The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

roasted garlic

breaducation's picture

In my last post, I experimented with spelt flour in a country bread. The flavor was very appealing with slight nutty undertones and the bread came out great! However, I'm never satisfied with my last bread and always want to push into new areas. So I decided to increase the spelt in the formula from 10% to 20%.

I didn't stop there however, as at the last second I decided to add in polenta. I've tried using polenta in bread before and liked the result. There are a few steps to take when adding polenta or any grain for that matter into a bread.

Soft grains and seeds need to be soaked in water first so that they don't steal water from the dough and change the dough composition. With a hard grain like polenta you may need to go a step further and either use a boiling water soaker or just cook the grain beforehand. I elected to cook the polenta as I didn't have time to let it soak in hot water for 2+ hours. Once the polenta was cooled off I simply hand mixed it into my dough.

The loaf was dusted with cornmeal to hint at the polenta on the inside.

But that is not all! Like I said, I had put polenta in bread before and liked it but this time I really wanted to try something new. I decided to consult The Flavor Bible which is one of my absolute favorite books for cooking and baking. It is essentially a list of just about every ingredient you can think of and then under each ingredient is another list of all the other things that pair well with that ingredient. I simply looked up polenta and found a number of options that would go great with it. I decided on roasted garlic.


The still-warm crumb.

If you've never added roasted garlic to your bread I highly recommend it! Think garlic bread except the garlic is built into the bread instead of spread on top. It created a wonderful aroma throughout the apartment while baking. How to add roasted garlic to bread you ask? Simply roast the garlic with your preferred method and allow to cool. Then chop up and mix into your dough by hand. I went with four medium to large sized cloves in my 500g. loaf. I think I could have doubled that though and been fine(the garlic flavor I got was mild and subtle).

All in all this loaf was quite delicious and I would definitely bake it again especially if I was making bread for an Italian dinner.

nadira2100's picture

After my sorry attempt at shaping my Pain de Campagne loaves I was itching to try again. After a suggestion from a fellow bread baker, I watched Jeffrey Hamelman and Ciril Hitz in video tutorials on how to make basic shapes. This helped more than looking at a series of pictures in a book! So this time, instead of tackling 3 different shapes, I just stuck to 1....the Batard. 

I also stuck with the same recipe for Pain de Campagne but I made my own version by adding some roasted garlic and cheddar to the dough....for something a bit different (and because I had these items in the house and wanted to use them up!). 

The day before baking, I made a preferment as follows: 



  • 5 oz AP flour
  • 5 oz unbleached bread flour
  • 1/2 tsp instant yeast
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c water


I mixed and kneaded for about 4 minutes and then let it rest on the counter for 1 hr. Before...


I then punched it down, gave it a quick knead and put it in the fridge overnight. 

The next day I took out the preferment 1 hr before mixing the final dough. 

During this time I roasted 2 small heads of garlic at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. 

I must say the aroma in my kitchen was phenomenal! Until recently I had never roasted garlic before, just sauteed it and I have to tell gives garlic a whole other dimension that is best described through the smell of it than words alone! So seriously...try it sometime...or maybe you have and I've just fallen way behind. 

Anyway....back to my lovely bread. I let the garlic cool on the counter, then mashed it up and set it aside.

I then put together the final dough as follows:

Final Dough


  • all of the preferment (about 16oz)
  • 8 oz unbleached bread flour
  • 1.5 oz rye flour
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • 3/4 c water
  • all of the mashed garlic
  • about 1/3 to 1/2 c shredded cheddar (about a handful)
  1. Cut the preferment into 12 pieces.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the flours, preferment, water, yeast, garlic and salt until a rough dough ball forms. Let rest for 15min.
  3. Knead or stretch and fold for about 10 minutes. Towards the end of kneading, add in the cheddar until it's all uniformly incorporated.Let rest in an oiled bowl for 30 minutes.
  4. Perform 2 stretch and folds and return it to the bowl and let it rise for about 30min to 1 hr or until it's doubled in size.
  5. Preshape the loaves by cutting in half and then forming these halves into 2 boules. Let rest for 20 minutes before the final shaping.
  6. Shape into batards and let proof seam side up for 1 hr.
  7. Flip onto a baking sheet dusted with cornmeal, score, sprinkle with cheddar cheese and bake at 500 degrees for 2 min with a steam pan at the bottom of the oven.
  8. Reduce the temperature to 450 and continute baking for 10 minutes. Rotate the loaves and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Let cool completely before devouring!


Truely, this is garlic bread at it's best without all the butter. The flavor also matures over time so it was heavenly the next day! I was pleased with both my shaping and flavor profile of the bread....the garlic was there but not overpowering and the cheddar paired beautifully with it....although it may have used a bit more for color throughout the loaves, but you could at least still taste it. And the crumb.....well, light and creamy and OH! so delicious! 

isand66's picture

I had some leftover sweet potatoes from dinner the other night and after refreshing my starter I decided it was time to concoct something new and different.

I figured I would throw in some dried roasted garlic and what better than maple syrup to go with sweet potatoes. Naturally I had to be different and use some raspberry flavored maple syrup that we had picked up in Vermont a while ago. I love the nutty flavor spelt flour adds to bread along with roasted wheat germ and cracked wheat.

Including the water and syrup the total hydration for this dough is 73% and it definitely a wet style dough. If you are not comfortable working with wet dough you can certainly add some additional flour or decrease the amount of water a bit.

The final bread came out with a wonderful complex nutty flavor. You can taste the toasted garlic for sure, but the raspberry maple syrup is not noticeable at all. It has certainly added to the dark appearance of the bread, but the flavor is hard to notice. The sweet potatoes contribute to the rich flavor and dark color of the bread and were a great addition to the overall formula. The crust is nice and dark and crunchy with a moist and flavorful slightly chewy interior. I had a few slices with some cream cheese for breakfast a few minutes ago and it was very tasty. I'm sure this is going to make great toast and would be ideal for a steak sandwich.

Starter Ingredients

227 grams AP Flour

71 grams Starter (65% Hydration White Starter)

151.5 grams Water

Final Dough Ingredients

425 grams 65% Hydration Starter (All of Starter Above)

230 grams Bread Flour (I used KAF)

200 grams Spelt Flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)

70 grams Cracked Wheat

40 grams Roasted Wheat Germ

17 grams Dried Roasted Garlic (you can roast your own garlic and use that instead)

8 grams Raspberry Maple Syrup

160 grams Roasted Sweet Potatoes

400 grams Water (90 degrees F.)

18 grams Seas Salt or Table Salt



Prepare the starter the night before and let it sit at room temperature for at least 10 hours. After 10 hours it should be doubled or more in volume. Deflate the starter and put in your refrigerator for up to 2 days or use it immediately.

Final Dough

Take the starter out of the refrigerator and let it warm up for about 20-30 minutes. Break it up into 5-10 pieces and put it in your stand mixer or work bowl. Add the cracked wheat to the water and let it soften for about 5 minutes. Next add the water with the cracked wheat with the starter and mix on low for 30 seconds to break up the starter. Use a wooden spoon or rubber spatula to break up the starter. Now add all of the flours, sweet potatoes (mash them slightly before adding), maple syrup and roasted garlic. Mix on low for 2 minutes. Let the dough sit for 15 to 20 minutes.

Next sprinkle the salt over the dough and mix on medium for 4 minutes. The dough will still be fairly wet and loose at this point which is fine. Resist the temptation to add too much additional flour. If the dough is like soup then you should add some more flour until it starts to come together.

Remove the dough to your work surface and using a dough scraper stretch and fold the wet dough for a couple of minutes and form it into a ball. Let it sit uncovered for 15 minutes.

Do another stretch and fold several times and cover the dough with either a moist clean towel or a slightly oil sprayed piece of plastic wrap. Let it sit for another 15 to 20 minutes before you do another stretch and fold. The dough should start to feel more tacky than wet and sticky at this point. Let it rest again for 15 to 20 minutes and do one more stretch and fold. Form the dough into a ball again and place it in a slightly oiled container or bowl and cover it tightly. Let it sit at room temperature for 1.5 hours and then put it in your refrigerator for 24 hours or up to 3 days.

When ready to bake the bread, take it out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Now shape the dough as desired on a floured work surface 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. I made 2 loaves with this recipe and shaped them into boules.

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. Leave the loaves in your oven with the door cracked for 5 minutes longer with the oven off. After 5 minutes remove them from the oven and place on your cooling rack. Try to resist the temptation to cut into the bread until they have cooled sufficiently.

oceanicthai's picture

After I had fried up some onions for dinner the bottom of the pan looked and smelled so good with the carmelized onions.  So I put a little water in it, mashed up some roasted garlic, and used it in my autolyse for this bread.  It smelled heavenly in the oven. 


cricketcmc's picture

roasted garlic in breadsticks

August 30, 2009 - 5:36am -- cricketcmc

Recently I saw a recipe for raosting garlic whole to use in recipes and thought that it would be mighty tasty in some fresh homemade breadsticks. I'm wondering about how much to use though per batch of breadsticks, my recipe makes 18, and also how exactly to incorporate them into the dough.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.


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