The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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oceanicthai

         


Another 7-grain seeded sourdough boule.  I am amazed how much the temperature affects the dough.  The raise on this loaf was slow, but not as disasterous as the boule I tried to make 2 days earlier.  We had a freak cold weather front come in, dropping from high 90's to high 50's.  For Thailand, that is a freak weather drop...I realize for many both are pretty balmy.  Anyway, I had one loaf that refused to rise...I eventually baked it anyway and it was awful.  Even though I had added salt I was concerned that it would turn to grey mush with too much enzymatic activity.  Outside was flat, inside was raw.  I gave it to the dogs.  This loaf is better, because the temperature is up to the 80's now.  Tomorrow is supposed to be normal weather, in the 90's again, so tomorrow's loaf will probably be big and fluffy as usual.  Next month, April, is hot season...past the temps where the yeast & lactobacillus is supposed to die...should be interesting. 

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I was inspired by JMonkey's bread from 2008 & from another bread I tried from Mike Avery's blog.  This bread was absolutely delicious.  I used my usual recipe for my sourdough boules with a 7-grain soaker so I wouldn't feel so guilty feeding it to my family.  I added 50 grams of Dutch cocoa, 100g of dried cranberries, and chocolate chips, folding it in the way JMOnkey showed so the chocolate wouldn't burn.  Worked fantastic. 

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This was our favorite, and there isn't much left of it.  I used a soaker for the rosemary herb.  Wish I could get fresh here in Thailand!  The internal temperature didn't quite reach 200F and the top got a bit dark, probably because of the oil, but it was soooo delicious, I can't believe I made it.



My sourdough boules are churning out of the oven regularly now.


Recipe:


DAY 1


100 grams sourdough starter at 100% hydration, mixed with 100g breadflour & 100g water  +1/2 tsp salt


Rosemary hot soaker: 1 Tablespoon dried herb & 100g hot water  +1 tsp salt


200g water mixed with 100g bread flour & 100g whole wheat flour  (I used water mixed with what was left in my pan after sauteeing onions)  +1 tsp salt


Leave out levain, autolyse & soaker overnight or 8-10 hours.  If I go beyond that I put it all in the fridge.  I add salt because it is 95F here & I don't want too much enzymatic action turning everything to mush.


DAY2


Morning:  Drain soaker, mix everything together, add several cloves of mashed roasted garlic.  Add 200g of bread flour.  Knead lightly to mix everything well.  Put in bowl oiled generously with olive oil, turn to coat.  Cover & let bulk ferment for 3 hours.  I did a stretch and fold at every hour using olive oil generously.  Preshape, put in bowl seam side down & put in fridge.


Evening:  Invert bowl, very gently shape again and put into floured couche in bowl (I have no banneton.)  Cover & put back in fridge.


DAY3


Soak terra-cotta cover to my improvised Thai La Cloche


Take out dough & wait until almost doubled, then put the Thai La Cloche in oven & preheat to 475F.  Gently invert bowl over parchment covered peel, slash it & sling it into the pot.  Cover & bake 20 minutes.  Take lid off, rotate loaf & bake another 25 minutes.  Check temperature.  I usually give up at 190 or 195 or so and turn off the oven.  After a few minutes I put the loaf on a rack to cool for an hour before cutting into it. 


I wonder, though, is there any way to get bigger holes in the crumb???

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oceanicthai

Dill, bacon, olive oil, roasted garlic sourdough bread.


         


The fam's favorite bread so far.  All gone already.

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oceanicthai

After I had fried up some onions for dinner the bottom of the pan looked and smelled so good with the carmelized onions.  So I put a little water in it, mashed up some roasted garlic, and used it in my autolyse for this bread.  It smelled heavenly in the oven. 


         


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oceanicthai

Today's bake was a 3-seed sourdough.  I previously posted all ingredients and the method I used, and had to go, and lost it...sigh.  Next time  :)   Here's the pics...tastes lovely.


                                        


The seed soaker added extra water even after I drained it.  I can't tell if I underproofed or not.  The crust was nice but I didn't get as much vertical lift as I had hoped.  My scoring kind of just melted back into itself.  I like this a lot better than the wheat germ one, but I think next time I use wheat germ I will soak it first.  I soaked my terra cotta lid for a couple of hours before I baked it.

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oceanicthai

Today's bake was another 3 day sourdough with whole wheat and wheat germ.  The crumb wasn't as open as I'd like, but the crust was as lovely as usual with my Thai-style La Cloche, a terra cotta pot with lid.  I soak the lid before I heat up the pot and it steams the bread lovely.  The wheat germ soaked up a LOT of water and if I make this recipe again I will add more water.  It is delicious, interestingly, this time the sourdough is quite pronounced.  I was kind of nervous to do the refrigerated bulk ferment/retardation with the wheat germ because I had read about so much enzyme activity with the wheat germ, but it seemed okay, no grey mush.  I love the inspiration for this bread, San Francisco sourbread, I grew up in S.F. and the Bay Area until my teen years, which were spent in the Sierra Foothills.  For my next breads I'd like to start trying seeds on my dough.  I wonder if I should steam my dough less when I use the seeds?  I love TFL because whatever obscure piece of information I'm looking for is here, and so much more than I ever imagined I'd want to know!



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oceanicthai

My son has been begging for banana bread.  I have been obsessed with sourdough boules.  So I found the recipe for Cranberry Chocolate Sourdough on SourdoughHome.  As you can already guess, I decided to make it, adding the bananas.  It was a mixing nightmare, super elastic dough, smushy bananas & boiled cranberries refusing to be mixed in.  So I just kind of squished it together and over 3 hours attempted some S&F's.  After 3 hours it finally relaxed & I was able to shape it into a kind of boule and bake it.  Pictured are the results.  I thought for sure I'd made another flop, but we all like it, weird as it is. 


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oceanicthai

My first attempts at boules weren't so grand and glorious.  I had several flat, dense loaves that I was too ashamed to take pictures of.  Things have progressed but I am just a newbie.  My friend called me a bread nerd, I felt kind of excited about that.  Maybe I can truly be a bread nerd someday.  I made a pretty good loaf this morning, but now I want to do something a little more daring...like add more ingredients.


  This was a little better than my earlier attempts.  LIke I said, I was too ashamed to take photos of them.  I did eat them, though, and my family dutifully chewed their way through them, with some hot soup to help soften them up a bit.


  This was my first loaf that resembled a boule.  Unfortunately I forgot to add salt, so it was pretty terrible.


  This was another one, it came out better but I had major problems with slashing the dough.


  I was really excited and proud of how this loaf came out, but I must confess, I forgot to add the salt till the last moment and it, uh, didn't get distributed very well.


  This was one I baked 3 days ago.  Just a sourdough boule with some whole wheat flour.  I couldn't get the poppy seeds to stick very well, I had used too much flour.  I didn't slash deep enough & I couldv'e baked it a bit longer.


  Today's bread, another sourdough 7-grain boule


I've had a great time reading, experimenting, eating and sharing my newfound bread obsession with my bemused family and entertained friends.  It is difficult for some of them to understand why I want to take photos of my bread.  I know, however, that you, my bread heroes, will understand.

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oceanicthai

I live in Thailand where many specialty baking items aren't available.  Improvising has been interesting, sometimes fun and occasionally quite frustrating.  Pictured is what I found at a local kiln to bake my breads in.  I would have loved a La Cloche, but this is working wonderfully.  To acheive an extra steamed effect I soak the lid of this unglazed terra cotta pot in water before I bake. 



I preheat it all in my oven and when I take the lid off to slide my bread in, steam wafts out.  I use a metal pizza peel made locally that I was really excited to find.  I can't buy a banneton so I use a stainless steel bowl.  For a couche I cut up an old thick cotton apron & it is working great!


This is a traditional style terra cotta pot used for food.  I have lived here in Thailand for 12 years now.

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