The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


dabrownman's picture

Love these real artisan baking videos.  If the bread was 4# and tastes as good as Poilane's then he cold sell it for 9.6 Euros in Paris and $50 in Phoenix:-)

Doughy's picture

Hi all! My name is Kris I live in Girvan which is in Scotland. This is my first bake using a yeasted dough (milk bread recipe). The batch baked rolls seem to have turned out ok. Whereas the loaf needs work. Not sure what I’ve done wrong. Maybe under proved? 

Practice makes perfect. I think next time I will try and tighten up on my shaping and prove for longer. 

The crumb







SabineGrandma's picture

I know this sounds weird. But bear with me.  

We make beer. When you home-brew and move your batch from bucket to carboy, you have yeasty leftovers in the bucket that I call "sludge". They smell yeasty like beer and make me want to use them -- not chuck them! So, I fed my starter (20g) with 50g of sludge. I added bread flour for the right consistency and left Sir Bobby Farts-Alot alone overnight to do his thing. Guess what: he loves beer as much as I do!  Dude tripled overnight and so I decided to bake with him the next morning. I added some more sludge just for giggles and then looked for some more ingredients. I had just harvested my purple & red carrots, garlic and rocoto peppers -- so that sounded good enough to me. I have a mockmill attachment to my KitchenAid and milled my whole grain flour needed for this recipe.

Sir Bobby of the sludge


Beer sludge
Beer & Water


Insert: raw purple & red carrot, rocoto pepper(1/2) fresh raw garlic (1 TBS)


Sunflower seeds for crown


Bread Flour


Milled Spelt kernels


Milled rye kernels


Brotgewürz (even amounts of coriander, caraway, fennel seeds ground roughly in the pepper mill)

½ tsp


1 tsp



Total Flour


I mixed up the starter, liquids, flour & salt as well as seasonings and let that rest for an hour. Then I did my first coil fold. Rest another hour, then do a lamination. Once the dough was stretched out, I added the inclusions of shredded carrot, minced fresh garlic, small cut up pepper. That got rolled up and mixed in and put back into the bowl. More rest, more coil folds until I was happy with the feel. Pre-shape and bench rest, shape, dip in some sunflower seeds, and then he went into the Banneton and the fridge. I baked this morning in the Dutch Oven @485 for 20 min with lid, 20 min without @ 450F. 

I still can't score well, so the top didn't open very much, but the crust was very crunchy nevertheless. I usually dust with a mix of barley & rice that I milled @ setting #8. Together with the sunflower seeds made for an awesome crust. The crumb was soft and squooshy (my kind of technical term) and the flavors on the inclusion went surprisingly well with each other. Who would have thought to put carrot with garlic & hot pepper!  Haha! Me!!  Anyway, I thought I share this with y'all. I got my very confusing start here on this site and "Minioven" helped me a lot with figuring out the bakers math. I'm still learning, but I'm getting there. 


ckujawa's picture

So the baking continues. With three upcoming interviews I want to make sure I'm on my game, so I decided to do one of my favorite breads to make--with a twist. I LOVE making baguettes. Wait. Let's be honest...I LOVE EATING baguettes. Making them is Ok. Especially when they're higher hydration, which I find challenging still. But whatever...a challenge is a challenge and I'm not usually one to let that stop me. 

So I dug out one of my favorite recipes for country baguette--from Martin Philip's wonderful book"Bread Making--A Baker's Journey Home in 75 Recipes" and got at it. And ran immediately into challenge #1: I didn't read his advice on equipment BEFORE buying a I have what I was comfortable with--one of the older spring type scales that measures down to the ounce...and 100kg increments. But if your familiar with Martin's formulas, they're in ounces.'s just math, right? So I grabbed pen and paper and got to it:

Liquid levain:
3 ounces APF
4 ounces water
2 tablespoons (exactly...honest ;) ) sourdough culture (discard? same thing...)

The Rest of the Story:

9 ounces bread flour
2 ounces whole wheat flour (I used hard winter wheat (red) because it seems to work better here)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dry yeast (Martin's idea...not mine but it does seem to deepen the flavor)
the levain I put together last night

Bulk ferment: 2hrs, slap and fold every 20 minutes for the first hour and leave it alone for the second
pre-shape into tubes, rest 15 shape into baguettes
let rise 30 minutes then preheat the over to 500 degrees F (I add a pan with water for steam)

Bake 5 minutes, remove steam, drop temp to 425 and bake for 20 minutes or so more (internal temp of 190-200 degrees F)

Sounds easy enough, right? And it was...until I discovered that I didn't flour my couche *quite* enough. Ugh. So much for the first perfect loaf. And then I realized that I had neglected to MEASURE the baguette shapes against the baguette pan I have--and they were too long. I also made the mistake of trying to pick the first baguette up from the ends (hey...I was gentle!). I KNOW BETTER. It proceeded to droop in the center--making it even longer! GREAT! I threw that loaf at the pan in disgust (gently!) and ROLLED the next one out of the couche. Still too long, but much better. Rinse and repeat with contestant number 3, adjusting the last two onto the pan and resigning myself to making croutons. Finally, I grab my $8 lame and *try* to make good, solid cuts, but the tool fails me again (it's curved and I've never been able to get the foolish curve thing figured out). Croutons are looking really good...besides I love them on salad. didn't take long for the baguettes to spring in the oven and the result wasn't quite as terrible as I thought it would be. Would I serve them to company? Not without cutting them (into croutons) but hey, it's dang tasty!

Cut baguette with butter


FLOUR THE COUCHE! The result of not doing it are...ummm...messy.
If you have a pan that's 12 inches in length, 16 inch baguettes don't work so well regardless of how good of an idea it may seem (i.e. measure twice, cut once!)
find a new lame.
And on a positive note, the more challenging the dough is to work with, the better the resulting bread when you get it right. 

idaveindy's picture

Favorite Baking Books:

Tartine Book No. 3, by Chad Robertson.

Whole Grain Breads, by Peter Reinhart.

The Bread Baker's Apprentice, by Reinhart.

Tartine Bread, by Chad Robertson.

Flour - Water - Salt - Yeast, by Ken Forkish.

Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, by Hertzberg and Francois.

The New Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, by Hertzberg and Francois.

Artisan Pizza and Flatbread in Five Minutes a Day, by Hertzberg and Francois.

The Tassajara Bread Book, by Edward Espe Brown.

Local Breads, by Daniel Leader.

Bread Alone, by Daniel Leader.

The Village Baker, by Joe Ortiz.

The Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book, by Laurel Robertson.

The Italian Baker, by Carol Field. 

Beard on Bread, by James Beard.

Location: Indiana 

Interests:  Near 100%, and at least 70%, whole grain loaves and flat-breads, mostly sourdough.

Baking Vessels: Lodge 3.2 qt cast iron combo cooker. Glass covered caserole.  Lodge 9" cast iron griddle. 8", 9",  10" cast iron pans. 5 qt enameled oval dutch oven.  Synthetic (cordierite) baking stone, 14-5/8", $10 from Aldi.  Lodge 14" cast iron pizza pan/griddle. Crofton 1.75 qt enameled cast iron sauce pan with lid, from Aldi.  Also bake in 1 qt and 2qt Pyrex/Anchor borosilicate measuring vessels.

Other Gear: Schule grain mill, hand crank, for cracking grain (does not make flour.) Wonder Junior Deluxe (hand operated), from WonderMill. Vitamix blender (regular blade, not the one for grains) for fine milling of pre-cracked grain.  Cheap $10 electric coffee/spice grinder for spices and small batches of flax, millet, amaranth, chia.

Top Two Grains: Prairie Gold (Hard White Spring) from Wheat Montana  (purchased thru CLNF), and Kamut (also from CLNF).

Favorite grains/flours: Prairie Gold, home-milled and store-bought flour. Kamut, home-milled. High extraction durum flour ("Fiber Walla"), from Sher Brar Mills, available at Indian/Pakistani stores. Bob's Red Mill Whole Wheat Pastry Flour. Spelt, home-milled and store-bought flour. Hard Red Spring Wheat, home-milled. Teff Flour, from Patel Brothers, or other Indian/Pakistani stores. Flax seeds. 

Favorite Suppliers: Country Life Natural Foods,, group orders. Patel Brothers, and other local Indo/Pak stores. E&S Sales, Shipshewana, Indiana, has 50 pound bags and repacks of dozens of grains/flours. Group order (4000 pounds, minimum) direct from Wheat Montana.


ckujawa's picture

It's been a long, hot summer. Well...not so long, but hot. Too hot to fire up the oven here in the house--and I hate that thought. So as the temperatures are dropping, so are the levels in my flour store since I'm making up for lost time. Add to that the fact that I'm looking for a new gig--as a bread baker and you've got the perfect recipe for....well....baking. As I was researching one of the places I was applying to today, I came across a menu item that I had not heard the name of--the Bialy. I was curious because the photo they had on their site looked tempting.

So I started digging around on the internet and found a few formulas (including Hammelman's on the BBGA website). I also discovered that legend has it that the bilay originally hailed from Bialystock, Poland before it was introduced in NYC about 100 years ago. Hey...I happen to be Polish and am a sucker for trying any food from that country. SO it was game on. Using several recipes for inspiration, I came up with the following, which borrows heavily from Hammelman and several other blog posts:

Onion filling:
1 medium red onion, minced in a food processor (it was too strong to do by hand...)
a bit of salt
1 tsp poppy seeds
olive oil

The Bread:

26 ounces KAF Sir Lancelot Flour  (100%)
16 ounces water
.5 ounces salt
.5 ounces instant yeast

For filling:
Heat oil in a pan, then add onions and salt to taste. Sautee the onions until they darken up a bit and become sweet. Remove from heat and add poppy seeds. Set aside

Confession time...
I didn't get this right out of the gate. The original formula I used had 16 ounces of flour and was...well, anyone remember attempting to eat the salted dough that you can use for making things like Christmas ornaments? was almost like that originally (oops), so I added more salt and more water to arrive at the numbers above. 

Anyway...nothing fancy here. Mix as usual, knead for...well, until it's ready (I had a smooth, sticky dough when done). Set it in a lightly oiled bowl for bulk fermentation for about 11/2 hours. Degas, divide 12 ways (roughly 5 ounces per portion), and make flattened rounds, putting each on a half sheet covered with parchment paper. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes. Then, create a depression in the middle of the round (about 1/2 of the round? I eyeballed it) and fill with the filling (I used roughly 1tsp took some experimenting to get a roughly even amount between them all).  Let rise for an additional 20 minutes or so and then pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees. Sprinkle with additional poppy seeds and bake for 12-15 minutes.  Note, I had 2 half sheets, one that I'm not too fond of so I swapped racks and rotated them about 1/2 way through the baking process too prevent burning and make sure they cooked evenly. 

Hope you enjoy! I had one as soon as it was cool enough to eat and it was FABULOUS.

Elsie_iu's picture

This is my second einkorn loaf. The first was baked roughly half a year ago when my friend kindly offered me some einkorn berries to try out. It left me with the impression that einkorn makes a slack and sticky dough that weakens with time. For some reason, the experience isn’t quite the same this time. 



50% Einkorn Sourdough



Dough flour

Final Dough


Total Dough










Flour (All Freshly Milled)









Sprouted Einkorn Flour









Einkorn Flour









Whole White Wheat Flour









White Whole Wheat Flour (Starter)









Whole Rye Flour (Starter)































































Vital Wheat Gluten









Starter (100% hydration)













































Sift out the bran from dough flour, reserve 28 g for the leaven. Soak the rest, if any, in equal amount of whey taken from dough ingredients. 

Combine all leaven ingredients and let sit until ready, about 4 hours (28.5°C). Roughly combine all dough ingredients. Ferment for a total of 4 hours. Construct a set of 3 minute Rubaud mixing at the 30 and 40 minute mark respectively. Do a set of lamination at the 50 minute mark. 30 minutes before shaping, do a set of coil fold. Shape the dough then put in into a banneton directly. Retard for 10 hours.

Preheat the oven at 250°C/482°F. Score and spritz the dough then bake straight from the fridge at 250°C/482°F with steam for 20 minutes then without steam for 25 minutes more or until the internal temperature reaches a minimum of 208°F. Let it cool for a minimum of 2 hours before slicing.



My hand shook while I was pouring the water into the flour… Oops... The dough was thus a bit too wet than I’d like. After the first round of mixing, it was still quite slack with little gluten development. However, it gained strength on its own as time went by. There was little, if any, stickiness too.



The oven spring wasn’t massive so my expectation wasn’t high. Miraculously, the crumb is rather open compared with my other whole grain bakes. It’s even more confounding when you consider that it’s 50% einkorn (of which more than half is sprouted!) and 50% white wheat. Both are grains that tend to produce weak dough.



Some people don't like einkorn but I personally find it quite tasty. It's got a very distinctive coconut taste that there's no way to mix it up with another grain. This bread is moderately sweet and sour.



Rolled oat & moong dal khichdi with baked capelin and caramelized carrots


Porcini mushroom, Jinhua ham & tomato rice pilaf with melted Reblochon


Tomato cream tuna rigatoni with king oyster mushrooms & shaved Gruyère


Pressure-cooked lamb shank Pho


Spicy black beans & rice with garlic ghee grouper


Squid biryani with garlicky cabbage & potatoes


Honey glazed pork chop 


Macau Portuguese chicken with egg fried rice, HK-style Bolognese with mushrooms, honey roasted sweet potatoes, and soy sauce braised veggies 


50% blue emmer SD ciabatta


30% durum scallion SD bagels


Hotbake's picture

Sweet, soft crumb, slightly tangy, with a fruity, citrusy aroma both from the earl grey tea leaf and the lime zest.

I've been craving French toast and wanted something special instead of plain ol white sourdough. This is gonna do it if we don't kill it before it's stale enough for French toast..


TwoCats's picture

I was not expecting this, but given how active my levain was and how strong the 85% (!!!) hydration dough seemed to be, I guess I'm not that surprised!


Subscribe to RSS - blogs