'Ancienne

Gosselin Pain a l'Ancienne

Gosselin baguettes

Gosselin baguettes

Gosselin baguette Crumb

Gosselin baguette Crumb

Gosselin Pain Rustique

Gosselin Pain Rustique

Gosselin Pain Rustique Crumb

Gosselin Pain Rustique Crumb

Both Peter Reinhart's "Bread Baker's Apprentice" (BBA) and Daniel Leader's "Local Breads" contain formulas for "Pain à l'Ancienne," based on the explorations during the 1990's by several Parisian bakers of lengthening bulk fermentation to achieve improved flavor. Of course, these techniques could not have been used in the "old days" that the name of the bread implies. Bakers devoted to this new technique use modern refrigeration which was not available to their ancestors.

Reinhart based his version of pain à l'ancienne on that of Philippe Gosselin. In BBA, Reinhart describes Gosselin's method in very general terms and then says the formula he provides is modified to make it easier for home bakers. In January, 2003 Reinhart sent a message to an internet mailing list which contained a detailed enough account of what Gosselin told him to write a formula. For me, the original formula did not seem more difficult than the one Reinhart published. This is because I almost always bake on weekends when I can accommodate my activities to the original formula. So, I thought I would give it a try. My interpretation of Reinhart's interpretation is as follows:

Pain à l'Ancienne of Philippe Gosselin, as described by Peter Reinhart

Flour.......................500 gms

Water......................375 gms

Salt.........................8.75 gms-

Instant yeast...............5 gms

Mix the flour with 325 gms of ice cold water and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, remove mixture from refrigerator. Add yeast, salt and another 25-50 gms of cold water and mix thoroughly for 4-6 minutes.

Ferment at room temperature until doubled in bulk (up to 6 hours).

One hour before baking, preheat oven to 460F.

Divide into 4 equal piece and gently pre-shape into torpedos.

Rest dough 10 minutes.

Shape into baguettes by stretching to 12-14 inches, score and bake immediately with steam at 460F.

The breads I made today used the following modification and extrapolations:

1. I used 50 gms of Guisto's rye flour and 450 gms of KAF Bread Flour.

2. After the long "autolyse," I mixed the flour and water with 30 gms of additional water, the yeast and the salt. The autolysed dough had moderate gluten development already and didn't want to take in the additional water with hand stirring, so I did the best I could with a scraper, then mixed in my KitchenAid with the paddle for about 3 minutes, then the dough hook for another 3 minutes. I then transferred the dough to a 2 quart glass pitcher and used Hamelman's in-the-bowl stretch and fold technique - 20 folds, 3 times at 20 minute intervals over the first hour. I then let the dough rest, covered, until doubled.

3. Gosselin's instructions to Reinhart indicated the dough would take 6 hours to double. In my (warm) kitchen today, it doubled in 4 hours.

4. I emptied the dough onto a flour-dusted board and dusted the top. I divided the dough into 3 parts. I pre-shaped the two smaller ones into rectangles and folded each long side to the middle and sealed the seams. Those, I rested with the seams down for about 10 minutes then stretched into "baguettes" and placed them on floured parchment paper. The larger piece was just cut in half to make pain rustique, rested and similarly placed on parchment.

5. I baked at 460F with steam on a pizza stone. After 7 minutes, I removed the loaf pan and skillet and continued to bake for a total of 20 minutes. I then turned the oven off, cracked it open, and left the loaves on the stone for an additional 5 minutes.

Comments

These breads had a nice, crunchy crust and an open, tender, somewhat chewy crumb. The taste was classic sweet baguette - as good as I have ever made. My wife liked it, but said she preferred the taste of the Anis baguettes with sourdough added. No surprise, as we are both partial to sourdough breads.

I was concerned that the pre-shaping of the baguettes, which Reinhart does not call for in his adaptation of Gosselin's formula, would decrease the openness of the crumb too much. It was more open than I expected. I guess I have learned to handle dough gently enough. On the other hand, it would be worthwhile to try making baguettes with this method but just cutting the dough and stretching it, without any other shaping, to see if the crumb would be even more open.

If your baking schedule allows for Gosselin's method, I would certainly recommend you give it a try. In my hands, it makes very fine baguettes.

The pains rustique require no forming, and are essentially like ciabattas. Reinhart says this dough can also be stretched into a circle or rectangle and used for pizza. I have not tried that and would be interested in hearing from anyone who does so.

David

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Pain_de_CampagneBatard

Pain_de_CampagneBatard

Pain_de_CampagneGrigne

Pain_de_CampagneGrigne 

Pain_de_CampagneCrumb

Pain_de_CampagneCrumb 

The formula for this bâtard is derived from that for Anis Bouabsa's baguettes, as shared with TFL by Janedo. Jane prompted me to add some sourdough starter, and this resulted in a big improvement, to my taste. We had also discussed adding some rye flour to the dough. Jane said she and her family really liked the result. The addition of rye and sourdough makes this more like a pain de campagne, which is traditionally shaped as a boule or  bâtard. The result of my mental meandering follows:

 

Formula

Active starter ........................100 gms

KAF French Style Flour.......450 gms

Guisto's Rye Flour..................50 gms

Water......................................370 gms

Instant yeast............................1/4 tsp

Salt............................................10 gms

 

Mixing

In a large bowl, mix the active starter with the water to dissolve it. Add the flours and stir to form a shaggy mass. Cover tightly and let rest (autolyse) for 20 minutes.

Sprinkle the yeast over the dough and mix with a plastic scraper. Then sprinkle the salt over the dough and mix.

Using the plastic scraper, stretch and fold the dough 20 times, rotating the bowl 1/5 turn between each stroke. Cover tightly. Repeat this stretch and fold procedure 20 minutes later and, again, after another 20 minutes.

 

Fermentation

After the third series of stretches and folds, scape the dough into a lightly oiled 2 quart/2 liter container and cover tightly. (I use a 2 quart glass measuring pitcher with a tightly fitting plastic lid manufactured by Anchor Glass.) Immediately place in the refrigerator and leave it there for 21 hours. (In this time, my dough doubles in volume and is full of bubbles. YMMV.)

 

Dividing and Shaping

(I chose to make one very large bâtard, but you could divide the dough into 2 or 3 pieces and make smaller bâtards, boules or baguettes. Or, you could just cut the dough and not shape it further to make pains rustiques.)

Take the dough out of the refrigerator and scrape it gently onto a lightly floured work surface. Gently pat it into a rectangle. To pre-shape for  a bâtard, fold the near edge up just past the center of the dough and seal the edge by gently pressing the two layers together with the ulnar (little finger) edge of your hand or the heel of your hand, whichever works best for you. Then, bring the far edge of the dough gently just over the sealed edge and seal the new seam as described.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and/or a kitchen towel and let it rest for 30-60 minutes, with the seams facing up. (The time will depend on ambient temperature and how active your starter is. The dough should have risen slightly, but not much.)

To shape a bâtard, fold the near edge of the dough and seal the edge, as before. Now, take the far edge of the dough and bring it towards you all the way to the work surface and seal the seam with the heel of your hand. Rotate the loaf gently toward you 1/4 turn so the last seam you formed is against the work surface and roll the loaf back and forth, with minimal downward pressure, to further seal the seam. Then, with the palms of both hands resting softly on the loaf, roll it back and forth to shape a bâtard. Start with both hands in the middle of the loaf and move them outward as you roll the loaf, slightly increasing the pressure as you move outward, so the bâtard ends up with the middle highest and the ends pointed .

 

Preheating the oven

Place a baking stone on the middle rack and both a cast iron skillet and a metal loaf pan (or equivalent receptacles of your choosing) on the bottom shelf.  Heat the oven to 500F. (I like to pre-heat the baking stone for an hour. I think I get better oven spring. Since I expected a 30 minute rest after pre-shaping and a 45 minute proofing, I turned on the oven 15 minutes after I had pre-shaped the loaf.) I put a kettle of water to boil 10 minutes before baking.

 

Proofing

After shaping the loaf, transfer it to parchment paper liberally dusted with semolina. Cover the loaf with plastic wrap and/or a kitchen towel. Proof until the loaf has expanded to about 1-1/2 times it's original size. (This turned out to be 30 minutes for me.) Do not over-proof, if you want good oven-spring and bloom!

 

Baking

Put about a cup full of ice cubes in the loaf pan on the bottom shelf of the oven and close the door.

Slip a peel or cookie sheet under the parchment paper holding the loaf. Uncover the loaf. Score it. (The bâtard was scored with a serrated tomato knife. The knife was held with its blade at about a 30 degree angle to the surface of the loaf. One swift end-to-end cut was made, about 1/2 inch deep.)

Transfer the loaf and parchment paper to the baking stone, pour one cup of boiling water into the skillet, and close the oven door. Turn the oven down to 460F.

After 15 minutes, remove the loaf pan and the skillet from the oven. Rotate the loaf 180 degrees, if it is browning unevenly. Close the oven door.

Bake for another 15 minutes, then remove the loaf and place on a cooling rack. Check for doneness. (Nice crust color. Internal temperature of at least 205F. Hollow sound when you thump the bottom of the loaf.) If necessary, return to loaf to the oven to bake longer.

 

Cooling

Cool on a rack for two hours before slicing.

 

Comments

I got very good oven spring and bloom. This loaf has an ear by which you could carry it around. It sang to me while cooling. The crust is nice and crunchy. The crumb is well aerated and almost "fluffy" in texture, but with tender chewiness. The taste is just plain good. It is minimally sour. Based on my half-vast experience, I'd say it is fairly representative of a French Pain de Campagne, the major difference being that it is less dense than the ones I recall. 

 This is, for me, not merely a good "novelty" bread. It could join San Francisco Sourdough and Jewish Sour Rye as an "everyday" bread I would enjoy having all the time.  The method is good for those of us who work outside the home. It can be mixed in the evening and baked in time for a late dinner the next night. 

 

Enjoy!

 David 

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