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jeffrey hamelman

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dmsnyder


Vermont Sourdough with Increased Whole Grain


I felt like baking something new this weekend, but I like the breads I make most often. That's why I bake them most often. So, I wanted something I would really like as much as those, but different. I settled on the Vermont Sourdough with Increased Whole Grain from Hamelman's “Bread.”


In the sidebar of this recipe, Hamelman talks about the “two small changes” in this formula compared to the “regular” Vermont Sourdough resulting in “surprisingly large” effects. The two changes are an increase in the whole grain flour from 10 to 15% and in the pre-fermented flour from 15 to 20%. These changes result in “a sharper tang and more or a whole-grain taste.” Well, that sounded terrific.


Then, I recalled the errata sheet for “Bread” that Paul (rainbowz) got from Jeff Hamelman and shared with us. I consulted it and found that the corrections decreased the pre-fermented flour which seemed in conflict with the description in the sidebar. Not having a clear sense of how to deal with this discrepancy, I ended up using the ingredient amounts as printed, resulting in a larger batch of dough than that printed in the book.


The Vermont Sourdough with Additional Whole Grain was made with KAF Bread Flour and 15% KAF Medium Rye Flour. It had 20% pre-fermented flour in the form of a 125% hydration starter fed with a mix of 70% AP, 20% WW and 10% whole rye flour. The total dough was 65% hydration. The loaves were scaled to 810 gms and shaped as boules.


The oven was pre-heated to 500ºF on convection bake for 60 minutes, with a baking stone on the middle shelf, pushed to the left, and a 7 inch cast iron skillet filled with lava rocks at the right front of the lower shelf. The oven was pre-steamed by pouring about 1/3 cup of boiling water over the lava rocks. The loaves were then transferred to a peel, scored and loaded onto the stone. Another ½ cup of water was poured over the lava rocks and the oven door quickly closed. The oven was immediately turned down to 460ºF, conventional bake. The skillet was removed after 15 minutes, and the oven was re-set to 435ºF, convection bake. The loaves were baked for an additional 25 minutes. Then, the oven was turned off, and the loaves were left on the stone with the oven door ajar for another 7 minutes before being transferred to a cooling rack.


I baked this bread as part of an experiment to see if I could reliably produce a crackly crust. My results were most satisfactory. (See Consistent Crackly Crust Conundrum Conquered?)



Crackly Crust


The crumb was fully aerated but without huge holes - good for a 65% hydration sourdough.




The crust was crunchy with a caramel-like nutty sweetness. The crumb was tender-chewy. The flavor had both a sweetness and a moderately assertive sourness. This is a bread that is quite sour, but there is a lot of complexity that also comes through. I'll have to make it again, but based on today's bake, I prefer it to the "regular" Vermont Sourdough.


 


David


Submitted to YeastSpotting


 

jennyloh's picture
jennyloh

Baked 2 different breads, taking up the Hamelman's challenge, one quite successful and the other,  just had too many mistakes.  You will understand what I mean when you look at the pictures.


 


Cheese Bread with quite a bit of modification to the recipe.  Great oven spring, still learning to score to get the ears.  Not enough cheese,  quite an open crumb,  thin crust,  and 100% sourdough only.   check out the details here.



 



 


Flaxseed Bread - too many mistakes here,  and this didn't turn out well at all.  Taste was ok, but it was dense and it didn't have much oven spring.  



 



1.    This was my 3rd loaf (not counting my other bakes like muffins and flatbread) on a weekend,  and its one of the more difficult ones.  
2.    Warm water for the flaxseed.  My water was still warm when I added into the flax seed.  I think that creates the gluey form more.
3.    Use of olive oil to handle the dough, the smell and taste doesn't seem to go together
4.    Brushing with butter - it made the rolls soft,  and not at all what I was hoping for.
5.    Shaping my rolls created a hole in the roll,  should have done better than that.
6.    Not allowing time for the dough to rise properly.
7.    I don't think I baked long enough or I didn't let it cool properly before I kept it,  as it turned moldy after 5 days.  


Well,  I still have  a lot to learn. 


 

jennyloh's picture
jennyloh

 


I'd say this looks more like bagels.  The previous ones were a little too small.  4 oz are the right size.  I also used a homemade malt powder,  tried to sprout my own with wheat berries.  Soaked for 3-4 days.  There was a little white sprout, but somehow didn't like the ones in Dan Lepard's book on The Homemade Loaf.  But I went ahead to dry and grind it then.  I added in this ingredient, but still without malt syrup,  I substituted with brown sugar.  The colouring looks fine I guess.


The puff was much better, the taste was chewy and there's a tinge of sweetness - could it be the malt powder?  I wonder. Perhaps.  


But my 2nd batch that went in didn't puff as much,  see bottom left picture,  the comparison,  the one on the right is the 2nd batch,  I suspect its the ice cold water,  most melted after the 1st batch.


More details here: click here.  


jennyloh's picture
jennyloh


Inspired by Lindy,  here's my try on the bagels.  But obviously mine didn't turn out as nice as hers.


As I can't find high gluten flour - I used Japanese stong bread flour - 12% protein level.  Without diastatic malt powder,  i left that out.  Without malt syrup,  I used honey and brown sugar instead. Here's a description of how I did it.  see post here


Without these key ingredients,  I guess I can't say I've made Jeffrey Hamelman's bagels.  The bagels did turn out very chewy and my son gave me a verdict of 6/10.  


I'm still trying to sprout my wheat berries......to get malt powder. The next time I'm in US,  I'll make sure I get some....








jennyloh's picture

Help with Jeffrey Hamelman's Poolish Baguette

May 1, 2010 - 9:50pm -- jennyloh

I've been trying this for the last 2 days.  The only thing I can do with this,  is to make it into at best a ciabatta type - too soft, and difficult to hold together dough. 


1st try - using the home formula, I divide by 3 to get the measurement,  as i didn't want to make too much.  Well,  after the 1st rise,  the dough was sticky and there was no way I could hold it together.  It just slumps down every time I try pulling it together.  So,  I thought perhaps I got my water and bread mixture all wrong.

jennyloh's picture

Need Help - Diastatic Malt Powder - Replacement?

April 27, 2010 - 6:10am -- jennyloh
Forums: 

I'd like to attempt the Jeffrey Hamelman's bagels which Lindy did a great job a few weeks ago.  However, I can't seem to find diastatic malt powder in the supermarket here (in China) :(.


I'd really love to do the bagels,  can anyone suggest an alternative that I can use? or if I exclude it,  will it make a difference?


Jenny

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

 


I like variety, so I could never say that any one bread is “my favorite.” However, I can say that the “Five-Grain Sourdough with Rye Sourdough” from Hamelman's “Bread” would certainly be one of the candidates. It has a wonderful crunchy crust and a delicious complex flavor. It is fabulous fresh-baked. It stays moist for many days. It makes toast to die for. It is good unadorned or buttered, by itself or with other foods, for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It's, incidentally, full of really healthy stuff. Moreover, it's really easy to make, and it's beautiful to look at. What's not to like?


This bread is made with a rye sourdough but is also spiked with commercial yeast. The sourdough is fed and a soaker is soaked 14-16 hours before mixing, but once the dough is mixed, the fermentation and proofing are rather short. I started putting the dough together at around 12:30 pm, and the bread was out of the oven at around 4:30 pm.



Notes on the formula




  1. The overall hydration of the dough is 99%, but much of the water is absorbed by the soaker. The final dough is sticky, but like a rye bread dough not like a high-hydration white bread dough.




  2. Also note that all the salt is in the soaker. This is to inhibit enzyme activity. The salt percentage may also seem high (2.2% of the total flour), but the grains in the soaker also need salt, so the bread does not seem overly salty in the least.




  3. This formula makes a large batch of dough. It would have been difficult to mix it in my KitchenAid. I mixed it in my Bosch Universal Plus, which handled it with ease. If using a KitchenAid or similar stand mixer, you should consider scaling down the formula to 2/3 of that specified below.




 


Rye sourdough

Weight

Baker's %

Whole-rye flour

8 oz

100

Water

6.7 oz

83

Mature sourdough culture

0.4 oz

5

Total

15.1 oz

 

 

Soaker

Weight

Baker's %

Flaxseeds

2.9 oz

27.3

Cracked rye (I used pumpernickel flour)

2.9 oz

27.3

Sunflower seeds

2.4 oz

22.7

Oats

2.4 oz

22.7

Water (boiling, if cracked rye)

13.2 oz

125

Salt

0.7 oz

6.7

Total

1 lb, 8.5 oz

 

 

Final dough

Weight

High-Gluten flour (KAF Bread Flour)

1 lb, 8 oz

Water

10.5 oz

Yeast (Instant)

0.19 oz

Honey

0.5 oz

Soaker

1 lb, 8.5 oz

Sourdough

14.7 oz

Total

4 lb, 10.4 oz

 

Method

  1. Mix the sourdough and ferment it at room temperature for 14-16 hours.

  2. Prepare the soaker at the same time as the sourdough. Weigh out the grains and salt. Mix them. If cracked rye is used, boil the water and pour over the grains and mix. If using rye chops or coarse rye flour (pumpernickel), cold water can be used. Cover the soaker and leave it at room temperature.

  3. Mix all the ingredients thoroughly in a mixer bowl at low speed, then increase to medium speed (Speed 2 in a KitchenAid or Bosch) and mix to moderate gluten development. In my Bosch, I think this took around 10 minutes.

  4. Transfer the dough to

    a lightly oiled bowl. Cover tightly and ferment for 1 hour.



  5. Divide the dough into three equal pieces and shape into boules, bâtards or a combination.




  6. Proof for 50-60 minutes in brotformen or en couche.




  7. Preheat the oven to 480ºF with a baking stone and your steaming method of choice in place.




  8. Pre-steam the oven. Transfer the loaves to a peel. Score them and load them onto your baking stone. Steam the oven. Turn the oven down to 460ºF.




  9. After 15 minutes, remove your steaming apparatus, rotate the loaves if necessary for even browning, and turn the oven down to 440ºF. If the loaves are getting too dark, you can turn the oven down to 420ºF.




  10. Bake for 15 minutes more (or 10 minutes longer, if baking 2 lb loaves) and check for doneness. (Internal temperature 205ºF. Bottom sounds hollow when thumped. Crust nicely browned.)




  11. Turn off the oven but leave the loaves in, with the oven door ajar for another 7-10 minutes to dry the crust.




  12. Transfer the loaves to a wire rack and cool thoroughly before slicing.





Enjoy!


David


Submitted to YeastSpotting



 


 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Today, I baked Hamelman's "Normandy Apple Bread" for the first time. This bread is a pain au levain spiked with instant yeast. It uses a firm starter and bread flour and whole wheat in the final dough. The apple flavor comes from chopped dried apples and apple cider.



Jeff (JMonkey) posted the formula and instructions for this bread May 19, 2007, so I won't duplicate them here. For those interesting in making this bread, Jeff's entry can be found here: Hamelman's Normandy Apple Bread


I followed Hamelman's instructions pretty much to the letter. I machine mixed for about 7 or 8 minutes and did a French fold before bulk fermentation. I did one more fold after one hour of a 2 hour bulk fermentation. I had to refrigerate the formed loaves for about 3 hours to work around an afternoon outing. I then let them proof about 60-75 minutes at room temperature before baking.


The loaves smelled wonderful while baking. The crust was crunchy. The flavor was somewhat disappointing. The apples do give pleasant little bursts of sourness, but the crumb flavor was not my favorite. It was basically like a light whole wheat levain, and that is not a type of bread I particularly like.


Your taste (undoubtedly) varies, and you may enjoy it more than I.


Then again, the Vermont Sourdough had such spectacular flavor, anything else would be hard to compare. Again, that's my taste.



 


David

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

These were made with the San Francisco Sourdough starter from sourdo.com. 



Vermont Sourdough on the left. San Francisco Sourdough on the right.


Please note the 3 distinct shades of browning of the Vermont Sourdough bloom. This is a sign that the blooming occurred gradually over a large portion of the bake. To me, this is an indication that the stars (loaf proofing, scoring, baking stone temperature, oven steaming, etc.) were all aligned propitiously. The oven gods smiled on these loaves, as you can see from their smiles' reflection on the loaves. (Eeeeew ... That's corney! Well, that 's what writing while listening to Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5 does. Consider yourselves fortunate I wasn't listening to the Dvorak Cello Concerto!)


Okay! Enough, already! On to crumb shots ...



San Francisco Sourdough from "Crust & Crumb" 


The crust was crunch-chewy. The crumb was a bit less open than expected. (The loaves were a somewhat over-proofed and collapsed slightly when scored.) The flavor was inoffensive but had no particular wonderfulness. It was mildly to moderately sour, which was what I'd wanted.



Vermont Sourdough from "Bread"


The crust was crunchy and nutty-sweet. The crumb was about as expected. It could have been more open, but I'm not unhappy with it. The crumb was quite chewy and the flavor was marvelous! Complex, sweet and moderately sour. It was close to my ideal for sourdough bread. 


The Vermont sourdough did have whole rye (10%) and the San Francisco Sourdough was straight white flour (except for a trace of whole wheat and rye in the starter feeding). Both of these formulas can make blow your socks off delicious bread. I credit the rye with the superior flavor in the Vermont Sourdough today. I certainly recommend a flour mix of 90% white and 10% rye to anyone who hasn't tried it. You don't taste "rye," but it does enhance the overall flavor greatly.


David

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

We were in Portland, OR last week. While I was in meetings, my wife bounced between Powell's (the biggest book store in the US of A) and the Pearl Bakery. I got to taste a number of their breads in sandwiches my wife brought back to the hotel, but I didn't taste their "multigrain roll," which my wife had one day and really liked.


Susan often asks me to make rolls for her lunch sandwiches, so with her description of the Pearl's roll in mind I went looking for a multigrain roll to make. I've made several of Hamelman's multigrain breads and liked them all. I think any of the ones I've made would make good rolls, but I wanted to try something new. Reading through "Bread," I found the "Whole-Wheat Bread with a Multigrain Soaker." (Pg. 126) It is a 50% bread flour/50% whole wheat dough with a soaker of cracked wheat, coarse corn meal, millet and oats. I had all the ingredients but for the millet. I substituted flax seeds.


This is one heavy dough. I added quite a bit of water, which Hamelman says is often needed, to get the consistency I thought was "right." I formed the 4+ lbs of dough into 2 bâtards and a half dozen 3 oz rolls.





Whole-Wheat Bread with Multigrain Soaker bâtard crumb


I baked the rolls at 450ºF for 15 minutes. The bâtards baked at 450ºF with steam for 12 minutes, then at 440ºF for another 15 minutes followed by 7 minutes in the turned off oven with the door ajar.


The crust was crunchy. The crumb was tender but chewy. The flavor is assertively honey whole wheat, mellowed somewhat by the soaker ingredients. It's outstanding with a thin spread of sweet butter.


My wife liked it but says it's nothing like the Pearl Bakery's multigrain rolls. Hee hee. An excuse to bake more rolls.


David


Submitted to YeastSpotting

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