The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

madisonbaker26's blog

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After putting my bread baking on hiatus, I decided to return and try out the 47% rye from Wild Yeast Blog.  It's my first rye loaf, save for the major disaster I made several months back.  I ended up finding the dough relatively easy to work with, which definitely surprised me.  It's also my first time trying out a chevron cut, so I'm looking forward to practicing that more.

UPDATE: This bread is awesome!  It's got a pretty assertive rye flavor for only 47%, it's quite tangy and a little sweet.


 And, as promised the crumb shot:

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After a rather sad attempt at a 75% hydration baguette, I decided to spend a lot more time practicing boules and batards with Susan's Norwich Sourdough loaf.  I finally gained enough confidence to try my hand at baguette shaping, but I wanted a lower hydration dough to work with as I still haven't quite gotten the knack of handling high hydration doughs without making a huge mess.

So I set out to make the 65% hydration baguette.  I followed the recipe, except I needed a longer bulk fermentation to compensate for my cold kitchen and a slightly longer bake time.  To my surprise, I was awarded with the best bread I've baked to date.  The crust was thin, blistered and crackly; the crumb was creamy, sweet and holey. They were just ever so slightly sour. Heck...even some of my cuts opened really well!  Thanks proth5 and dmsnyder...I'll be making these again to get lots of practice with shaping and scoring before moving on to wetter dough.

Finished baguettes:

Cross section:


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I was lucky to snag a spot in one of Madison Sourdough's bread classes recently and I thought I'd share a video that the co-owner/head baker put together.  Unlike a lot of videos I've seen on the internet, his batard shaping technique seems to be a little different and there are also a couple unusual shapes he demonstrates (such as the fendu and the tabatiere).


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After a long time being intrigued by artisan bread baking, I finally decided to give it a go.  I think I got it from my father, but I usually dive in head first and think "go big or go home."  

Last weekend, after experimenting a little bit with my sourdough starter I decided to pick up a copy of BBA and start baking...with the Poliane-style miche.  Other than not using the high-extraction flour (did a 50/50 bread + whole wheat mix) I made no modifications and I'm fairly pleased with how it turned out.  Of course, you guys are the experts, so please let a newbie know what you think!  Personally, one of the best tasting breads I've had in a while.  3 days after baking and I'm amazed at how the flavor has changed and gotten even more complex! 

Here's a shot of the miche right after shaping it into a boule:

The scoring (just a bought a lame, so hopefully it will improve quite a bit)

Right out of the oven...I think maybe it should be a little darker? The lighting is a little off..probably something to do with my iPhone:

A close-up of the crust and crumb:

Miche cross-section:

I've really only been baking on the weekends, but hopefully I can find a way to work in some bread baking around my weird work schedule during the week so I can post more often.


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