The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Most bookmarked

ejm's picture
ejm

Apricot Roll and a 5-Strand Braid

I made the following for Bread Baking Day (BBD) #08: Celebrate!

apricot roll and 5 strand braid

Because there was enough dough for two loaves, I decided to make one as a roll and braid the other one without filling it.

We really love this bread. And we really loved how much oven spring there was. Imagine how tall it would have been if I'd put the bread in tins to bake!

Next time I will use prunes for the filling, as Manuela suggests, rather than apricots. Apricots are nice but I think the flavour of the prunes will be better with the bread, not to mention, prettier in the roll. And I'll add less filling, and serve the extra in a little bowl on the side. I like the idea of the roll having just a hint of the fruit flavour.

apricot roll

We haven't tasted the braid yet but we know that it will be delicious as well. I may have to make some apricot or prune jam to go with it though.

Please note that I have not forgotten that today is 1 April. But I decided to refrain from playing tricks on the blog this year. I thought my time would be better spent posting for BBD#08 (let alone that I couldn't think of anything...).

Monica's picture
Monica

Malt loaf update

Well, I tried the un-yeasted malt loaf recipe listed on this site a few days ago.  It had good flavor and crumb, but it is not the one I remember.  The one I use to get in the UK was very dark, almost black, and sticky delicious!  Still looking for THAT recipe if anyone can help.  I haven't tried the one with yeast, but by looking at the ingredients, I know it won't be dark, sticky, and rich.  I will try it next week however.  Today I made richman's brioche from BBA!

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Polish Cottage Rye & Multigrain Sourdough - Last weekend's breads

Polish Cottage Rye

Polish Cottage Rye

Polish Cottage Rye - Crumb

Polish Cottage Rye - Crumb

Multigrain Sourdough

Multigrain Sourdough

Multigrain Sourdough - Crumb

Multigrain Sourdough - Crumb

 

Both of these are breads I've baked several times before and enjoy a lot. This weekend, I ran out of King Arthur bread flour and substituted Golden Buffalo flour in both breads. We had some of the Multigrain Sourdough for breakfast. As I came out for breakfast, my wife, who was just finishing hers, greeted me with, "That's amazing bread." 

David

NYamateur's picture
NYamateur

What's your steaming method of choice??

Ive been experimenting lately with some steaming methods and Im wonder what your go-to method is.  So far I think I like the lava rock/cast iron pan method.  what do you guys think?

Also what do you think about using a pressure cooker or clothing iron to spray steam into th oven, crazy and stupid or does this idea have potential worth investigating?

 

 

lisah's picture
lisah

Johnson & Wales Univ. Artisan Bread Course

Hi Everyone,

I finally attended the Johnson & Wales Artisan Bread Course in Charlotte this weekend.  WOW!!!!!  I am so excited.  It was a dream come true for me and it was all that I hoped it would be and much more.  If anyone has any questions at all about the course, I'm happy to share.

We used the professional steam injected deck ovens, a steam injected convection oven, and we made a variety of doughs including straight, biga and poolish.  And the best of all was learning how to make that incredible crumb with big big holes.  That was a big win for me.

As I have time, I'll start posting some of the more important learnings for me so that you might find something new to try.

Lisa H.

PaddyL's picture
PaddyL

Sourdough in chocolate cake?

I'fe found an old sourdough cookbook I'd forgot I had, and there's a recipe for sourdough chocolate cake, sourdough cookies, sourdough sweets.  Why?  I can see it in breadmaking, but desserts?

shakleford's picture
shakleford

100% Sprouted Wheat Bread

Almost every weekend, I make one loaf of what I think of as "sandwich bread".  As you might expect from this nomenclature, this is the loaf that I'll be using for sandwiches in the coming week.  I generally pick recipes that are reliable, fairly plain, and light enough to make a good sandwich (admittedly, I like dense breads, so I might be less strict about this last criterion than many of you).  My more experimental recipes, or those including fruit or nuts or lots of herbs or other goodies, or those that are just extremely dense, fall under what I think of as my "dinner bread" category.

This week's sandwich bread was a 100% sprouted wheat bread from The Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book.  My first attempt at this recipe was a few weeks ago.  Since that was my first time sprouting grains I didn't really know what to expect, and for some reason thought that I would be able to easily chop/mash the sprouts by hand.  This didn't work out so well and I was instead forced to grind my sprouts in small batches in an old coffee grinder.  The resulting mess (I hesitate to use the term "dough") rose only very slightly, giving me my first real brick.  It was an extremely tasty brick, but even so, would not have made very impressive sandwiches -- fortunately, that loaf was intended as a dinner bread, so I was able to enjoy it anyway.

Since then I have acquired a food processor to help chop my sprouts, so I decided to try the sprout bread again this weekend, and go all-out by using it as a sandwich bread.  Beginning Wednesday evening, I started soaking 1.25 pounds of hard red wheat berries.  Sprouting is pretty simple; you rinse the berries around three times per day, and other than that, just let them soak on your counter.  Just the same, I get a kick out of this part, as it sort of lets me combine another of my hobbies, gardening, with my baking.

By Saturday morning, the sprouts were just beginning to show.  I drained and dried the berries and stuck them in the refrigerator in anticipation of the heating they would experience when I began to process them.  A few hours later, I combined them with some honey, yeast, and salt in my food processor and gave it its inaugural run.  I initially planned to process half at a time, but it turned out that there was plenty of room for all of it.

Having never used a food processor in my bread-baking before, I was a bit nervous, but things worked out very well.  I processed in increments of around 20 seconds, between which I would scrape the dough together, break up any larger pieces, and check the temperature.  I stopped when the dough was circling around on top of the blades rather than being mixed any further.  At this point, it was still a bit below room temperature and passed the windowpane test with flying colors.

Ground Sprouts

After this, I kneaded for a few minutes, more to get a feel for the dough and to pick out a few whole wheat berries that had stuck under the food processor blade than for any real need to develop the gluten further.  The dough was somewhat sticky, but certainly manageable.  The texture was coarser than dough made out of flour, but still relatively smooth.

After I finished kneading, I put the dough through the two rises and proof standard in Laurel's approach to bread-baking.  Below is an image of the dough just before it began proofing.  As you can see, it is a fairly large amount of dough for one loaf.  This is because sprout bread is not known for its spectacular rises -- in fact, Peter Reinhart recommends significant added gluten as an (optional) ingredient in the similar recipe in Whole Grain Breads.  I'm not necessarily opposed to using gluten (though it does feel a bit like cheating), but wanted to try the recipe at least once without it.

Sprout Bread Proof

Up to the point that I put the loaf in the oven, the rises had been adequate but not spectacular, so I was not sure what to expect for a final result.  Fortunately, oven spring came to the rescue again.  While the below result will not set any records for lightness, I was quite happy with how much it rose for a 100% sprout bread.  What my lousy camera cannot show is the beautiful texture in the crust from the large pieces of bran.

I won't actually cut into this loaf until tomorrow, but right now I am cautiously optimistic that it was a success.  The appearance of the crust gives me high hopes of a terrific texture throughout the loaf, and I'll be pleased if the taste is anything like my previous attempt at this recipe.  The only possible problem I see right now is that the crust does seem a bit tough - next time, I may try cooking with steam.  I'm also interested in sprouting other grains along with the wheat, but would probably not do this in a 100% sprouted grain bread, or at least not one that I planned to make sandwiches with.

Monica's picture
Monica

malt loaf

Living in England for several years I fell in love with the small, slightly sticky, malt loaf.  It is a dark rich "tea" bread.  I have never been able to find a recipe for one.  Anyone in England, or anywhere else, have one please?  It is a small loaf and sometimes had raisens in it.  Monica

jessicap's picture
jessicap

Pane Siciliano from BBA

I just got Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice and intend to make many of his breads over the next few weeks. It's slightly unfortunate timing, since it'll be Passover in a month and then summer in a few more weeks (I'll wait, impatiently, until fall to put up a sourdough starter), but that just means I need to make as much bread as possible each weekend.

My first loaf was the pane siciliano, made with semolina flour. The nine-year-old promptly dubbed it "the best bread I've even tasted;" he'll be getting sandwiches made from the batard loaf this week. I'm going to try adding some whole grain flour to the recipe in the future.


I made a triple batch of his pate fermente on Thursday. One pound went into this bread; the other two are frozen for future use. The bread dough is made with the pre-ferment, high-gluten bread flour, semolina flour -- the nubby kind you make pasta out of -- a little honey and olive oil, salt, yeast and water. I kneaded, fermented, and shaped on Friday. It was an extremely flexible dough, stretching out like a baguette with no springing back at all. It went into the fridge overnight to proof. (I was out of sesame seeds, and the nine year old doesn't like them anyhow.)

I baked it this morning in a very steamy oven. (I preheated the oven to 550 degrees, with a cast iron skillet on the floor. I poured in simmering water and closed the door quickly, twice. The oven was incredibly steamy, despite no additional misting of water). When the bread went in, I turned the heat down to 450. After 15 minutes, I separated the breads, because they were touching; ten minutes later, they were done (205+ on the thermometer.)

Unanimous verdict? Yum.

For next time:

  • Try replacing about a third of the flour in the pre-ferment with King Arthur white whole whole wheat.
  • The batard loaf is a little small for sadwiches;maybe make one large batard and one spiral next time? It also should probably be slashed; it split some on the side.
  • After 15 minutes in the oven, take the bread off the pan entirely and put them directly on the rack. The middle load stayed white and soft on the sides because they didn't get enough direct heat.
qahtan's picture
qahtan

request for recipe

Posting my request again, hoping that some one has the recipe....I am looking for a choux paste cream puff recipe, but wait not the ordinary run of the mill cream puff, the one I am looking for puffs up very large and has great cracks in it when baked, it is filled with whipped cream and just a light sprinkle of icing sugar over the top. These are BIG cream puffs very light and puffy. help... qahtan

Pages