The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Katie's Stout with Flax-Delicious!

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ehanner's picture
ehanner

Katie's Stout with Flax-Delicious!

It's funny how things come together some times. Katie, one of Andy's students in college developed this recipe that Karin (a German baker transplanted to Maine) baked and posted last week. It was a beautiful loaf. About the same time a new poster from Iceland ( Schrödinger's O...) presented a beautiful bread with a natural expansion instead of slashing. I decided to try my own nut brown ale since it is very flavor rich and semi dark and, available. I also added a small amount of toasted wheat germ to add a little dimension to the chew and flavor.

I first must say to Katie I think your bread is wonderful. It has a full depth of flavor and a great aftertaste. Your hydration and baking times were right on for me. Thank you so much for sharing your creative energy. also a word of thanks must go to Andy, for bringing this talent forward for us to see and enjoy her work. And Karin for her inspiration and conformation the recipe can be baked out of scale. It's always nice to see her work. Then comes -kristjan, who showed us a beautiful boule he has been baking for some time and shared with us only that day. I was so inspired that I tried a shaping and natural expansion I had been wanting to try instead of scoring to see if I could bring some art to the surface of this loaf. So, here is my take on Katie's Stout with Flax Seeds.

Comments

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

The loaf looks beautiful.  The color of both the crust and crumb is very inviting.

I also really like the 'natural expansion' vs scoring.  I read about that awhile back on one of hansjokim's posts and have been seriously considering trying it out myself....not for the artistry but because some of my boules insist on opening up when proofing....

Janet

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Thank you Janet. My goal is to get the beautiful expansion hansjokim does.

Eric

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Thanks David.

Eric

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Hello Eric,
What a gorgeous loaf, love its 'natural' look, and full of so many good and tasty things, too.
:^) from breadsong

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Thank you for you comments on my attempt to be artsy. You don't really taste the beer directly but it does add something, a note of uniqueness I can't quite describe yet.

Eric

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Looks great Eric! Lovely Crust opening, and color too! the crumb is wonderfully speckeled with flax seeds. This should be a mighty healthy bread.

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I have always enjoyed the aroma and transformation that occurs with soaked flax seeds. They bring deep nuttiness and a flavor profile not possible with anything else I know of. And, as you say it should be good for you. Someone mentioned trying apple cider. I think the result might be similar.

Eric

lumos's picture
lumos

I second everyone above me. It's really beautiful loaf, Eric!

I've been wanting to try natural expansion for a long time, too.  I might try it with the dough which has been fermenting as we speak.

2 questions, if I may....

1) Did you put the dough in a banetton with the seam-side down?

2) Did you sprinkle the seam with semolina or something so that it wouldn't close while proofing?

 

Thanks in advance.

lumos

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I have had a few flops in trying natural expansion. This one literally flopped out of the floured banetton through my waiting fingers and half off the flipper board/peel. I thought I had lost it. As a result the seams did get stretched some which I think helped the effect. I used fine ground wheat flour and rice flour in the banetton and proof seams down for an hour and a little longer. For this to work the dough needs to have the potential for good oven spring and, not be over proofed. I think the seeds and wheat germ weakens the gluten sheath on the crust somewhat, thus making this bread a good cantidate for natural expansion. At least that's my idea of why it might work. Good luck when you try.

Eric

lumos's picture
lumos

Thank you, Eric.

I only found your reply after I put the dough in the oven. :p   The dough felt a bit sticky and softer than I'd expected after the bulk fermentaion, so in the end I decided it's probably not suitable to experiment with natural expansion for the seam just might stick to the banetton.

So next time.... I'll try with a dough with lower hydration.

Thank you for your tips. I'll keep them in mind.

lumos

ananda's picture
ananda

Spot-on Eric;

The crumb is perfect; I'm sure Katie would be suitably impressed

Top work, sir!

Andy

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I appreciate your kind words Andy. This bread was a delight to make. The beer pre-fermented flour was a first for me and it was a very unique experience. There is more going on here than I know about I suspect. I do hope Katie sees this attempt.

Eric

varda's picture
varda

and also wonderful how fast these ideas get built upon from one baker to another around the world.  -Varda

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Yes the ability to communicate in this fashion is remarkable isn't it.

Thank you for you kind words.

Eric

Syd's picture
Syd

Excellent bread Eric.  I love the unscored look, too.  It is very handsome.  Looks like a bundle of laundry. 

Best,

Syd

ehanner's picture
ehanner

A bundle of laundry? Maybe I should do that now and then so I know if that's a complement. Lol

Eric

txfarmer's picture
txfarmer

Very nice!

I love those "natural expression" loaves. I have make a few 40-60% rye breads that way, have to try this formula someday!

ehanner's picture
ehanner

The beer really adds something to the flavor. It's quite nice and didn't last 24 hours here with the two of us.

Eric

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

From the first photo looking down at the loaf, it appeared to be a frisbee.  The profile shot, however, shows a nice dome.  Considering the near-disaster between banneton and peel, it turned out very well, indeed!

I need to put that on my "to bake" list.

Paul

ehanner's picture
ehanner

It was a near disaster. If it were not for good oven spring, well you know. This was especially enjoyable since I used my own home brew and from my first batch. My son gave me a starter kit for my birthday which has been put to good use. :>)

Eric

codruta's picture
codruta

Hi Eric! Excellent loaf yo have here! Beautiful crust and mouthwatering crumb.

I tried 2 times to make the natural expansion, but everytime the seams closed and I got a perfect dome, without a single crack. I must try again... your loaf is just too beautiful! And stout in bread... by boyfriend will surely like that!

codruta

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Thank you Codruta.The natural expansion is hard to predict and I have had my share of domes too. One thing that seems to help is a light dusting of the whole grain used in the dough on the top of the dough ball as I am pulling up the edges and pinching them together.

I hope you give this a try. The taste is wonderful.

Eric