Sticky sticky arrgggh
This weekend I had an absolute baking disaster. I've not had time to blog about the mess I made (or the things I did successfully bake: veggie Piroshkis from Laurel's Kitchen, rolls that my daughter shaped from leftover Piroshki dough, absolutely divine 100% whole wheat (with oats) cinnamon rolls from King Arthur Flour Whole Grains Baking), but I did want to throw this out to the group for help.
How the %*@!! do you keep really wet doughs from cementing themselves to the proofing surface, whether it's a couche, a banneton, or whatever? I totally suck at this. Up to about 85% hydration with whole wheat, I'm good. But beyond there -- forget about it.
I did have some luck a couple of weeks ago making a varient of Tomsbread's whole wheat loaves. Essentially, I made a 2 lb loaf at 90% hydration with 1/4 tsp instant yeast, all very cold and then let it sit in the fridge overnight. I then let it rise slowly the next day. Why 90%? It seems fresh gound whole wheat flour requires more water than bagged flour, so I was trying to get the same consistency that Mountaindog and Tomsbread achieved in their masterpieces.
Goll-darnit, it stuck a bit to the banneton and flattened out. I'd used a mix of white rice flour and AP flour to dust the banneton, but it still stuck. Thankfully, though, it poofed up in the oven enough to pass for dinner bread for the family, and it did have a fantastic crumb, though it was nonetheless one heck of a butt-ugly loaf thanks to the signature "Cow Patty" top endemic to loaves that stick.
This weekend, I decided to try sourdough at 90%. Again, I didn't knead, but just folded it 4 times. Nice development, actually. On a totally different note, I'm always surprised at how ... gelatinous really wet whole wheat dough is, at least at first. Anyway, I went crazy with the rice flour and, this time, used a bowl and some baker's linen that my wife gave me for Christmas.
Holy Toledo, you'd think I'd lined the cloth with Elmer's Glue. What a mess -- I just chucked it in the trash.
So, what do I do? I need a really wet dough to get the kind of crumb I want, but I can't get the dang dough to release from the basket. Help?