The Fresh Loaf

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Susan's picture
Susan

Well, I finally did it!

Today I baked the sourdough bread I've been looking for ever since starting this odyssey. It has a crispy crust and a stretchy, holey crumb. And it's easy. As I told a couple of friends earlier, "...it's reproducible, if the weather stays exactly how it is today."

I'm not suggesting that this could be anyone else's ultimate sourdough, but it sure is mine, at least for right now. Thanks to all who have helped me over the past year or so, even unwittingly. It continues to be great fun. The recipe is below.

My Ultimate Sourdough

Susan's Ultimate Sourdough

Starter is made the way Peter Reinhart suggested to us in class: 1:3:4 (starter:water:flour)

A single small boule, made by hand:

12g starter

175g water

25g whole wheat flour

225g hi-gluten flour (All Trumps, to be exact)

5g salt (I use Kosher)

Mix starter and water, mix in flour. Rest a few minutes, then re-mix. Dump into a greased bowl, let rise until doubled, about 8 hours. Turn the very soft dough onto your counter and pat it out, then sprinkle salt over the top. Roll it up, then gently knead a few times to distribute the salt. Let relax. Do the following until the dough is hard to fold: round up, let the dough relax, stretch and fold. Round up, let relax, shape, and put it in a banneton for proofing 3-4 hours in a warm spot.

The oven was preheated for 30 minutes at 500F, and reduced to 450F after I put the loaf in. It was baked on a tray, covered, for 18 minutes. The cover was then removed and the loaf baked until dark brown, about another 8 minutes.

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Lesson: Squeeze more sour from your sourdough

I am far from a sourdough expert. I’ve only been baking sourdough since February, and I still have a lot to learn about shaping, scoring and proofing to perfection.

However, there is one thing I have learned well: how to squeeze more flavor out of my naturally sweet starter. Here's the basic tips.

1) Keep the starter stiff
2) Spike your white starter with whole rye
3) Use starter that is well-fed
4) Keep the dough cool
5) Extend the rise by degassing
6) Proof the shaped loaves overnight in the fridge

Photos and elaboration follow.

It’s a common lament that I see on bread baking forums – Why isn’t my sourdough sour?

Personally, I blame Watertown. My evidence? I gave some of my starter to a friend who lives six miles away in Lexington. Within 6 weeks, she was making sour tasting sourdough. Her local yeastie beasties are clearly more sour than mine.

I don’t know what it is about the microflora that live in the little hollow between the hills that I occupy in Watertown, Mass., but treated traditionally, my white starter and my whole wheat starter pack as much sour taste as a loaf of Wonder Bread. That’s not to say that the loaves don’t taste nice. They do. They’re wheaty with a touch of a buttery aftertaste.

But they don’t taste sour, which is how I think sourdough ought to taste.

Anyway, I’ve finally figured out how to get the tangy loaves I love. If you’re facing the same sweet trouble as me, perhaps some (or all) of these tips will help.

1) Keep your starter stiff:

Traditionally, sourdough starter is kept as a batter. The most common consistency is to have equal weights of water and flour, also known as 100% hydration because the water weight is equal to 100% of the flour weight. That’s roughly 1 scant cup of flour to about ½ cup of water. Jeffrey Hammelman keeps his at 125%, and quite a few folks keep theirs at 200% (1 cup water to 1 cup flour).

I keep my sourdough starter at 50% hydration, meaning that for every 2 units of flour weight, I add 1 unit of water.

Barney Barm, my white starter is on the left; Arthur the whole wheat starter on the right. The bran and germ in whole wheat absorb a lot of water, so that starter is even stiffer than the white.

There are two basic types of bacteria that flourish in a sourdough starter. One produces lactic acid, which gives the bread a smooth taste, sort of like yogurt. It does best in wet, warm environment. The other makes acetic acid, the acid that gives bread its sharp tang. These bacteria prefer a drier, cooler environment.

(Or so I've read, anyway. I ain't no biochemist; I just know what they print in them books.)

A hydration of 50% is pretty stiff, especially for a whole-wheat starter. You really have to knead strongly to convince the starter to incorporate all the flour.

For example, here's my white starter after I've done my best to mix it up in the bucket. Time to knead a bit.

Here's what it looks like after kneading.

And here's what it looks like 5 hours later once it's ripe.

Conversion from 100% to 50% isn't hard to do if you've got a kitchen scale.

Take 2 ounces of your 100% starter. Then add 5 ounces of flour and 2 ounces of water. This should give you 9 ounces of starter. Leave it overnight, and it should be ripened in the morning.

From there on out when you feed it, add 1 unit of water for every 2 units of flour. I'd recommend feeding it 2 or 3 more times before using it, though, so that the yeast and bacteria can acclimate to the new environment.

There are additional advantages to a stiff starter beyond producing a more sour bread.

First, a stiff starter is easier to transport. Just throw a hunk into a bag, and you’re done.

Supposedly, the stiff stuff keeps longer than the batters. You can leave stiff starter in the fridge for months, or so I hear, and it can still be revived. Never tried it myself, though, so don't take my word for it.

Finally, the math for feeding is easy at 50% hydration, much easier than 60% or 65%. Just feed your starter in multiples of threes. For exmaple, if I’ve got 3 ounces of starter and I need to feed it, I'll probably triple it in size. To get six additional ounces for food, I just add 4 ounces flour and 2 ounces water. Piece of cake.

Converting recipes isn’t hard either. First, figure out the total water weight and total flour weight in the original recipe, including what's in the starter. If the recipe calls for a 100% hydration starter, then half of the starter is flour and the other half is water. Divide it accordingly to get the total flour and total water weights in the final dough.

Now, add the total water and total flour together. Take that figure and multiply by 0.30. This will tell you how much stiff starter you’ll need.

Last, subtract the amount of water in the stiff starter from the total water in the final dough, and the amount of flour in the stiff starter from the total flour in the final dough. The results tell you how much flour and water to add to the starter to get the final dough. Everything else remains the same.

2) Spike your white starter with whole rye flour:

It doesn’t take much. Currently, my white starter is about 10-15% whole rye. Basically, for every 3 ounces of white flour that I feed the starter, I replace ½ ounce with whole rye. That small portion of rye makes a big difference in flavor. Rye is to sourdough microflora as spinach is to Popeye. It’s super-food that’s easily digestible and nutrient rich. That’s why so many recipes for getting a starter going from scratch suggest you start with whole rye.

Here I am, about to add rye to "Barney Barm," my white starter. I haven’t added rye to my whole-wheat starter, though. It hasn’t needed it – there’s more than enough nutrients in the whole wheat to keep the starter party going strong.

3) Use starter that is well fed: Early in my search to sour my sourdough, I’d read that, if you leave a starter unfed and on the counter for a few days before baking, it will make your bread more sour.

I’ve found that’s not the case. The starter gets more sour, but the bread doesn’t taste very sour at all.

The better course is to take your starter out of the fridge at least a couple of days before you use it, and then feed it two or three times before you make the final dough. Healthy microflora make a more flavorful bread.

4) Keep the dough cool:

When I first started out, I was following recipes that called for the dough to be at 79 degrees, and I’d often put it in a fairly warm place to rise. Warmth kills sour taste. Nowadays, I add water that’s room temperature, not warmed, and aim for a much cooler rise, no higher than 75 degrees and often as low as 64.

The cellar is your friend.

5) Extend the rise by degassing:

When I make whole wheat sourdough, I usually let the dough rise until it has doubled and then degass it by folding until it rises a second time. Along with cool dough, this means the bulk fermentation usually lasts 5-6 hours.

When I’m making pain au levain or some other white flour sourdough, I usually have the dough very wet, so it needs more than one fold to give it the strength it needs. In this case, I fold once at 90 minutes and then again after another 90 minutes. Usually, the full bulk rise lasts about 5 hours.

Here's a sequence showing how I fold my whole-wheat sourdough.

First, turn the risen dough out on a lightly floured surface (heavily floured if your dough is very wet).

Stretch it to about twice its length.

Gently degass one-third of the dough, fold it over the middle, and degass the middle section to seal.

Do the same for the remaining side. Take the folded dough, turn it one-quarter, and fold once more before returning to the bowl or bucket to rise again.

6) Proof the shaped loaves overnight in the fridge:

This final touch really brings out the flavor. So much so that, if you’ve incorporated all the other suggestions, proofing overnight might make your bread a bit too sour for your taste. My wife and I like it assertively sour, however, so this step is a must.

Normally, I’d suggest proofing your loaves on the top shelf where it’s warmest, so as not to kill off any yeast, but I find that if I put my loaves in the top, they’re ready in about 4-6 hours, at which time I’m usually sound asleep. So I started putting them in the bottom, and had better luck.

I hope this helps those of you who dread pulling another beautiful loaf from the oven, only to find it looks better than it tastes. Best of luck!

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)

 

 

txfarmer's picture
txfarmer

SD 100% WW Hokkaido Milk Loaf - an oxymoron?

Recently, I have posted about my SD version of the classic Hokkaido Milk Loaf (see here: http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/23662/sourdough-hokkaido-milk-loaf-classic-shreddable-soft-bread), this time I adapted it to use all ww flour. Yes, the original Hokkaido Milk Loaf is quite enriched, and this ww version is not any "leaner", however, I do think ww flour adds more dimension to the flavor, and all the enriching ingredients bring incredible softness to this 100% ww loaf. To me, "healthy eating" is not about restricting, on the contrary, it's about bringing in different kinds of natural food groups into my diet and thriving for a balance.

 

SD 100%ww Hokkaido Milk Loaf

Note: 19% of the flour is in levain

Note: total flour is 420g, fit my Chinese small-ish pullman pan. For 8X4 US loaf tin, I suggest to use about 450g of total flour.

 

- levain

starter (100%), 22g

milk, 37g

ww flour (I used KAF ww), 69g

1. Mix and let fermentation at room temp (73F) for 12 hours.

- final dough

ww flour, 340g

sugar, 55g

butter, 17g, softened

milk powder, 25g

egg whites, 63g

salt, 6g

milk, 150g

heavy cream, 118g

 

1. Mix together everything but butter, autolyse for 40-60min. Add butter, Knead until the dough is very developed. This intensive kneading is the key to a soft crumb, and proper volume. The windowpane will be thin and speckled with grains, but NOT as strong as one would get form a white flour dough. For more info on intensive kneading, see here.

2. rise at room temp for 2 hours, punch down, put in fridge overnight.

3. Take out dough, punch down, divide and rest for one hour.

4. Shape into sandwich loaves, the goal here is to get rid of all air bubles in the dough, and shape them very tightly and uniformly, this way the crumb of final breads would be even and velvety, with no unsightly holes. For different ways to shape (rolling once or twice, i.e. 3 piecing etc) see here.

5. Proof until the dough reaches one inch higher than the tin (for 8X4 inch tin), or 80% full (for pullman pan). About 5 hours at 74F.

6. Bake at 375F for 40-45min. Brush with butter when it's warm.

 

A crumb and flavor even whole grain haters would love.

 

Tear/shread away...

 

Sending this to Yeastspotting.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Baguette crumb - 65% hydration dough

Some time ago, Pat (proth5) posted her formula for baguettes. This was in the context of our "great baguette quest" of some months back. We were playing with higher hydration doughs and cold fermentation à la Gosselin and Bouabsa.

Pat's formula is levain-based and employs a 65% hydration dough. She has insisted repeatedly that, while higher hydration is one route to a more open, holey crumb, fermentation and technique in shaping the baguettes are at least as important and that good technique can achieve the desired open crumb even with a dryer dough.

Okay. It was past time I tested my own technique against Pat's claim.

Pat's formula is as follows:

This is for two loaves at a finished weight of 10.5 oz each

.75 oz starter

1.12 oz flour

1.12 oz water 

Mix and let ripen (8-10 hours) 

Bread

All of the levain build

10.95 oz all purpose flour

.25 oz salt

6.6 oz water 

Dough temperature 76F 

Mix to shaggy mass (Yes! Put the preferment in the autolyse!) – let rest 30 mins

Fold with plastic scraper  (30 strokes) – repeat 3 more times at 30 min intervals 

Bulk ferment at 76F for 1.5 hours – fold

Bulk ferment at 76F 2 hours

Preshape lightly but firmly, rest 15 mins

Shape.  Proof 1 hour or so

Slash

Bake with steam at 500F for about 20 mins

 

I followed this except I baked at 480F. I used Whole Foods 365 Organic AP flour. The result was an excellent, classic baguette with a crunchy crust and cool, creamy crumb. It was slightly sweet with imperceptible sourness when eaten just ... well, almost ... cooled.

Here's  the crumb:

I'll let you draw your own conclusions.

Thanks, Pat!

David

Flour.ish.en's picture
Flour.ish.en

Tartine Olive Walnut Bread

Breaking this bread is tantamount to opening a holiday present. At least, it feels that way when I cut the bread. The abundant good eats: olives, walnuts, sunflower seeds, herbs de Provence, lemon zest, filled the interior to the rim, are what make this bread sing. 

This Tartine olive walnut bread uses a young leaven (20% of flour weight) and 10% whole wheat flour. Nothing out of the ordinary. However, the big winner is with all the add-ins, especially the olives. Since the dough is quite wet, series of stretch-and-fold help to strengthen it. I sprinkled more sunflower seeds around the proofing basket to prevent the dough from sticking. The dough was retarded in the fridge overnight. I made a full recipe (see the cheat sheet below for details) and baked two large loaves in Dutch ovens (one round, one oval) in a preheated 500°F oven. Lower the oven temperature to 475°F as the loaves are loaded. Finally, bake for 15 minutes with the cover on and 20-25 minutes uncovered.

All the olives, nuts, seeds and herbs make for quite a substantial bread. The bread stands on its own with its fairly loud flavors. Like all good breads, serve up with some fine cheese and wine, nothing can be better!

Adapted from Tartine Bread by Chad Robertson

https://www.everopensauce.com/tartine-olive-walnut-bread/

Smo's picture
Smo

The Easiest German-style Spelt Recipe, Ever

Well, that's the idea anyway.  I've been working on this one for years and didn't want to post it until I felt that I'd mastered it.  That came sooner than expected this year, when I switched to using pullman loaf pans and things got immediately easier.

The goal of this recipe is to be something that I can bake every week for the rest of my life, no matter how crazy things get.  So far, so good.  The recipe features:

  • No kneading
  • No shaping
  • No sourdough starter maintenance
  • Flexible rise time
  • Short ingredient list
  • Authentic German crust, crumb and taste

I studied abroad years ago in southwestern Germany, where Spelt bread (aka Dinkelbrot) is very popular. I was given a recipe for a no-knead, 100% whole grain sourdough spelt bread while I was there.  Over the last few years I've been trying to perfect the recipe by making it simpler, more full-proof, and easier to fit into a busy lifestyle.  The last batches I've made are the closest I've come to reproducing the Dinkelvollkornbrot from my favorite bakery in Stuttgart [1].

Begin by adding (per loaf) 600g of whole grain spelt flour, 15g salt and 3g guar gum [2] (optional, see notes) to a mixing bowl. EDIT: I now use 20g of ground flax seed per loaf in lieu of the guar gum). Take your sourdough starter out of the fridge and mix it in too. I don't measure the starter but it's usually about half a cup [3]. Add 600g of hot water (I run my tap until it's hot) to the bowl and mix until combined. If needed, add extra water to hydrate all the flour without resorting to kneading - I usually end up adding 50-100g extra. But I would start around 100% hydration and go from there.

Once the dough is mixed, take a cup or so of it and put it back in your sourdough starter jar. Put it straight back into the fridge. It'll ferment and be ready for your next bake. As long as you bake at least once a month, this is all the sourdough maintenance you'll need to do with this recipe, no need to feed your starter.

Now, cover with a towel and go to work. Or go to bed. Or, whatever. Just give the dough 8-15 hours to rise. The dough will be waiting for you any time within that time period. How long you wait will effect on the level of sourdough flavor in the final product, but the effect is minor and I worry more about my schedule than the flavor. Whenever it's convenient, move on to the next step.

After the long rise, the dough should have risen quite a bit (maybe close to double in volume).  Optionally add 35g of sunflower seeds and 35g of pumpkin seeds per loaf to the bowl [4]. Stir well and remove large air bubbles. This should only take 1-2 minutes, don't get too enthusiastic and start kneading.

Now grease your loaf pans (I use an oil mister, because it's easy and fast) and divide the dough between the pans. It should be far too wet to shape, so don't even try. Let it rise about an hour before putting it in the oven (with the lid on, if you're using a pullman pan).

This step is where the pullman loaf pans really come in handy, because they have a lid.  The tight-fitting lid results in more predictable oven spring, which gives you a much bigger margin for error when proofing the dough. I have yet to underproof or overproof a loaf when using these pans.  Even when I was sure I'd screwed up, the loaves turned out fine. With regular loaf pans I found that the optimal window of time to put them in the oven was very, very short. See notes for more on this, plus tips on using a regular pan with this recipe [5].

Once the bread has proofed, put it in a 420 degree oven. I then bake it for an hour, in my oven at home[6].  Take the bread out of the oven, place onto cooling racks, and wait for it to cool.  For best results, wait overnight before starting on the loaf.  Then slice thin and enjoy! The bread will last a long time - at least 10 days. It's great for open face sandwiches with cheese, cold cuts, or other spreads.  Or for PB&J (I may love German bread but I'm still American...). Or, you know . . . butter. Open face butter sandwiches. Is there anything better?

I've also made a version with white spelt flour, for making grilled cheese and BLTs. That one's a work in progress.  I'm going to try adding potato water to soften up the crust next time.  And I have yet to master the rye version as well.  But this whole wheat spelt version is good and consistent for me now.

Here are links to the pullman loaf pans that I'm using, on Amazon:

Affiliate link (for those who aren't familiar, gives the link poster, AKA me, a little kickback at no extra cost to the purchaser)

Non-affiliate link

They also make a 13" long version, which would be more economical if you're trying to maximize the amount of bread made per dollar spent on loaf pans.  But I like the shape of the 9" loaves better.

Notes:

[1] Hafendoerfer, for those who are curious. If you *ever* get the chance to go there, do it! It might be the best bakery in the entire country of Germany. Definitely the best in Stuttgart.

[2] The guar gum improves the texture when used in small quantities. Using much more than this will result in an unpleasant gummy, bouncy texture. The loaf will be fine without it, but won't hold together quite as well.  EDIT: I now use 20g of ground flax seed per loaf instead.  It works just as well as the guar gum, plus it's good for you!

[3] By having a long initial fermentation, there's no need to have an active starter. It'll have several hours to wake up and get going. I've used starter straight from the fridge that hadn't been fed in a month, and the bread rose just fine. Using hot water also helps kick-start the fermentation.

[4] I *highly* recommend adding the seeds, they do a lot for the texture and flavor. They also tone down the fluffiness of the bread and make the crumb more authentically German - I found that my bread was rising a bit too much without them. If you omit them, you may find that 600g flour makes a bit too much dough for a 4x4x9 pullman pan.

[5] With a regular pan, I found it really hard to figure out the ideal time to put the dough in the oven to get a good rise. Overproofing results in a lot of oven spring, but then the loaf collapses in the oven. Underproofing results in the crust rising above the crumb, and a cavity between the two. Or weird shapes bursting out of the top of the loaf.  I found the sweet spot between the two to be short and hard to catch.

There may be other solutions to this problem - adding steam to the oven might help. Or you could put a sheet pan on top of regular loaf pans and put a skillet on top for weight. But the pullman pans work for me and I like the size of the loaves they make.  I spent years trying to figure out the proofing stage of this recipe and I finally feel like I've figured it out, thanks to the new pans.

[6] If I'm using a new oven, I'll bake for 45 minutes, then remove the covers off of the pullman pans and stick a probe thermometer into the center of one loaf. I then continue baking until the center reaches 205-ish degrees Fahrenheit (I live at 7000 feet elevation, so I actually go to 195, but at sea level you'd want 205). Once I've figured out the oven I don't use the thermometer anymore and I just set a timer.

 

MarkS's picture
MarkS

Help me understand "builds".

Peter Reinhart touched on this briefly in The Bread Baker's Apprentice, but did not elaborate.

I am working on a sourdough recipe. I want a 350 gram leaven in the final dough, so I am starting with 50 grams of 100% starter.

If I understand the meaning, my leaven has three builds with a fourth when added to the final dough, as follows:

First build: 50 grams of starter, plus 15 grams of flour to bring it to 60% hydration. Ferment overnight at room temp.

Second build: 100 grams flour plus 59 grams water, and ferment again at room temp.

Third build: 70 grams of flour plus 56 grams of water and ferment.

The final build will be adding it to the final dough. This, to me, seems what is meant by "build". Is this correct, and if so, what purpose is there in doing this as opposed to just adding the correct amount of flour and water to bring it to 350 grams and letting it ferment?

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.

     

    Elagins's picture
    Elagins

    Another one for Norm: onion rolls?

    Norm, I haven't had a decent onion roll since I left NY about 25 years ago, and I'd kill for one -- you know the kind I'm talking about -- the big ones, 4" in diameter, browned with a crisp crust and flecked with chopped onions and (maybe) poppy seeds ... the kind that needs nothing more than a schmear of cold, unsalted butter ....

    Can you help?

    Stan

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