The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


Dsr303's picture

Made this this morning...finally got the hang of slashes..

mike_1_berry's picture

I came across a recipe for Cranberry Sourdough on the Breadwerx website yesterday and decided to give it a try. Although the oven spring was a little lacking every other aspect of the bread was amazing. Definitely one of the best tasting breads I have made and I recommend everyone else giving this a try. 

Trevor's videos and recipes are so easy to follow and I have always used them as a basis for my recipes since I started baking. 



Loretta23's picture

Hi.  I have this book.  Made country batard and buckwheat round.  Horrible.  Not edible.  Could not cut it with an axe.  Inside thin and gummy.  Read and re-read book.  Can anyone help?  Thanks in advance.  Loretta

joc1954's picture

This is an improved version of my gluten free 100% buckwheat bread leavened with yeast water. The recipe was tested many times from different enthusiasts and always gave a very good result. It might happen that you will not get so open crumb in first attempt, but the bread will still be tasty and soft like a cake as it contains no gluten. 

You can use any active yeast water.


1.) Prepare the leaven - The leaven is built in two stages. Start with 50% of flour and 50% of yeast water – so with 100g of flour and 150g of yeast water. When doubles add the rest of flour and yeast water and wait until doubles again. You can use any active yeast water.

2.) Add the water from the main dough part to the leaven and psyllium and let ferment from 30 - 60 minutes. Then add the buckwheat flour and salt and mix well for at least few minutes on a low speed or mix with hand. Now you can add seeds, walnuts, …

3.) Leave the dough to rest for about 30 minutes and mix with hand for about a minute. Repeat this step again after resting of 30 minutes.

4.) Form a loaf and put it into the proofing basket and let it rise until it almost doubles what might take about 3-5 hours.

5.) Bake in preheated oven at 240 dC covered or with a lot of steam for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 220 dC and bake it for 40 minutes. After that uncover it and bake for next 10 to max 20 minutes. For this last part you may reduce the temperature if the loaf is already well brown.


Happy baking,


kendalm's picture

As several other member's have bit the Abel bug I thought it's about time to give it a shot. This was a half ditched effort since I couldn't locate my loaf tins and so had to go free form. Not disappointed, thos of course was an unfocused experiment more-or-less just to see how it would turn out as a side bake against croissants with more attention to the croissants. Since they (croissants) take a good bit of oven kick, I think the pain vienoisse turned out a little too dark - I even removed it from the oven at around minute 5 to allow the croissants to take on he heat and then returned it later at a lower temp. Problem was that after 5 minutes it was already a bit too dark. I think this loaf needs a super short hot kick as in 3 minutes around 425 then a longer warm bake say 20-25 at around 375. That's what I would soon the next take. But anyway here's the results for those interested ;)

trailrunner's picture

well I am astounded at the results of this bake. Even more simple than any others of late. Small amount of  hands on involved and amazing oven spring for so little effort. Will post crumb later...having a dinner party in an hour so need to get scooting ! 

Refreshed Starter, 100% hydration*:  150 grams
Total Flour**:  485 grams 
Water:  330g 
Sea Salt:  11 grams

Borrowed this formula from Girl meets dirt a blog that is interesting if you want to take a look. 

I of course did some changes to the formula. I used a fresh ground young rye levain at some hydration . I don't keep track of how much flour or water I add. I just make it feel right when I stir it. I used all unbleached KA bread flour. I doubled all the amounts. Of the 660g total of water there was 200 g of AYW and 460 g H2O. I added  more water to get the mix as soft as I like it. All was stirred together except the salt and placed in the oven with light on. When it was puffy in about 2 hrs. I took it out and folded in the salt with misted water at several intervals as I added the salt. Since 1 tsp adds 1 percent of hydration who knows how much I had :) ? I then set the dough back in the oven with light on. After one hour I took it out and did one s and f. It was pretty wet so I was glad I floured the board. Put it all back for another hour. Did one more s and f. Felt like it needed more time so set it back again. Was almost at double by then. Took it out and did one gentle s and f and included some ground flax seeds. Not toasted or soaked and probably only about 25g since I am experimenting with them. Made a batard and one boule....thought better of it and cut 300g off the batard and made a baby boule . Placed in banneton and directly in fridge. Baked in 500 degree preheated granite ware roaster. 500 degrees 10 min with 4 ice cubes ( note I have doubled the amount) tossed under the paper lid on.  475 degrees 10 min lid on. And then 20 min 475 lid off. Temp 212. This is my first loaves in forever with this much white. So we shall see the crumb etc. 






baby boule 

isand66's picture

This is a very rustic bread using roasted baby red potatoes and roasted sweet potatoes.  For the red potatoes I mashed them up and added them skins and all.  You can see some whole pieces of potato sticking out in the crumb shots below.

  I used fresh milled whole spelt without sifting and rye which I sifted with #40 mesh and after re-sifting the hard bits I added them back in after the final mix was complete.

The potatoes added approximately 148 grams of water which is not indicated in the formulas hydration, so this was a much higher hydrated dough than it appears.

I also added some freshly made Greek Yogurt to add some softness to the crumb.

I was very pleased with the flavor and crumb on this bake.  It was nice and soft and chock full of flavor with a moderately open crumb.  Definitely one worth making again.


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.

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

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours, barley flakes, potatoes,yogurt and 85% or so, of the 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 1 hour.  Next add the salt, starter (cut into about 7-8 pieces), olive oil and the rest of the water and mix on low for 4 minutes.  Now add the remaining sifted bran back into the dough and mix for a few seconds.  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 1.5 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).

When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1 hour (Spelt tends to proof very quickly, so if you don't use Spelt I would leave the dough out 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 about 1 hour depending on your room temperature (if not using Spelt it will take 1.5 to 2 hours).  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 520 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 450 degrees.  Bake for 25-35 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 205 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.

Dsr303's picture

Hi... cracked my clay clouche( spritzed water on dough..bad idea). Does any one know if cracked base can b repaired or just chalk it up lost and buy a new one.   Thanks

Danni3ll3's picture

I loved Trailrunner’s “Look ma, almost no hands…” bread method and decided to give it a shot. This bread is almost the same recipe, but scaled to making three loaves and with the addition of some flax.  The ingredient list is similar to Trevor’s European Peasant loaf so I decided to have some fun with names and call this a Canadian Settler loaf because of the inclusion of maple syrup in it. Carolyn, I hope that you don’t mind me renaming your bread!


So to start off, I began by following Carolyn’s method but I just couldn’t resist throwing in a few folds during the bulk fermentation and I ended up doing my usual pre-shape, rest and final shape. I also took her advice and did the proof in the fridge rather than the bulk fermentation. I did have to add more water than her original recipe because of my very thirsty flour and I couldn’t get things mixed using just a spatula. I ended up diving in using my hand to be able to first get the flour wet enough for the autolyse and then later, to mix in the salt and the levain. 


I really think that my Canadian flour absorbs a lot more water than others around the world as my dough never seems to be as wet as what I see in pictures here, especially at the autolyse stage. It takes a lot of squishing and working to get all of the flour wet and I often have to add 50 or so grams of water to be able to get that shaggy dough.


And I almost forgot, this is my first foray back into yeast water since baking a few bricks a couple of years ago. I made two yeast waters, one with raisins and one with apples. The raisin yeast water seemed to activate more quickly than the apple but I am unsure of what it is supposed to look like when you use it. Is it carbonated like pop or soda? All the raisins were floating and there were some bubbles but the liquid itself did not look carbonated at all when I used it. The apples floated the whole time so hard to tell when that one was ready. I figured that it was good enough after a week in a warm spot. I didn’t have time to do a test with flour and figured that with almost 18% prefermented flour, it wouldn’t be a disaster if the YW wasn’t ready. Both smelled amazing though with that piece of orange peel in it. One wouldn’t think that using a bit of orange peel would make such a difference but it does.


So here is what I did:


210 g spelt berries

113 g kamut berries

63 g rye berries

825 g unbleached flour

50 g freshly ground flax (got this idea from one of Mutantspace’s recipes)

25 g maple syrup

30 g plain yogurt

425 g yeast water (I did about half raisin and half apple)

200 g filtered water

22 g salt

430 g 2 stage 100 % hydration levain (method follows below)

  1. Mill the spelt, gamut and rye berries separately. Sift the bran out and reserve the bran and all of the spelt for the levain. Place the sifted kamut and rye flour in the dough bucket or bowl. As an aside, I received the Komo sifter as a belated Valentine’s Day gift and had a blast using it to sift out the bran. I used the middle screen but next time, I will use the finer screen. It sure beats sifting by hand.
  2. Prepare a two stage levain (à la Dabrownman) by using 23 g of active starter, 210 g of filtered water and 210 g of bran/sifted spelt flour making sure that all the bran makes it into the first build. I left this overnight. The next day, feed again 210 g of filtered water and 210 of spelt flour. This doubled in less than 3 hours.
  3. Right after the second feed, place the remaining ingredients except for the salt and the levain in the dough bucket. Mix well to a shaggy dough and let rest while the levain is rising. I placed both in a warm spots, the dough in the oven with the light on and the levain in the microwave where I had heated a cup of water. Carolyn said that her dough got puffy while autolysing but I didn’t really see any activity with mine.
  4. Once the levain has doubled and is starting to recede, mix in the salt and the levain. This is where I tried doing this with the spatula but it wasn’t mixing in well so I just dove in with my hand and mixed it as per usual. 
  5. I put the dough back into its warm spot and gave it two sets of folds each an hour apart. Then I let the dough rise only 25 to 30% which took about 3 and half hours. I didn’t let it go to 50% or double because I was trying to repeat my success with oven spring when I made my version of Trevor’s European Peasant loaf. 
  6. Just before turning out the loaf, I gave it one final set of very gentle folds and turned the dough out on a lightly floured counter. I am definitely using a lot less flour than in the past. Divide into 3 loaves or 2 larger loaves. I preshaped the dough very gently into a boule by bringing the edges to the middle, turning it over and then gently shaping into a round with the dough scraper. I let rest about 15 minutes and then did a final shape by cinching the dough “à la Trevor” and tightened the boules’ skin by pulling on a dry counter surface.
  7. The boules went seam side down into floured bannetons and were covered with plastic bowl covers. Then into the fridge for the night. 
  8. The next morning, they were baked as per usual (thanks to LazyLoafer for her method): Oven and pots heated to 475 F, parchment rounds in the bottom of the pots, and boules baked covered and seam side up at 450 F for 25 minutes and then uncovered and baked for a further 22 minutes at 425 F. 


I was very pleased to see great oven spring! I think I might have been over fermenting my dough since I seem to be getting much better oven spring when I let it go only 25 to 30%. We will see what the crumb looks like when I cut them open.


This write up is already long enough but unfortunately, I am not done, in case you made it down this far. Ha ha! Only four loaves out of the 8 that I have for sale were spoken for and I do have a friend that only buys bread if it has fruit in it, so since it was her birthday on Friday, I decided to make one batch with fruit. In addition to the above recipe, at the autolyse stage, I threw in 25 g poppy seeds, 25 g hemp hearts, 75 g chopped medjool dates and 75 g cranberries as well as an additional 50 g of water since the add-ins absorbed a fair bit of the hydration. Otherwise, the recipe and method is the same as above. Here it is fresh out of the oven.


I tried to give credit for techniques and ideas so that we can see how much we influence each other in our baking. There are many others such as Minioven, CedarMountain, Ian, Bread1965, Rue, Icedemeter, and Leslie just to name a few that I haven’t mentioned in this post but have definitely impacted my thinking and practice. Pretty amazing really! 

ketupat007's picture

Hello Everyone,

I posted once on one of the very old thread and I think its better that I start a blog on my croissant adventure as I think I need to note down what works and what not works.  I too hope that I will be able to get some tips and advice from all the experts too.

My first attempt in making croissant at home.  Used 100% bread flour and I think my laminating skill with a rolling pin wasn't great.  Secondly, I think I didn't proof enough even though it was more than 2 hours.  I used the recipe from Yuval Ayalon.  The outcome was breadlike.

On my 2nd attempt, I changed the flour by using 80% bread flour and 20% AP flour.  I also use put the dough in the freezer after every turn.  Next, I try to proved it longer, more than 2 hours before I baked it.  I can see the potential of the honeycomb texture but still, it was NOT really a croissant which one will buy in the bakery.

My 3rd attempt...changed the ratio of the flour to 50%-50%.  Stretched the freezing a little longer (30 mins) after every turn.  I also proved it longer (nearly 31/2 hours) and finally I could see the honeycomb texure.  I am so happy and excited but of course, I still have a long way to go.  But right now, I am just so happy.

Any tips and advice from you guys would be appreciated.

Next, I will try bicolor croissants as suggested by my hubby.

Wish me good luck!!!




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