The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Most bookmarked

Nominingi's picture

Danish Rye Bread Formula please

Good morning dear TFLer

I want to bake a danish rugbrod and have not been able to find a formula I'm confident enough to try. There's a good video on youtube posted by someone who produces the bread I want to bake, but he bakes it in an intuitive way.


Thank you

GWRoss's picture

100% Sourdough German-Style Many Grain Bread

I think this is my first post on TFL. I registered way back in July of 2011. I used to be active on before Lehman's "rescued" it.

The other day, when I was making a batch of German-Style Many Grain Bread (from Peter Reinhart's "Whole Grain Breads") I did a search online to see if anyone had any comments on the recipe. A couple of the search results were on this site.

On my first try, I closely followed the recipe. Usually, when I have made breads from WGB, I have used the honey option. This time, I used brown sugar, and the result was that the dough was too dry, but I didn't notice it until the very end of the kneading (in my Hobart N50.) I kneaded in more water, but it was either still not enough, or I had over-kneaded the dough, and I was not happy with the final result.

On my second try, I increased the amount of flaxseed (matching the weight of the other seeds) and omitted the yeast, allowing my sourdough to do the heavy lifting. (And of course, I paid more attention to the hydration as I began kneading the dough.)

I was so pleased with the result that I just had to brag. I don't usually roll my loaves in seeds, but this time I did, and it really shows the way the loaf bloomed in the oven.

Hanzosbm's picture

Flour or grease to prevent sticking

Hello all,


This is a somewhat general question but I wanted to generate some discussion around techniques rather than recipes.  In general, there are two methods to prevent dough from sticking during the proofing process.  One can either grease/oil the dough/container/surface, or one can use flour of some sort. 

Recently, I've been making lighter breads from primarily white flours looking for an open crumb which naturally lends itself to a higher hydration dough, but for this reason, most recipes suggest using the greased method to avoid adding more flour to the equation.  However, I've run into two problems with this.  First, I really like the look of crust that has been floured and looks a bit drier and crustier (is that a word?).  Second, and probably more infuriatingly, I've been having a heck of a time getting these breads into the oven and have ruined a few in the process.  There is nothing more aggravating than spending a week building a sourdough starter, another day creating a poolish, all day kneading and proofing, and then finally, when you're ready to put the bread into the oven, the loaf sticks to the peel and upon trying to get it off, the entire loaf falls onto the floor of your electric oven around the coils.  (and yes, that literally happened to me recently)

So, getting back to the discussion, assuming the identical recipe, how much of a difference do you think there is between flouring and greasing surfaces?  What kinds of effects do you think each will have on the finished product?  Which do you prefer and why?  And does anyone know of a way to prevent greased loaves from sticking to a peel?

a_warming_trend's picture

Monday Gift Loaves

These are 76% hydration, 20% levain, 30% whole wheat, with a smidge of pate fermentee for that little added umph. 

No crumb shots, because they were gifts. 

Abe, thanks for inspiring me with your scoring pattern! The boule is exactly your pattern, with a few extra very shallow swirls

Here's to making it through Monday, TFL!

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

Tartine Country Rye

Deja vu.  This weekend I decided to make the Tartine Country rye bread again, this time I made four loaves.  The formula in the book:

Leaven  200g

Water    800 g

Whole Rye 170 g

Bread Flour 810 g

Salt 20g.


My "modifications" to the formula:

Leaven                      200 g.

All Purpose Flour     500 g

Whole White Wheat 330 g

Whole Rye                170 g

Water                          818 g

Salt                                20g

Because I took the starter out of the fridge on Thursday evening, I was able to feed it 3 times before using it in the levain, and it did nicely by Saturday morning when it was time to mix the dough.  So, no yeast added this go around.

For me, the most interesting thing about this loaf is being able to taste the wheat, the rye and a mild tang of the sourdough.  Usually my bread is not this complexly flavored, or I can't usually taste so many things in each loaf.

I also added a smattering of sesame seeds which I think make the bread all the more delicious.

And a blurry  "bottom shot" since a lot of people seem to burn the loaf.  I avoid that, I think, by nesting the pans after the first 20 minutes, removing the deep top and putting it under the shallow bottom pan.

I really do love this bread.

StuffedBagel's picture

Bagel Shop Proofing


I have been doing research as part of  potentially opening a bagel business. Being that most shops seem to cold proof overnight after forming the bagels, how do they find storage for the bagels to proof? I presume the larger bagel shops sell well over 1,000 bagels per day. Can someone please enlighten me as to how they find the space or equipment to cold proof (retard) the bagels overnight? I am thinking that some would have to skip the overnight ferment and do a warmer and shorter proof that doesn't require nearly as much storage. Any information would be appreciated. Thank you.



LevaiNation's picture

Tropical levain readjusting

Hello all,

I've been baking FWSY loaves for a couple of years now, and have been happily successful at all the recipes in the book. I have also learned to tweak and adjust flour types and fermenting times in order to make my own personal breads.

About six months ago I moved from Oregon, U.S., to the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. The temps here are a steady 85-95 deg. all day long and pretty much year round. I've been keeping an eye on my doughs and having many quality bakes with many of the recipes, except for the 100% Levain loaves. Those doughs have seen way more compost pile than the inside of my dutch ovens...

I believe that my sourdough starter is acting way too fast because of the temps, and many times the proofed dough turns into batter and failure and sad kids that don't have homemade bread! So I'm trying to adjust some parts of my recipes. I'm starting with increasing the amount of flour that I feed my culture. The original ratios according to Forkish are 1:1:4:4 (levain: whole: white: H20) so now I'm trying 1:1:5:4. The resulting starter, when ready, is already looking less watery. 

The next step is gonna be to reduce to half the amount of levain in the final dough, but maintain the time schedule the same.


I'll report back on this, but would welcome some viewpoints or ideas...


Taming the beast, 


maojn's picture

Cotton Cake, so light and pretty and delicious!

For detail steps and pictures, please see 


For 6 inch baking pan

3 large egg yolks+1 whole egg

warm milk 50g

egg white 3x

sugar 70g

cake/pastry flour 60g

butter 40g


preheat oven to 170C, line the pan with parchment paper at bottom 


- heat butter in water bath to 80C﹐ add flour quickly and mix quickly with egg whisk

- add warm milk in 4-5 times, whisk and make sure it's mixed well each time before add more.

- mix yolks and whole egg, add into batter

- cover and save for later

- beat egg white and sugar until stiff peak, see this video for detail timing to add sugar:

- add 1/3 egg white into yolk batter, mix with egg whisk until no egg white lumps.

- add the rest of egg white and mix with egg whisk until no lumps.

- use scraper to clean the side of the bowl and mix well.

- pour batter into pan from 10 inch height, this will break big bubbles, 

- put the cake pan into a water tray which is bigger than the cake pan, pour the hottest water from the faucet to depth of about 1 inch (about 70-80C)

- use broil (only top heat) setting and sure the surface is colored gold brown, then use bake (bottom heat) 150C for 50min.



website numbers total


Sylviambt's picture

Exploring stiff sourdough starters

I've been working with liquid sourdough starters for the last several years and have just started investigating stiff starters, something that you can store for longer term. Any thoughts would be appreciated.