The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

peter reinhart

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JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Working from home has its disadvantages: it's all too easy to blur work into home-life, you're somewhat isolated from co-workers, and it's tempting to try to do chores when work is slow.

But bread baking poses no problems at all. Most of bread baking, especially when you use the stretch and fold method to develop dough instead of traditional kneading, consists of 2-3 minute bursts of activity separated by long periods of waiting. The trouble, of course, is that the timing of those little bursts of activity is really, really important. Working from home, the kitchen is always just a few steps away from my computer, and doing the work of making bread takes about as much time as going to fetch a fresh cup of coffee.

Lately, I've been doing a lot of sourdough baking, even when the bread itself isn't truly a sourdough bread. For instance, here's my results from baking Peter Reinhart's Mash Bread, from his new (and fabulous) book, Peter Reinhart's Whole Grain Breads.





The sweetness of the bread was really surprising, and I was astonished by how much oven spring I got. It's easily the best I've ever gotten from a 100% whole grain bread. Unfortunately, I was in a hurry and didn't let the sourdough mature fully, so the flavor was less than I'd expected. In short, sweet, but bland. I'm eager to try it again, though, and next time I'll let the sourdough fully ripen, which is especially important, since the sourdough is used almost exclusively for flavoring rather than leavening. If you want to make this bread, I'd suggest heading over to Bill Wraith's excellent write-up.

I had some starter left over, so I made up some sourdough pizza dough -- two of the doughballs went in the freezer, while the others went into the fridge so that I could make them up for dinner the next night. Probably two of the best pizzas I've made. A woman at the Corvallis Farmer's Market was selling wild chantrelle mushrooms, so I got some, sauteed them in a bit of butter, and plopped them on the pizza. They were great, along with some black olives and turkey-chicken sausage:



The crust was nice and holey!



Here's how I made it:

Formula

  • Whole wheat flour: 50%
  • AP flour: 50%
  • Water: 80%
  • Salt: 2%
  • Olive oil: 5%
  • 15% of the flour is pre-fermented as starter
Recipe (2 crusts):
  • Whole wheat starter (75% hydration): 100 grams
  • Whole wheat flour: 130 grams
  • AP flour: 180 grams
  • Water: 250 grams
  • Olive oil: 18 grams
  • Salt: 7 grams

Mix the water and the starter, and mush it all up with your fingers until it's a soupy mess. Add the salt and the oil, mix again, and then add the flour. Let it sit, covered, for 1 hour and then give it a stretch and fold. Do two more folds spaced 30 minutes to an hour apart. Let it ferment a total of 4-5 hours at room temperature (about 68-70 degrees F), and then divide into two. Shape each lump of dough into a tight ball, pop them into plastic bags, and put them in the fridge if you plan to use within the next 3 days. Otherwise, put them in the freezer, where they'll keep for at least one month. When you're ready to make the pizza, let the dough sit out for about 2 hours if it was in the fridge, 4 hours if in the freezer. Shape, top and bake on a stone preheated for about an hour in an oven at the highest setting possible. Bake for 8-10 minutes.

Last, my standby: whole wheat sourdough sandwich bread.



Always tasty, always reliable.

Next on my agenda: some of those potato-onion-rye rolls from Peter's book!
Rosalie's picture

New Reinhart and Leader Books

August 9, 2007 - 3:22pm -- Rosalie
Forums: 

I'm kinda excited.  I'd ordered Peter Reinhart's "Whole Grain Breads" and Daniel Leader's "Local Breads" from my local bookstore (sorry, Floyd, I don't do business with Amazon).  Both were due out in September, but I had a message on my answering machine today (early August) that they were BOTH in.  Sometimes they get books in early and are not supposed to sell them before a certain date, but they had no such directive.  So I have them right this very minute!  Too bad I have to attend to other things right now (make crackers for an event tomorrow

pudnpie's picture

Reinhart American Pie book

June 8, 2007 - 5:42am -- pudnpie
Forums: 

Hi - both me and a friend have ordered this book from different souces and both have turned up with ragged outside edges to the pages. It's like the pages didn't separate during manufacture and they have been ripped apart by hand. It seemed a bit of coincidence. Is there any chance that the book was supposed to be that way!? Or perhaps there's just a faulty batch floating round the UK.

tigressbakes's picture
tigressbakes

OK so it's not sourdough, it's not even yeasted. But and this is a big but, i swear it is the best damn cornbread EVER!

In fact, I have just vowed to myself that I can only make this for a special treat because over the course of just today I have lost all reason and have eaten more of this cornbread than i care to admit!

This cornbread recipe is taken from Peter Reinhart's Brother Juniper's Bread Book. cornbread 1

It is the perfect sweetness; I went just a little lighter on the sugar than the recipe called for due to the fact that the actual corn I used was off of cobs that I had frozen fresh from last summer, and I knew how sweet it was. There is a healthy amount of buttermilk in the recipe, and the clincher I think is the generous amount of uncooked polenta (out of the 3 cups of polenta it called for I substituted 1/2 of it with stoneground cornmeal just because I didn't have enough polenta). The uncooked polenta gave each bite a perfect little crunch inside the buttery moistness.

cornbread 2

As you can see, the top developed a nice crispy crunch, it is I must say Cornbread Perfection.

For those of you who dare to indulge here is my exact version - ever so slightly altered from Peter's recipe:

 

  • 4 cups all purpose white (I used King Arthur organic)
  • 2 1/2 cups uncooked polenta + 1/2 cup stoneground organic cornmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
  • 4 1/2 Tablespoons Baking Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Sea Salt
  • 1 cup raw sugar granules
  • 2 rounded cups corn kernels (I used frozen corn from farm fresh cobs from last summer)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 stick butter melted
  • 3 cups Buttermilk


Mix all dry ingredients together including corn kernels (used fingers). Wisk eggs, then wisk in Buttermilk and butter. Pour wet ingredients into dry and then mix together (I used my hand again) only until all of the flour is hydrated but no more. Pour into a greased pan. I used one that is rectangular, probably an 8X14 or around there. Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out fairly clean from the middle. And it rises! It is big and thick and makes a lot.

So, if you like cornbread, your in for a treat. Make this if you dare, but be prepared!

It is really perfect the way it is, but I am wonderng if a few chopped up hot chile peppers might make it even more sinful!

Enjoy!

 

zolablue's picture

Ciabatta challenge - BBA recipe

February 24, 2007 - 1:56pm -- zolablue
Forums: 

There has been some discussion about problems with the BBA ciabatta recipe and not being able to achieve an open crumb.  I have tried this recipe 3 times with varying results based on changes I made but was still not able to get the crumb correct.  I'm a very new bread baker but this was the first recipe I made about two months ago.  Each time it had a very good flavor and I think its worthy of trying to find out if it is a flawed recipe or if those of us who've tried it are making some error. 

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