The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


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victoriamc's picture

Herb bread recipe number 5.  This recipe for lemon thyme bread needed a bit of testing before I was happy with it. The final version featured on is an easy recipe for a lovely soft flavourful bread.  A great way to make use of fresh thyme if you have some growing in your garden.  Lovely and citrussy, fresh and summery, almost worth baking just for the wonderful aroma.

sonia101's picture


It's freezing in Melbourne so I'm quite content to stay home in the warmth and bake comfort food lol


Sourdough Millers loaf from the Bourke Street Bakery cookbook.


Five Grain Sourdough loaf from The Fundamental Techniques Of Classic Bread Baking, The French Culinary Institute cookbook.




 Sourdough Naan Bread with butter chicken, such a lovely quick and easy recipe. Recipe by Skibum



Sourdough Chocolate Brownies, my son and husband loved this recipe!



My not so pretty Chellah, need to work on this lol. Any ideas on what I am doing wrong? Is it under proofed ? I love this recipe and the taste is amazing but they always explode while in the oven.




Friday Night sourdough pizza.


Testing out my new steam oven, creme brûlée from the miele steam oven recipe book



Cheers Sonia

FrugalBaker's picture

I received my two oval brotform yesterday and decided to bake for my friend. I knew I bought an 8" but they seemed smaller than expected. So, I did the volume test! I put in 3 cups of raw rice in the round brotform and did the same to the oval. I got the answer....they hold the same. My dough tend to proof quite a bit in fridge overnight and my final dough somehow weighed more than the usual, probably due to the bravery that I have nowadays on increasing dough hydration. Eventually, I persuaded myself to split it into two. I would have preferred to have one big loaf rather than two but the bake came out really nice. Happy, Happy, Happy :) and my friend was very impressed with the result too.


Herbalgarden's picture

Homemade yeast, prepared black beans and barley ahead of time. Tripe B-campagne(black bean, barley and black sesame) it is.

victoriamc's picture

So my Herb garden is thriving and I am so happy to have some lovely fresh herbs just outside my back door that I started a herb-bread blog feature.  Breads 2 and 3 are now posted on 

Bread 2;  Savoury picnic muffins, with basil, olives, feta and tomato.  These are lovely little muffins, super easy to make and packed with the flavours of greece

Bread 3; Rosemary potato bread.  An artisan whole wheat bread, with fresh rosemary and speckled with chunks of potato.  Really nice!

isand66's picture

  I love potatoes in bread and in any other form as well as pecans so I figured it was time to use both of them again in a bread.

I recently milled some fresh whole wheat flour and still had some freshly milled durum and sprouted durum flour left over from a little while ago.  I decided to add some KAF high gluten flour to strengthen the dough a little and a little walnut oil just for good measure.

The water content listed on the formula below does not include the water content from the potatoes which are 81% water so the actual hydration of the dough is around 86%.  Since the freshly milled flours are very thirsty the dough was very manageable.

The final bread came out amazing with a nice moist and open crumb perfect for toasting, grilling and just about anything you can do with bread!  I highly recommend you try this one if you get a chance and feel free to substitute your favorite nut.


First Peony Flower of the Season


Sprouted Durum- Whole Wheat Pecan Potato Bread  (%)

Sprouted Durum- Whole Wheat Pecan Potato Bread  (weights)

Download the BreadStorm File Here.


Levain Directions

Mix all the Levain ingredients together for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled.  I usually do this the night before.

Either use in the main dough immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 day before using.

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours  and water together in your mixer or by hand until it just starts to come together, maybe about 1 minute.  Let it rest in your work bowl covered for 20-30 minutes.  Next add the salt, starter (cut into about 7-8 pieces), walnut oil (or olive oil) and mashed potatoes, and mix on low for 5 minutes.  Lastly add the pecans and mix for about 1 minute until they are incorporated thoroughly.  Remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds.  Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold.  Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold.  After a total of 2 hours place your covered bowl in the refrigerator and let it rest for 12 to 24 hours.  (If you have a proofer you can set it to 80 degrees and follow above steps but you should be finished in 1 hour to 1.5 hours).

When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1.5 to 2 hours.  Remove the dough and shape as desired.   Place your dough into your proofing basket(s) and cover with a moist tea towel or plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray.  The dough will take 1.5 to 2 hours depending on your room temperature.  Let the dough dictate when it is read to bake not the clock.

Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 550 degrees F. and prepare it for steam.  I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf.  I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.

Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, score as desired and then add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.

After 1 minute lower the temperature to 500 degrees and after another 3 minutes lower it to 450 degrees.  Bake for 25-35 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 210 degrees.

Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.



Spider Worts




victoriamc's picture

I am pleased to kick off my collection of herby-breads recipes with this easy recipe for Garlic herb flatbread.  More posts for herby bread recipes, all inspired by my superabundant herb garden, are scheduled to follow on  Its a kind of herb bread theme week, or herb bread blog marathon. However you like to call it, it should be delicious 

FrugalBaker's picture

This bake started out as an experiment. I live in the tropics, my starter would peak 5 times of its size within 4 hours or so. Therefore, I was doing things the complete opposite at my end here....'How to slow down the fermentation process and maximise the flavour of SD'!

I was building the starter as per recipe but Abe suggested to put some cold water to slow down the process and I gladly complied. The water was iced-cold, only to slow down the process during the 1st hour or so but it still peaked as usual. Therefore, this method could only buy me an hour or two....not by a big margin. Also, adding sugar or honey would not affect the texture of SD. 


To be honest, this is not the first time that I made a sourdough with dried cranberries and walnut but this bake came out with a lovely hue, more so than the one turned purple. I guess it could be a hit with the ladies : )


And I was just thinking, SD or artisan bread doesn't need to be eaten over breakfast or dinner only. If we use our imagination a bit, it could be a very good Valentine Gift Basket too. Just add in lots of cranberries on a white SD, have a few stalks of flower, homemade jam...and voila! 


Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend so far.....happy baking!





Crumb Shot.


Lady In Purple.


Close up on yet another crumb shot!



alexandrut03's picture

After 2 years (or more?) ... YEY!


And the update... a higher hydration dough... 

Anyway... missed so much... uhhhhh.... :D:D:D

Cheers from Italy ! (red wine and a slice of bread....a beautiful sunny Saturday... what else?... ) 

victoriamc's picture

During out trip to England my kids fell in love with English granary bread.  So I came up with a recipe that I thought would produce something similar to that lovely soft, nutty tasty grainy english favourite.  It worked out great and after a couple of test bakes its now featured on  So if you also like a sandwich/toast bread that is healthy, high fibre, tasty, perfect for sandwiches or toast, then this recipe would be a good for you.  


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