The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Levain Boule/Batard & Tartine Country Loaf

  • Pin It
Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Levain Boule/Batard & Tartine Country Loaf

Today I baked up some levain boules and a Tartine Country Loaf.  I can't shake this sourdough kick since returning from San Francisco.  I tweaked my roaster/steaming method a bit to enhance the Tartine crust caramelization.  I am very happy with the results.  The adjustments to the steaming method really made the crust thin and crispy, and added a more complex flavour.

The combination of dreary weather foiling my landscape photography and a new camera resulted in a post bake shutterbug frenzy. 

 

Comments

Maine18's picture
Maine18

Bread looks amazing (fantastic photography, too).  Well done!

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thank you Maine18...happy baking.

John

emkay's picture
emkay

Love the crumb of the Tartine loaf. Was it as "custardy" as it looks? 

Mary

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thank you Mary.  Yes, the crumb was something I haven't experienced before in bread.  Close, but not quite like this.  Tender, moist, and extremely addicting.  It sure helped trying it while very warm from the oven too.

Thanks for your comments and happy baking.

John

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Well done John.   The photography is fantastic - so the new camera really worked out too.  {_retty soon you wonkt have time for working:-)

Happy baking - Arizona isn't far away time wise now!

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Absolutely dabrowny!  Only a few months away.

I already don't have time for working...I need an extra 8 hours in a day to get my work done!  You know how it is.

Thanks for the feedback.  Your recent sourdough is a treat to see from you.

John

WoodenSpoon's picture
WoodenSpoon

Great job man, both photography and loaves, I bet they were tasty as hell as well.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thank you.  I can say the larger of the 3, Tartine Loaf, was great.  A bit of a dangerous thing to have around the home with some butter.

Happy baking.

John

Wingnut's picture
Wingnut

Smashing good looking bread John! Great expansion, blistering, and crumb. High marks mate.

Cheers,

Wingnut

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks Wingnut.  Yes, I have to give my turkey roaster some credit for giving all those qualities to the bakes.

Take care and happy baking.

John

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I like the B&W photos. Did you use a shutter delay timer on those?

David

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thank you David.  The black and whites were actually the only 2 photos in my post that weren't from my camera!  They were taken by my wife with her iPhone 5S.  It actually takes very nice blur motion shots with no need for longer shutter/exposure.

Take care.

John

Darwin's picture
Darwin

Beautiful crust & crumb!  I really like these smaller loaves. :)

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thank you Darwin.  Yes, the smaller loaves were shaped with more symmetry I think.

Happy baking.

John

isand66's picture
isand66

Beautiful bake John.  I know it's hard to resist a loaf like these.  Nice photos too...so what's your new toy?

Ian

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks Ian.  This is really the only 'white' bread we ever have around the house.  Typically it's a whole grain, rye or Hamelman 5 Grain Levain type bread around here.

Spoiled myself with a Nikon D610.  Now I just need a wide angle (about the same cost of the body!) for landscape photos.

Take are Ian.

John

Mebake's picture
Mebake

They look delicious, John! thanks for sharing it with us.

 

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks Khalid.  I know this one is old hat for you..:)

Happy baking.

John

Julie McLeod's picture
Julie McLeod

These look fantastic......and very tempting.  :)

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks Julie.  I feel horrible saying that I could finish one loaf to myself in one day easily.  Not that I have!  But still...tempting.

John

janniethebaker's picture
janniethebaker

Hello, Song of the Baker.  Unbeknownst to you, I have followed your advice and have been using a big old 1940s covered roaster to bake 3 batards a week!  Once the loaves are ready to bake, I put them in the bottom of the pan, on a rack, spritz the loaves with water, and then pour in the bottom a cup of boiling water, cover the pan, and proceed to bake at 500.   The loaves weigh about 900+g each, so I've had to experiment some to get the timing right.

Am always eager to learn, and your breads to me are incredibly beautiful, so I hope that you will share the changes to your steaming method.

Thank you in advance for your experience and guidance.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Oh my god...I spent 30 minutes writing you a reply, but it got erased when I posted it.  I will send you a message instead when I get a chance to re write.

John

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

OK, let's try this again...

I would like to see some photos of your bakes.  Glad to hear the method I use is working out for you.

I adjusted 2 things:

1. I removed the tin can of boiling water method.  Instead, I pour the water directly to the bottom of the roaster.  I realized my roaster has shallow grooves on the bottom (originally intended to pool the fat and drippings from meat) that pools the boiling water, keeping it away from the parchment paper and dough.  The tin can worked fine, just was a bit too clunky.

2. I removed the quarry tiles from inside the roaster and instead place the roaster on top of the preheated tiles.  This allows me to bake loaves the entire size of the roaster as opposed to just the size of the tile area, 12 inches by 6 inches.  Boules were difficult to bake on this constricted working area.

My question for you is how do you place the dough on a rack without the dough oozing through the rack?

I like the idea of using a low rack in the roaster so you can pour the water under the elevated dough.  My ultimate plan is to custom cut quarry tiles to the shape and size of my roaster, and find a low sitting (so I still have lots of head room to lid for the spring rise) rack.  I would then place the rack in the roaster, place the tiles on top of the rack, then pour boiling water (like you do) so it evaporates under the rack.  This way I won't have to worry about the water touching the tiles.

John

 

RobynNZ's picture
RobynNZ

Hi John

Further to PM. I've been using a roasting tin for about four years. Like yours mine has those ridges in the bottom. Usually I add some water to the outer circle, essentially no contact with dough  and spray the sides and inside of lid with water too.  I do not preheat it, but place it on a kiln shelf which has been preheated in oven.  I remove lid after 18 min or so, and then after another 10 min or so I remove the bread from the roasting tin and place it directly on the kiln shelf for the rest of the bake. 

Pretty similar to what you are now doing.

Last year I stayed at a friend's place for several weeks, her roasting tin was wonderful. Much better quality though smaller than mine. It had a rack with long handles for lowering/removing from tin. The metal was thick. I preheated it. I put the proofed loaf onto the rack, with a piece of parchment doubled over. I also added water to the bottom of the roasting tin. I had no stone, and the bottom did not fire well while in the tin, so when I took it out, I turned the loaf upside down on oven shelf, that worked.

 Robyn

Edit: PS TextEdit to the rescue! Just lost my comment too!

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Geeze..is Floyd aware of this issue?  Perhaps nothing can be done about it other than copying and saving before posting...I hear dabrownman complain about it quite a bit so hopefully there's a fix.

Anyway, so THAT is how you get around the dough not oozing through the rack...doubled up parchment paper.  Perfect.  I use parchment on the bottom of all my bakes so I will try this out when I get a rack that fits inside my roaster.

Thanks for the idea.

John