The Fresh Loaf

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Flaxseed Bread from "BREAD" by J. Hamelman

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Mebake's picture
Mebake

Flaxseed Bread from "BREAD" by J. Hamelman

Winds of Change

Things haven’t been changing much for me in the last couple of years, and it seemed at some point that I was stuck in an unfulfilling clerical/office Job for the rest of my life. Lately, I’ve been witnessing changes in my life; the winds of change have finally blown. Pondering for over a year now on how to change my career, I decided to join an amateur course on Pastry in a culinary institute in Dubai.

The 6 months program, which includes Puff pastry, short crust, Choux, Meringue, cakes, cookies, Chocolate, also happens to include a lesson about yeasted goods (no sourdough, though). The lessons I’ve chosen to join are the Friday’s weekend ones that span over the whole day; approx. 7 hours, including an hour lunch break. I’ve completed two training sessions so far, and I’m quite content with them. However, when I return home from the long day, I’m often too tired and lazy to do any home baking. I still manage to squeeze a sourdough bake every week during the weekdays, but I haven't the energy to photograph or blog about it.

The Puff / Filo pastry class:

Choux / Meringue Class:

The last bake was a trusty and tested one, just like most Hamelman’s recipes; Flaxseed bread. The recipe calls for a sour rye ferment and 60% Rye flour with overnight- soaked flaxseeds. I’ve followed the recipe to the letter, including the addition of 1.5 tsp instant yeast.

-Khalid

Comments

trailrunner's picture
trailrunner

Winds of change to blow out the stale and let in fresh air !  I wish there was something like that here in our area. Your bread is beautiful and your posts are always enjoyable. I am glad you did find time to come back to TFL. I hope you will continue to report on your classes...more details about how they are managed and more pics would be interesting. c

yozzause's picture
yozzause

Hi Khalid

That looks like a really worthwhile expansion to your repertoire im sure that you will impress with your bread when the yeasted  goods comes around. im sure they will be most impressed if you take along a sample of the sour dough that you produce as it is second to none. Changes are what makes life interesting my friend. 

kind regards Derek

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Quite true, i'm been apprehensive of change far too long! 

If i have any chance of persuing a career related to baking, i believe i'd better get pastry fundamentals First.

I'll do as you suggested, not to impress, but to introduce them to the world of bread with superior flavor. 

Thanks for the generous words, my friend!

-Khalid

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thank you, Caroline! 

I'm glad i found a culinary institute nearby, but they'll shift to a new remote location soon..ugh!

I'll try to sneak in some extra photos, especially those of the oven, aaah the steam oven! There are of course other gadgets of less interest to us bread bakers, like the blast chiller. 

-Khalid

golgi70's picture
golgi70

Did you fight with the IDY trying to keep it out again?  Looks mighty tasty. Based on all your work shown here I think you'd do fantastic in this industry. And if it makes you happy there is very little sitting. 

is pastry new to you or have you dabbled along with bread? 

well I hope these winds sail you to a place that comforts you. 

Regards

josh

Mebake's picture
Mebake

No, i added the yeast to speed things up. 

It does make me happy, when i have the chance to bake and move around in the kitchen; though i know my limitation.

Pastry is knew to me, but i have made a cake, a few cookies, and a quiche some time ago.

Thanks for the lovely words of encouragement, Josh!

-Khalid

wassisname's picture
wassisname

That is a beautiful, hearty loaf, Khalid.  It is wonderful to hear that you are pursuing your passion for baking and taking on the challenge of formal pastry education.  If your breads are any indication I have no doubt that you will excel!  Best wishes.

Marcus

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Marcus! That is very kind of you.

-Khalid

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Your flaxseed loaf is an appropriate antidote to the pastries you are learning to bake. It looks delicious, too!

Good luck with your changes, whatever you decide!

David

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Funny you should say that, David, by the time a lesson is finished, i'm high on sugar. 

Thanks for the well wishes, David!

-Khalid

golgi70's picture
golgi70

Just like bread pastry is an art of discipline. While I love making batters and doughs I struggle with the foofy side of pastry like cake decor. I can finish a cake but it takes me too long and I have shaky hands which don't help the cause. I'm better at production and pastries and let the artists do the finishing. 

you have proven the discipline and desire to understand the science behind breads.  Believe it or not most bakers dont care about the how or whys which I believe is crucial to taking it to the next level. I think you'll do fantastic with pastry. 

Good luck 

josh

Mebake's picture
Mebake

I love the science behind everything...and pastry / breadmaking offers enough for my curiousity.

Thanks again Josh, very kind of you.

-Khalid

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

What a great way liven up your life -- learn to make things that make great gifts, and not so bad indulgences when they "fail".  If that spread is any indication, you've got a second life waiting in the wings.  Not a second career necessarily -  avocations can lose their lustre when they lose the 'a'.

Add a few more seeds to that Hammelman formula and you can join Karin's challenge.

Best,

Tom

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Tom!

I'm not seeking a vocational training, rather a crash course in Pastry making to help spice things abit and increase my profit margin; that is when i get to having my own bakery business.

I don't have much energy to bake, let alone improvise. members here have been doing some lovely variations of Karin's challenge bread!

-Khalid

Skibum's picture
Skibum

That is one gorgeous loaf!!!  Most attractive with the creative scoring and I am guessing sesame seeds on top.

It is always great to break out of a rut, but I will second Tom's comment that "avocations can lose their lustre when they lose the 'a'."  I spent most of my career selling high technology, starting with IBM and ending with HP.  I was always a keen photographer and in fact trained in photography and film making.  So at 39, armed with a lot of middle age angst, I started a commercial photography business.  The business was successful, but ruined my love of photography for many years after I closed it.

Ken Forkish also sold high technology for IBM.  In his book Flour, Salt, Water, Yeast, he speaks of his work schedule in the early days of running his bakery.  I think this would be a good and sobering read for those thinking of full time baking.  It is a LOT of work!

However sometimes a change is as good as a rest.

Happy baking!  Brian

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thank you, Brian!

As i said above, i don't intend to be doing the actual labor in a bakery, as most of you are well aware of my back ailement. The career change might start with gradual participations in food festivals, and ultimately may end up in having my own Artisan bakery (hopefully).

-Khalid

varda's picture
varda

Khalid,  Terrific that you are learning something new and changing your environment to head toward something that you prefer.  It's your life.   Might as well get some joy out of it.  Your flaxseed loaf looks delicious.   I make that one frequently.  It's so good.   Confused a bit about your numbers.   The Hamelman flaxseed that I make is 40% rye and the crumb looks just like yours.  Happy baking and learning.  -Varda

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, varda!

You had me running to Hamelman's book to double check the recipe! Um, it is 60% medium rye. My new rye flour which i blogged about earlier is really soft and fine,  i wonder if this has any effect on the bread; i think it does.

-Khalid

varda's picture
varda

Hey Khalid,   So I went back to the book and you are right.   I have been baking this every couple weeks for months, and just had it in my head that it was 40% rye.   Takes you to set me straight.  Think I need a brain transplant.  -Varda

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi Khalid,

What exciting news!  I am so glad you shared what you have been up to and wish you the best of luck as you pursue you dream.  I support your efforts 150% - time to make a move when you are young and have the energy to work a day job and pursue a new career while raising a family!  No easy undertaking and it takes great courage to step out and 'do it'.  You are a lucky man to have a family that supports your endeavors too.

Your loaf is a beauty.  Love the sesame seeds on the top and your scoring.  All so stunning.  Crumb looks great too but I was really taken in by the crust….

Thanks again for posting and for your great photos!


Take Care,

Janet

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, Janet!

It was a a tough call to make, but all career changes are. As long as i keep the little ones fed with my brought home pastries, no one will complain!

The recipe makes a really marvelous bread, i'm glad you like it.

Thanks for the heads up, Janet!

-Khalid

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Especially when the bread turns out a beautiful as this one!  If this isn't Hamelman's most baked by Fresh Lofians - it has to be a close second.  Yours is exceptional though.  The crust and crumb ar perfect.  The reason this bread is baked so often is because it is about as tasty as a bread can get and his recipe is bulletproof.  For being fat with pastries and tired from baking them - you really did it well.   Best of luck woith ypour calss Khalid and

Happy baking  

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks, DA!

This is an excellent recipe, no doubt. The % of prefermented flour is 40  all of which is rye flour, allowing for a good sour, and excellent crumb structure.

I'm struggling to maintain my weight after all the butter/'sugar laden pastries. I don't eat much, though.. most get eaten by the kids.

-Khalid

 

bakingbadly's picture
bakingbadly

Great to hear (read) from you, Khalid, and happy to hear about your new endeavor. Likewise, I have been stuck in an office cubicle, performing tedious tasks on a daily basis. I had enough and now attempting to open a not-for-profit sourdough bakery here in Cambodia. Probability of failure is high for me but I'm taking it step by step to mitigate the risks. 

Anyway, I hope you continue to find contentment in your baking course, and better yet I hope you find and do what makes you happy.

Zita

Mebake's picture
Mebake

I Know, i've read part of your post on the subject. I need to skim through it again, though. Very impressive, and noble efforts, Zita.

Thanks for the lovely words.

-Khalid

isand66's picture
isand66

Khalid I'm so happy for you that you have found a path out of your rut and hopefully into happiness.  I am very envious of you and wish I could take that pastry class as it looks great.  I'm sure you will master pastry as you have bread making.  I've taken a croissant class but I leave the sugary baking to my wife for now at least.  I fear I would gain 50 pounds if I started making pastry :)

Your bread as always is excellent with what looks like a perfect crust and crumb.  I need to try this formula soon.

Regards

Ian 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Sorry for the belated relpy, Ian

Why don't you join a pastry class or two? Just for a change. You don't have to eat what you prepare :)

Thanks my friend!

-Khalid

annie the chef's picture
annie the chef

I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed your pastry class for a change. You have made beautiful pastries and desserts.  Your loaf looks delicious too!

All the best with your new plans for the future, look after yourself and don't work too hard, Khalid.

Annie

 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Thanks for the kind words, Annie. Are you a pastry Chef?

I know, i'll have to slow down the pace of things. Thanks!

-Khalid

annie the chef's picture
annie the chef

I was trained as a chef. I did spend a year learning pastry during my 4 years apprenticeship and after I qualified as a chef, I have worked in pastry kitchen for another 2 years. Working in the commercial kitchen, you are judged by your skills and experience.  It helps very much when I moved up to the very senior position in the kitchen when you are expected to know everything.

Hope you are enjoying pastry as much as I am enjoying making sourdough breads at the moment.

Happy baking!

Annie

rossnroller's picture
rossnroller

Change can be scary and daunting, but if you feel strongly you need to change direction, then that's an itch you have to scratch! Takes guts, though - well done!

As others have said, going by your lovely breads, there is every reason to believe you will also excel in pastries. I guess the change to a commercial context is the biggest challenge. Different worlds, the amateur and pro, as my couple of experiences baking with Derek have hammered home to me.

That's a perfect, even crumb! Superb!

Cheers and all the best with your new venture!
Ross

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Many thanks to you Ross!

Yeah, time to move on. The decision was the hardest part, but i conquered my fears. I'm now glad that i did.

all the best to you,

-Khalid