The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


dmsnyder's picture

Our granddaughters, Naomi (6 years old) and Sasha (3 years old), have been staying with us for two weeks. Making bagels was in our contract. We saved this activity until just before their parents return, so they could have them fresh-baked. The parents return late tonight, so we made bagels today to bake for their brunch tomorrow.

Naomi had had an introduction to bagel shaping by her great Great Uncle, Glenn, a few weeks ago. She was a quick learner. Now, little sister wanted to make bagels too.

Sasha got to shape the first bagel, before going for her nap. Naomi provided support. 

Naomi really remembered everything Glenn had shown her. She needed minimal help - like keeping the board damp enough to give the dough some traction.

Naomi really shaped most of the bagels, but she did let me make a couple.

From the "It's never too late to learn" department: When she saw how much fun we were having, Grandma Susan had to grab a piece of the action. She received excellent instruction and did pretty well, for a beginner.

Since I had so much help with the bagels, I was able to get a couple bâtards of pain au levain baked this afternoon as well.

While they lacked something in symmetry, these were the best tasting bagels I've every baked. I used the Krakow Bagel formula from ITJB recipe testing. It is the same as the New York Bagel formula in the book, except it adds a 60 minute bulk fermentation step before dividing and shaping. I tried brother Glenn's flour mix - 25% KAF Bread Flour and 75% KAF Sir Lancelot Flour. Also, the bagels were eaten within an hour of baking. The crust was crisp. There was just the right amount of chewiness. The flavor was perfect, with a bit more sweet flavor than usual.

My apprentices each ate ate two whole bagels with cream cheese and cold smoked salmon. (Their parents wouldn't let them eat more.)

Naomi eating her "twisty bagel."

Sasha could hardly wait to eat her bagel

Sasha and Naomi's parents were given a copy of ITJB. I am pretty sure they will be baking bagels in Las Vegas.



diverpro94's picture

Batards Tearing!?

May 27, 2011 - 10:29am -- diverpro94

I've been using the recipe for the European Peasant bread in 'Artisan Bread in Minutes a Day' and I've come across one problem. During my proofing stage, my outer membrane on my batard tears along one side.


I think this might be due to the higher hydration compared to my other breads, but I've been using this recipe for a while and it just started this. I have been using a baker's couche also, which might have caused it.

Leandro Di Lorenzo's picture

Bâtard with poolish

December 8, 2008 - 1:41am -- Leandro Di Lorenzo

Hi!!! This is my first entry here... Though I've been following the fresh loaf for a while. First of all... I'm from Brazil, so you have to forgive my english :) Last night after read David's Ficelles article, and with a poolish fully developed I was in a mood for baking. So I tried to make some bâtards with high hydratation (about 77%) Here are some photos of the adventure!!! Hope you like!!!

holds99's picture


I tried your recipe for the baguttes/batards (using starter) and I had some problems that maybe you can help me understand.  First I refreshed my starter at 6 hours intervals for a day and a half before I started.  It's the Nancy Silverton starter I made years ago and still use when making some of her sourdough recipes.  It was bubbling nicely when I started the recipe.  Anyway, following your recipe I used 167g starter, 375g K.A. French style flour (supposed to be the equivalent of French T55), 225g water, and 10g salt.  Mixed it all together, let it rest for 45 min. did a fold and placed it in a lightly oiled gallon size plastic container, turned it over (smooth side up), covered it and set it aside at room temp. for 12 hours.  After 12 hours I didn't have any rise to speak of in the dough.  So, i left it for another 3 hours, thinking maybe the room temp. was cooler than 78 deg. and after 3 hrs. still very little rise.  At this point I figured I better do something or I'm going to lose it.  So I stretched the dough out on the counter sprinkled 1 tsp. instant yeast over the surface and kneaded it for about 8 minutes giving it a good workout to fully incorporate the yeast.  Then let set it into the fridge for about 3 hours, removed it to room temp. and let it rise until doubled.  Removed it from the container did a couple of folds, returned it to the container for about an hour, then put it on the counter divided it in two and let it rest for 30 min.  I then shaped it and placed it in a well floured couche and let it rise for about 1.5 hours.  Flipped it from the couche onto my floured transport board, placed it on parchment lined pans, scored it and baked it.

The only thing I can figure is that my starter was not working properly.  Can you tell me what you do to your starter in this recipe to bring it up to speed and get the proper rise without having to resort to yeast?  The exterior of the loaves look o.k. but the interior, well it needs "big time" help because it sure doesn't resemble the interior of those lovely loaves you made.  I feel like the gods must be angry :-)    Seriously, I really want to understand where I went wrong. Any thoughts you have would be greatly appreciated.




Batard Interior

Batard Interior

holds99's picture

I used Danielle Forestier's baguette recipe from her demo on Julia Child PBS video to make these batards.  My oven wasn't large enough to make baguettes so I opted for the batards.  She doesn't use a pre-ferment, only yeast. I didn't get the nice large holes in the interior that are characteristic of French baguettes/batards but I suspect it was because the dough should have been a little wetter and I wasn't gentle enough with the dough when rolling, pinching and shaping it, but they tasted very good.  I'll keep trying. 


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