The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


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trailrunner's picture

I started to make this from Bread but then looked at my  notes and saw an old post from another TFLer who  cited Shiao Ping's version. Since her adaptation fits with my usual procedures I decided to carry on with her ideas. Everyone comments on how wet this formula is. I always have my levain at approx 80-100% hydration. Again I carried on. I used equal parts Red Fife and Kamut and finished with organic bread flour. I doubled the formula to get 4 1 kg miche :) I followed her folding schedule and the dough became very easy to handle and the gluten development was amazing.It is definitely a wet formula and my high hydration levain increased it. I shaped and placed in floured  cloth-lined baskets and retarded immediately for 12 hours. I baked cold from the fridge in iron pots as my usual routine. 500 degrees for 15 min. with lids on and 25 min. at 460 with lids off. This is a great bread !  Hamelman says it develops more and more flavor as the days go by. I look forward to that. I got an open tender crumb with a bit of sour right off the bat. Crust is very crisp initially and beautifully  caramelized  .


Cuisine Fiend's picture
Cuisine Fiend

This is seriously good, for a craving for a perfectly square white sandwich loaf... French sandwich bread, or pain de mie - meaning 'crumb loaf' as there isn't supposed to be any crust.

The tin is interesting, Pullman with a lid. I wasn't sure how that would work - as in, what if the dough wants to keep rising and escapes the tin? First attempt, admittedly, had an attached hanging bread stalactite on the side of the tin:-) The key is to work out when to shut the lid and stick it in the oven of course - in this instance when it's risen to about an inch from the rim. The more even the top of the dough, the easier to work it out, obviously, so all that folding and twisting pays off.

I haven't tried to bake it in an ordinary tin - I guess it would still be tasty but maybe not so 'crustless'. Anyway, recommended as a change from all the wholesome, crusty, seeded and sour loaves!

KathyF's picture

With the hot weather and no central air conditioning, I needed to be able to bake in the morning when it is still cool. Trevor helped me to work out the timing with his Champlain Sourdough. First day, in the early evening, I mixed the flour, water and salt for the long "autolyze" and popped it in the fridge. Took it out at bedtime and set on counter. In the morning I mixed in the starter and for the next six hours did hourly stretch and folds. Then I pre-shaped and let it rest for an hour. Shaped it, put in the banneton and let it rise for one hour, then popped it back in the fridge for the next 12 hours. Baked it this morning and I think the long retard really helped me with the crumb. And it tastes great!

Also wanted to use up some starter this morning so decided to wing it with some waffles.

1 cup starter straight from the fridge
1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. milk
1 egg
2 T. oil (I'm guessing. I just poured some in)
2 T. sugar (guessing again!)
3/4 t. of baking powder
1/4 t. baking soda
dash of salt

Turned out great!

dabrownman's picture

9 Grain 50 Percent Whole Grain Half Sprouted Sourdough Chacon with Pepitas and Sunflower Seeds

Lucy formulated this bread as an entry for Bread Baking Day #83 here where flours other than rye, red wheat and spelt were used.  In this case we added, Pima Club, emmer, einkorn, Buckwheat, oat and white wheat.

My wife decided to give this to a friend who is grieving for her passed brother so I am not sure that I will get a crumb shot or not depending on whether my wife says it is Ok to cut it in half for one?  Can you cut a gift in half and still call it a gift?  We decided to make the bread into a special Chacon as we usually do when someone passes – like the Chacon for Eric Hanner – or for a birth or other once in a lifetime event in the family.


We decided to use a couple of the comb roll up shapes for last Friday’s bake as the basis for the design but using sunflower seeds for the inside along with a couple of smiley face ropes and a 2 balls with some pepitas sprinkled in the bottom of the basket for extra design emphasis design.  The fun part with Chacons is to come up with a nifty design that shows itself during the spring of baking.

Since half the flour was whole grain and half of that sprouted we were able to use our 3 stage retarded bran levain method using the bran from the whole and sprouted grains for the first two stages and the high extraction whole grain flour for the 3rd feeding.

The bran came out to a 18% average for the two siftings and the levain was 100% hydration and contained 10% pre- fermented flour total with 10 g of NMNF rye starter, retarded for 22 weeks, used as the seed.  Once the levain was built and had doubled after the 3rd feeding it was retarded for 12 hours.

When the levain came out of the fridge the next day, we stirred it down and left it to rise 25% as it warmed up and as we autolyzed the dough high extraction sprouted and high extraction non-sprouted flour along with the 50% King Arthur Bread flour that made up the remaining dough flour and the 2% Pink Himalayan Sea Salt sprinkled on top.  Hydration came in at a bit over 78%.

Once the salt was stirred in and the bran levain added, we did 40 slap and folds to get everything well mixed and the gluten development started.  This was followed by 2 sets of slap and folds of 5 laps each on 20 minute intervals and then by 3 sets of 4 stretch and folds on 30 minute intervals.

After a brief rest of 10 minutes we made the design shapes and placed them in the bottom of the oval shaped rise floured basket followed by the remaining dough shaped into squat oval to fit the basket.  The basket was immediately bagged in a well-used trash can liner and immediately retarded in a 37 F fridge for 12 hours.

When the dough came out of the cold the next morning it was clear that it was 100% proofed since it was spilling out of the top of the basket.  We immediately preheated the oven to 500 F with the Combo Cooker inside.  When at temperature we un-molded the Chacon onto parchment on a peel and placed it into the CC, quickly covering it and placing it on the bottom stone of the oven while turning the oven down to 425 F.

We steamed the bread for 18 minutes and then removed the lid for 8 minutes of convection baking at 425 F.  At that time, the bread was removed from the bottom of the CC and continued baking directly on the bottom stone for an additional 25 minutes until it was well browned and at 206 F.

This bread browned and sprang well enough and with the fridge proofing, it should have a nice open crumb for a 50% whole grain, half sprouted bread.  We will have to see if it can be sliced or not.


EllaFromChina's picture

Somehow I lost track of the ingredients during mix....and I kept adding water during I guess its very wet...Not sure if that is the reason but I have never seen my dough size increased so much....after 1.5 hours in the room (3 folding) then 9 hours in refrigerator

Hopefully the result turns out okay.

dabrownman's picture

We love this time of year.  It is the time the first cherries come out in the stores from CA.  They aren’t the great trasting cherries from the Pacific Northwest that come a bit later but they are perfect for one thing - converting the YW from apple tom cherries.  We just love the cherry color the YW takes on from being fed these little jewels.

Since we were running low on bread after the Wine Wee Beastie Kill Off last Friday, we need a quick bread that would tide us over till Friday.  So Lucy came up with a fast one.  All the levain liquid and was YW and the levain was a big one – 40% pre-fermented LaFama AP flour.  We would never do this with SD but YW is different.

There was only 14% sprouted whole grains in the dough flour and it was the overlooked varieties – so no rye, spelt or red wheat.  We used Pima club, white wheat, oat, buck wheat and emmer.

Once the YW levain had sat on the counter for 10 hours at 84 F fermenting away we retarded it foe 12 hours in the fridge.  The next day we added a bit more water, some more AP, 10 g of rye SD and the milled whole grains to get the overall hydration to 72% with 2% salt.  We started off with 30 slap and folds to get everything mixed and then did 5 sets of stretch and folds all on 20 minute intervals.

We included a 30% dry weight porridge of quinoa and steel cut oats on the 4th set of stretch and folds to get the overall whole grains up to 37%.  We let the dough sit on the counter for an hour bulk ferment before shaping and panning the dough inti a cocktail loaf tin.  We let the dough proof on the counter in a plastic shopping bag for 4 hours when it rose 50% before we placed it in the fridge for a 9 hour cold retard.

It rose another 20% in the fridge but still required a 2 hour proof on the counter to get it to 90% and ready for the oven.  We decided to bake this bread in the Mini Oven for the first time this summer using 2 of Sylvia’s steaming cups with a dish rag inside and half full of water for steam.

We steamed at 450 F for 13 minutes and then baked convection for 20 minutes at 425 F till the inside read 205 F.   Since the spring was so good and the top was close to the elements on the top, we covered the top crust with aluminum foil 5 minutes after the steam came out and then 5 minutes later baked it upside down out of the tin for 10 minutes to brown the side that were against the tin.

This loaf came out as boldly baked as one would achieve without burning it.  Can’t wait to see how the crumb came out.  We expect it to be a sandwich style crumb with that large porridge in there.  We also want to see how much of the SD came through with no SD levain used to beef it up first.

The crumb came out as we expected – sandwich style but it was super soft and moist too with a subtly slight sour hint that came through.  The crust was also a huge success and the tasty crunchy crust was worth the near burning.  A very good bread all around for not much effort, cost and time.  We like it a lot.  

Where is that beet and walnut salad?

Laowai's picture

Thanks to all the good advise on this site.

Wild yeast sourdough using off the shelve general purpose flour. What's the best place to buy rye flower in the Arlington, TX (DFW metroplex) area?




EllaFromChina's picture

I don't prefer breads with cream/milk/egg but my friends have Asian tastes so I'm trying this for them. I love rustic breads because they are more healthy and they look really cool and sexy...

I tried this recipe before but in order to kneed it to max (as below pic. I don't know how to say it in English) easily I added more water than original recipe. It worked but it was hard for me to final shape it (especially if I want to braid it with the same dough for my toast) even after I put flour in my hand when dong final shape.

So this time I try to cut down on water (milk) and it's easier to do final shape.  I didn't kneed it to max and seem it does affect the result?

I don't know why it breaks again at the bottom maybe I didn't seam it well again...oh and I should not brush the bread with egg after it got baked already for 15min because now the surface gets 'dirty'.....

BTW I have to start baking this morning at 5AM ( final proof 5-6 hours from 11pm last night), and I have to do my yoga AFTER that (usually I yoga as soon as I get up when the mind is most peaceful) and it was so difficult to resist myself from tasting the new bread...

Happy baking~


Recipe is from here :










Yippee's picture

French style milk loaf... If you prefer milk bread that's less fluffy, this one is for you.

mcs's picture

Ive just completed 8 days in Poland and I'm headed to Moscow on my second annual European baking tour.  Here are a couple of videos I made during my time in two Polish bakeries.  Enjoy ;)



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