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Shiao-Ping's picture
Shiao-Ping

Gérard Rubaud Miche

I dedicate my Gérard Rubaud Miche to MC.

(I wish that it could be transported across the Pacific Ocean to reach the other shore.)

 

It was one of those soulful Van Morrison nights.  The music in my tea room could not be any louder; any louder, the gods of silent teapots would have protested.  John Donne was in the air.  Van Morrison, my muse, dreamt of this miche for me.... 

 

               

 

                                                                                                   

 

I have neglected my teapots for the longest time now.  They have not been polished for ... dare I reveal ... a year?  Sounds criminal.  Just as well, with all that flour coming out of the surface of the miche, do I need to bother dusting my teapot stands?

 

Gérard Rubaud starter (re-sized to 2% of his formula as recounted HERE in MC's blog; my figures are for a final dough yield of 1.9 kg, you are welcome to half my quantity again)

First build

  • 6 g ripe stiff starter (at this quantity, any starter you've got going is fine, preferably not liquid starter)
  • 8 g water
  • 14 g flour (2 g WW, 1 g spelt, 1 g rye, and 10 g plain flour)

Note: Gérard Rubaud's starter hydration averages 55.5%.  The main thrust of his starter is three refreshes and built with the same flour compositions as for his final dough; ie. 30% whole grains flours (60% wheat, 30% spelt, and 10% rye) and 70% all-purpose flour.

At 30 degree C, this build took 10 1/2 hours for me (overnight temperature might have dropped to 24 - 25 degree C in my kitchen).

Second build

  • 28 g starter (from the first build above)
  • 16 g water
  • 30 g flour (5 g WW, 3 g spelt, 1 g rye, and 21 g plain flour)

At 30 degree C, this build took 6 hours for me..

Third build

  • 74 g starter (from the second build above)
  • 56 g water
  • 100 g flour (18 g WW, 9 g spelt, 3 g rye, and 70 g plain)

Note:  Watch your starter fermentation carefully, depending on your room temperatures.  As flour (fresh food) is not even 1.5 times the starter, it is very easy to over-ferment at this stage.  It was not an issue for the previous two builds as the yeast adjusted to the new flour compositions and began its activity slowly.  

At 30 degree C, this build took 4 hours for me (and it was already too long because when I touched my starter, it shrank back very quickly; 3 1/2 hours would have been better).  It rose 2 1/2 times.

Gérard Rubaud Final Dough

Main points about the final dough construction are (1) final dough flour is 30% whole grain flours and 70% all-purpose flour as for starter; (2) starter is 25% of final dough flour (ie, 25% baker's percentage); and (3) overall dough hydration is 80%.

  • 230 g starter (all from the third build above)
  • 920 g flour (165 g WW, 83 g spelt, 28 g rye, and 644 g plain flour)
  • 772 g water (every 10 -11 g of water is 1% dough hydration; feel free to reduce water if you wish)
  • 20 g salt

Total dough weight was 1,920 grams (minus 150 g as pâte fermentée = 1,770 g, see below) and overall dough hydration was 80%. 

Note:

(1) I did double my own formula here (both starter and final dough) because I wanted to do a stencil with Gérard Rubaud initials and I wasn't sure if it would be successful. 

(2) I reserved 150 grams from each dough and I had 300 grams as pâte fermentée (old dough) in total from the two doughs. I wanted to try a Poilâne style of miche.  Giovanni has done extensive research on Poilâne Miche.  Without going into the specifics, all that I wanted to do at this stage was to use Gérard Rubaud's stiff starter and dough with the addition of a reserved old dough to make a miche and see what happens, which I did.  

(3) So, in total I made three x my own formula here at two separate occasions, the last being a Gérard Rubaud Miche with pâte fermentée.  

Procedure - without pâte fermentée

Gérard Rubaud autolyse flour and water, then he cuts up his stiff levain into small pieces and adds them to the autolysed flour and water mixture.  However, the way I did the bread in this post was that I first diluted my starter with water, then I added flour and salt into the diluted starter, then I followed the procedure below.

  1. Autolyse 20 minutes.
  2. Five sets of S&F's of 30 strokes each at 30 minutes intervals.  
  3. At the end of the last S&F's, section off a piece of dough weighing 150 grams (and placed it in the fridge) to be used as pâte fermentée (more below).
  4. Pre-shape and shape, then place the dough in the fridge for overnight retarding.  (My room temperature was 30 degree C.  It was exactly three hours from the time the ingredients were mixed to the time the shaped dough was placed in the fridge.  You may need longer depending on your dough temperature and room temperature.  Gérard Rubaud does not like to retard dough, but I did 9 hour retarding for convenience).
  5. The next morning, stencil, then score the dough.  Pre-heat your oven to as hot as it can go.  Bake with steam at 230 C for 50 minutes.

 

       

       Gérard Rubaud Miche (without pâte fermentée) 

                                                                                                      

 

Only one of the two miches that I made is shown here, as the stencil of the other one was completely smeared.  The proved dough of that one was quite high (its profile was like a tall hill); when I placed the stencil on its surface and dusted flour on it, the flour did not sit well on the surface.  I knew there might be problem but went ahead any way.  I should have tried to press the stencil closer to the surface of the dough before I dusted flour.

Notwithstanding the above, the aroma was most amazing when the miche was being baked.  When the oven door opened, the whole house was filled with the wonderful whole grains roasting fragrance.

The loaves cooled down to have the cracks all over their surface - the top and all around the sides.  Part of the reason for that is because these are very high hydration doughs, but more because I tend NOT to leave my dough in the oven with the oven turned off for the last 5 - 10 minutes of baking as many of TFL home bakers do.  I tend to give my dough full but shorter bake.  The extreme difference in temperatures inside and outside the oven results in the crackling effect on the crusts.

 

       

 

                                                     

 

With this Gérard Rubaud formula, I am witnessing the most amazing crumb that I have never seen before.  It has a translucent quality about it.  It is almost as if each and every particle of the flour had been fermented and each and every cell of the dough has been aerated.  I have never seen anything quite like it.  It is light and yet a slice of it on you palm feels a weight, a substance.  While the crumb looks translucent, it has a sheen as if it is oily (but it is not).  You can clearly see the specks of the whole grain flours in the crumb.  Had I not made this bread myself, I would not have believed that 30% whole grain flours would give me a crumb like this. 

So that is the texture.  What about the flavor?  I cannot tell you any single flavor.  No one taste stands out.   I cannot say that it is sour because sourness does not stand out.  The taste is very "creamy" if I may use that word.  The creaminess and the sourness are beautifully balanced. 

MC said of her Rustic Batard that it tastes more whole grains than Gérard's and she wondered if temperature had made a difference as Gérard's bakery is a good 15 degree F warmer than her place.  Now, my miche does NOT taste whole grains or wheaty at all.  I cannot single out a wheaty taste, but it is there, blended in with all the other flavors.  I wonder if my high temperature indeed had made a difference in this.  Or, put another way, had MC bulk fermented and proved her Rustic Batard in a proofing box to control temperatures, would she have gotten a closer taste in her Rustic Batard to Gérard's.

 

Procedure - with pâte fermentée

(Note: the formula is exactly the same as above except with the inclusion of 300 grams of pâte fermentée)

Follow the procedure as for miche without pâte fermentée except for the following:

  1. One hour after the dough was mixed (ie, at the end of the second set of S&F's, section off a piece of dough weighing 300 g ( reserve it as future pâte fermentée);
  2. Total fermentation time is shorter by 1/2 hour because fermentation happens faster with this dough.  (From the very first set of S&F's, you can already see some strength in the dough because of the acidity from the pâte fermentée.  To me, this is quite something, considering the way I mix my dough is that there is no kneading whatsoever, merely stirring to hydrate the flours.) 
  3. As this is a slightly bigger dough (1,920 grams as opposed to 1,770 grams), bake it for one hour. 

 

        

        Gérard Rubaud Miche (with pâte fermentée)

                                                                                                             

 

I learned something in this bake:  that sourdough pâte fermentée will give you extra dough strength because of the acidity in the old dough (provided it is not over-fermented to start with).  I am amazed at the volume that I get in this miche.  (Let's recap: this dough went through 2 1/2 hours of fermentation at room temperature of 30 degree C, then went into the refrigerator for 9 hour retardation, then baked at 230 C for 1 hour. That's all.) 

The taste of this miche is a lot sourer than the previous miche.  

 

       

 

                                                   

 

This has been a very fulfilling exercise for me.   Thank you, MC, for the wonderful experience.

 

Shiao-Ping

Shiao-Ping's picture
Shiao-Ping

My imitation of Chad Robertson's Country Sourdough

Have you ever seen a photo of very stiff starter wrapped up tightly in cloth then tied up in string (as if making absolutely sure that the little beasties have no way of escaping)?  I never understood the purpose of the tight string until the other day when I was writing about Chad Robertson.   A Day in the Life at the Bay Village Bakery in The Bread Builders says Chad "uses a brief two-hour final stage of leaven expansion before he mixes up his dough" (page 221).  In both of these two cases maximum natural yeast population is achieved without them further fermenting (because there will be plenty of fermentation once final dough is mixed).

Chad Robertson's rustic sourdoughs from Tartine Bakery were my most favourite during my recent stay in San Francisco.  I wanted to see if it was possible to reproduce his style of sourdough at home.  I was told that a bread cookbook is coming out soon (in addition to their existing pastry cookbook), but no date is given.  Alain Ducasse's Harvesting Excellence quotes Elizabeth Prueitt as saying that Chad's breads were hand-made from the very beginning to the very end, and that "it is one person's expression" (page 19).

By the time The Bread Builders wrote about him, Chad Robertson had acquired a mixer from Europe which helped him in meeting the growing demands for his breads.  A brief description of timeline for a typical load of breads that he baked at his (then) one-man bakery at Point Reyes, Califorina (before he and Elizabeth moved to San Francisco and opened Tartine) is as follows (according to The Bread Builders): 

  1. At 8 am, he mixes his final intermediate levain and let it sit in room temperature for two hours (note: I assume the levain is fully mature before the two-hour final expansion);
  2. At 10 am, he mixes the final dough by first putting all the ingredients or all except the levain into the mixer and running it for 2 - 3 minutes at 45 - 50 revolutions a minute;
  3. Autolyse 15 - 30 minutes
  4. Adds the levain if necessary, then mixes it for 4 - 5 minutes
  5. Bulk fermentation 4 hours (counting from 10 am to 2 pm), during which time several stretch and folds in the tub are done;
  6. At 2 pm, divide the dough and pre-shape them, then rest for 15 minutes
  7. Shape the dough and place them on the bannetons or couche dusted with a mixture of bread and rice flours;
  8. Proof in room temperature for 2 hours before going into proofing boxes (at 55F) to retard for 8 - 10 hours (Harvesting Excellence says up to 12 hours); and
  9. The next day, start baking between 4:30 - 5 am.

Based on this timeline, my formula for Chad's sourdough follows:

My formula for Chad's Sourdough

Two nights before bake day - first stage of levain build-up

  • 82 g starter @ 75% hydration
  • 164 g bread flour (i.e. two times starter amount for me)
  • 124 g water

Mix and ferment for 6 - 8 hours at 18C / 65 F (depending on your room temperature, you may need more than 2 times bread flour, or shorter or longer fermentation time for your starter to mature)

The morning before bake day - second (and final) stage of levain expansion

  • 370 g starter @ 75% hydration (all from above)
  • 370 g bread flour (I figure one time starter amount in flour is enough)
  • 277 g water

Mix and ferment for two hours only

Formula for final dough

  • 1,017 g starter (all from above)
  • 1,017 g bread flour (Australian Laucke's Wallaby bakers flour, protein 11.9%)
  • 651 g water
  • 30 g salt

Total dough weight 2.7 kg (divided into three pieces) and total dough hydration 68%

  1. I followed the timeline above but I did everything by hand.  I fully intended to fold as many times as necessary to build up dough strength but as my dough was not very wet the gluten developed very fast and by the end of first set of stretch & folds, the dough already felt silky and smooth.  I did only two sets of stretch & folds in the bowl.
  2. After the dough was divided into three pieces, I pre-shaped them to tight balls, rested them 20 minutes, then shaped them into batards and placed them on bread & rice flours dusted couche.
  3. The shaped loaves proofed for 2 hours in room temperature then went into my refrigerator to retard overnight (for 12 hours).

Bake day

  1. I baked the loaves cold (straight from the refrigerator).  I pre-heated the oven to 250C / 480F.  Once the loaves were loaded, I poured 2/3 cups of boiling hot water onto lava rocks (enormous steam was generated), and turned the oven temperature down to 230C / 450F.  They were baked for 20 minutes, then another 15 minutes at 210C / 410F, and rested for 5 minutes in turnoff-off oven.  (You can bake them for 10 minutes more if you like darker crust.)
  2. There was an impressive oven spring with this bake.

              

                 

                                                 

I am quite pleased with the result, although without rye and whole meal flours, I probably cannot call this country sourdough.  Also, Chad's country sourdough has a very rustic look (quite dark) as if from a wood fired oven. 

As I was drafting this post and looking at the black and white picture of Chad's bread in Harvesting Excellence, my daughter came by, I said to her he is the reason why I bought this book; she asked, is he "hot"?  I never understand teenagers' lingo - why "hot" and "cool" mean the same thing.

                   

                                         

                                           

The crumb is really tender and moist.  It has a very supple texture and open crumb that I did not believe I would have been able to achieve with low hydration dough.  I really don't know what hydration level is Chad Robertson's sourdoughs; I did 68% here because I wanted to have good volume and, possibly, good grigne.  Well, it worked. 

I like the flavor very much, more so than my Sourdough 50/50.

Shiao-Ping

mountaindog's picture
mountaindog

Billowy Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Icing

I was inspired from Teresa at her Northwest Sourdough website to try her sourdough cinnamon rolls pictured there, but the closest actual written recipe I could find to that was her Festive Hawaiian Roll recipe. After studying a lot of other sweet dough recipes and brioche recipes, I decided to make a hybrid dough with what I thought were the best aspects of each, that would also use only sourdough starter as the leavening agent. The main differences from NWSD's recipe is my addition of eggs and buttermilk, plus I added 4 times the amount of butter, bringing the butter content up to 11%, which is still not as high as many sweet doughs and not nearly as high as brioche.

This recipe will make about 16-24 large and airy, but rich and tender Cinnamon Rolls. We don't like excess cinnamon flavor in our rolls and so use about half the amount of cinnamon usually called for in the filling of similar recipes. We are also not *fond* of white fondant glaze, so I made up this cream cheese/buttercream glaze to provide a more flavorful topping that complements the flavor of the rolls well. I also did not use any nuts in these, but they could also be added to the filling if desired.

Beware of these rolls: Due to the potato and buttermilk in the dough, these are by far the richest, most moist, tender, and flavorful cinnamon rolls we've ever had, the dough itself is fragrant with vanilla and butter, it almost does not need the filling or icing. The sourdough made these extraordinarily airy and puffy with no commercial yeast added. Because these are so rich, they will be reserved for special occasions or special visitors in our house, they are far too addictive to keep around otherwise. Because they are also so light and billowy - similar to a good sourdough waffle, they are not overly filling and heavy in your stomach.

The total preparation time is about 36 hours to allow for the long cool ferments. If you want to serve these rolls on a Sunday morning, you need to build the levain the preceding Friday evening.

Approx. 12 hours before making the final dough, build the levain as follows:

Levain Build:

grams          Item
150       100% hydration sourdough starter, recently fed and ripened
340       Lukewarm water
340       AP flour
850       Total Wt.


    Let this mixture sit at room temperature until doubled (usually overnight, if your starter is fast and the levain is active early, keep it in the frig. until ready to make dough). Meanwhile, make a small amount of mashed potato by boiling or microwaving (covered) 1 medium peeled & sliced potato in a little water until soft. Mash with fork and a little milk until smooth.

    Final Dough:

    grams     Item
    113       1 stick Unsalted butter, softened
    225       3 large eggs
    42        1 ½ TBSP Honey
    24        2 TBSP Vanilla Extract
    130       Mashed potato
    195       ¾ c. Buttermilk or whole milk
    850       Levain
    700       AP flour
    21        Salt
    2300       Total Wt.


    Once levain is ripe, make the final dough. First cream the softened (not melted) butter by hand or in mixer with paddle attachment, then beat in eggs, honey, vanilla, and mashed potato and continue mixing. Stop to scrape down sides of bowl with spatula as needed and continue to mix just until well-blended. Switch to dough hook and add buttermilk and levain until blended, then gradually add flour and salt and continue mixing with dough hook until well-blended. Scrape down sides of bowl with spatula, cover, and let rest 20 min. After rest, uncover and continue to mix with dough hook another 2-3 minutes (or by hand, fold in bowl with plastic bowl scraper for 3 min.). This will be a very soft, sticky dough, around 71% hydration if you count the liquid from eggs and milk, but not counting the butter.

    Place the dough into a container sprayed with cooking oil, cover, and bulk ferment in a cool location (55-65F) until doubled, approx. 8-12 hours depending on temperature and how fast a riser your starter is. Every few hours, give the dough a stretch and fold, for a total of about 2 folds.

    Meanwhile, make the filling as follows:

    Filling:

    grams       Item
    170       1 ½ sticks Unsalted butter, softened
    85        Cream or half&half
    300       Dark brown sugar
    180       Raisins
    3         1 ½ tsp. Cinnamon
    12        1 TBSP Vanilla extract
    750       Total Wt.


    For the filling, add all above ingredients to a medium sized saucepan and bring to a low boil over medium heat while stirring. As soon as the mixture boils, take off heat and chill to a spreadable consistency before using.

    After dough has doubled, divide it into 2 pieces on a flour-dusted surface (it may be sticky even though the butter should be solid from the cool temps), then roll out each piece of dough into a rectangle shape about 10 x 16 inches across. Spread the filling across each rectangle of dough, leaving 1 inch clean where the outer seam edge of the roll will be and then taking the opposite edge, roll up the dough gently but firmly and seal the seam.

    Slice each log into 8 or 12 rolls (depending on how big a rectangle you rolled out and how large you want the rolls to be) with serrated knife and place them just barely touching each other on baking parchment on sheet pan. Don't worry if log gets flattened as you slice each roll, you can straighten them out once placed on the sheet pan, and they should rise very high and straighten out when proofing. Spray tops of rolls lightly with cooking spray, cover with plastic wrap, and slowly proof rolls overnight or up to 12 hrs. in the refrigerator or cool place between 45 and 55F until the dough is about doubled and puffy looking. Bake right out of frig. at 400 degrees for about 25-35 minutes until light golden, or until the center of dough registers about 195-200F on instant-read thermometer. Do not let the rolls get very brown. Melt about 4 TBSP of butter in microwave and as soon as rolls are out of oven, brush them with the melted butter to keep crust soft before icing them.

    Here are the rolls right out of oven and after being brushed with butter, they had a great amount of oven spring and rose tremendously during the bake:

    While rolls are baking, make a glaze/icing as follows:

    Cream Cheese Glaze:

    grams       Item
    56        ½ (4 TBSP) stick Unsalted butter, softened
    56        4 TBSP. Cream cheese
    165       ¾ c. Confectioner's sugar
    65        ¼ c. Milk, whole
    2         ½ tsp. Vanilla extract
    344       Total Wt.


    Microwave the butter and cream cheese together until very soft but not melted. Whisk them together while adding the vanilla, powdered sugar, and enough milk to thin out the icing to a drip-able consistency.

    Let the rolls mostly cool before glazing them with icing. Dip a wire whisk in the icing and drizzle across surface of each roll in crisscross pattern. Serve and enjoy.

    (NOTE: I've not yet tried this, but it should also be possible to chill the un-sliced logs in frig overnight and slice just before baking, or freeze the logs for up to 1 month, take out the night before baking and defrost in frig. Next morning, remove from frig., slice, and let warm up at room temp about 1-2 hours before baking.)

    It's a good thing we had a house full of guests this past weekend to help us put away not only the cinnamon rolls, but also these Vermont Sourdough boules, and cherry-sunflower-seed levains.

     

    dmsnyder's picture
    dmsnyder

    Pain de Campagne

    Pain_de_CampagneBatard

    Pain_de_CampagneBatard

    Pain_de_CampagneGrigne

    Pain_de_CampagneGrigne 

    Pain_de_CampagneCrumb

    Pain_de_CampagneCrumb 

    The formula for this bâtard is derived from that for Anis Bouabsa's baguettes, as shared with TFL by Janedo. Jane prompted me to add some sourdough starter, and this resulted in a big improvement, to my taste. We had also discussed adding some rye flour to the dough. Jane said she and her family really liked the result. The addition of rye and sourdough makes this more like a pain de campagne, which is traditionally shaped as a boule or  bâtard. The result of my mental meandering follows:

     

    Formula

    Active starter ........................100 gms

    KAF French Style Flour.......450 gms

    Guisto's Rye Flour..................50 gms

    Water......................................370 gms

    Instant yeast............................1/4 tsp

    Salt............................................10 gms

     

    Mixing

    In a large bowl, mix the active starter with the water to dissolve it. Add the flours and stir to form a shaggy mass. Cover tightly and let rest (autolyse) for 20 minutes.

    Sprinkle the yeast over the dough and mix with a plastic scraper. Then sprinkle the salt over the dough and mix.

    Using the plastic scraper, stretch and fold the dough 20 times, rotating the bowl 1/5 turn between each stroke. Cover tightly. Repeat this stretch and fold procedure 20 minutes later and, again, after another 20 minutes.

     

    Fermentation

    After the third series of stretches and folds, scape the dough into a lightly oiled 2 quart/2 liter container and cover tightly. (I use a 2 quart glass measuring pitcher with a tightly fitting plastic lid manufactured by Anchor Glass.) Immediately place in the refrigerator and leave it there for 21 hours. (In this time, my dough doubles in volume and is full of bubbles. YMMV.)

     

    Dividing and Shaping

    (I chose to make one very large bâtard, but you could divide the dough into 2 or 3 pieces and make smaller bâtards, boules or baguettes. Or, you could just cut the dough and not shape it further to make pains rustiques.)

    Take the dough out of the refrigerator and scrape it gently onto a lightly floured work surface. Gently pat it into a rectangle. To pre-shape for  a bâtard, fold the near edge up just past the center of the dough and seal the edge by gently pressing the two layers together with the ulnar (little finger) edge of your hand or the heel of your hand, whichever works best for you. Then, bring the far edge of the dough gently just over the sealed edge and seal the new seam as described.

    Cover the dough with plastic wrap and/or a kitchen towel and let it rest for 30-60 minutes, with the seams facing up. (The time will depend on ambient temperature and how active your starter is. The dough should have risen slightly, but not much.)

    To shape a bâtard, fold the near edge of the dough and seal the edge, as before. Now, take the far edge of the dough and bring it towards you all the way to the work surface and seal the seam with the heel of your hand. Rotate the loaf gently toward you 1/4 turn so the last seam you formed is against the work surface and roll the loaf back and forth, with minimal downward pressure, to further seal the seam. Then, with the palms of both hands resting softly on the loaf, roll it back and forth to shape a bâtard. Start with both hands in the middle of the loaf and move them outward as you roll the loaf, slightly increasing the pressure as you move outward, so the bâtard ends up with the middle highest and the ends pointed .

     

    Preheating the oven

    Place a baking stone on the middle rack and both a cast iron skillet and a metal loaf pan (or equivalent receptacles of your choosing) on the bottom shelf.  Heat the oven to 500F. (I like to pre-heat the baking stone for an hour. I think I get better oven spring. Since I expected a 30 minute rest after pre-shaping and a 45 minute proofing, I turned on the oven 15 minutes after I had pre-shaped the loaf.) I put a kettle of water to boil 10 minutes before baking.

     

    Proofing

    After shaping the loaf, transfer it to parchment paper liberally dusted with semolina. Cover the loaf with plastic wrap and/or a kitchen towel. Proof until the loaf has expanded to about 1-1/2 times it's original size. (This turned out to be 30 minutes for me.) Do not over-proof, if you want good oven-spring and bloom!

     

    Baking

    Put about a cup full of ice cubes in the loaf pan on the bottom shelf of the oven and close the door.

    Slip a peel or cookie sheet under the parchment paper holding the loaf. Uncover the loaf. Score it. (The bâtard was scored with a serrated tomato knife. The knife was held with its blade at about a 30 degree angle to the surface of the loaf. One swift end-to-end cut was made, about 1/2 inch deep.)

    Transfer the loaf and parchment paper to the baking stone, pour one cup of boiling water into the skillet, and close the oven door. Turn the oven down to 460F.

    After 15 minutes, remove the loaf pan and the skillet from the oven. Rotate the loaf 180 degrees, if it is browning unevenly. Close the oven door.

    Bake for another 15 minutes, then remove the loaf and place on a cooling rack. Check for doneness. (Nice crust color. Internal temperature of at least 205F. Hollow sound when you thump the bottom of the loaf.) If necessary, return to loaf to the oven to bake longer.

     

    Cooling

    Cool on a rack for two hours before slicing.

     

    Comments

    I got very good oven spring and bloom. This loaf has an ear by which you could carry it around. It sang to me while cooling. The crust is nice and crunchy. The crumb is well aerated and almost "fluffy" in texture, but with tender chewiness. The taste is just plain good. It is minimally sour. Based on my half-vast experience, I'd say it is fairly representative of a French Pain de Campagne, the major difference being that it is less dense than the ones I recall. 

     This is, for me, not merely a good "novelty" bread. It could join San Francisco Sourdough and Jewish Sour Rye as an "everyday" bread I would enjoy having all the time.  The method is good for those of us who work outside the home. It can be mixed in the evening and baked in time for a late dinner the next night. 

     

    Enjoy!

     David 

    JMonkey's picture
    JMonkey

    Finally -- a 100% whole grain hearth bread I'm proud of

    As many of you know, I've been questing for a tasty, open crumb, 100% whole grain hearth bread for a long, long time now.

    This weekend, I finally achieved my goal.



    Nice open crumb, creamy texture, tangy and flavorful crumb, appealing slashes, crunchy crust.

    Here's how I made it, and, to be truthful, it was mostly on a whim. The day before, I'd made some whole wheat sourdough sandwich bread, and had about 80 grams of starter left over. I didn't have time, really, to feed it, so I popped it in the fridge figuring I'd do something with it later.

    The next evening, as I was thinking about what to cook for a visit from my folks (they'd come all the way from Atlanta, so I wanted something nice), I thought, "Why not try something akin to CrumbBum's miche?"

    So here's what I did:

    • 40 grams of whole wheat starter at 60% hydration (Use 50 grams if at 100% hydration)
    • 375 grams water
    • 10 grams salt
    • 300 grams whole wheat flour
    • 150 grams whole spelt flour
    • 50 grams whole rye flour
    So basically, its roughly 5 percent of flour in the starter, with a 60-30-10 wheat / spelt / rye flour combination at 75% hydration.

    I mixed the starter into the water, added the salt until it was dissolved, and then stirred in the flour. I then did a stretch and fold at one hour, and then two more at half hour intervals. After the last stretch and fold, I shaped it into a ball, and let it sit overnight.

    It's pretty chilly in our house at night, getting down to 63 degrees F, so your mileage may very, but the dough was ready to shape after about 12 hours. I preshaped it into a ball, shaped the dough into a batard after a 15 minute rest, wrapped it in baker's linen and then let it rise at 64 degrees for about 3.5 hours. After that, a few slashes and into a hot oven at 450 for 35 minutes.

    I think the final piece that came into place for me was shaping gently, but firmly. And I suspect that the long fermentation helped with both flavor and texture. Anyway, I hope I can repeat this success.

    Potato Rosemary Rolls

    potato rosemary rolls

    Thanksgiving in the States is coming up soon. These rolls would make a wonderful accompaniment to the banquet table, though they are simple enough that they can go along with any night's dinner. They make amazing hamburger buns too.

    Potato Rosemary Rolls Makes 18 small rolls or 12 hamburger sized buns 1 potato, cooked and mashed 1 lb (3 1/2 cups) bread or all-purpose unbleached flour 3/4 - 1 cup water 2 teaspoons instant yeast 2 teaspoons salt 1 tablespoon butter 1 tablespoon dried rosemary or 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary 1 teaspoon ground black pepper 1 teaspoon ground sage leaves

    Cook the potato until soft, either by boiling or baking in the oven or microwave. For this batch I chopped up and boiled the potato. I then reserved a cup of the potato water to add to the loaf, figuring it had additional nutrients and starches that would help my loaf.

    Mash the potato. Removing the skin prior to mashing is optional: if you are using tough skinned potatoes like russets I would suggest removing them, but with soft skinned potatoes such as yukon gold or red potatoes I typically leave them on. The chopped up skin add nice color and texture to your rolls.

    Combine the flour, mashed potato, yeast, salt, pepper and herbs in a large bowl. Add 3/4 cups water and knead or mix for 5 to 10 minutes, adding more water or flour until a consistency you are comfortable working with is reached. I added close to a full cup of water and ended up with an extremely sticky dough that was difficult to work with. I was only able to shape the rolls by repeatedly dipping my fingers in flour. The end result was wonderful though.

    (I encourage amateur bakers to push the limit of what they think they can handle, moisture-wise. More often than not you'll be pleasantly surprised with the results, though you can go too far and end up baking a pancake, which I've done more than once.)

    potato rosemary rolls

    Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a moist towel and let the dough rise until it has doubled in size, typically 60 to 90 minutes.

    Remove the dough from the bowl, gently degas it, and shape it. For rolls or buns you can weigh them if you like or just eyeball them. I cut racquetball sized chunks of dough (larger than golf balls, smaller than tennis balls) then rolled them into balls in my well-floured hands. I placed them on a baking sheet covered with parchment, placed the entire sheet in a plastic trash bag, and set it aside to rise for approximately an hour again.

    While the dough rose, I preheated the oven to 375 degrees.

    If you have a spritzer, spray the top of the rolls with water right before placing them in the oven. Place them in the center rack and bake them for 10 minutes. Rotate the pan 180 degrees and bake them for another 10 to 20 minutes, depending on size. My large hamburger bun sized rolls took close to half an hour to bake. You'll know they are done when the bottom of the rolls is solid and slightly crispy. If you have a probe thermometer, check the temperature inside one of the rolls. When the internal temperature is approaching 200 degrees F, they are ready to pull out of the oven.

    potato rosemary rolls

    potato rosemary rolls

    Allow the rolls to cool before serving. They keep very well too, so you could bake them a day or two ahead of time and still serve them for Thanksgiving.

    Related Recipe: Kaiser Rolls.

    dmsnyder's picture
    dmsnyder

    Bread in the spirit of FWSY

    12 September, 2014

     One of the attractions of Ken Forkish's Flour Water Salt Yeast bread baking book is that a concerted study of it will teach you how the important variables of ingredients, time and temperature can be manipulated to produce different flavor profiles and how, keeping most methods constant, you can develop procedures that accommodate to your own schedule and still produce a variety of outstanding breads.

    Well, that's the theory. In fact, most of us don't have complete control of ambient temperature, one of the most important variables controlling fermentation. That means results can be very different from those Forkish describes. Nonetheless, if you do understand the basic principles, you can juggle the variables you can control to obtain really outstanding breads using Forkish's formulas and methods.

     In my Central California kitchen, about 9 months of the year, the temperature is significantly higher than it was in Forkish's Portland, Oregon kitchen when he developed his formulas. As a result, fermentation proceeds very much faster than described in the book. An “overnight” bread from FWYS will get way over-fermented if left overnight at room temperature. I have successfully followed Forkish's times only in Winter, when my kitchen temperature runs 65-68ºF.

     On top of that, my personal time demands do not always fit with the schedules Forkish describes in any of his recipes. So, sometimes … well, almost always … , I end up using Forkish's basic approach, but use my ability to control time and temperature to make it work for me. For example …

    Today, I baked a couple loaves based on Forkish's “Overnight Country Blonde” formula. It calls for a final levain feeding at 9 am, mixing the final dough at 5 pm, letting it ferment at room temperature overnight, shaping the loaves at 8 am the next morning and baking at noon. I kept the formula (ratio of ingredients) and most procedures the same but altered the time and temperature a lot. Here's what I actually did:

     Three days before baking, at 10 pm, I activated my refrigerated stock starter by mixing 30 g of starter (50% hydration) with 75 g water and 75 g flour (a mix of 70% AP, 20% WW and 10% medium rye).

     Twelve hours later, I fed the levain as follows:

     

    Levain ingredients

    Wt (g)

    Baker's %

    Mature liquid levain

    50

    50

    AP flour

    200

    80

    WW flour

    50

    20

    Water

    200

    80

    Total

    500

    230

     

    1. In a medium-size bowl, dissolve the levain the the water. Add the flours, and mix thoroughly.

    2. Transfer to a clean bowl. Cover tightly.

    3. Ferment until moderately ripe. (In my 78ºF kitchen, this took about 6 hours. The levain was tripled in volume. It had a domed surface. In the transparent, plastic container, bubbles could be seen throughout the levain.

    4. Cold retard at 40ºF until the next morning.

     

    At about 8 am the next morning, I took the levain out of the refrigerator and let it warm up on the counter. At about 10 am, I proceeded to mix the final dough as follows:

     

    Final Dough ingredients

    Wt (g)

    Levain

    216

    AP flour

    804

    WW flour

    26

    Medium Rye flour

    50

    Water (90ºF)

    684

    Salt

    22

    Total

    1802

     

    1. In a 6 L Cambro(R) container, mix the water and flours to a shaggy mass. Cover and let stand for 20-60 minutes. (Autolyse).

    2. Sprinkle the surface of the dough with the salt and add the levain in chunks.

    3. Mix by folding the dough over itself while rotating the container, then complete the mixing by the “pinch and fold” method described by Forkish. Wet hands in water as necessary to reduce dough sticking to hands. (I wet my hands very liberally and frequently. My dough weighed 1820g at the time I divided it, implying that using wet hands added 18g of water to the dough. This increased the final dough hydration from 78% to 79.8%.)

    4. Bulk ferment until the dough has increased in volume to 2.5 times with stretch and folds 4 times at 30 minute intervals at the beginning of fermentation. (This took 2 1/2 to 3 hours, in my kitchen.)

    5. Divide the dough into two equal parts. Pre-shape as rounds. Cover with a damp towel and let rest 15-20 minutes.

    6. Shape as boules and place in linen-lined bannetons that have been well dusted with a mix of AP and Rice flours.

    7. Place bannetons in plastic bags and refrigerate overnight. (This was actually from about 4 pm to about 2:30 pm the next day.)

    8. Bake at 475ºF in Dutch ovens, as Forkish describes.

    9. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool before slicing.

     

    In summary, I altered Forkish's procedures by drastically shortening the very long, room temperature bulk fermentation and adding a long, cold retardation of the formed loaves. And the levain was also cold retarded overnight.

     Forkish describes the flavor of this bread as having a mild tang that mellows over the first couple days after baking. My bread had a sweet, wheaty flavor and a moderate tang, tasted when just cooled to room temperature. The crust was crunchy, and the crumb was quite chewy. Pretty good stuff.

     

    Happy baking!

     

    David

    dmsnyder's picture
    dmsnyder

    Pane Valle del Maggia

    Pane Valle del Maggia

    February 23, 2014

     Several bakers on The Fresh Loaf have shown us their bakes of “Pane Maggiore.” This bread comes from the Swiss Canton of Ticino, which is the only Swiss Canton in which Italian is the predominant language.

    While the Ticino Canton has Lake Maggiore on its border, the name of the bread supposedly comes from the town of Maggia which is in the Maggia valley, named after the Maggia river which flows through it and enters Lake Maggiore between the towns of Ascona and Locarno.

    I was interested in how this bread came to be so popular among food bloggers. As far as I can tell, Franko, dabrownman and others (on TFL) got the formula from Josh/golgi70 (on TFL) who got it from Ploetzblog.de who got it from “Chili und Ciabatta,” the last two being German language blogs. While Petra (of Chili und Ciabatta) knew of this bread from having vacationed in Ticino, she actually got the recipe from a well-known Swedish baking book, Swedish Breads and Pastries, by Jan Hedh.

     

     For your interest, here are some photos from Petra's blog of this bread as she bought it in it's place of origin: 

    Pane Valle del Maggia. (Photo from the Chili und Ciabatta blog)

    Pane Valle del Maggia crumb. (Photo from the Chili und Ciabatta blog)

     

    After this bit of backtracking research, I ended up with four … or is it five? … recipes. I had to decide which one to start with. I decided to start with Josh’s version, posted in Farmers Market Week 6 Pane Maggiore.

     Josh’s approach used two levains, one fed with freshly-ground whole wheat flour and the other with white flour plus a touch of rye. I did not grind my own flour but followed his formula and procedures pretty closely otherwise. What I describe below is what I actually did.

      

    Whole Wheat Levain

    Wt. (g)

    Baker’s %

    Active liquid levain (70% AP; 20% WW; 10% Rye)

    16

    48

    Giusto’s Fine Whole Wheat flour

    33

    100

    Water

    36

    109

    Total

    85

    257

     

    White Flour Levain

    Wt. (g)

    Baker’s %

    Active liquid levain (70% AP; 20% WW; 10% Rye)

    17

    50

    KAF AP flour

    28

    82

    BRM Dark Rye flour

    6

    18

    Water

    34

    100

    Total

    85

    240

     Both levains were mixed in the late evening and fermented at room temperature for about 14 hours.

     

    Final Dough

    Wt. (g)

    Giusto’s Fine Whole Wheat flour

    137

    BRM Dark Rye flour

    66

    KAF Medium Rye flour

    63

    KAF AP flour

    504

    Water

    659

    Salt

    18

    Both levains

    170

    Total

    1618

     

    Total Dough

    Wt. (g)

    Baker’s %

    AP flour

    555

    64

    Whole Wheat flour

    177

    20

    Rye flour

    138

    16

    Water

    746

    86

    Salt

    18

    2

    Total

    1618

    188

     

    Procedures

    1. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle installed, disperse the two levains in 600g of the Final Dough Water.

    2. Add the flours and mix at low speed to a shaggy mass.

    3. Cover and allow to autolyse for 1-3 hours.

    4. Add the salt and mix at low speed to combine.

    5. Switch to the dough hook and mix to medium gluten development.

    6. Add the remaining 59g of water and continue mixing until the dough comes back together.

    7. Transfer to a well-floured board and stretch and fold into a ball.

    8. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover.

    9. Bulk ferment for about 4 hours with Stretch and Folds on the board every 40 minutes for 4 times. (Note: This is a rather slack, sticky dough. It gains strength as it ferments and you stretch and fold it, but you still have to flour the board and your hands well to prevent too much of the dough from sticking. Use the bench knife to free the dough when it is sticking to the bench.)

    10. Divide the dough into two equal pieces and pre-shape round.

    11. Cover with a damp towel or plasti-crap and allow to rest for 15-30 minutes.

    12. Shape as tight boules or bâtards and place in floured bannetons, seam-side up.

    13. Put each banneton in a food-safe plastic bag and refrigerate for 8-12 hours.

    14. Pre-heat the oven for 45-60 minutes to 500 dF with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

    15. Take the loaves out of the refrigerator. Place them on a peel. Score them as you wish. (I believe the traditional scoring is 3 parallel cuts across a round loaf.)

    16. Transfer the loaves to the baking stone.

    17. Bake with steam for 13 minutes, then remove your steaming apparatus/vent the oven.

    18. Continue baking for 20-25 minutes. The loaves should be darkly colored with firm crusts. The internal temperature should be at least 205 dF.

    19. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely before slicing.

     I had some trepidation about baking at 500 dF, but the photos I had seen of the Pane Valle del Maggia were really dark. Also, it made sense that, if I wanted a crunchy crust on a high-hydration bread, I would need to bake hot. I baked the loaves for 33 minutes. They were no darker than my usual lean bread bakes. The internal temperature was over 205 dF. The crust was quite hard, but it did soften some during cooling. In hindsight, I could have either baked the bread for another 5 minutes or left the loaves in the cooling oven for 15-30 minutes to dry out the crust better.

     

    I can tell you, these breads sure smell good!

    When sliced, the crust was chewy except for the ears which crunched. The crumb was well aerated but without very large holes. Reviewing the various blog postings on this bread, all of the variations have about the same type of crumb. The high hydration level promotes bigger holes, but the high percentage of whole grain flours works against them. In any case, this is a great crumb for sandwiches and for toast.

    Now, the flavor: I was struck first by the cool, tender texture as others have mentioned, although there was some nice chew, too.  I have been making mostly breads with mixed grains lately, so this one has a lot in common. It has proportionately more rye than any of the others, and I can taste it. The most remarkable taste element was a more prominent flavor of lactic acid than almost any bread I can recall. I really liked the flavor balance a lot! I would describe this bread as "mellow," rather than tangy. The dark crust added the nuttiness I always enjoy. All in all, an exceptionally delicious bread with a mellow, balanced, complex, sophisticated flavor.

    Now, it wasn't so sophisticated that I hesitated to sop up the sauce from my wife's Chicken Fricassee with it! It did a commendable job, in fact.

     

    I baked some San Joaquin Soudough baguettes while the Pane Valle del Maggia loaves were cooling.  

    They had a pretty nice crumb, too.

    Happy baking!

    David

    Submitted to YeastSpotting

    breadsong's picture
    breadsong

    Pumpkin Sourdough Rye - for BBD #62

    Hello everyone,

    It was lovely see all of the breads bakers around the world contributed for World Bread Day in October –
    thank you to Zorra for her work to round all of these up!

                                                                                   
    BBD #62 - Bread Baking Day meets World Bread Day (last day of sumbission December 1st)

    November’s Bread Baking Day (BBD #62) celebrates the breads contributed for World Bread Day,
    inviting bakers to bake a World Bread Day bread for BBD #62.

    One of the rye breads contributed for World Bread Day really caught my eye:  a Pumpkin Rye Sourdough bread, kindly posted by a Polish baker on the blog ‘The Scent of Bread – Zapach Chleba’.

    Wasn't this an incredibly gorgeous rye? The beautiful, airy crumb and glorious color – I had to try making this one! This is my attempt at re-creating this amazing Polish baker’s bread.

                                           

    I couldn’t find any information on the type 720 flour this baker used, so I used some whole, dark organic rye flour from Nunweiler’s.  This is a really, really nice flour to work with – I was very happy with the fermentation.
    My rye levain was very happy, too – this picture was taken just before mixing the dough:

     

    This bread has a fantastic flavor. I used squash and roasted it until it was really caramelized.
    The sweetness from the squash is delicious in the baked bread!
                                                      (another picture of the crumb)

     

    Here are the quantities I used for a 9x4x4 Pullman pan:



    Thank you Zorra, for providing a venue for bakers around the world to share bread, and thank you to the baker from Zapach Chleba for baking this Pumpkin Sourdough Rye.



    Happy baking, everyone, and Happy Thanksgiving to all those celebrating this week!
    :^) breadsong

    (submitted to YeastSpotting)

     

     

    dmsnyder's picture
    dmsnyder

    My San Francisco Sourdough Quest, Take 4

    I almost decided not to bake this past weekend, but I activated some starter, thinking I might make some sourdough pancakes for breakfast Sunday. But, then, there was this starter, and I thought maybe I'd bake something or other. Well, I might as well have some fresh-baked bread for Sunday dinner, and it had been a while since I'd given a loaf to my next door neighbor who really appreciates my breads. I guessed I'd make some San Francisco-style sourdough to share.

    I didn't want to be completely tied to the time-demands of my dough, so I relaxed the rigorous procedures with which I had been working to accommodate the other things I wanted to do. I expected the bread to be “good” but maybe not quite as good as last week's bake.

    To my surprise and delight, the bread turned out to be the best San Francisco-style sourdough I had ever baked. So I am documenting what I did and hope it's reproducible. And I'm sharing it with you all. The modifications in my procedures were determined by convenience of the moment. This was sort of “a shot in the dark that hit the bullseye.”

    So, here are the formula and procedures for this bake:

    I started with my stock refrigerated 50% starter that had been fed last weekend. This feeding consisted of 50 g active starter, 100 g water and 200 g starter feeding mix. My starter feeding mix is 70% AP, 20% WW and 10% whole rye flour.

    I activated the starter with a feeding of 40 g stock starter, 100 g water and 100 g starter feeding mix. This was fermented at room temperature for 16 hours, then refrigerated for about 20 hours. I then mixed the stiff levain.

    Stiff levain

    Bakers' %

    Wt (g)

    for 1 kg

    Wt (g)

    for 2 kg

    Bread flour

    95

    78

    157

    Medium rye flour

    5

    4

    8

    Water

    50

    41

    82

    Stiff starter

    80

    66

    132

    Total

    230

    189

    379

    1.  Dissolve the starter in the water. Add the flour and mix thoroughly until the flour has been completely incorporated and moistened.

    2. Ferment at room temperature for 16 hours.

    Final dough

    Bakers' %

    Wt (g)

    for 1 kg

    Wt (g)

    for 2 kg

    AP flour

    90

    416

    832

    WW Flour

    10

    46

    92

    Water

    73

    337

    675

    Salt

    2.4

    11

    22

    Stiff levain

    41

    189

    379

    Total

    216.4

    953

    2000

    Method

    1. In a stand mixer, mix the flour and water at low speed until it forms a shaggy mass.

    2. Cover and autolyse for 120 minutes

    3. Add the salt and levain and mix at low speed for 1-2 minutes, then increase the speed to medium (Speed 2 in a KitchenAid) and mix for 5 minutes. Add flour and water as needed. The dough should be rather slack. It should clean the sides of the bowl but not the bottom.

    4. Transfer to a lightly floured board and do a stretch and fold and form a ball.

    5. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover tightly.

    6. Ferment at 76º F for 31/2 to 4 hours with a stretch and fold at 50 and 100 minutes.

    7. Divide the dough into three equal pieces. (Note: I had made 2 kg of dough.)

    8. Pre-shape as rounds and rest, covered, for 10 minutes.

    9. Shape as boules or bâtards and place in bannetons. Place bannetons in plastic bags.

    10. Proof at room temperature (68-70º F) for 1-2 hours.

    11. Cold retard the loaves overnight.

    12. The next morning, proof the loaves at 85º F for 3 hours. (If you can't create a moist, 85 degree F environment, at least try to create one warmer than “room temperature.” For this bake, I took two loaves out of the fridge and started proofing them. I took the third loaf out about an hour later and stacked it balanced on top of the other two. I did one bake with the first two loaves and a second bake with the third loaf.)

    13. 45-60 minutes before baking, pre-heat the oven to 480º F with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

    14. Transfer the loaves to a peel. Score the loaves as desired, turn down the oven to 460º F, steam the oven, and transfer the loaves to the baking stone.

    15. After 15 minutes, remove the steaming apparatus, and turn down the oven to 435º F/Convection. (If you don't have a convection oven, leave the temperature at 460º F.)

    16. Bake for another 15 minutes.

    17. Turn off the oven, and leave the loaves on the stone, with the oven door ajar, for another 15 minutes.

    18. Transfer the loaves to a cooling rack, and cool thoroughly before slicing.

     

    Note: Because these loaves were smaller than those baked in “Take 3,” the oven temperature was hotter , and the baking time was shorter. I also wanted a slightly darker crust, which this modification accomplished.

    The crust was thick and very crunchy but not “hard.” The crumb was more open than my last bake. The crust had a sweet, nutty flavor. The crumb had sweetness with a definite whole grain wheat overtone and a more pronounced acetic acid tang. It had a wonderful cool mouth feel and was a bit more tender than the last bake.

    This bread was close in flavor and texture to the best tasting bread I've ever had which was a half kilo of pain de campagne cut from an absolutely huge miche in Les Eyzies, France some 15 years ago. It's a taste I've never forgotten and often wished I could reproduce.

    I need to make me a miche like this!

    David

    Submitted to YeastSpotting 

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