The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Lean, airy, whole grain breads

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moodswt's picture
moodswt

Lean, airy, whole grain breads

Hi from Tucson! I'm new to posting and subscribing so please bear with me. I usually use my white sourdough starter, high hydration, and a variety of recipes modified from books like Reinhart's Whole Grain Breads, Silverstein's Bread from La Brea, or my own ad-lib creations. Sometimes I go crazy and make a white flour sourdough French bread. Whatever I do, and things usually turn out well enough,  shaping into a batard is hit and miss for me. I feel like I'd get airier whole grain bread if....well, what? I try to follow instructions but am often left with creases that bake hard or gaps that open, instead, on the crease. My breads are usually of the lean-dough type. I'm interested in the stretching-of-the-dough technique but I'm not seeing answers in the forums about stretching for the final shaping. Can you just pull the dough into shape for the baking, either for a baquette pan or freeform for placing on the baking stone? Thanks, Christina

VonildaBakesBread's picture
VonildaBakesBread

Hi from Alaska Christina! I'm fairly new here, so I've got a couple suggestions. http://www.thebackhomebakery.com/Tutorials/MoreBreadShaping.html (many videos, including specific freeform shaping techniques. Very well done! Just go to "see more tutorials" at the bottom of the page if this isn't what you need)

http://www.gourmet.com/magazine/video/2008/03/bertinet_sweetdough is also VERY good.

If you click on the Handbook link above, you can go to bread basics, technique, mixing and developing. there are links there to videos about stretching, which is a technique instead of kneading, which they suggest for whole grains. The technique in the Bertinet video was suggested on this forum a long time ago by someone who made one sweet, light, airy looking version of Laurel's Kitchen basic whole wheat recipe. (Search Laurel's basic whole wheat in this forum to find the discussion.)

Blessings!

Voni

VonildaBakesBread's picture
VonildaBakesBread

Christina, the video was on mebakes blog, by Khalid. Just type "Laurel's basic Whole Wheat" in the search engine. It should pop up for you. Blessings!

moodswt's picture
moodswt

I just finished looking at all those videos! I especially liked The Back Home Bakery with Mark starting off using a towel! I've been slow to embrace technology in the kitchen, but playing the video from the Handbook on my laptop yesterday in front of my dough on the counter sure did help. Well, I'm glad I decided to make better use of this Fresh Loaf site. 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

a slew of videos on shaping (just about any kind of bread) by fine bakers on youtube also.  Plus any other kind if technique like S&F, decorating, slashing, etc

moodswt's picture
moodswt

Thank you guys for your replies! After I posted my Q. I found the Fresh Loaf handbook video on shaping and immediately apllied the instructions to some bread I was making and it really helped. I'll definitely look into your suggestions for the other videos and instructions. It was exciting to see the replies come in! I know I'll benefit from your help.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Welcome from Phoenix too!  If you want to learn to make very good bread  -  you have come to the right place!  My daughter is a senior at U of A. 

Happy Baking.