The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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daveazar531's picture
daveazar531

I was in the mood for nutella so i started googling what i could do with the stuff and i ran accross this

Steamy Kitchen Article

But i am tring to not use the NK bread as much anymore so i used the BBA recepit for Challah. the only thing i didnt do was let the  4 strand loaf proof for 90 minutes. its getting late and i didnt want to wait. i got some decent oven spring(gas oven, no steam). For a rookie who doesnt really follow the "rules" im really happy with the result.

Up intill the shaping of the braids i followed BBA formula. I scaled and preformed the braids so they would roll easyer then I used a serated knife to open each braid and load it with nuttela.

 

Pinching them shut can get messy but i realised that if you let the weight of the braid strech the dough as you pinch it is much cleaner

 Considering i only let the loaf rest 10 minutes before putting it in the oven and i didnt bother with steam im happy. I would have liked my if the loaf had a better shine to it. A better glaze then the one I used (egg whites and a little half an half) might be the right move next time

Crumb pictures from this morning

madisonbaker26's picture
madisonbaker26

After a long time being intrigued by artisan bread baking, I finally decided to give it a go.  I think I got it from my father, but I usually dive in head first and think "go big or go home."  

Last weekend, after experimenting a little bit with my sourdough starter I decided to pick up a copy of BBA and start baking...with the Poliane-style miche.  Other than not using the high-extraction flour (did a 50/50 bread + whole wheat mix) I made no modifications and I'm fairly pleased with how it turned out.  Of course, you guys are the experts, so please let a newbie know what you think!  Personally, one of the best tasting breads I've had in a while.  3 days after baking and I'm amazed at how the flavor has changed and gotten even more complex! 

Here's a shot of the miche right after shaping it into a boule:

The scoring (just a bought a lame, so hopefully it will improve quite a bit)

Right out of the oven...I think maybe it should be a little darker? The lighting is a little off..probably something to do with my iPhone:

A close-up of the crust and crumb:

Miche cross-section:

I've really only been baking on the weekends, but hopefully I can find a way to work in some bread baking around my weird work schedule during the week so I can post more often.

Cheers!

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

The 100% Whole Wheat Bread from Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice has been one of my favorite breads for years. I love it for it's delicious honey-wheat flavor. However, it often comes out with a dense, cake-like crumb. In April, I tried making this bread using a more intensive mix, as demonstrated by txfarmer. (See Light and fluffy 100% Whole Wheat Bread) I did, indeed, achieve a less dense, more open crumb. But I felt there was some loss of flavor due to oxidation of carotenoids. 

It is difficult to make a 100% whole wheat bread with a light, airy crumb. The pieces of bran in the flour act like little knives, cutting the gluten strands that give bread crumb its “structure.” I had heard of flour mills that grind the bran to a finer consistency after it has been separated during the normal milling process and then add the fine-ground bran back in, along with the other wheat components that re-constitute “whole wheat” flour. The smaller bran particles do less damage to the developing gluten during mixing.

Central Milling makes such a flour, and brother Glenn recently got some for me at CM's Petaluma warehouse. Today, I used CM's “Organic Hi-Protein Fine” whole wheat flour to make the Whole Wheat Bread from BBA. I followed the formula and procedures in my April 2, 2011 blog entry with one exception: I only mixed the dough for 12 minutes at Speed 2.

 

The first difference in the bread was the wonderfulness of its aroma. I can't say it was different in quality, but it just filled the house as never before. When the bread was cool and sliced, the crumb structure was even more open than I got with intensive mixing. The bread is chewy like a good white loaf and not at all cakey or crumbly. The flavor is delicious. I can't really say it is better than the flavor I've gotten with either home-milled flour or KAF Organic Whole Wheat flour, but the combination of crumb structure, texture and flavor was remarkable.

 

I am now eager to try using this flour with other breads, for example the Tartine "Basic Country Bread." Stay tuned.

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

It's much nicer to live with my wife, along with San Joaquin Sourdough, than alone. And if there is any bread that makes her happier than San Joaquin Sourdough, it's the Cinnamon-Raisin-Walnut Bread from BBA. So I baked some today.

One of these days, I will try Glenn's variation with pecans and dried cranberries. See Another Spice-Fruit-Nut Bread

And, for those who are wondering, Glenn and I did not discuss what we were baking this weekend. It's just one of them synchronicity things.

David

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder


100% Whole Wheat Bread from BBA


I've been admiring the whole wheat pan loaves txfarmer has shown us in recent weeks. Her use of intensive mixing to achieve a higher rise and airier crumb has particularly intrigued me. (See SD 100% WW sandwich loaf with bulgur (cracked wheat) - discovered a new favorite ingredient). When I read her blog, I decided to make the same bread. However, on further reflection, I changed my plan. I have a favorite 100% whole wheat bread – that in BBA – and I really don't like the combination of sourdough tang and whole wheat flavors. So, I decided to fiddle with Peter Reinhart's formula for 100% whole wheat bread using some of txfarmer's techniques to see if I could get a lighter-crumbed version of a bread I already know well and love. The crumb texture I have gotten with this bread is moist but rather dense and crumbly, following Reinhart's suggestions for mixing time. This is not at all unpleasant to eat, but is very different from the airier crumb txfarmer and khalid have shown.


Reinhart's formula calls for a soaker with a coarsely-ground grain and a whole wheat poolish. As usual, I used bulgur for the soaker, and I used fresh-milled whole wheat flour for the poolish. The flour in the final dough was KAF Organic Whole Wheat. The procedures described are those I used. They deviate from both Peter Reinhart's and txfarmer's in significant ways.


 


Soaker

Baker's %

Wt (oz)

Medium bulgur

100

4.25

Water

141

6

The day before baking, measure the bulgur into a 3 cup bowl. Pour the water over it and cover tightly. Leave at room temperature until used.

 

Whole Wheat Poolish

Baker's %

Wt (oz)

Whole wheat flour

100

6.75

Instant yeast

0.41

0.028 (¼ tsp)

Water

88.9

6

The day before baking, mix the poolish ingredients. Cover the bowl tightly. Allow to ferment until bubbles start to form (2-4 hours), then refrigerate.

 

Final dough

Baker's %

Wt (oz)

Whole wheat flour

100

9

Salt

3.7

0.33

Instant yeast

1.2

0.11 (1 tsp)

Honey

16.7

1.5

Vegetable oil (optional)

5.6

0.5

Egg, slightly beaten

18.3

1.65 (1 large)

Seeds to garnish (optional)

 

2 T

Soaker

114

All of above

Poolish

142

All of above

 

Procedure

  1. Mix the soaker and poolish, as instructed above, the night before mixing the final dough.

  2. One hour before mixing, take the poolish out of the refrigerator to warm to room temperature.

  3. Place all the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer.

  4. Using the paddle, mix at Speed 1until a ball forms on the paddle and the ingredients are well-mixed (1-2 minutes). Note that the dough should be quite tacky – neither dry nor sticky. Adjustments can be made by adding either water or flour during this step or during the next mixing step. (I added about 15-20 g additional water.)

  5. Let the dough rest, covered in the mixer bowl, for 20-40 minutes.

  6. Switch to the dough hook and mix at Speed 2 until a medium window pane can be made. (20-25 minutes) Note: Reinhart's instruction is to knead for 10-15 minutes, “less” if machine kneading.

  7. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl.

  8. Ferment for two hours or until the dough has doubled in volume, with a stretch and fold on the board at 60 minutes.

  9. Divide the dough into two equal pieces and form them into pan loaves.

  10. Place the dough into lightly oiled medium loaf pans and place the pans in food-grade plastic bags or cover well with a towel or plasti-crap.

  11. Proof until the loaves have almost doubled and are peaking above the rims of the pans. (About 90 minutes)

  12. Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF with a rack in the middle.

  13. Optionally, spray the loaves lightly with water and sprinkle on seeds or rolled oats.

  14. Optionally, score the loaves.

  15. Bake for 45-60 minutes. At 30 minutes, rotate the pans 180º, if necessary for even browning. The interior temperature should be at least 195ºF, and the crust should be firm on the top and on the sides of the loaves. If necessary, return the loaves to the oven and bake longer. (My loaves were done in 45 minutes.)

  16. Immediately transfer the loaves to a cooling rack.

  17. Cool thoroughly before slicing.

I noticed two significant differences in this dough, compared to my previous bakes of this bread. First, the dough was less sticky than usual. Second, the loaves achieved significantly greater volume during proofing. I attribute this to the more intensive mixing, but also the S&F which serves to further strengthen the dough but also equalized the dough temperature and redistribute the products of fermentation.

Once baked, the loaves felt much lighter than usual. When sliced, the reason was quite obvious. Rather than the cakey, somewhat crumbly crumb this bread has always had in the past, the crumb was airy and, in txfarmer's words, “shreddable.”

Crumb from a previous bake of the BBA 100% Whole Wheat Bread, made following Reinhart's mixing time instructions

Crumb of the 100% Whole Wheat Bread from BBA mixed as described above

"Shreddable"

The flavor of the bread is basically unchanged, but the mouth feel is entirely different - light and mildly chewy. I was amazed.

I'm looking forward to having toast for breakfast.

Thanks, txfarmer, for your inspiring and informative postings!

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jo_Jo_'s picture
Jo_Jo_

I of course start by planning ahead, which means sitting on my bum and reading the instructions all the way through. Help is always appreciated, but sometimes I get a little to much help. In this instance, Smoky decided he would help me read the BBA recipe which for some reason wore him out and required him to take a 20 minute nap on the book which I was holding up. Now normally, with any of the other cats, I would simply move around alot and they would go find a place to lay that didn't move so much. Smoky though simply gave me a dirty look each time, groaned loudly, and re-adjusted himself for more zzz's. Don't tell anyone, but I finally had to kick him off and send him packing, much to his disgust.





On to the making of my version of the Bread Baker's Apprentice Cranberry Walnut bread. I looked over the recipe, and realized immediately that I would have to change a few ingredients. To me walnuts are rather evil, causing stomach aches and just making a person feel horrible. Not to long ago someone suggested using pecans instead, and I tried that with the raisin bread with pretty good results. I love cranberries and decided even though they make my mouth raw, it would be worth it to try it this time. Actually, I love most fruits, but seem to have a bad reaction to them and while I still eat some usually it is in a small amount and rather quickly so they don't sit in my mouth.  It's funny how your body seems to have cravings for things that you probably shouldn't eat. I decided that the dried fruit and nuts could soak in the water overnight (I soak dry fruit so that is doesn't burn and turn hard when baked).  I set up two soakers. The other one had about 50% of the recipes flour (fresh ground winter white wheat) and kefir (similar to the buttermilk that was called for). The other 50% bread flour I saved for the next day.  I have the picture of the berries and nuts, but for some reason I seem to have either deleted or misplaced some of my pictures.  Life goes on....





The next day I combined all the ingredients, including the flour/kefir soaker and leaving out the cranberry/nut one. The cranberries had soaked up all but a tablespoon of the water, so I included that in the dough. I had to add some water to the dough to make it the right consistency, kneading it with my kitchenaid for 6 minutes. I then added the fruit/nut mix, which added a little bit of moisture to the whole thing and kneaded it for another 2 minutes. I pulled out my King Arthur Silicone Rolling Mat and put extra flour on it, and put the dough into the middle, then folded it a couple times.  This created a boule shape, or round ball.  Just a note, if you don't have a good place to knead and shape your bread, the King Arthur rolling mat is really awesome.  I love it and pull it out for every loaf I make, even if it's just to shape it into a log for a single loaf.





I let it rest a few minutes, and then shaped it into a log.





Since I used the baker's percentages that Reinhart provided in his book, I was able to adjust the recipe to make a single 2 lb loaf of bread that fit perfectly into my bread pan. I know that I was supposed to braid this loaf, but while surfing on SomethingShiny's website I found a wonderful idea. The very first picture on the site was of this bread, with turkey and cheese stuffed inside. I decided right then that mine was going to be a sandwich loaf, since this would probably not be made again till Thanksgiving.  My mouth started to drool, because cranberry sauce and turkey on a sandwich are really good together.  My husband says I'm nuts, because cranberry sauce does NOT belong on a sandwich, but I just don't agree and since I am ALWAYs right.....





I used part of the egg from the recipe to do an egg wash on the crust, and it came out really nice. I took 8 pictures of just the crust, it was shiny and such a nice shade of brown. Just beautiful, tender when eaten, with a beautiful color and shine which made it hard to cut into. It was just to pretty!






I realized that I would have to cut it open, so I could see what the crumb looked like. It was just such a perfect loaf that I really didn't want to, except for the thought of taking a bite of it!





I took this picture of the crumb inside, and didn't look till later and realized it really didn't show how wonderful the crumb was.





The next morning I cut the loaf into slices and froze half of it, then took a few slices and used natural lighting to see if it would help show the crumb. The crumb was darker than normal, but I think that was because of the liquid from the cranberry soaker.  It's great tasting bread!





I will be making this again, probably for Thanksgiving. It has great taste, texture, and the crust is wonderful too. Definitely a holiday bread.

Jo_Jo_'s picture
Jo_Jo_

Well it certainly looks good! I baked it at 450* for 20 minutes, on my pizza stone. I really like the color of the crust both top and bottom. There weren't many surprises when I made this, except maybe that it was a lot easier to tell if it was ready to be baked. I am used to making sourdough versions of this, so they take a LOT longer to rise.


From BBA Ciabatta

Here's a picture of the bottom, which is a beautiful color. I always like how my bread turns out when baking on a stone with steam in the oven.


Here they are side by side on my cookie sheet, which I use like a peel. Haven't seen a need for a real peel yet, seems rather expensive when I have something that works.


I used Peter Reinhart's baker's formula, and only made 1 pound of dough. I was already in the process of making sourdough loaves, so I figured that I wanted to have enough to try this recipe out. The only difficulty I had was that my mixer likes to make at least 2 pounds of dough, and smaller loads seem to be harder for it to really create a nice gluten structure.


As you can see, it is quite wet and sticky even after it being worked for about 5 minutes.


Here it is close to the end of the process, when I decided to just pull it out and do some stretch and folds to help build it up a little bit.


After second set of stretch and folds....


Ok, I missed a lot of picture opportunities with this one, totally forgot to take pictures of each step of the process.  I actually did three stretch and folds, one at the beginning because I felt it was underworked by the mixer.  I gave it a rest of 90 minutes after the stretch and fold process, then split it into two pieces.  I then did the final shaping and transferred it to a french bread pan I have, which I often use as a couch.


It's already starting to grow...


Almost ready to be put into the oven...


These rose a lot during the final proof, and for it being only a pound of dough it made two nice loaves. Ok, I have held off on showing the crumb shot till now, because I was so disappointed with it.  This dough was really wet, and I know that I didn't overwork it.  Possibly it was slightly underworked, but here are two pictures.

From BBA Ciabatta

I was really expecting a LOT more holes, especially when my sourdough breads are so much easier to work with and give me crumb like the next pictures regularly. Here are two pictures of the loaves I made today, and I wasn't even trying for a ciabatta like loaf.


And my sourdough was a lot easier to handle, and it tasted a lot better too. I find that most of the BBA breads seem to have too much salt in them for my taste, but this bread just seemed to be like a regular french bread to me and didn't have nearly the flavor that I expected.  My sourdough is usually made with a starter made from AP Flour, water, salt, bread flour for the main dough.  I used AP flour with the biga that I made for the ciabatta, then bread flour for the main dough.  The biggest difference in the recipes is that BBA adds oil, which I never use.  I just find this really interesting, when comparing the hydration percentages on the two dough, my sourdough came in at 70.4%, and Reinhart's was at 74.74%. 

mdunham21's picture
mdunham21

In my quest to make better bread I have gathered information from almost any resource.  Peter Reinhart's Bread Baker's Apprentice has become a go-to book when I want to bake.  One day I was perusing random websites and I happened upon a blog called "Pinch My Salt".  This blog included a number of amateur bakers making each recipe in The Bread Baker's Apprentice in order.  I thought this might be a cheaper alternative to making beer considering I do not currently have the funds.


Yesterday afternoon I mixed together the cornmeal and water and let it sit out overnight.  The bowl on the bottom of the picture is about 2 cups of flour, the cornmeal mixture, and yeast.  The other two bowls are pizza dough and a poolish.



I let the soaker/sponge sit out for a couple hours until it was gurgling CO2 at me.  I mixed the sponge with the remaining 2.5 cups flour, 1.5 tsp salt, 1oz shortening and 4oz of molasses .  When I stirred everything together it still seemed too wet, so I mixed in some more flour during the kneading.  the dough was lightly oiled in a bowl and set to ferment for a few hours.  I removed the dough, knocked it down, and formed a couple boules.



I didn't want to make sandwich loaves because I really like free form loaves and the shape of boules.  The final proofing lasted for about an hour before taking them to be scored and baked.  The loaves scored nicely but I lack a peel, as a result I accidently deflated some of the loaf during transfer to the oven.  Thankfully I had a decent amount of oven spring.  





The loaves turned out fine, I can only imagine how they would have looked if I hadn't deflated them, I guess it's time to look into making a peel.  I look forward to the next stage in the BBA challenge and as always look for improvement.


 


Cheers and Happy Baking


 


-Matthew

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