The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Italian

d_a_kelly's picture
d_a_kelly

This one isn't very seasonal at the moment, but I love eating it for breakfast. It's so buttery and soft that I really don't think it needs an accompaniment. The recipe is taken from "non solo zucchero vol.II" where it is called pandoro evolution, but it is very similar to the pandoro a sfoglia from Cresci. 

Main impasto - in grams

sweet starter (50% humidity) 45

dry active yeast 3

very strong flour 179

sugar 36

unsalted butter (soft but not melted) 27

egg 107

salt 3.5

half a vanilla pod 

melted butter flavour 0.3 (I've made this before without the flavouring and it tasted exactly the same - but it's in the recipe so I've included it here).

 

mix all the ingredients together and work it until it forms a smooth, elastic dough. It should be strong and windowpane, but still very slightly sticky. Wrap it in plastic and put it in the freezer. I left it in there for an about an hour, but the book actually recommends overnight at -10C. While this is firming up, I worked on the butter for lamination:

softened unsalted butter 147

icing sugar 39 

 

mix the two ingredients together thoroughly, then pat into a square, wrap, and put in the fridge to firm up. When both parts are at the right consistency, take 362 of the dough and laminate it as if you were making croissants - 3 simple turns in total, with at least half an hour between each turn. It ought to look something like this when you've finished:

 

the total weight is 550g.

The difficult bit is then forming this into a ball without breaking the laminations. The book gives absolutely no guidance here whatsoever! I usually fold the ends underneath and then roll it around until it looks more or less spherical. I doubt very much that this is the best method! The dough by this point is really quite resistant to being shaped. 

It looks so tiny in the tin - it's hard to believe that it can possibly fill it!

Leave it to prove at about 27C and at least 60% humidity for about 10 - 12 hours. I left mine for 10 hours. 

I think it could easily have grown even more than this, so next time I might put less dough in the pandoro tin. As it was, it was just about to start spilling over the edge. If my shaping of the ball had been better then I also think this might have helped.

Leave it in the open air for about 30 minutes in order to form a skin on the dough and then it goes in the oven for 30 minutes at 170C. Leave it in the tin for a few hours after cooking before turning out. Mine stuck a little bit - I should have used more flour and butter to grease the form. 

When it's ready to eat (after a few days), dust it in icing sugar and enjoy! 

I was very happy with the crumb on this one - really light and shreddy, with a wonderfully complex buttery taste. It just fell to pieces as I was cutting and eating it. 

 

David

Epsilon's picture

Newbie's first loaves!

August 25, 2012 - 12:24pm -- Epsilon
Forums: 

This is part me showing off, part asking for input. :)

A bit about me - I've always enjoyed cooking, but just recently (as of a week ago) dove into bread-making for the first time ever when I bought a few packets of active dry yeast on a whim. I've made two batches, and I've got my third one retarding in the fridge. I've already bought a proper jar of yeast (rather than packets,) and I've got an attempt at cherry yeast water brewing in the kitchen at the moment.

... yeah, I'm kind of addicted already. ;)

isand66's picture
isand66

I really did intend to make one of the 100 recipes I have saved from assorted websites and blogs or one of the 1000 recipes from one of my bread books.....really...I did.  Well this recipe is kind of adapted from Peter Reinhart's The Bread Bakers Apprentice.  I started with the recipe for Italian Bread and changed the biga to using  my sourdough starter or levain and used European style flour, rye, barley and whole wheat flour instead of bread flour.  I also added some organic cracked wheat bran to make it interesting and used molasses instead of sugar.  Oh...and I used buttermilk instead of water...but other than that it's like I copied the recipe from the book!

The bread is rising in 2 bannetons as I write this, so I will let you know how it comes out at the end of this post....or if it doesn't turn out very well you may never read this  :).

Ingredients

15.5 ounces 65% Hydration Starter Refreshed

6 ounces European Style Flour from KAF (you can use bread flour in place of this)

3 ounces Medium Rye Flour

2 ounces Barley Flour

2 ounces Whole Wheat Flour

2 ounces Organic Cracked Wheat Bran

11 ounces Luke warm buttermilk, 90 - 95 degrees Fahrenheit

1  2/3 Teaspoons Sea Salt

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

1 Tablespoon Molasses

Directions

Using your stand mixer or by hand, mix the buttermilk with the starter to break up the starter.

Add the flours, salt, olive oil, and molasses and mix on the lowest speed for 2 minutes.  Let rest for 5 minutes

Mix for 4 minutes more on medium speed, adding more flour if necessary to produce a slightly sticky ball of dough.

Remove dough to your lightly floured work surface and need for 1 minute and form a ball.

Leave uncovered for 10 minutes.

Do a stretch and fold and form into a ball again and cover with a clean moist cloth or oiled plastic wrap.

After another 10 minutes do another stretch and fold and put into a lightly oiled bowl that has enough room so the dough can double overnight.

Leave the covered dough in your bowl at room temperature for 1.5 to 2 hours and then put it in your refrigerator overnight or up to 3 days.

When ready to bake the bread, take the bowl out of your refrigerator and let it rest at room temperature for 2 hours.  After 2 hours shape the dough as desired being careful not to handle the dough too roughly so you don't de-gas it.  Place it in your bowl, banneton or shape into baguettes.

Let it sit at room temperature for 2 hours covered with oiled plastic wrap or a wet cloth.

Pre-heat oven with baking stone (I use one on bottom and one on top shelf of my oven), to 500 degrees F.

Slash loaves as desired and place empty pan in bottom shelf of oven.

Pour 1 cup of very hot water into pan and place loaves into oven.

Lower oven to 450 Degrees and bake for 25 - 35 minutes until bread is golden brown and internal temperature reaches 200 degrees.

Let cool on cooling rack and enjoy!

I do have to say the crust came out excellent on this bake and the bread had a nice flavor with a slight sour and nutty overtone.  The crumb could have been a bit more open but overall I would consider this one a success.

Please visit the Yeast Spotting Site here: http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting/ for lots of cool recipes

AprilSky's picture
AprilSky

We have 2 Costco conveniently located in different sites of the city I live in. We also have many of the others but Costco is always my best choice for grossary. I bought this cooking book at Costco 4 years ago and have been practicing the recipes it offers. And as it says I found it incredibly easy to follow. Rustic Tuscany Bread from the cooking book has been the most facinating piece to me. I did it quite often and I did it kind of my own special version. It looks gorgeous and tastes fantastic. My friends screamed every time I brought it to dinner parties.  

It is incredibly easy.

 

I don't like frozen bread dough so I had to come up with the bread dough myself. It's the same dough I use for focaccia

 

Drained tomato stew as filling.

 

I rolled the dough to a 5mm thick 30x40 cm rectangle and spray 1 table spoon of olive oil with a sprinkle of sea salt evenly over the dough.

 

I

Drained tomato stew over 2/3 of dough.

 

 

Add a layer of pizza cheese. 

 

I guess it will be pretty much OK if you add more ingredients.

 

First 1/3 on the second 1/3~~~~My poor English. ><!

 

2/3 on the last 1/3~~~~folding done!

 

Some flour on both sides~~~

 

Let it rest for one hour to double the size.

 

Score few diamonds on the top of dough. This is the most exciting part of making the bread.

 

   The tip is to cut the dough deep and wide to reveal the filling but still firm enough to hold the filling inside the dough after baking.

  

The beauty from my oven.

 

I love how the scoring turned out.

 

Yummy~~~~

 

eschneider5's picture

Need help figuring out formula for this bread.

July 24, 2011 - 11:01am -- eschneider5

I wanted to start a new thread for this.  I need to find out the formula for this bread which is also a sandwich roll.  The roll has a slight sour taste to it, the crumb is soft and chewy, the crust is thin and crunchy.  The crust is the big mystery for me as it is unlike any baguette that I have made or eaten before.  This crust is much thinner than a baguette which makes it great as a sandwich roll.  Help please!

abovethelau's picture

I'm making my first Italian loaf .. and its for my future in-laws - help!

May 12, 2011 - 8:19am -- abovethelau

Hi Everyone!

So I am no baking novice, but when it comes to baking bread I am not nearly as experienced as I am when it comes to cookies!

I have previously made successful white bread (with some help from everyone here in the past) and was hoping that I could get a few pointers before taking on my first Italian loaf, especially since I am making it for my future in-laws this weekend!

mse1152's picture
mse1152

Greetings, bakers,

Tonight for dinner we had salad and the 'Rosettes of Venice' rolls from Carol Field's The Italian Baker.  I don't know why I never tried them before, but they were fabulous!  The recipe wants 500g of biga, and I had 486g of biga in the freezer, so I declared that was enough biga to attempt these.  They take about 5-ish hours from start to finish.  They look like hole-less bagels or kaiser rolls, but are much softer than either of those...maybe the 1/2 cup of olive oil had something to do with it.  The recipe said you should get 12 to 14 rolls, but I made only 8.  At that size, they'd make wonderful sandwich rolls, which I intend to verify tomorrow.

 

 

Soft and tasty, with just enough sugar to notice.  They're glazed with egg white, and I decided they also would benefit from a sprinkle of sesame or poppy seeds, and just enough kosher salt to give them a little bite.

 

 

To make the biga:

Mix by hand, mixer, or food processor:

1/4 tsp. active dry yeast

1/4 cup warm water

3/4 cup plus 1 Tb. plus 1 tsp. room temp. water (weird measurement, I agree)

330g unbleached all-purpose flour

Let the yeast stand in the warm water about 10 minutes.  Add remaining water, then the flour, a cup at a time.  Rise the biga in a covered bowl at room temp. for 6 to 24 hours.  Then you can refigerate or freeze it till you need it, or you could use it immediately after it's risen, I suppose.

 

To make the rosettes:

1 tsp. active dry yeast

2 Tb. warm water

1/2 cup olive oil (the recipe wants 1/4 cup lard and 1/4 cup olive oil)

3 Tb. sugar

500g biga

300g unbleached all-purpose flour

5g salt

1 beaten egg white for glazing

Combine yeast and 2 Tb. water in a large bowl.  Let stand about 10 minutes.  Add oil, sugar, and biga.  Mix by hand or in a mixer till biga and liquids are fairly well blended.  Add flour and salt and mix or knead until dough comes together.  Knead by hand (8-10 minutes) or mixer (3-4 minutes on low speed) until dough is moist and elastic.  I used a Bosch mixer, and on low speed, the dough really didn't come together well.  After a couple of minutes, I finished kneading it by hand.

Put the dough in a bowl rise, covered with plastic or whatever.  Let rise about 2 hours, at approx. 75 degrees F.

 

Shaping:

Dump the dough onto a lightly floured counter and pat or roll to 3/4 inch thick (mine were thinner, maybe 1/2 inch).  Use whatever you have to cut out a circle of dough, about 3-5 inches in diameter, depending on whether you want small rolls or sandwich buns.  Here's the tricky part, so read it a few times:

Assuming you're right handed, place your left thumb at the 9 o'clock position of the dough circle, with the end of the thumb in the middle of the circle.  Use the other hand to roll the dough from the 12 o'clock position down to the thumb.  Rotate the dough clockwise until the left 'point' of the roll that you just made is at the 12 o'clock position.  Place your left thumb again at 9 o'clock and roll that section of the dough down again toward your thumb.  Rotate and repeat the rolling until you have a sort of kaiser-type of roll shape, with leaves or petals of dough on top of the roll, or whatever you can describe them as.  Press down the middle of the roll to ensure the 'leaves' stay put.  I decided that as long as the rolls weren't flat, I was in the ballpark.  I didn't take photos of this step, since, not knowing how yummy they'd be, I had no idea I'd be posting anything!

Place the rolls on a lightly oiled or parchment covered baking sheet.  Cover with plastic or a towel, and let rise till doubled, approx. 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours.  In the last 15-20 minutes of the rise, turn the oven on to 400F.  When the oven is ready, brush the rolls with beaten egg white.  Add any toppings you desire.  Bake about 20 minutes.  I rotated the pan halfway through baking.  Mmmmmmmmmm!!!

Sue

 

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

My wife's christmas present was a baking course at the Lighthouse Bakery, a small bakery focussing on teaching and some wholesale.

We were 4 participants and made some wonderful breads out of 5 different doughs using biga, rye sourdough, sponge, poolish and pate fermentee.

The most surprising and spectacular of the breads we made was the pugliese, which is also the "signature" loaf of the Lighthouse Bakery.

Liz and Rachel, who run the bakery, are happy for the formula to be shared, so here it is:

finished loaf

This bread is made with strong flour, water, salt and yeast, and yet has a sweetish, creamy crumb. It keeps well and is still excellent as toast 4 days after baking (given it survives that long).

Here is the formula:

Biga

The biga can be stored in the fridge and keeps for a week.

Ingredient Weight(g) Percent
Strong White Flour 500 100
Water 350 70
Fresh yeast 4 0.8

Mix and ferment at room temperature for at least 1 hour (until the yeast gets going), then put it into the fridge overnight. It will expand further, so choose an appropriate bowl.

Here a picture of the biga after 1 night in the fridge (the surface scraped off):

biga

 

Dough

The given amounts make 1 loaf.

Ingredient Weight(g) Percent
Strong White Flour 500 100
Water 340 68
Biga 100 20
Salt 10 2
Fresh yeast 4.5 0.9

Mix and work the dough.

Our teachers recommend to use a mixer: 5min on medium speed and 5min on high speed.

I have no mixer; but I got great results with Bertinet's slap and fold technique.

Bulk ferment for about 3 hours (until trebled in size).

Preheat oven to 220C.

Shape into boule, be careful not to handle the dough too hard, it's quite sloppy at this stage.

Avoid using flour on the worktop.

Put the dough onto a baking parchament for the final proof (about 1 hour, check with the finger test).

Here a picture of the boule after final proof, it spreads a bit, which is not a bad thing:

proofed

Then dust it with flour and dimple it with your fingertips - a bit like captain Nemo playing the organ in his submarine.

Here is the result, ready to go into the oven:

dimpled

Rather flat.

But the oven spring is quite amazing, and on the course when the oven door opened there was an astonished Ooooh in unison.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes at 220C without steam.

The result is the first picture in this post, here a shot of the crumb:

crumb

It needs to rest a couple of hours after baking, the taste improves a lot and you are rewarded for your patience.

I hope you enjoy making this bread as much as I do,

Juergen

 

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