The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Me and My Mini-Miche.

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GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Me and My Mini-Miche.


 


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I generally follow trends slavishly, but I can’t get into the nine-pound-miche thing that seems to have taken TFL by storm.  In fact my one and only complaint about miches is they are too large for my small (albeit voracious) family of only two carbovores.  I know they can be divided and a piece frozen, but they’re never as good thawed as fresh.


So what does one do if one loves the flavor and texture of a miche but wants smaller loaves???  I pondered this for several long minutes, and then I settled on the idea of trying a radical experiment.  What if one made a miche dough, and then (gasp!) divided it into two boules!!??   Though I risk the disapproval of the Mega-Miche adherents, I took the risk in the spirit of bread science and the quest for the perfect loaf. 


I am among the seeming thousands of TFLers who have tried and admired the SFBI Miche my Big Brother David posted about five weeks ago (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/21644/miche-hit).   It has a magnificent caramel flavor and an admirably chewy crumb.  My favorite variation on that formula is to use 50% Central Milling Organic Type 85 high extraction flour and 50% Central Milling Organic Artisan Baker’s Craft (Malted) white flour, as described in my 1/30/11 blog post (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/21900/bay-area-miche-sfbi-formulacentral-milling-flours).


So this week, I used the SFBI formula but with that flour combination (and no wheat germ), and then after primary fermentation I divided the 1250 gram dough ball into two boules and plunked them into small brotforms.  After a night in the fridge and 150 minutes on the counter, they were baked with Sylvia’s magic steam towels for 20 minutes at 450F, and then dry for 35 minutes more at 430F.


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Besides having loaves of a size we can eat, the shorter bake time produced a rich dark crust with no burned spots.  And who can complain about the higher crust ratio of a mini-miche?


The flavor is more-or-less the same as the full-sized version, wheaty and moderately sour.  And the crust is similarly crunchy.  The crumb may be a bit more airy. 


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A successful experiment. 


And here’s my day’s baking output, the mini-miches with the Vienna Bread Dutch Crunch rolls.


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A good baking day.


Glenn

 

Comments

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

and baked it beautifully...without a dense center..that can be a problem with a big heavy boule.  I think my neighbors enjoy their own small loaf, rather than a quarter of a large one.  They do taste better fresh baked, than sliced and frozen...but darn they are fun to make.


Sylvia

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

I agree with you, Sylvia.  Next time I make a big pot of stew or soup for 8 or more people, I will make the big one.  It is fun to wrassle a basketball size dough ball.


Glenn

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Lovely boules and rolls.


The crusts and crumbs are beautiful on both. I do like the "star" scoring pattern.


David

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Thanks, David.  I'm getting good consistency in my bakes now (as consistent as I can with my old oven).  I like the star pattern, too, for upward spread.  This loaf appears to have been a bit underproofed, so some cuts opened too large and impaired the symmetry.  No noticeable effect on texture or flavor, though.


Glenn 

Jaydot's picture
Jaydot

I too find those big fat boules gorgeous, but not practical. Thanks for demonstrating that the mini-miche is just as good looking and tasty!

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

The boule that didn't get frozen will be consumed before it's stale.  And it is tasty.


Glenn

MadAboutB8's picture
MadAboutB8

Great looking loaves, Glenn. I love the scoring, it's very attractive. The crumbs look great too.


I was pondering about the size of Miche as well when I baked them last week and I was kinda thinking would it be still be a miche if the size is of boule. We are also a household of two who eat a little:) So, it was great that I could share this great taste miche to our neighbours, workmates, family, you name it as I made a hugh batch of 3 kg:)


Sue


http://youcandoitathome.blogspot.com


 

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Sue, I'm pretty sure these 625 gram loaves are not proper miches.  The definition in Wikipedia is "Pain d’une grosseur moyenne, pesant au moins une livre. (Par extension) Pain rond d’un poids plus considérable."  So size does matter.


But then Daniel Leader tells us that "miche" is also French slang for butt cheek.  And some like them small.


Glenn

wally's picture
wally

I'm with you - at a loss as to what to do with 5 lbs of bread staring at me.  Your mini-miche looks the perfect solution.


Larry

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

I'll be using this formula regularly when I want a nice sourdough.  


Glenn

varda's picture
varda

You have nothing to lose but those extra tires around your waist.   Beautiful breads Glenn.   I have been avoiding miche fever myself for that very reason.   But can you call it a miche if you cut it in half?   Enquiring minds want to know.   -Varda

SallyBR's picture
SallyBR

I called mine a "demi-miche"  when I cut the recipe for a classic in half!     I agree, the full miche is way too big for two.


Mine baked a little on the flat side, but it tasted great - it is a different recipe, though - I have my eyes set on this miche that is getting such great reviews here, but I'll do the half-size too.


 


http://bewitchingkitchen.com/2010/05/16/mellow-bakers-miche-point-a-calliere/

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Try this formula.  It's a winner.


Glenn

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

See my definitional note above.  I will call it mini-miche.


Glenn

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Hi Glenn, These loaves and rolls you've baked look beautiful!
I like the smaller-sized loaves too - a nice size for giving.
(I've got 3kg of miche dough on the go - but it will be 6 x 500g demis/minis.)
from breadsong


 

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

I look forward to seeing your mini-miches.


Glenn

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Hello Glenn, This is what I came up with for mini-miches.
I scaled them to try to fit the various bowls etc. I had available for proofing. The biggest one was scaled at 700g.
There were six; the sixth wasn't scored but was proofed in my engraved proofing basket (this one is already half-devoured).

(David's SFBI miche formula, with toasted wheat germ...a favorite!)


Good thing there were only five to score; I'd run out of ideas at five!
from breadsong

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde


"I'd run out of ideas at five!"



I doubt that you will ever run out of ideas for beautiful scoring, Breadsong.  Your technique is pure art.


Glenn

breadsong's picture
breadsong

What a kind thing to say.  :^)
Never really knowing what the bread might do in the oven, I often feel the outcome is pure luck...!
from breadsong


 


 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Here are some more ideas (from SFBI Artisan II):



David

SallyBR's picture
SallyBR

What a beautiful display of scoring!  I love the round one, on the top left, wish I could see it baked...

breadsong's picture
breadsong

David, thanks so much for this.
I remember this photo from your original post, now that I see it again; there are lots of pretty patterns.
I'd better start making bigger batches of dough...   :^)
from breadsong

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Great Looking Mini miche, glenn! Too bad i can't source any wheat germ in Dubai..