The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Floydm's blog

  • Pin It
Floydm's picture
Floydm

I upgrade the site to Drupal 4.7.1. Knock on wood, it was mostly painless. Contact me if you notice anything acting too squirrelly here.

Hopefully the UI will be a little less confusing now. There are a few little improvements folks will see, but for the most part the site should look and feel the same.

Not too much baking on my part, of late. I did bake pizza last weekend:

pizza

as well as a porridge whole wheat bread that I was pleased with.

Oregon strawberries are finally in season, so we've been having excellent strawberry shortcake lately.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I'm trying to upgrade the site to Drupal 4.7 tonight. Wish me luck!

Floydm's picture
Floydm

It was a rainy weekend, so today I stayed in and baked. I baked Honey Whole Wheat Bread, which, as I mention, was an attempt to recreate the Good Earth rolls, which I've been fixating on recently. They tasted really good. I've been trying to decide why my whole wheat breads are tasting better, whether it is because I've gotten better at baking techniques, am using better ingredients (King Arthur's Whole Wheat Flour instead of Bob's Red Mill Whole Wheat Flour), or have just acquired a taste for whole wheat finally.

I also baked a couple of loaves of a white french bread (basically using the daily bread recipe) that weren't bad. I left my poolish out for about 18 hours before making the final dough, I noticed a bit of an off flavor... the bread was less "sweet and nutty" and more "tart and cheesy." No matter, it was still better than anything I could pick up at the local grocery store.

I also set up another website: Ajax Hacking. Setting that up is giving me a chance to play with Drupal 4.7 (this site is running 4.6). I'm liking 4.7 a lot, so I suspect I'll be upgrading this site in the next few weeks. People will enjoy the improvements.

That is all for now.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I couple of pics just to prove I've not been totally neglecting my baking:

daily bread

A loaf of my daily bread I made a week or two past. Actually, I used about 20% whole wheat flour, so I suppose it was more like Hamelman's rustic bread.

ciabatta bread

A ciabatta like loaf I made this weekend. The dough was a bit too goopy. I should have done another series of folds, but I was getting impatient. Tsk, tsk...

Floydm's picture
Floydm

What with spring cleaning, business at work, helping family move, my baking has been seriously curtailed the past month. This weekend, hopefully, I'll get a chance to spend a day puttering around the garden and baking a couple of batches of bread.

I've redirected my enthusiasm for good bread in another direction. I recently discovered Banh Mi, Vietnamese sandwiches. My office is in an area with a number of Vietnamese shops. I've tried the sandwiches in 5 or 6 different places now and totally fallen in love. The toppings are good, but for me the bread is what it is all about. Seriously, I don't think I've found better French bread in town as I've found at my favorite Banh Mi shop, a little hole-in-the-wall place next to a laundromat that always has a half dozen chain-smoking Vietnamese guys sitting out front. Two bucks a sandwich too: can't beat that.

Now that I'm looking for them, every day I'm discovering additional Banh Mi shops. Pho in the fall and winter, Banh Mi in the spring and summer. Vietnamese food is my new favorite cuisine.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

My Ciabatta (sung to the tune of "My Sharona")

my ciabatta
Oooh my little crusty one, my crunchy one.
Making you was awf'ly fun, My Ciabatta!
Your crumb is my fav'rite one, my fav'rite one.
When you gonna be done, My Ciabatta!

my ciabatta
Ready to munch, don't want to wait
for you to cool. Cooling on the rack, wire rack,
Time to eat. My my my i yi woo! M M M My Ciabatta...

my ciabatta

This was my best ciabatta to date. The two three things that seemed to make a difference were extremely slack dough (75% hydration), lower than usual yeast (cut it by half), and pressing it extremely thin before putting it in the oven. Other than those few changes, the dough and technique were basically the same as my daily bread.

Good stuff. More baking tomorrow.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Sorry to anyone who tried coming by this evening. While applying a security patch to the site I made a configuration error. The site was quite unhappy for about 15 minutes. It should all be back now.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I've been gobbling up The Handmade Loaf. Great book. A pity it is so hard to find in the states.

I'm too tired to post any recipes or articles tonight, though I will again soon. I'm long overdue. For now, a roll call of things I baked this weekend:

cinnamon buns Cinnamon Buns - an amalgam of recipes.

flax seed bread Flax Seed Bread - from Dan Lepard's book. He calls it Linseed Wheat Bread, I believe. So good I made a second batch. It looks like a yam, no?

barm bread Barm Bread - another Dan Lepard recipe. Bottle conditioned beer mixed with a bit of levain. I used a combination of white, whole wheat, barley, and rye flours. Not one I'm overjoyed by, but a worthwhile baking experiment.

barm bread My pain sur poolish and the flax bread being oogled by the littlest one.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

It has been a very busy month. Work, class, guests, birthdays, etc. I've baked fairly regularly, but I haven't had time to take pictures, post recipes here, or experiment.

Today I used my sourdough starter. I've been feeding it once a week, but I hadn't baked with it in a while. I just made some little buns:

sourdough buns

They weren't bad. I served them with a pot of homemade split pea soup.

The real star of the meal were the homemade croutons. I used cheap leftover Safeway french bread that I cubed up and fried in a pan with about half a stick of butter, some salt, garlic powder, and onion powder. They were amazing on top of the soup! I'll have to try making them with some of my bread some time.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I didn't bake this weekend. I made waffles and pancakes, but that isn't really baking, is it?

I baked last weekend, both a sourdough and a poolish bread, but I've been swamped. Work is busy and I'm doing some freelancing on the side, I'm taking a Spanish class, and I've really gotten sucked in to rereading The Iliad. Twisted, eh?

Probably the most bread-like thing I did this weekend was watch The Tick vs. The Breadmaster. If you have broadband and twenty minutes to kill, it is an amusing cartoon.

A couple of weeks ago I ordered a used copy of Dan Lepard's The Handmade Loaf from a bookseller in Ipswich. I'm hoping it'll get here soon and that it'll kick me into the baking mood again.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Floydm's blog