The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


tombierbaum's picture

Does anyone know where you can find St. John's Johnnie bread in retail stores in Minneapolis? Finding it difficult to locate.  Thanks

abunaloaf's picture

Whenever I make bread I leave some in the fridge for frying.  Sometime over the past several months I forgot it and it started to bubble and smell a bit sour...I added it to my bread and  now I always leave some of my bread as a starter for the next batch....And the bread is amazing fried in a cast iron pan with a bit of butter, and split and more added.  I actually use Becel...good as butter.  I like to think this type of sourdough with yeast added to every new batch has the same health benefits as regular sourdough which I gave up on.

For the fried bread I just make it into small circles, flatten with my fingers, and cook turning them once in awhile until nicely browned.  Serve hot with marjarine, and jam if you wish.

This has different names around the world.  I have known them as fried bread, flummies (Labrador), panitsiak (Inuit), toutons (Newfoundland) and stove cakes (my mother).  And I think they resemble a fried bread I tasted from the East Indian culture.  I was thinking I wanted to learn how to make it, but if I flatten the fried bread enough, it works.

Floydm's picture

Monday is Thankgiving Day in Canada.  I'm listening to CBC 1 and they are talking all about turkey, cranberries, and stuffing.  Yum.

For Canadians looking for recipes to bake this weekend, a few of the more popular Thanksgiving recipes here:

 Buttermilk Cluster

 Sweet Potato Rolls

 Wild Rice & Onion Bread 

I think the latter is my favorite, though I bake them as rolls rather than loaves.  Just follow the technique used in the Sweet Potato Rolls recipe.

Happy Thanksgiving!



amy bassett's picture
amy bassett

I just love this recipe, thanks to Floyd for posting it!  It is just sweet enough and soft enough that you can't stop eating them!  I made these to go with my blackened salmon burgers............YUM!!  The sweetness of the roll was just a delicious combo!

amy bassett's picture
amy bassett

Ok, so here are my bagels, not my first time making them.  I've actually been making bagels for several years now.  I haven't had any complaints about them, in fact, many people say they really like them!  However, I was on a quest to see if I could get more out of my bagels, see if I could make them better.  So, I tried Peter Reinhart's recipe, minus the baking soda in the water on most of the bagels. I did do 2 bagels in the baking soda.  I always thought that having baking soda in the water would make it taste a lot like a pretzel and I don't think that's how a bagel should taste!  Well, I was wrong, well according to my husband :)  Definitely a little tougher crust, in a good way and the malt adds a little but more flavor!  Other than that, they taste just like the bagels I've been making for years. 

But.....I'm not sure that the process I went through makes this bagel any better than the way I've been doing them.  I've been following a very simple recipe, flour, water, yeast, salt and sugar. Let is rise until double, divide into 4 oz pieces, shape, let rest for 20 minutes, boil for a minute each side and bake for 15-20 minutes at 400-425.  If I left the bagels to rise overnight in the fridge, they would turn out the same.  I just don't know if the retarding process is really necessary.  What do you think?


loydb's picture

The first batch of sourdough biscuits I made (see below in the blog) were fantastic. So, of course, I had to wildly tinker with the recipe. This time, I decided to mill soft white wheat (3%) to use for the dry flour portion of the recipe. I figured there would be enough bread flour in the sourdough starter. 

I was wrong.

I got no oven spring at all. They taste good, but are dense. I told my wife they were flatbread. I don't think she bought it...

PhOven's picture

I'm still a sourdough novice but a restrict sourdough purist. :-) Of course, I usually add baking soda and powder to sourdough cookie batter or cake batter that can save old sourdough starter. However, I try not to add yeast when I bake 'bread' using sourdough.

It was a great experience for me to get to know this web community and see marvelous sourdough bread that home bakers worked so hard. Most bread did not look like a standard of that amateurs could bake: they've really set a high standard for a newcomer like me. Their bread has been a great inspiration to me for last 8 months and I learned a lot from this community. But one thing that I've eagerly wanted to know was whether sourdough was good source enough to make enriched bread. I could find some enriched bread made out of sourdough but adding yeast to it, not the amount of a pinch but as the same as to usual yeast bread. I thought it did not give me an edge in culturing my starter if wild yeasts were useless to expand enriched dough. That is why zolablue's posting about sourdough challah was so meaningful for me. It was hillarious to see her beautiful bread based on the recipe by Maggie Glezer.


As a beginner, I tried to bake many bread that had different ratio of sourdough starter, butter, or eggs to flour. Finally, tada~~~~~ I'm so much proud of myself though you may not agree with me. My recipe is sourdough ensaimadas without sour taste at all. Just like yeast-added enriched bread, they are tender and buttery. I truely love the sour taste of sourdough bread but I need to satisfy my people who are not familiar with it(you can figure out that my English is not that of natives!). So I have had to be obssessed with the taste as well as the crumb. To be honest, I prefer healthy sourdough bread, love its sourness and rarely bake enriched bread. Sometimes, it is worth enjoying sweet and rich bread for breakfast when it gets cold outside...


If you want to look a glance at my recipe ...

<Preferment : overnight>

60% sourdough starter 18g (vigorous and fed)
Water 40g
Bread flour 68g

<Final dough>

All of preferment
Bread flour 250g
Sugar 38g
Salt 1/2ts (You can add more if you want)
Milk 80g
1 Egg (medium size)
Oil 1TS
Butter 50g
Melted butter for brushing
Egg wash

1. Mix preferment and all ingredients for final dough and knead till it is smooth.
2. Bulk fermentation for 2 hours. It may not expand double but that's fine.
3. Divide into 10 pieces of dough and roll out like a rectangle. Brush the melted butter on the surface, roll up and coil the dough like snails. 
4. Proof them on the baking sheet for 3-4 hours untill it is doubled.
5. Preheat the oven to 350 degree and brush the egg wash to each piece of snail-shaped dough when it's ready.
6. Bake them for 20 minutes.


I hope you enjoy my sourdough ensaimadas~

lumos's picture

Just so that  you know I haven’t given up on T55 baguette challenge. ;)

Been always wondering the reason behind using 30% flour for pre-ferment for poolish baguette formula and 50% for Pain Rustique with Poolish in Hamelman’s book.  Thought higher proportion of pre-fermented flour would give you better flavour, that’s his Pain Rustique with poolish recipe was what my regular formula for poolish baguette was based upon…..Which works fine for baguette using a mix of UK strong flour (70-75%) and plain flour (30-25%). But didn’t with 100% T55.

Replaced plain flour with T55 but kept strong flour in poolish, but still not quite right.   Wondered if its very low protein level can’t withstand my formula of combination of poolish & very long cold fermentation, I tried reducing the ratio of pre-fermented flour to about 1/3, as in Hamelman’s poolish baguette formula…..and it worked, more or less, though not perfect. But the imperfection was probably due to shortcoming of my skill rather than the formula. The dough was much more manageable and easier to handle, easier to shape, easier to score. Though admittedly it lacks the complexity and depth of 50% pre-fermented flour option I’d been using, and the crumb had lighter texture, too, which can be said it’s more baguette-like. 

So, it might be ‘bout time I need to learn to compromise on something to achieve something better in other parts. Maybe the case of a lesson; there can be a good reason for everything. (most of the times….)

So this is the new formula for my latest version of revised Hamelinet Poolish baguette.  The only thing I changed is the ratio of pre-fermented flour used for poolish and the amount of yeast and water, accordingly. The method remains same as the original (the link above).



Hamelinet Poolish Baguette – Revised with 1/3 poolish

 Ingredients (To make 4 x 40cm mini-baguettes)

Poolish --- Strong flour 155g

                    Rye  15g

                    Dried yeast  0.3g

                    Water  155g


Main Dough --- T55  330g

                             WW  20g

                              Dried yeast 1.3g

                               Salt 10g

                              Water 200g




 Obvious next step may be to replace strong flour in poolish with T55.  Been contemplating that…a lot....though I have a feeling it may needs more intense kneading rather than just several sessions of S & F to develop enough gluten strength for this T55,  at least at the initial kneading stage. Will look into it….perhaps…. Maybe back to my old favourite of Bertinet’s slap & fold technique?  Another case of there's a reason for everything, possibly......


Mebake's picture

This is a my first take on a recipe from Laurel’s Kitchen bread book. It is (Basic Whole Wheat bread). The recipe is basically an enriched (Butter/oil , and Honey) 100% whole wheat bread.

The whole procedure from mixing to baking takes roughly 5-6 hours, quite fast! Recipe calls for 1.6 tsp for a 900 grams of whole wheat flour. The hydration is about 70%, but I increased it to 75%.

I used the slap and fold kneading method to arrive at the gluten development strongly advocated for in the recipe. I added the butter later half way through the mixing. I made sure that a window pane was formed.

The interesting thing about the recipe is that it includes deflating the dough twice, there is a first rising, “gently deflating, not punching down!!” and then 2nd rise, deflating again, then rounding/resting  for 10 minutes, and finally shaping. Even the shaping technique for a sandwich loaf is unique in this book (I may illustrate the shaping technique one day).

I used freshly milled white Australian whole wheat.  




    Tall domed loaf using a Pullman look alike french deep pan







   Very soft, tender and light bread.







    Slices toast very quickly, as would white sandwich loaves.







    The crumb was cotton soft. 2Tb of butter did the trick!





I loved this bread, Period. The book has also some wealth of information about wholegrains and baking in general. I really recommend this book to any Home baker who wishes to bake healthy, yet light and flavorful wholegrain bread at home.




sam's picture


I wanted to try out a schedule that worked for my normal work-week and maximizing
flavor, because I am usually not around during the daytime hours.  Also I
wanted to see the effect of a purely white flour mash.
Due to the way my schedule works, I did bulk ferment of 24 hrs, with the understanding
that my final dough might be sour (hopefully not inedible sour),
So for this recipe I was going for 100% white flour.  For my palette, a white
bread with a solid tang is good.  Maybe not so much tang for breads with a high
percentage of whole grains.

Turns out, this was perfect (for me).  I would make this again.  Tastes great!

All flour is KA Bread Flour, except for the starter flour which is KA AP.
All weight in grams.

Total Dough Weight: 1000  
Total Dough Hydration: 68%  
Total Dough Flour Weight: 595  
Total Dough Water Weight: 405  

Levain Percentage: 20%  
Levain Hydration: 125%  
Starter Percentage: 10% of leaven 
Starter Hydration: 125%

Soaker Percentage: 54%  
Soaker Hydration: 80%  
Mash Percentage: 20% of soaker 
Mash Hydration: 200%  
Soaker Salt Percentage: 1%
Overall Dough Salt Percentage: 1.5%

Flour Weight: 114  
Water Weight: 143
Starter Weight: 12

Flour Weight: 64  
Water Weight: 128
Diatastic Malt Powder: 1

All Mash:
Flour Weight: 257  
Water Weight: 129  
Salt Weight: 3  
Final Dough:
All Levain
All Soaker/Mash
Flour Weight: 155

Salt: 6

Procedure I did:

1)  Evening #1, made mash.  I did 55C for 90 mins, 60C for 30 mins,
65C for 30 mins, 70C for 30 mins.

2)  Morning #2, mixed levain and soaker/mash.

3)  Evening #2, mixed everything to final dough.  Put dough into
chiller at 44F / 6.6C.

4)  Morning #3, stretch + fold.

5)  Evening #3, took dough out of chiller, another stretch + fold.

6)  Final of evening #3:

Allowed 1 hr for warm-up.

Shaped.  Cut out a small chunk of dough to watch bubble activity.

It took 2.5 hours for dough to be ready for bake -- Both from bubble activity
and feel of the dough.  I am getting better at gauging the feel of the dough,
and not needing the crutch of watching bubble activity, but it is good to have
the small chunk of dough as a confirmation.

Turns out, I am still staying up too late on Evening #3, because it takes a while
for the dough to do the final ferment after being the chiller for so long.  
But, I can make bread during the week!  :)


Oven after first 10 minutes of steam:


Baked with steam (above) for 10 mins at 460F, then lowered to 420F.   Here it is after 20 mins at 420F.



A little bit darker than I'd like, but all good.   Internal temp measured 207F and was hollow to the thump.








Happy baking!



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