The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


leucadian's picture

I am attempting to read Janedo's baking blog 'Au Levain', having gotten hooked on the automatic translation that kept translating 'baguette' into 'stick' or 'wand'. I always wanted to learn French, and this seemed like a good motivation. What a treat to visit Anis Bouabsa and Patisserie Poilane. Very cool. As part of the exercise, I made a list of some baking terms. I thought I'd share them here, with the hope of getting some free proofreading and editorial comments.

Stewart  (edited with new words and pronunciation hints 9 Dec 08)

  Vocabulaire du boulanger A baker's vocabulary
  Stewart Walton   9 décembre 2008
  ajouter to add ah joo TAY
  alveolée with lots of holes ahl vee oh LAY
le apprêt second fermentation ah PREH
la autolyse autolyse, enzymatic rest auto LEES
la baguette long thin loaf, 'stick'  bah GET
le banneton basket for proofing ban net TAWN
le bâtard thicker loaf, 'bastard' bah TARD
le blé wheat blay
le bol bowl ball
la boule round loaf bool
la bouillie boiled mush boo YEE
la buée steam in the oven biew WAY (first part like view)
  chauffer to heat show FAY
le chef starter, 'chief' shef
la clé seam on shaped dough, 'key' clay
la couche dusted towel for proofing coosh
la coupe cut,score coop
  croquant crisp crow CON
  croustillant crisp crew steel YAHN
la croûte crust crewt
la cuiller spoon (not a common spelling) coo YAY
la cuillère spoon coo YAY
  cuire to cook queer
la détente rest before shaping day TAHN
  diviser to divide, cut to loaf size dee vee SAY
l' eau water oh
l' épeautre spelt ('grand épeautre) eh PAW truh
l' épi 'head' of wheat eh PEE
le façonnage shaping fa sown AHJ
la farine flour fah REEN
la fermentation fermentation  fir mahn tah SEE OWN
la ficelle very thin loaf, 'string' fee SELL
le four oven foor
le frasage simple mixing of ingredients  frah SAHJ
le frigo refrigerator free GO
le gluten gluten gloo TAN
  gonfler to rise, inflate, oven spring gone FLAY
le grigne expanded slashes on loaf green
le grignon most well baked part of loaf green YON
la huile oil we
la  humidification humidity oo mee dee FEE cah SEE OWN
la hydratation hydration heed rah tah SEE OWN
le lait milk lay
la lame blade lahm
le levain sourdough luh VAN
la levée rising, proofing luh VAY
la levure commercial yeast luh VIEW(e)R
  mélanger to mix meh lahn JAY
  mettre to put, to place met ruh
la miche large round loaf meesh
la mie crumb mee
le miel honey mee ELL
  mise en forme shaping  mees on form
le pain bread pan
la pâte dough pot
le pâton shaped dough pot OWN
le petit pain roll ptee pan
le pétrin bread trough or kneading machine pet TRAN
  pétrir to knead pet TREAR
le pétrissage process of kneading  pet tree SAHJ
la pierre stone pee YAYR
le pliage degas (stretch,  fold, or punch), 'pleat' plea AHJ
le pointage  first fermentation pwahn TAHJ
la poolish high hydration yeast starter POH lish
le rabat degas (see pliage), a hunting term  'beat the bushes' rob BAH
le seigle rye SEE gluh
le sel salt sell
le sucre sugar SUE cruh
le taux ratio, percentage tow
le torchon towel tore SHAWN
le trou hole TRUE
la vapeur steam vah PURE
  Note on my attempt at phonetic pronunciation for English speakers:
  Pronouncing these words as I have indicated will bring peals of laughter from anyone who speaks French, but they should be able to understand what you are saying. The French 'r' is hard for most Americans, so don't worry about it. Try running all the syllables together, and say the word fast. The words will sound better that way. Most of the syllables have been rendered as English words or at least something that could be pronounced with English pronunciation conventions (as if there were any). If there was no close equivalent, I resorted to the following conventions:
  ah combination is always pronounced  as in 'lah dee dah'.
  oo combination is always pronounced  as in 'boot, root, scoop'.
  uh combination is always pronounced as in 'uh, I dunno', and can be dropped at the end of a word..
  ahj combination is always pronounced as in 'fusilage garage'.
  Most 'n's in French are nasal: it's the n sound in 'long' before you say the g.
  The baking process mostly from Joe Ortiz 'The Village Baker'  
le pétrissage mixing and kneading  
la repos rest to hydrate during mixing  
le pointage first rising, also called 'première fermentation'
  Donner un tour degassing, 'give a turn', same as pliage or rabat
le pésage scaling, also 'diviser' dividing  
le détente intermediate rising, 'relaxing'  
le façonnage shaping  
le apprêt final proofing, 'preparation', also called 'deuxième fermentation'
le coup de lame slashing, 'cut with blade'  
la cuisson baking  
  I started this list in order to read Janedo's blogs on and  I have gotten lots of help from friends on the Fresh Loaf.  I used Langensheidt's French Pocket Dictionary for most of the ordinary words.
  A final disclaimer: I'm learning French. I don't speak it very well. Comments and corrections are always welcome.
Darkstar's picture

Well it's been since I first found TheFreshLoaf in 2006 that I posted to my bread blog. Up until recently I hadn't had much time or energy to do much baking. Couple that with my love of crusty breads and whole wheat and my wife likes non-crusty, white breads and all the married folk can understand how this variable can decrease the amount of bread time for Jason. Well I had the time recently and wanted something to challenge me and get me back in the swing of baking so I scanned the site and decided on Floyd's Pain sur Poolish recipe.


I don't have much experience with working high-hydration dough but the best way to learn is to do so I dove right in. I guess I was feeling cocky from finally ordering and reading BBA but I felt I could handle it or add enough flour to make it a lower hydration loaf. :)


I followed the recipe to the letter with minor variations caused by the weather and temperature in the Chicago area recently (freaking cold). I am pleased and proud to have turned out a lovely boule and to have achieved a crisp crust with a creamy interior; both firsts for me as I usually bake enriched breads. I was doubly pleased and proud when my wife came home and not only tried my bread but actually liked it! I quickly made another poolish and baked up a second batch the next day for around-the-office gifting this time making two smaller boules for my usual "bread-head" and a newly discovered loaf-lover. The picture below was taken of the crumb from one of the smaller loaves my "bread-head" friend devoured. I thanked her for photographing it before it was all gone.


Darkstar's Daily Bread


I got sidetracked after I baked this as my sourdough starter became ready to bake with and I made this same recipe with a cup of starter in place of some of the flour and all of the yeast. I used pieces of info from JMonkey's lesson Squeeze more sour from your sourdough and other suggestions from another site to make a very, VERY tasty loaf. I plan on doing this again to photograph as my wife and I decimated the sourdough loaf before I could take pictures of it.


pjkobulnicky's picture

I did a forum post a week or so ago asking if anyone knew more than me about making Joe Ortiz's Pain de Seigle de Thiezac . I didn't get any comments so I supposed the answer was no. So .. here is an update.

This bread is supposed to be all rye made solely with a natural starter. Ortiz humanely suggests that the beginner incorporate a bit of white flour and some yeast into the final dough. Even so, the first time I tried this it was a bear to make. Super glue has nothing over on pure rye dough. And ... pure rye starters that are not soupy wet are, how shall we say this ... subtle in their demonstration of activity. I also feel that Ortiz's transcriptions of bakery recipes for the home baker are poorly executed in print. (Joe ... if you read this I do apologize). He has the recipe starting not from an existing starter but from making a stiff levan from scratch. So ... the novice will spend 2-3 days waiting for something to happen and it may never happen. Or, since the action is so subtle, you may never know if you are successful. Anyone knows that it is MUCH easier to get a starter going with a wet solution. Then, once you have a working starter you innoculate another levan with it.

So, I spent the week getting a good starter going and when it came time to do Joe's recipe, I mixed a bit of the starter into the first levan mixture.

Joe doesn't give weights and Joe makes no mention of proofing temps. So ... I used the usual standard weights for cups of rye and white flour. I did the levan and the first refeshment at room temp (curretly about 60 in our house) over long times. The first (innoculated) levan went for almost 24 hours and the refreshment went for 8 hours. When I put the dough together with the wee bit of yeast, I move it to my proof box at 85 degrees where it went for 45 minutes. Then I shaped it ... not too tough and with less additonal flour to manipulate the sticky dough than with cibatta. I put it into a round shape and put it into a heavily, heavily floured round cane banneton using rye flour. It went back to the proof box for another 45 minutes. The oven preheated (450) with my stone for the 45 minutes. The loaf popped right out of the banneton on to my parchment covered peel. It baked for 50 minutes with another 10 in the turned off oven at the end.


If I can figure out how to get pictures to this site I'll post them. I did upload them but got a blank acknowledgment screen so maybe the image upload fairies were sleeping.


If it takes, here is the loaf:




And here is the FlickrURL:


Here is the crumb:





And here is the Flickr url.





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