The Fresh Loaf

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Smita

A couple weekends worth of sourdough sandwich breads. Heres what we do:


1. Friday night (or morning, depending on room temperature) - feed starter with 2 oz each of water and AP flour. I use 8-hour two builds if possible, to get 8 oz of 100% hydration starter.


2. Saturday am - When the starter is ripe (bubble with fruity smell), add 12 oz flour and 8 oz water. Including 4 oz each of flour and water in the starter, this amounts to 16 oz flour and 12 oz water (75% hydration dough). We're flexible with the 12 oz of flour. Of the two loaves below, the top loaf was made with 5, 4 and 3 oz of whole wheat, white whole wheat and AP flour. The bottom loaf was made with 7 and 5 of whole wheat and white whole wheat flour respectively.


Notes: I store our flours in the freezer. I use the formula for desired dough temperature (DDT) to calculate water temperature.


3. Mix flour, water, 2 teaspoons gluten and starter - autolyse 30 minutes.


Note: I also added 1 tablespoon flax seeds to the bottom loaf.


4. Knead by hand for 10 minutes, till windowpane.


5. Rest, add salt and knead gently.


6. First rise for about 3 hours or till dough doubles. We did three stretch and folds for the top loaf. Went and got brunch while the bottom loaf was rising!


7. Deflate and roll real tight (such a lovely americanism) tp shape into sandwich loaf. Place in a greased 9 x 5 pan.A slightly smaller pan will give you a higher loaf. I don't worry too much about this.


8. Final proof for 3 hours or until it crests above the loaf pan. Note: We've also done overnight retards with good results.


9. Bake at 375 for 40 minutes. Internal temperature should read around 200 degrees F when done, the loaf should sound hollow.


Cool for an hour and slice. 


 



 



Taste and appearance: We have grown quite fond of this formula. The loaves have no butter / oil at all, and made for a perfect morning toast / sandwich bread. Sometimes, I will add a half cup of mashed potato or buttermilk, which tenderizes the loaf. These loaves showcase whole wheat - so if you enjoy whole wheat, this is a good recipe to try. IMHO, the critical steps were: 1) Working out 16:12 flour to water is a good size loaf for us, that resulted in the right crumb texture, 2) Knead till windowpane to coax gluten development in whole wheat, 3) I have to be flexible about rise times. Gotta run one's day by the dough's schedule and not vice-versa. If I add a teaspoon or less of yeast, I can cut down rising time to about 90-120 minutes. The best loaves we've made usually take 3-5 hours. I'm sure this will change as we apprach warmer weather.


Feel free to share your thoughts! All feedback welcome!


 


 

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Smita


Notes:


- Used my 100% hydration starter.


- Two builds to reach 8 oz active starter. The starter smelled fruity, not sour. Bubbles about half a centimeter big.


- Final dough: 2 cups whole wheat flour (365 from Whole Foods) and under 1 cup AP flour (King Arthur), 1 tsp wheat gluten. 


- For DDT of 76 degrees, added 1.5 cups water at about 90 degrees.


- 30 minute autolyse. Kneaded till windowpane.


- 45 minute rise, stretch and fold, 60 minute rise.


- Shaped into boule, plopped into floured banneton. Overnight retard (10 hours).


- Baked at 450 in Le Cruset (15 mins), turned oven down to 440 (20 mins), lid off (10 mins). Total = 45 mins.


- Internal temperature = 200 degrees.


 


Results:


- Lovely crumb and crust. We like this a lot, in terms of flavor and whole wheat flour content.


- My goal is to be able to make this consistently, and also get better at shaping.


- I would also like to introduce diastatic malt and see if I can decrease the AP flour. Need to do some reading from Hamelman's Bread in preparation.


- All comments and feedback welcome!

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Smita


Easily the best non-sourdough loaf I have ever made. Followed instructions to the letter.


What surprised me the most was how incredibly light the loaf was. Very good for morning toast. Best within 3-4 days. Thank you Peter Reinhart and BBA!


 

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Smita

Clint is doing well. Tried making a sandwich bread using sourdough starter. Heres what I did.


2 Nights before:
Added about a cup of whole wheat flour and half a cup of water to half a cup starter (100% hydration)


Day 1:
Added a cup of whole wheat flour, a cup of white whole wheat flour and a third cup of AP flour, 1.5 cups of water, 2 tsp salt, 1 tablespoon each butter and sugar.


Steps:
1. Mixed flours and water to get a shaggy dough. Rest for 30 mins (autolyse)
2. Added salt, butter, sugar and kneaded 8-10 minutes till the dough windowpaned.
3. Rest. Phew.
4. Bulk ferment for 90-120 minutes or till the dough doubles in volume, with stretch and folds every 30 minutes.
5. Shaped and stuck into a loaf pan.
6. Day 2. Pulled dough out of fridge and kept at room temperature for 2 hours. Baked at 375 for 40 minutes.


Results:
Soft and pillowy. Good crumb and rise. However, my shaping skills suck. Need to develop a feel for tension in the dough. Looked a bunch of YouTube videos but need to develop a better feel. Also want to try this with whole wheat flour instead of the white whole wheat. Just a personal taste preference. 


 



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Smita

Three weeks of sourdough. Got my starter from a baking class and named him Clint. After Clint Eastwood - full of potential!


The basic recipe is as follows:


Ingredients:


1/2 cup starter


2 cups whole wheat bread flour


1 cup AP unbleached flour


2 t salt


1.25-1.5 cups water


Methods:


- Mix flours and water to form a shaggy dough. Autolyse - rest for 30 mins.


- Add starter and knead 8-10 minutes, till you get a windowpane.


- Add salt and rest.


- 3 stretch and folds at 20-30 minutes apart.


- Proof till double in size. Deflate and place seam side up a linen lined bowl or floured banneton.


- Then retard overnight in fridge.


- Next morning, set dough at room temp for 2-3 hours.


- Pre heat oven to 485. Plop bread into dutch oven, seam side down. Score and lower temperature to 450 or 440. Bake 35-35 minutes or till internal temperature is 210.


- Cool for an hour and slice.


 


Lessons so far.


1. Week 1: The loaf tastes terrific, but is a shining example of how not to fold and shape.



2. Week 2. Started paying attention to details: weighed EVERYTHING this week, checked temperature and in a rush of enthusiasm, made english muffins with excess starter.




3. Week 3. Best lookin' loaf yet! Big holey crumbs, perfect for dipping into some olive oil.




Lessons learnt:


1. Decided to be as empirical as possible but also not try to control EVERTHING. Must tell self to bake by feel as much as bake while following instructions.


2. This bread is great for sandwiches and for dipping. My next goal is to consistently reproduce them, and perhaps to try a celebration bread using the starter.


Feedback is welcome and appreciated.


Thanks in advance!


 


 


 

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