The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Italian Tang Zhong, Fig, Hazelnut & Ricotta Cheese Sourdough Chacons

  • Pin It
dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Italian Tang Zhong, Fig, Hazelnut & Ricotta Cheese Sourdough Chacons

After our recent experiments with 100% whole grain bread, and DaPumperizing some of them, we found out that our limited supply of what we call white breads was exhausted.  These ‘white breads’ still have 20%-30% whole grains in them so they have some decent flavor and healthfulness.

  

We thought we would go Italian for this bake because of the sneaky ricotta, goat cheese and citrus cheese cake my apprentice baked while no one was looking.   It had also been awhile since we had done a chacon shape too.  We could have done an Italian shape like an Altamura but these shapes usually need some durum flour in hem and we are saving the last of Desert Durum for something else.

  

Instead of out usual pesto, parmesan and sun dried tomato Italian bread that we like so much we decided to go in a different Italian direction by using figs, hazelnuts and ricotta cheese to go along with the 22% whole grain Rye, spelt and WW that was mainly used in the levains.

  

Yes, we had 2 levains for this bake but they were both of the SD variety instead of YW we usually use for 1 of them.  We used out Rye Sour and our Not Mini’s Ancient WW starters for this bake.  We love what both of them do for bread so why not combine them and see what happens.

 

So not to have enough to do for this bake we also decided to use whey water for some of the liquid and do a Tang Zhong with 25 g of the dough flour with an additional 125 g of water not included in the liquid amounts in the formula.

 

We thought about throw in some of our aromatic seed mix but the apprentice nixed that at the last minute wanting to know what was German about this bake anyway?  For being mainly nutzoid when it comes to breaking the bread mold, she can be traditional when you least expect it – usually right before doing a nose rip on you – which is also not expected.

 

These levains built themselves up to doubling in 4 hours so only one build was needed to get them full strength.  We did not retard the levains when built as is our usual practice of late but we did do a 4 hour autolyse of the dough flours with the malts, VWG and Toadies.  We kept the nuts, figs, cheese and salt out.  Usually we put the salt in the autolyse so we don’t forget it but thought we try to have Lucy remember to put it in later.

After the 2 levains, the Tang Zhong, ricotta cheese and autolyse came together, we mixed it withy a spoon for 1 minute and then did 4 minutes of slap and folds before adding the salt.  This dough feels much wetter that the just short of the 69% total hydration with the add ins.  This is due to the Thang Zhong and the cheese. 

After the salt went in, we did another 8 minutes of slap and folds before the dough finally came together fore a 20 minute rest.  We then did (3) sets of S&F’s on 15 minute intervals and incorporated the nuts and re-hydrated figs in the 2nd one and by the 3rd one they were well distributed.   The wet figs also added some more unaccounted liquid to the mix. 

 

After a hours worth of ferment on the counter the dough was bulk retarded for 12 hours, ala Ian’s typical retard mastering.  In the cold it had risen to the rime of the bowl and after 1 ¾ hours on the counter the next morning it has risen above the rim of the bowl .

We then divided it and shaped the knotted rolls; one each for the bottom of each basket, and shaped the twisted rope in addition of the oval basket so these Chacons wouldn’t end up looking too similar after baking.   So no braids, balls or other intricate shapes and designs in the bottom of the basket were used in keeping with this simple Italian bake.

After 2 hours of final proof on the counter in a plastic bag, they were ready for Big old Betsy that had bee preheated to 500 F with one of David Snyder’s lava rocks in a large cast Iron skillet along with a large size one of Sylvia’s steaming pans with 2 rolled up towels in it.  Both were put into the oven half full of water when the 40 minute preheat started and they supplied their usual mega steam.  We also used top and bottom stones as we always do since they never come out of the oven.

My apprentice thought that the loaves were over proofed again when the came out of the bag since the dough jiggled like jello or a croissant and the dough had risen above the rim of the baskets.   But, since Chacons do not need to be slashed, they went straight into the oven on the bottom stone after un-molding onto parchment paper and peel.  They still managed to spring nicely anyway and my apprentice’s over proofing fear was as unfounded as her legal immigration status.

After 2 minutes the temperature was turned down to 460 F and then after a total of 12 minutes the steaming apparatus came out of the oven and the temperature was turned down to 425 F , convection this time.  The loaves were rotated on the stone every 5 minutes for 15 minutes when they tested 205 F and were removed from the oven to a cooling rack.

The loaves cracked well on top as they should and they ended up being nicely browned,  crisp but un-blistered despite the long retard and mega steam.  They are awfully nice looking loaves none the less and we can’t wait to cut into one to see what the crumb looks like.

The crumb turned out fairly open, glossy and super soft.  The Tang Zhong really came through as it always does.   I like to use it on whole grain, multi-grain breads since we discovered that it does the same thing for these breads as it does for white breads.  Now we know it isn't just the YW that makes the crumb soft.  We like this bread very much and it is worth the extra effort required to pull it off. 

Formula

WW and Rye Sour Levain

Build 1

Total

%

WW SD Starter

25

25

3.79%

Rye Sour Starter

25

25

4.67%

Spelt

25

25

4.67%

Whole Wheat

50

50

9.35%

Dark Rye

25

25

4.67%

Water

100

50

9.35%

Total

250

200

37.38%

 

 

 

 

Levain Totals

 

%

 

Flour

125

23.36%

 

Water

125

23.36%

 

Hydration

100.00%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Levain % of Total

17.82%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dough Flour

 

%

 

Whole spelt

5

0.93%

 

Dark Rye

5

0.93%

 

AP

525

98.13%

 

Dough Flour

535

100.00%

 

 

 

 

 

Salt

10

1.52%

 

Whey 200 Water100

300

56.07%

 

Dough Hydration

56.07%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total Flour

660

 

 

Soaker Water 300 & Water

425

 

 

T. Dough Hydration

64.39%

 

 

Whole Grain %

22.27%

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hydration w/ Adds

68.92%

 

 

Total Weight

1,403

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add - Ins

 

%

 

White Rye Malt

3

0.56%

 

Red Rye Malt

3

0.56%

 

Toadies

6

1.12%

 

VW Gluten

10

1.87%

 

Ricotta Cheese

100

18.69%

 

Adriatic & Mission Figs

115

21.50%

 

Hazelnuts

71

13.27%

 

Total

308

57.57%

 

 

 

 

 

Weight of figs is pre re-hydrated weight

 

 

 

Comments

spahkee's picture
spahkee

I'm curious as to how you found in terms of using the tangzhong for this recipe relative to results you've gotten previously.   Most of the tangzhong method breads that have been posted are the soft Japanese bread variety but I'm curious how it turned out for your bread.   Was the crumb noticeably different and would you recommend that the next time you bake this recipe?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Tang Zhong for breads that are multigrain and usually more whole grain than this one.  It does the same thing for these breads as white ones, moist an soft and well worth the little bit of extra effort to make a roux.   This crumb was really soft and moist you could easily notice the difference.  Normally I would use YW for half the levain to get a similar soft and moist crumb texture but just a little less so.  When we make teketek's Japanese White Sandwich loaf I would use YW as the only levain and a roux too to go along with the cream and butter.  There isn't a better white bread out there that iIhave made at any rate.  I have several other posts on Tang Zhong and water roux  but they were for more substantial breads with more whole grains.

Happy baking

linder's picture
linder

The loaves look great.  Bet they taste wonderful too - your baking is always so interesting filled with all kind of goodies. 

Now, what is the recipe for the yummy cheesecake I see in your post?  At least it looks like cheese cake to me, ricotta?

thanks

Linda

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

the cheese pie actually started out as a Mexican flan with;  5 eggs, 1/2 C of sugar, 1 can of condensed milk, 1 can of evaporated milk, and 1 can of Media Creama.  Then we decided to take it Italian once we decided to go Italian with the bread.  We had 1/4 C of left over cream cheese so it went in, 1/3 C of sour cream, we added 6 oz of very nice goat cheese and another 1/ 2 C  of ricotta.  This wiped put all the left overs.  We grated in some lemon zest from half a lemon and then squeezed in the juice and did the same thing with  half a Minneola.  1 tsp of vanilla rounded it out.   It tastes more like a semi sweet, goaty, citrus cheese pie than a cheese cake. 

The crumb is 4 T of melted butter mixed in with 1/3rd of a package of chocolate center Oreo cookies and 8 chocolate bourbon cookies.  All whacked around in a processor till fine and then molded into the the bottom and up the sides  of a spring form  pan with a 1/2 C measure to pat it all down and against the sides.  refrigerate that while you put all the rest of the stuff in the processor and whirl away until it is smooth.  Cheese Cakes i bake in a water bath but I don't for cheese pies like this one so that the texture is different and my apprentice doesn't get even more confused about where she is and what she is doing.  This one took 1 hour  at 325 F convection in the mini oven and we turned it 90 degrees every 15 minutes.   We just sort of made it up as went along like we do most of our breads :-)  There is something about serendipity besides dippity doo.  A blueberry glaze would be very nice too but any berry something will do.

Thos bread is very nice too and I'm glad you liked the post.

Happy Baking

grind's picture
grind

Nice looking bread!  I always enjoy your creativity and fearless approach to bread baking.  I like how you blended the two traditions.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

There isn't much that is black or white in the world and certainly not it the bread world.  Most everything seems to be a shade of dull gray so blending traditions and techniques is natural and can lead to things that are new, unique and not dull - though not all good comes from it :-)  Fear, pride and ego are the only three character attributes, that I now of anyway,  that led to eventual failure.... while there are hundreds of other ones required for success.

Oddly,  traditions can be all tied up with ego and pride - not a good combination most always and why traditions need to change and be renewed regularly or face the possibility of dying before their time is due.  Thankfully bread traditions change often and mostly fo the better unlike apprentices which can end up being ankle biters faster than you can spell autolyse :-)

Happy baking

grind's picture
grind

Nicely stated.

gmabaking's picture
gmabaking

You are a master at combining tastes. Wow, you got my apprentice on all three not so good character attributes. I was just telling my sisters that if these Hamelmann's croissants turn out tasting as good as they look in the oven, I am going to be aggravated at my apprentice for not baking them earlier. Her worries about ego gratification abound and make her too cautious at times. She was overheard telling the cat that it took months to try this recipe!

Barbra

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

from the GMA's this week and though that you had just taken break from all the Easter cooking and baking.  Then I find out you gals are sneaking around with croissants.  I would need a break before taking on croissants too!   Can't wait to see them. 

My apprentice is really off the rails when it comes to fear.  Loud noises like thunder, fireworks and gun shots just scare the bejeebers out of her along with having cabbage heads rolled down the hallway at her like she is a bowling pin.   She would never be caught dead talking to a cat though - there is that pride and ego thing working against her.  Every cat she meets is scared to death of her for some reason and you would think someone had died with all the racket she puts up when she sees one!

Glad you liked the bread.   It is very tasty and makes a really nice French toast too.

isand66's picture
isand66

Another great looking bake DA.  I love the moist soft open crumb and I'm sure the cheese didn't hurt either.  I will have to try this Tang Zhong method when I get home.

that cake creation looks fantastic and tasty as all be.

had some interesting desert last night that I will post about when I can.

regards

Ian

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

you have to do some Tang Zhong.  I thought you would like the Chinese connection.  We started messing around with it in January but had always used it in conjunction with YW.   It sure does make for a moist, soft crumb on its own.    As far as we can tell it would be good for any kind of bread if that is what you are looking for in crumb texture.  My apprentice prefers dry, hard and flaky crumb but that is what she grew up on .....eating all that stale bread :-)

Travel safe Ian and stay away from deserts that have too many bugs in them.

Happy baking

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

Then it was falling pumper-temps and now I'll bet you have everyone hopping aboard the TangZhong Express, Dr Brown.  Hell, I'm sure tempted, even though I've sworn on a stack of Hamelmans that I won't touch the formula or process for my wife's 100% WW sandwich loaf.  Temp-ting.  Your creative juices are in full flood, brother.  Those crumb shots were worth waiting for.  And we could sure use some o' that cheesecake and fresh strawbs.  Another killer bake, dab.  And thanks for the TZ nudge.  On the (long!) list of things to try at some point.  Hopefully sooner than later.

Tom

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

a double batch of 'Keeping The Wife Happy Bread' and sneak some Chinese speaking flour in there for one of them.  Once she starts learning Chinese, without Rosetta Stone, she will probably be so pleased that she will only let you eat out where they serve Won Tons.

Sadly, that might lead her giving up bread entirely and switch over to noodles.  Noodle making is where Tang Zhong was supposedly first used - to make noodles softer.   After the Chinese invented VWG to make their noodles strong enough to be stretched withoiut breaking,  these noodles were pretty tough - too much al Dente.   Tough VWG noodles are a real no no but perfection was supposedly achieved when noodles were Tang Zhonged into soft submission while still remaining tough enough to be stretched into long thin noodles.  Oddly, one of my favorite breads was a take on sweetbird's Hard Apple Cider Buckwheat Bread where my apprentice insanely added buckwheat soba noodles to the mix amongst a few other things she was hiding under her apprentice's hat.

Next thing you know Marco Polo showed up and brought noodles to Europe so Italians could invent pasta and the term al Dente....after a long wait for Columbus to bring back tomatoes and its sauce back from the new world to sauce those Chinese noodles :-)  We won't tell you where cheese pie comes from now ....so folks don't get scared of their own shadows but I will say that its not cows...at least not the kind of cows we have on this world - but that is a story for another time!

Keep that list going - without it you would need a list of things to do from your wife to take its place.  I'm guessing that hers won't have 'Tang Zhong my bread' on it but might have some other stuff on it that isn't nearly as fun. 

Glad you liked the bread Tom. Did you see your Toadies leaving their brown flavorful specks behind in the crumb?

Happy baking

chouette22's picture
chouette22

...about bread together in one single loaf (or two)! Wow, just amazing! I especially love the photo of your flattened dough loaded with all the goodies you are about to incorporate, and hazelnuts are by far my favorite nut. The crumb looks super soft and moist, I am sure this was fabulously tasting. 

What I am intrigued by, besides your daredevil creations, are the plates you are always showing us of how you eat your breads. Plates where you pile up raw veggies and fruit with a bit of cheese, in general (and sometimes some meat). Are these your lunches or dinners or both? My husband and I eat a HUGE salad every night, for which I chop up 8-10 different vegetables (this hodge podge salad never appeals to the kids; they get mostly fresh fruit instead). So, for you, your veggies accompany a sandwich then?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

spirit.  We eat a huge salad for every dinner too!  It usually that has at least 8 different kinds of lettuce from the pots, some kind of cabbage, spinach, a cheese, carrot, tomato, a sweet and hot pepper, mushrooms, red and green onions and the cold left over steamed veggies from the night before if there are any.  Sometimes we just throw left over meat and some totu on it and call it dinner.

What you see is my daily fruit, veggie, sandwich and left over salad lunch.  If not my favorite P & J or fried teriyaki tofu, the 1 slice cut in half sandwich has some kind of meat on it - usually left over from the dinner the night before, sliced thin, about 1 oz, some cheese, salad and tomato and home made dijon mustard.  This one was left over smoked BBQ boneless country style ribs.  We try to have 4 fruits and 4 veggies along with at least 2 kinds of pickles - we had Thai eggplant and onion pickles for this lunch.  If I didn't have a sandwich for lunch, then there would be a lot less bread baking going on around here and I wouldn't need an apprentice :-)  So for me, the sandwich accompanies great fresh veg and fruits.

All this healthy eating and whole grain breads are due to trying to control type II diabetes without any medication.  So far so good when combined with a brisk 4 mile walk a day!  The great thing is that the fresh fruit and veg is very tasty too- besides being healthy.  They say everything in moderation but that isn't true when it comes to fresh fruits and veggies - you should eat as much as you can of them.    It does apply to bread if your diabetic though, so we try to make a high quality, healthy and tasty bread we can and usually one you can't get anywhere else.  The veg and fruit deserve the best.

Glad you liked the bread - the sandwich was super delicious.  Happy Baking.  Here was last night's salad

chouette22's picture
chouette22

...that you are keeping your diabetes under control without medication. Fantastic! And I wholeheartedly agree - I love, love, love vegetables, and never ever have to force myself to eat large quantities of it. As I said, a big salad is 'de rigueur', but I also roast many of them, like cauliflower, all kinds of squash, brussel sprouts, onions, etc. These roasted ones I take to work to accompany my lunch sandwich. Fruit I love too, but eat a bit less of. I chop one apple into my homemade yogurt every morning (my Swiss Müsli, to which I add a few chopped almonds, some oats and chia seeds), and then I might have some fruit after dinner again, as dessert. Bread is also not limitless (to keep our weights in check), none for breakfast, some for my lunch and depending of what we have for dinner, sometimes a whole-wheat (100%) pita. This also means that we are not going through too much bread anymore (as I said in an earlier post, my daughter does not really love bread - what kind of genes is she made of, I often wonder :) and thus I cannot wait until my son's university Freshman year is over and he'll be spending the summer at home. My bread production will be in high demand and I cannot wait!

Great that you are walking 4 miles a day. I work out daily too; if not, even less bread!
Your dinner salad looked wonderful. 

Thaichef's picture
Thaichef

Hello dabrownman:

   I know that you are a very Special baker but this time you had reach the "Master" level . Your breads look outstanding!  I am now put you on the same level as "dmsnyder". Wow, wow and wow.

  Unfortunately my home is too far away from you or else I would show up at your door with the best and fresh shrimp Pad Thai, the best beef Sate with peanut sauce and hot chicken and chili basil stir -fried and begged to be your student for bread!!! Darn.

  On a serious note, I will be teaching Thai in June at the Central Virginia Community College in Lynchburg.  I also will be in Italy and South of France (solo travel) in May( Will be cooking Thai there also). In late June, I will attend the  Mediterranean Bread making at King Arthur in Norwich then to Maine to eat all the seafood and lobster.  We have nothing here in my area.

mantana

mantana

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Since my twin brother also lives in Lynchburg there is a very good chance that I will get there sooner rather than later.  I would get there every month when I lived in Richmond.  So when I go there I will letyou now and you can teach me Thai and We can make bread together.   It wil be awhile before I get int David's league - he is known as King David around here.  After your trip to KA you can teach me bread too!  Your teaching trip to Europe sounds wonderful - how lucky you are to mix business with pleasure.

Glad you like the bread mantana and happy baking and Thai food teaching.

Alpana's picture
Alpana

Tang zhong seems to be the order of the day on TFL :).  I started my bread baking (apart from one sole Challah I made from TFL recipe 6 years back) with Tang zhong and it is so much part of my  daily breads that I didn't even think much about it till I saw Floyd's post. And now this another gorgeous bread from you.

At the risk of sounding ignorant, what is a Chacon? I don't think  I have heard of this bread and I must have read almost all bread books out there!

 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

a shaping method we invented where you put various things: knotted rolls, balls, braids, ropes, twisted ropes and or combinations of them into the bottom of a basket and then form a huge bialy shape with the rest of the dough to cover them.  Once un-molded from the basket and baked, the bread naturally cracks at the intersections of the various shapes giving the bread its distinctive  and dramatic cracked look.  Originally We made the design and then flipped the whole thing upside down into a basket to proof but now we take the easier route of just making the design in the bottom of the basket so so flipping required - a very good thing.

My apprentice named this method after another Fresh Lofian in Colorado, Thomas Chacon, who helped me with the first folding of the star shaped one - so I named this method after him.  Certain ones get named after other Fresh Lofians.  there is a 3 Twisted Sister Chacon named after the 3 GMA's and the Chaon for Eric, a beautifully marbled one using Eric's Favorite Rey with a Challah,  in memory of Eric Hanner.  I linked a few of them for you to look at.  They are so fun to make and the design possibilities are endless.   Plus the added feature is you don't have to do any slashing since they naturally crack at the seams - and for us slashing challenged - a godsend.

I didn't learn of Tang Zhong until this February and have been messing around with it since then - a bread keeper if there ever was one.  Another must do bread step, to make bread baking as complicated as possible, just makes my apprentice all giddy with excitement :-)

Glad you liked the post Alpana.  Try out a Chacon design of your own and I'm sure it will become part of your regular bread baking like Tang Zhong did - Happy baking.

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/28905/40-whole-multigrain-sd-and-yw-altamura-style-chacon

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/29002/sd-yw-chacon-revisited-%E2%80%93-87-whole-grain-multigrain-sprouts-walnut-and-sage-paste-and-pump

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/29172/twisted-sisters-chacon-67-whole-rye-wheat-sprouts-seeds

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/29866/chacon-catastrophes-moka-ian%E2%80%99s-mocha-disaster-chacone

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/30806/two-do-chacons-couldn%E2%80%99t-be-any-different

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/31149/chacon-eric

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/31748/multigrain-sourdough-chacon-olives-sun-dried-tomato-garlic-rosemary-and-2-cheeses

 

Alpana's picture
Alpana

Hats off to your creativity! Any method that can save me from scoring is worth a try (is it a wonder my scoring doesn't improve). I realise that there is a lot on TFL that I have not gone through. 

You have a smart apprentice - not everyone would be game to all the complexities you throw at her. 

 

 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

smells pretty game ......she's 8 years old and still can't give herself a bath for heaven's sake....I mean really!  The chacon was invented for the slashing challenged ....or apprentices that have no thumbs ....rather than being all thumbs! 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Yum, DA!

Lovely combination of ingredients.

Lovely cheesecake! what is the dessert in the pan?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

of the same bread but we sure are glad we did with this one.  The bread makes fine sandwiches, has a very soft crumb but it a little light on the whole grains.    The figs and filberts  go well together too.   The  desert in the pan, and as a wedge with strawberries, is a cheese pie that stared out as as a Mexican flan before we threw in some goat cheese and ricotta to make it Italian and match the bread's Italian roots.  I put the recipe in the reply to linder.

Glad you like the bread Khalid it is a a growing favorite.