The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Artisan Breads

KazaKhan's picture

My starter finally kicked into gear yesterday afternoon (started, Sunday 26th, March). It looked ready so I had a go at a lunch loaf. After a nice and quick first rise I shaped the dough and let it sit for a couple of hours before putting in my little proofer thingy. It didn't seem to be going well so I decided I was going to put in the fridge before going to bed. I forgot about it until I was on my way to bed when I noticed it was ready to bake, so on goes the oven at 12:30 at night. I took it out of the oven around 1:30 wrapped it in a tea towel and went to bed. A little small but I didn't have enough starter which also went into the fridge for the first time last night.

This morning I took the starter out of the fridge put some in a coulpe of containers and then fed them. And late this afternoon I was ready to go again. This was also my first use of my new vienna trays. I'll post a picture of the crumb later when I cut one.

All up not bad results for my first go at artisan bread. I used a 1:1 bakers flour and water starter which was fed irregulary, once or twice a day. I used the following formula and did not take any notice of the various temperatures.

  • 100% -- Bakers Flour
  • 100% -- Starter
  • 35% -- Water
  • 2% -- Salt
  • 1% -- Sugar
  • 1% -- Olive Oil
  • 1% -- Lecithin Granules
  • 1% -- Light Dry Malt
Joe Fisher's picture

What to do with extra potatoes and dill?

April 4, 2006 - 6:15pm -- Joe Fisher

Make potato dill bread, of course!

These overproofed quite a bit (too warm + inattention), and the left one deflated badly when I moved it, even with my Superpeel.

That said, they looked and tasted delicious! The crumb was soft and moist. The crust was just a little crispy on the outside, thick and chewy on the inside; as close to perfect as I think I'm going to get. The dill added a great flavor. I will definately make these again.

Recipe to follow.


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Pedro Pan's picture
Pedro Pan

I’d love to have one but since I don’t…

I set out to determine if I could approximate the wood burning brick oven effect by baking the bread in my Cast Aluminum PK charcoal grill. I was hopeful because one of the nice features of the PK is the heat radiating effects of Aluminum. “Aluminum reflects 97% of heat rays

Pedro Pan's picture
Pedro Pan

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I've been making Sourdough breads for a couple months now from a culture I started myself with water and unbleached flour. The original inspiration and methodology came from OUTLAW COOK by John Thorne. There are two great bread chapters in the book: An Artisanal Loaf and One Loaf Three Ways. The former explores the mystery and delight of making bread from nature, the latter gives practical instruction. Since then I have scoured every sourdough entry Google could locate and have gotten great ideas from the many excellent bread makers who have shared their art and technique. I've had some ups and downs as most people do. My goal is craggy, flavorful, crusty artisanal loaves. No bread pans for me! Initially I wasn't getting the loft in the bread-- they weren't door stoppers-- just not as airy as I would have liked. But the biggest failing in my mind was the lack of dramatic bloom and crests where i had slashed the bread. I've solved those issues with this bread which is 1/5 whole wheat flour. My next effort will be with all white bread flour.

Here is my set up: Flower pot cloche on unglazed tiles

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The recipe:
Rosemary Olive Sourdough Boule

1 ½ Cs activated 100% hydration SD starter (retarded overnight and brought to room temp)
1 2/3 Cs water
1 C WW flour
3 ½ Cs Bread Flour
1 T dried Rosemary softened in 1 T olive oil
1 C Brine cured olives pitted, roughly chopped and oven dried at 275 for about an hour.
1 1/2 t sea salt

Put activated starter, WW flour, olive oil/ rosemary and water in large bowl (I use kitchen Aid mixer). Mix on low with paddle until well blended. With mixer on lowest setting, add bread flour 1 tablespoon at a time until a dough begins to form. Using rubber spatula, scrape dough off paddle and exchange for dough hook. Turn on lowest setting with dough hook and continue adding flour 1 tablespoon at a time while scraping down side of bowl so the dough begins to form into a ball. After each addition of flour, the dough will come together away from the bowl and become dry on the outside. Then as the flour is incorporated, the dough will start to sag again, appear wetter and stick to the bowl. As this happens, add more flour. Throughout this process, use the rubber spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and encourage all the dough to stick together. This should take around 4-5 minutes. Once you have a smooth but still somewhat sticky dough, flour your surface and hands and turn/ scrape the dough out for hand kneading.

Hand knead incorporating flour as needed until you have a classic bread dough. 2-4 minutes more.

Set aside covered in a lightly oiled bowl for 20 minutes.

Turn out again onto floured surface and shape into a rough square. Sprinkle 2/3 of the salt on the dough, fold in half and sprinkle remaining salt. Fold over and knead for another 1-2 minutes until salt is evenly distributed.

Put back into oiled bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and set aside to rise. 4-6 hours.

Turn out onto floured surface, spread out into rough square, sprinkle olives all over, fold and knead until olives are well distributed. Shape into Boule and place top down into floured banneton. Place banneton inside a plastic garbage liner (white kind only) or other plastic bag and place in the fridge for overnight retardation.

Remove from fridge and allow 3-5 hours to proof. Preheat oven, tiles and cloche to 500,
Turn bread onto corn meal dusted peel, slash top and slide onto tiles and cover with cloche. Bake 45 mins: 15 mins at 500, 15 mins at 400, final 15 mins uncovered to brown.

Peeking while it rises, 2 hours out of the fridge, 2 hours before baking (a finger poked 1/2 inch into the dough springs back quickly)

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gradygrains's picture

Pedro Pan's picture

When to retard the dough and surface drama

March 22, 2006 - 12:27pm -- Pedro Pan

I actually posted this as a reply to another string and realized that it was kind of a non-sequitor there.

Given the time logistics and requirements for sourdough-- mine is a six hour starter-- I am a real fan of retardation in the fridge, both the sponge and the shaped loaves. It also helps that retardation gives the levain time to develop flavor and complexity. I have found it convenient to retard the dough right after it has been shaped (before any significant rising). Then the next day I take it out roughly 7 hours before I plan to bake it (1 hour to come to room temp, 6 hours to double). The results have been very good. I like the idea mentioned in another post about allowing it to rise after shaping, then retarding it overnight before baking. Obviously the timing is different in that I would have to plan for two 6 hour rises in one day. I'll be trying that next.

timtune's picture

Just a few days ago, i decided to try Pete Reinhart's Pane Siciliano. It's been a long time since i've wanted to try this..

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Wished i'd shape it better though.
But the semolina adds something nice to it :)!

Anybody tried Pane di Altamura before? Is it 100% durum flour bread?


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