The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


dabrownman's picture

Since Lucy and I didn’t die, or even get sick from our new wild and black rice starter we made last week we decoded to keep I around in the fridge for a while and see what we could do with this exotic culture.  Lucy said we need should make some SD noodles, something we haven’t done for a long time and it is too good not to do and so much better than most anything you can buy!


For sure, you won’t be able to buy Black Rice SD, spelt, Kamut, rye and wheat egg noodles – not even from Lucy who thinks that they should sell like hot cakes for Halloween along with the Black SD Bread she made that should have killed us😊  It turns out that folks have been making gluten free SD bread for a long time with brown rice SD starters and they are not dropping like flies.

We have the meat - Bacon, Sopresata, grilled chicken, smoked Italian sausage, smoked pepperoni .

This black rice starter is very active.  Even after a week in the fridge it doubled a single stage, bran levain in 4 hours on the window sill at 82 F.  The levain was 12 g of 100% black rice starter, 10 g of high extraction rye, 10g of wild and forbidden black rice flour and 30 g of bran sifted out from the home milled whole grains at 100% hydration.

Add the meat to the onion, grape tomato, and basil garlic

We added 130 g of high extraction 4 grain flour and used the Biscuit Method to get the levain evenly distributed before adding 1 egg to the starter.  It was so dry that we couldn’t get all the dry incorporated with a spoon so we added another egg.  This came out too wet for a pasta dough that has to have certain feel to it to make noodles, just like bread does.

Single serving - killer delicious!

In this case, it should feel bit like a 53% hydration, whole grain bagel dough but this one was too wet so we starter adding the wild and forbidden black rice flour and kneading it in the old fashioned way until it felt right and then kneaded for 10 minutes until smooth.

Grilled salmon dinner

We left it in a ball on the counter covered by a SS bowl kneading it every hour for 2.5 hours until it had risen 50% after the last kneading.  With no salt, high kitchen temperature and an active SD starter, it really took off after the 2nd hour on the bench.  We then oiled the SS bowl, kneaded the air out of it and chucked the dough into the fridge for a long 24 hour retard. 

There is Lucy's salad!

We let the dough warm up for an hour before dividing it into 4 ths to roll out as thin as we could for the thin noodles we wanted and to let them dry a bit on the counter uncovered.  They sure were weird looking so we decided to do a strange carbonara with them.  Bacon, grilled chicken, soprasata and pepperoni for the meats, a half cup each of Pecorino and Parmesan - the cheese  half in and half on the pasta with some grape tomatoes , green onion and basil to go along with the 2 eggs and a hlaf cup of pasta water to make everything silky.

Ham and cheese heirloom tomato and lettuce sandwidcor lunch with those killer Black rRce baguettes.

Weirdest Carbonara ever ….at least around here anyway😊  But tasty it was, in a weird sort of way!  Even the girls loved it despite its black appearance.

Click the link and vote for Maurizio - every day!

not.a.crumb.left's picture

Details are in the following thread..

I wanted to know whether a warm , cold bulk combined and then a cold retard would possibly get me a more open crumb as I noticed this with recent ciabatta and baguette bakes.

The above thread has more detail with photos and Solano was trying something similar. My conclusion is that it is another way to time a bake and make it work but result wise from a crumb point of view it compares to my normal process with warm bulk and then straight retarding. I have to say though the oven spring was great...not sure whether to do with the cold bulk or not though...

Elsie_iu's picture

I love sticky rice! No matter it is cooked whole in a savory dish or made into rice cake or mochi. Fried, steamed, baked or boiled, it is so versatile. After coming across bread recipes that suggested using up leftover rice cake from Chinese New Year by stuffing it into bread, I decided to create my own version of rice cake bread.  


Purple Rice Cake Sourdough with 20% Millet and 20% Sprouted Durum


Dough flour (all freshly milled):

180g      60%       Whole white wheat flour

60g        20%       Sprouted durum flour

60g        20%       Whole millet flour


For leaven:

9g           3%       Starter

18g         6%       Bran sifted out from dough flour

18g         6%       Whey


For dough:

282g        94%       Dough flour excluding bran for leaven

160g     53.3%       Water

100g     33.3%       Whey

45g          15%       Leaven

9g              3%       Vital wheat gluten

5g        1.67%       Salt


For purple rice cake:

25g         8.3%       Purple rice flour (glutinous black rice)

25g         8.3%       White glutinous flour

50g       16.7%       Water

5g         1.67%       Coconut cream powder

5g         1.67%       Sugar



304.5g      100%       Whole grain

282.5g     92.8%       Total hydration


Make the rice cake. Combine all ingredients then steam for 15 minutes (I cut the time to 5 minutes since pressure cooker was used). Let cool completely and refrigerate until it firms up. Cut it into cubes. Sprinkle it heavily with flour to prevent sticking. Keep refrigerated until needed.

Sift out the coarse bran from the dough flour, reserve 18g for leaven. Soak the rest, if any, in equal amount of whey taken from dough ingredients.

Combine all leaven ingredients and let sit until doubled, around 2.5 hours.

Roughly combine all dough ingredients except for the salt, leaven, and soaked bran, autolyse for 15 minutes. Knead in the reserved ingredients and ferment for 15 minutes. Fold in the purple rice cake then ferment for 3.5 hours longer.

Preshape the dough then let it rest for 15 minutes. Shape the dough and put in into a banneton. Retard for 11 hours.

Preheat the oven at 250°C/482°F. Remove the dough from fridge 30 minutes before baking.

Score and spritz the dough. Bake at 250°C/482°F with steam for 15 minutes then without steam for 25 minutes more or until the internal temperature reaches a minimum of 208°F. Let cool for at least 2 hours before slicing.

The bread has a rather close crumb, which I think both durum and millet played a role in. Moreover, it is a bit cakely and not chewy enough for my taste…On the bright side, I like that the rice cake added some nice stickiness and chewiness. Also, the yellow-purple contrast is just stunning!

The millet and sprouted durum gave this bread plenty of sweetness and there is very little sourness. I think the subtly sweet and aromatic rice cake makes the bread perfect for when you want dessert for breakfast :)



Time to try a red fife version of half sprouted red wheat bread.


100% Red Fife Sourdough with 50% Sprouted


Dough flour (all freshly milled):

150g      50%       Whole red fife flour

150g      50%       Sprouted red fife flour


For leaven:

10g        3.3%       Starter

40g      13.3%       Bran sifted out from dough flour

40g      13.3%       Whey


For dough:

260g     86.7%       Dough flour excluding bran for leaven

160g     53.3%       Water

100g     33.3%       Whey

90g          30%       Leaven

9g              3%       Vital wheat gluten

5g         1.67%       Salt



305g      100%       Whole grain

305g      100%       Total hydration


Sift out the coarse bran from the dough flour, reserve 40g for leaven. Soak the rest, if any, in equal amount of whey taken from dough ingredients.

Combine all leaven ingredients and let sit until doubled, around 3.5 hours.

Roughly combine all dough ingredients except for the salt, leaven, and soaked bran, autolyse for 15 minutes. Knead in the reserved ingredients and ferment for 15 minutes. Stretch and fold the dough for a few times then ferment for 2 hours longer.

Preshape the dough then let it rest for 15 minutes. Shape the dough and put in into a banneton. Retard for 8 hours.

Preheat the oven at 250°C/482°F.

Score and spritz the dough then bake directly from the fridge at 250°C/482°F with steam for 15 minutes then without steam for 25 minutes more or until the internal temperature reaches a minimum of 208°F. Let cool for at least 2 hours before slicing.

As you can probably tell, I under-proofed the dough slightly. Fortunately, the bread still has great texture and a moderately open crumb.

Containing 50% sprouted flour, the bread tastes amazing. Nevertheless, its taste doesn’t differ from that of regular red wheat as much as I have hoped for. I guess sprouting the grains reduced the faint flavour contrast.



Wow! I can't believe I made so many rice dishes within a week when rice is not even my preferred grain!

Thai pineapple minced pork fried rice

Omelette fried rice

Clear-the-fridge stir fry with minced lamb

Today’s dinner where Shanghai cuisine was the theme


hreik's picture

So.... I've been struggling with trying to let lift and good crumb from whole wheat.  I like 100% for it's health benefits. This is my third try and will post crumb shot later.

Formula (give or take)

250 gm whole wheat (sifted)

175 gm water

4 gm salt 

Autolyse above for several hours.  While doing that I fed my whole wheat starter and poured 60 gm of boiled water on the remaining 40 gm of the bran from sifting.


Final dough

autolysed dough (429 gm)

levain 48 gm

bran / water mix 100 gm


After mixing in several stages I added water as needed to get the consistency I'm used to.  It ended up being about another 50 gm of water.

Did 6 hour bulk fermentation with s&f every couple of hours.

Final bench rest (30) and shaping and then into fridge. 
However, I put some parchment paper in the banneton to  help me with transfer for the morning bake.  I did this b/c of the collapsing I've had w other attempts.

Baked for about 40 minutes, first 20 @ 475, last 20 @ 460.

 Crumb shot:  I'm pretty satisfied with these results,  Not perfect but improving with 100% ww and hydration.


alfanso's picture

The video below is my step by step journey in baking Maurizio Leo’s Levain Baguettes.  It is self explanatory with almost all steps included.  However, I eliminated the levain build and final mixing of ingredients as I’ll take a guess that there are some somnambulists on TFL just looking for a good video to ease them into Dream Land.  Please watch and hopefully you will enjoy the video as well as the voiceover.


copynumbervariant's picture

5pm scald: 125 g bulgur, 210 g water, 3 g salt

6pm chill the scald

7pm autolyze: the scald, 270 g king arthur bread flour, 155 g water

9pm levain: 60 g 100% starter, 85 g bread flour, 85 g water

9pm refrigerate autolyze

7am take autolyze out of frige

8:30am knead levain and 8 g salt into autolyze

9am - 11:30am six sets of stretch and folds

3pm shape into banneton

6:30pm bake covered

6:50pm uncover

7:30pm done

Crumb was so gooey I worried. I tried flopping the dough from the banneton into the cast iron, instead of placing the cast iron on top of the banneton and flipping it over. The banneton has been getting burnt on the top from the latter. It flopped a little off-kilter. The serrated knife for scoring isn't great, I have to cut multiple times over the same place to get a deep score, and it stretches the dough around.


9pm scald 200 g freekeh with 600 g boiling water and 4 g salt (not all of it was used for bread)

9pm chill scald

9pm mix levain 50 g starter 60 g water 60 g bob's red mill whole wheat flour

9pm mix autolyze 350 g king arthur bread flour, 220 g water

8:30am knead together autolyze and levain, then knead in 9 g salt and 250 g freekeh scald

9:00am S&F

9:30am S&F

10:00am S&F

10:30am S&F

11:00am S&F

1:30pm S&F

3:00pm shape

6:45pm bake covered

7:05pm uncover

7:45pm done

There probably don't need to be that many stretch and folds, and they don't need to be so close together during a six and a half hour bulk ferment.

All the pictures of beautiful banneton patterns on here have been making me jealous, so I thought I must have been overdoing it with flour. I just did a handful of semolina this time, and the dough stuck, strangely not to the bottom but to two points halfway up the sides. Once out onto the peel, it spread in the direction of the sticking points, so I scored it with parallel cuts to expand it in the other direction. By that time it had already spread beyond the size of the cast iron. This was the first time I've used a peel as an intermediary between banneton and cast iron, and it will be the last. Slipping it off the peel caused the dough to bunch up against one side of the pan, where it burnt.

The green wheat taste of freekeh is interesting. It has a bit of astringency. Dry, it smelled like grain moths to me, but because it was a newly opened package, I thought I had probably been erroneously associating the smell of whole wheat with grain moths. Now I'm not so sure, though there aren't any moths or larvae in the freekeh.

Ru007's picture

Hello friends! 

Happy monday :) This is was my bake yesterday...

I've been working on this formula for a couple of months and I've almost settled on a flour blend that I really like. 70% white, 25% whole grain and 5% rye. I'm still working on what grain the 25% is. I'm not really spoiled for choice in terms of flour, but I've tried 25% spelt, and 25% whole wheat and a few variations in between. This one is 25% whole wheat. 

The hydration has varied from 75% to 85% this week. I must say this has been my favorite version of the dough to work with. I use 2.4% salt.


1. Levain build the night before mixing 16g 80% hydration 100% rye NMNF starter, 6g rye, 36g whole wheat, 33g water. I typically use the levain when its some where between 10 and 12 hours old (although I do want to try using it when its a bit younger, just to see what happens)

2. 2 hour autolyse on mixing day (316g water, 296 white unbleached bread flour, 67g whole wheat flour)

3. Add 10 g salt and 90g levain to flour and hand mix for a couple of minutes. Rest for 10mins and mix again. Repeat 3 -4 times. 

4. S&F 60, 120 and 180 mins after mixing. 

5. Bulk ferment for another 3 hours or until the dough is jiggly (yes, this is a very technical term!)

6. Preshape and rest for 30mins then shape. 

7. Proof at room temp for another 1 -2 hours (depending on the weather, it was cold this weekend so I let it go for 2 hours).  

8. Retard overnight, bake straight from the fridge. 250dC with steam for 20mins ,230dC without steam for another 25mins.


I'm happy with the crumb on this one, its nice and soft.

I've tried this leafy scoring pattern before, but I think I like this version better, with the more aggressive slashes down the side... but I might change my mind next week! 

Have a great week everyone and happy baking :)


leftcoastloaf's picture

For anyone interested, I've been doing most of my progress tracking in instagram. You can find me at @leftcoastloaf

See you there!

dabrownman's picture

We have been making a few fruit tarts instead of the more usual galettes of late.  This time to get farther from the French and more toward the Italians we put a small tub of mascarpone in the French Cream Patisserie and we added some lemon zest and vanilla to it too.


We kept the half and half almond and AP crust but upped the butter to 4/5th of a stick, cut the egg out completely and added some vanilla to it too.  We like the no egg version much better.  it isn’t as sturdy but it is much lighter.  With half ground almonds you don’t need any extra almond extract either.

We didn’t cook the Cream Patisserie as long this time to thicken it up as much because we knew the cold mascarpone would be whisked in later to thicken it up and we wanted it to spread easy plus we know this was going to bake at 350 F for 45 minutes to set it really firm eventually.  It came out like a light Italian cheesecake filling so it wasn’t as eggy or sweet either.

Don't make fun of my basil flour decorations.

The fruits were one each: black plums, Bartlett pears, Fuji apple, a stone free yellow peach and half of a nectarine all sliced thin.  We marinated the sliced fruit with some sugar and some warm spices including ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and mace. 

Unglazed and no pistachios so you can see the cream. cheese filling.

We par baked the shell for 20 minutes to get it golden and let it cool before the cream/ cheese filling went in.  The fruits were arranged on top and the blue berries added at the last minute.  I would have rather used strawberries for some color but we were out – no worries.

Shrimp and grilled veg taco with cabbage on top - no sauces yet:-)

We reserved the marinating liquid that came out of the fruits to glaze the tart after baking and stick the pistachios to the top of it.  An un-glazed tart looks unfinished and naked.  Once it cools we will put it in the fridge to get cold.  You can also not bake this tart if you prefer it that way and your fruits are ripe.  I prefer a baked one for extra flavor.

Chicken stir fry

Grilled salmon dinner

Green Chili Pork Enchilada

Will have to let you know what it tastes like after dinner tonight but it sure smelled nice near the end of baking.  This is one fine tasting tart.  It is actually better the next day with a basil sprig;-)  The fruits a great but the mascarpone filling is to die for.  A bit of pistachio crunch, with the basil flower savory mixed with the sweet is a typical Italian paring.  Everyone seems to want seconds for some reason!

Lucy reminds us to eat a peach and blueberry loaded salad before the dessert if we want to be around long enough to have more dessert😊  Plus a Monsoon Arizona Sunset.

not.a.crumb.left's picture

When I was in Germany I decided to do this bread when I am back home and was waiting for Maurizio to post the formula...

I love the colour and the gentle taste of the Kamut in this bread and boy I know now why he said to use a mixer. However, I don't have a mixer and that is I had to use some slap and folds to manage and for the first time I had dough on the wall!!!!!

I also used some strong coil folds for the three folds during the bulk fermentation and the dough was nice and bubbly going into the wine cooler.

My wine cooler was a bit warmer than the suggested 3-4C at 5.5C but it seemed to be ok and dough had a little rise but not too much...considering it was in wine cooler from 3.30PM to 9AM...

Maurizio said to use lots of flour when dividing and needed not much encouragement to do that!!!

Maurizio said to proof 2 hours but I felt that the dough was looking good after one hour and did not want to push my luck....

I think this bread will be baked more often to sit on our bench in the garden!


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