The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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dmsnyder's picture

Hamelman's "Bread," second edition is shipping!

My copy arrived today! Just looking at the table of contents, I see a number of new formulas that are calling to me ... Make me! ... No! Make me first! ... 

'Scuse me. Gotta go read.


JOHN01473's picture

Brown Bread - Felixstowe Baker's Recipe

Today I made a granary loaf with fresh yeast and I have to say I am pleased as punch. Although not a sourdough I did use a few of the SD techniques.
This recipe was given to me by one of the "Lovely Bakers from Felixstowe" as I refer to them. Pete started me on the road with this recipe, and then introduced me to Sourdough -. He inspired and helped me and that was 2 years ago.


1, mix the flours and water together and autolyse for 20 minutes.
2, add the yeast and salt then mix.
3, add the seeds and mix.
4, knead the dough for about 10 minutes until a good gluten window can be formed.
5, bulk proof for 1 hour.
6, knock back the dough and set it aside for final proofing.
7, preheat the oven to 250c then turn down to 220c - place the baking stone in side and the pan for steaming.
8, when the dough is finally proofed remove the stone from the oven and flour the top of the dough.
9, transfer the dough to the stone and bake for 25 minutes.
10, remove the stone and bread after 25 minutes and flip the bread over and cook on the rack for a further 5 minutes.
11, remove form the oven and cool on a rack.

The same recipe can be used with wholemeal flour, just increase the water to 370ml.
I use Marriages Strong White Bread Flour and Hovis Malted Brown Granary Flour
I prefer to use live yeast.

This is at the start of the bulk fermenting stage.

After the final proofing.

On the stone prior to slashing.

Slashed and ready to bake.

The finished article.
I got some nice oven spring - Hurrah!!!

A nice crust and soft crumb and a great taste.
It springs back after squashing.
The grains in the granary flour and sunflower seeds are evenly distributed.

Cheese on toast with Italian herbs - MMMMMMMMMM

I am really pleased with this one.

Wandering Bread's picture
Wandering Bread

Sourdough Ruchbrot

Hey y'all. Has anyone here ever baked with Swiss "Ruchmehl"? I just tried it for the first time and I really like it. It's somehwere between medium and whoe wheat. A lot of flavor but can still hold together gluten wise. 

I'm only here in Switzerland for another week so I figured it was time to give this a try. Now I'm wishing I had done it months ago!

It was super tasty with a full wheat flavor and a crunchy crust with a cool, soft crumb.  

I also wanted to say it's been very inspirational to read all of your posts in tribute to Eric. I wish I had been around to get to know him, he clearly had a huge impact on many of you, who have in turn had a large impact on me. I am very sorry for your loss and I am grateful for his legacy here.


Ruchbrot formula at Wandering Bread

isand66's picture

Onion Sourdough-Yeast Water Rye Ale Bread

There are many things in my life that I have a passion for, with bread  being near the top.  Recently I was very saddened to learn of the sudden passing of a terrific baker and person Eric Hanner.  Eric was a frequent contributor on The Fresh Loaf website and he inspired me with his passion for baking and touched a great many people along the way.

His willingness to share his vast baking experiences and cooking expertise as well photography pointers left an unforgettable mark on all that came in contact with him.  One of Eric's favorite recipes was his Jewish Rye which goes great with his homemade pastrami.  I had a spirited conversation with Eric regarding our pastrami passion and  I couldn't wait to try his pastrami after I had baked his famous rye.

In tribute to Eric I offer my own inspired Jewish Rye (I'm Jewish...therefore it's a Jewish Rye :0).  I have not used my yeast water starter in a while so I refreshed it with some oranges due to my apples having gone bad.  I also created a rye sour converting my AP starter in 3 stages including adding sautéed onions in stage 2.  Both starters were finished by bringing them from 100% hydration to 65% hydration.

I also picked up some interesting ale at the local supermarket which was brewed with lemon peels, ginger and honey so naturally I needed to use some in this rye bread.

The final loaf ended up being by far one of the best rye breads I have  made to date.  The onions combined with the 2 starters and the ale made this a wonderfully tasty moist bread perfect for a pastrami or corned beef sandwich or a smear of cream cheese.


Yeast Water Starter Build 1

60 grams Pumpernickel  Flour (KAF)

60 grams Yeast Water Starter

Mix the flour and Yeast Water in a bowl until thoroughly combined.  Cover the bowl and let it sit at room temperature for around 6 hours.  The starter should almost double when ready to proceed to build 2.

Build 2

Add ingredients below to starter from above and mix until incorporated.  Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 6 hours.

100 grams Pumpernickel Flour

100 grams Yeast Water

Build 3

Add flour to starter from above and mix until incorporated.  Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 4 hours or until bubbly and either use immediately or put in the refrigerator for the next day.

100 grams Pumpernickel Flour

10 grams Yeast Water

(Note: I made extra starter since I wanted to use this for another bake.  You can cut the amounts down to make the 125 grams needed in the recipe)

Rye Sour Starter Build 1

63 grams AP Starter

63 Pumpernickel Starter

75 grams Water

Mix the flour, starter and water in a bowl until thoroughly combined.  Cover the bowl and let it sit at room temperature for around 4-6 hours.  The starter should almost double when ready to proceed to build 2.

Rye Sour Starter Build 2

100 Pumpernickel Flour

100 grams Water

123 grams Sautéed Onions (sautéed in olive oil)

Mix the flour and water with the sour starter from build 1 along with the onions.  Cover and let sit at room temperature for 4-6 hours until doubled and nice and bubbly.

Rye Sour Starter Build 3

102 grams Pumpernickel Flour

Add the flour to the rye sour from build 2 and let it rest covered for 4-6 hours until bubbly and nearly doubled.

Main Dough Ingredients

300 grams Rye Starter from Above

125 grams Yeast Water Rye Starter from Above

400 grams First Clear Flour (KAF)

80 grams White Rye Flour (KAF)

50 grams Rye Chops (KAF)

30 grams Potato Flour (KAF)

357 grams Tenacious Traveler Shandy Ale

18 grams Seas Salt or Table Salt

8 grams Caraway Seeds

1 Large Egg (for egg wash only)


Build your Yeast Water levain and rye sour starter the day before you are ready to bake.

The evening before you want to bake, mix the flours, rye chops, caraway seeds and the ale.  Mix on low-speed in your stand mixer or by hand for about 1 minute until the ingredients are combined.  Let the dough autolyse for about 20 minutes to an hour.

Next add both levains along with the salt and mix for 4 minutes on low.  The dough will come together and be slightly sticky.  Place the dough in a slightly oiled bowl and do a couple of stretch and folds.  Cover the bowl and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.  Do another stretch and fold in the bowl and let it rest another 10-15 minutes.  Do another stretch and fold and let the dough sit out in the covered bowl for another 1.5 hours.  Place the dough in the refrigerator until ready to bake the next day.

When ready to bake take the dough out and leave it covered in your bowl for 1.5 to 2 hours.  Next divide the dough into 2 loaves and either place in a banneton or from into batards and let them rest in floured couches for 1.5 - 2 hours.

About one hour before ready to bake, set your oven for 500 degrees F.and make sure you prepare it for steam.  I have a baking stone on the top shelf and the bottom and use a heavy-duty rimmed baking pan that I pour 1 cup of boiling water into right as I put the loaves into the oven.

Score the loaves as desired and brush each loaf with a simple egg wash using 1 whole egg and a couple of teaspoons of water.

When ready to bake place the loaves into your oven on  your oven stone with steam and lower the temperature immediately to 450 degrees.  It should take around 30 minutes to bake  until the rye breads  are golden brown and reached an internal temperature of 200 - 205 degrees F.

Let the loaves cool down for at least an 2 hours or so before eating as desired.


gmagmabaking2's picture

ITJB FR Week 12 Yeast Raised Donuts pps. 168-170

We 3 sisters fried donuts today! Wow, this is the best donut recipe ever! Really got good rise, easy to fry and glaze or sugar as we all did a variety... Barbra and Helen have been regular baking whirling dervishes... busy, busy with the Holiday things... me, lazy... and just doing the weekly bake, but that is okay... I like having my time to read about what everyone on this website is doing!

Here is how the donuts when down... by the way... these were way to good to keep around, and fresh and hot is how the kids, grands, and neighbors liked them.


All of our dough looked about like this before the first rise... not all had the great reflection in the plastic wrap of my oven element!... 


Helen and I made 16 each, making only half of the required recipe... Barb made the whole batch, so imagine 2 trays like this and a few more!

 Barb's donuts are all boxed up and ready to take to the grandkids and the volunteer fire department... kept back a couple for the apprentices. Lovely looking, glazed, plain, and powdered.  Very nice! She said they were much to good to keep around her diabetic hubby... proof positive when she returned from her deliveries and the one she left on the counter was GONE!... Good thing she didn't leave a dozen behind! ;-)

 Helen's awesome donuts and holes... she went for all powdered... there were some very sweet things going on in her kitchen... cakes, caramels, toffees and way more... what a busy place... happier than Disneyland, I am just saying!!!

Mine are really, really, good... sharing with the neighbors... or dying one or the other!

I did glazed, sugar and cinnamon, and powdered.


And that completes Week 12 of this great challenge... We are finishing Norm and Stan's book next week with the Golden Chiffon Cake on page 197.  Join us for the FINAL BAKE OF THE FINAL ROUND of the ITJB Cookbook Challenge.

Happy Holiday Baking, 



linder's picture

Care and Feeding of a Whole Wheat Sourdough Starter

For those who maintain a whole grain sourdough starter, what is your care and feeding schedule?  At what hydration level do you keep your starter? I keep my starter in the fridge.  Before baking day, I remove the starter from the fridge.  My starter is at 100% hydration, I feed it 1:1:1 equal weights of starter, water and home ground whole wheat flour are added to the starter twice daily for two days before I make bread.  Once I've removed what I need for the bread formula, I feed the starter again and then put it back in the fridge for a week or so until the next baking round.  The starter usually doubles in about 4-6 hours.  Is this OK?

Should I continue to feed just whole grain or would it be wise to add some AP or bread flour to the mix? 

What do you do to maintain your starter?

dlee's picture

no rising

Hi I need help I started  my starter in Late Nov.I was feeding it twice a day no luck. I was told that was to much .So now I do 1/4 cup a day .Still it will not rise it bubbles very very  little .  yesterday I put it in the fridge.Today I feed it .I need it to rise for me to make the bread wright.

varda's picture

Baking with home milled and bolted flour

Lately I have been baking with flour home-milled from hard red winter wheat from Upinngil Farm in Gill Massachusetts.     I have also been experimenting with sifting the milled flour to achieve different results, and after reading about bolting - see Andy's post and note below - with bolting as well.   My first attempt at bolting using a knee-high nylon didn't go well.   The less said the better.    Then I realized that cheese cloth has a fine mesh and might possibly be well suited for the task at hand.    So I have been playing around with using cheese cloth to bolt fresh milled flour, without much good baking results.   

Today, I came back to it and made another attempt.    I decided to use my regular white starter, rather than working with a whole wheat starter, which adds another layer of complexity.   And also constrained the process by determining that I would only use the Upinngil whole wheat for the final dough.   

I proceeded as follows:  

1.  Mill 514 g of wheat berries at medium setting

2.  Sift with #24 wire strainer

3.  Mill what is caught in the sieve at fine setting

4.  Sift with #30 wire strainer

This process removed 50g of bran.

5.   Place flour on top of a square of cheese cloth and form a bag by folding up corners and securing with a twist tie

6.  Shake, bounce, bump, etc. into a wooden bowl.    (Note this step takes awhile.)

At the end of this process I had 226g of golden flour with only tiny flecks of bran in it, and left in the cheese cloth was 226g of a coarse flour / semolina mix.  

I decided to make two loaves - one with the more refined flour, and one with the less refined flour.  They both came out quite breadlike.

The one with the refined flour was a bit better behaved than the other.

I would say both tasted good with the second loaf with a much more rustic, coarse crumb.

Here are the formulae:


Starter builds








2:30 PM

9:30 PM















Whole Rye




































Whole Rye






Bolted Upinngil Tier 1




























































Bolted Upinngil Tier 2






Med Rye











































I mixed the first dough for 10 minutes, and the second for 20.    It was necessary to add a bit of medium rye to the second dough to make it adhere.   I was very worried about over fermenting and proofing these loaves so I erred on the side of under-doing it.    I fermented the first loaf for 2 hours, and the second for 1.5 hours, both with two stretch and folds.   Then proofed each of them for only 45 minutes.   They were baked together at 450F with steam for 20 minutes, and without for 25.  

Note:   Bolting is an old (say 17th century) method of refining flour by passing milled wheat through successively finer and finer cloth mesh tubes.   See for instance   So technically I have done a hybrid of metal sifting and cloth bolting, as I only have one cloth mesh size.  

[Addendum:  For those of you who think that milling, sifting, and now bolting is too messy, please note that only 13g of flour was missing in action.    I'm sure it will be all cleaned up in the fullness of time. ] 


greedybread's picture

Festive/ Xmas bread of Lake Como- MATALOC !!

The Xmas bread (but also festivals) of Lake Como.

Mataloc is also offered as a dessert………with a bit of mascarpone

This is what we want!!

This bread is chocca block with goodies and not so much butter that its too rich.

Very similar to panettone but the taste is a little different.

This bread needs a serious warning!!

Seriously addictive….

So light, yet not overly sweet, so that you can munch away and OHHHHH its all gone !!


What do you need? 

The willpower of Job not to eat it all…………… yourself…………

You will need to allow time to make this…. best start at night as it needs overnight 1st proving or at least 8-10 hours to rest.

So without further ado…



Ready for first rise…

For Pre- Ferment:

2tsp of dried yeast

Half a cup of warm water

Half a cup of Strong bakers flour

For dough:

Half a tsp of yeast

1 tbsp honey

1/4 cup of warm water

1 cup castor sugar

3 large eggs

3 cups of Strong bakers flour

Pinch of salt

2 tsp fennel( or anise) seeds

Grated zest of 2 oranges

Grated zest of 2 lemons

160g butter

chopped and flour dusted fruit and nuts


Fruit/ nut mix:

1 cup hazelnuts

1 cup pecans ( i prefer but you can use walnuts)

4 dried figs chopped

1 large cup raisins

1 tbsp flour


After first rise


Stir yeast (pre ferment) into warm water and leave 15 minutes until creamy.

Add flour and mix well, cover and let stand for an hour.

Place in mixing bowl, 2nd amount of yeast, with water and honey.

Allow to stand for 10 minutes until creamy.

Stir in the sugar and eggs, then add in pre ferment.

Add in the zest, fennel, salt and flour.

Mix the butter into dough .

Knead in mixer for 5-6 minutes until smooth but sticky.

Place in a well oiled bowl and cover with gladwrap and leave at room temperature overnight to double in volume.

Ready to add fruit and nuts

Lightly turn out dough on lightly floured area and press out the dough.

Toss fruit and nuts in flour and spread 1/3 of fruit etc on the flattened dough.

Roll up dough and flatten again, repeating the above process until all fruit and nuts are incorporated in the dough.

Allow dough to rest ten minutes in between additions of fruit and nuts.

Adding the yum!!


When all fruit is incorporated, place in well oiled mould.

I use a big casserole dish (see below) I have that happens to have tall sides!!


But I have to say that the only disadvantage to this , is that you can’t hang the cake upside down to cool.

It is so light, you need to hang it to cool so it doesn’t collapse in, which mine did slightly……..BUT my panettone hasn’t as yet:)

Panettone moulds are good.

In fact, I could put them inside my big blue beasty as I do have paper moulds…..

But they need to be WELL GREASED!!

I will use my blue dish to make monster panettone.

Panettone papers/ moulds


Ok, back to recipe…

Cover and allow to rise for 3-4 hours until doubles in size.

Heat oven to 210 celsius and place Mataloc in the oven.

Bake for ten minutes and reduce heat to 190 celsius and cook for another 45-60 minutes.

Remove from the mould and allow to cool on rack or try the hanging method above.

Lovely and golden


As soon as you are able….

Enjoy, Enjoy, Enjoy!!

A lick of mascarpone ?

Have a wedge (or two)


Dont be shy now!!

See the zest and the plump raisins………..

Big bite!


Recipe Adapted from Carol Field’s “The Italian Baker”, 2 Ed, 2011.

dabrownman's picture

75% Whole Grain YW / SD Caramelized Onion, Wild Rice, Sprouts & Baltika Porter Bread

This is another take on a multi-grain bake we did not s long ago that you can find here;

60% Whole Grain SD / YW Bread With Caraway, Rye Chops, Coffee and Cocoa


This time we upped the whole grains to 75% and the hydration to a little over 85%.  We dropped the chops and added multi-grain sprouts.  The whole grains and sprouts were rye, spelt and whole wheat.  A combination we like very much as long as the rye equals the other two grains.


We also decided to make this bread a little more Russian by using their Baltika #6 Porter for a majority of the liquid in this bread and all of the dough wetness if you overlook the barley malt.


We were overcome by guilt and also knowing that The Hempster would not be her kindly self if we left out the seeds so we tossed in some caraway and coriander to perfume this dark bread in a traditional way - but not too much.


Hanseata, probably in a fit of non-hempness, is also the creator of her very fine wild rice bread that we like so much.   Thinking she would still be upset that there are no hemp seeds in this bread, we plunked in some cooked wild rice hoping to appease Her Hempness with one last gesture of jester.


Keeping with the black theme this bread was calling out for, we also added in some caramelized onions, quite a lot actually, with its deglazed reduced juices as Eric, Andy, Ian and so many TFL bakers are wont to do out ofa  honed professional education and experience for many of them that know what they are doing and a playful, inquisitive wonderment of the strange for Ian and myself.


One last shot at anti-establishment went to the Combo YW and SD rye and Desem starter and levain we cooked up over two builds.  As we contemplated the dark path we were about to trip along, in total disregard of anything sane or normal, my apprentice became edgy, quite uncomfortable really and took on the look of one sick puppy. No, it wasn’t Toady Tom’s Toasted Tidbits at fault here even though we put 15 g of them in the mix.


It is a look that I see most often right before she upchucks - which she did... then murmuring under her lowly growl something about death to all dark baking masters or another…….. It seemed she got sick after noticing that the bread lacked nuts.  She recovered quickly after the upheaval when she realized there were already plenty of nuts out of their shells in the kitchen as it was - so no extra nuts were required for this Holiday bake.  


After all of what would pass for bread 101 on Empress Ying’s home planet, we hoped that this bread would be a shade darker than a dark one should be and also one that we could be proud to pair with the fine Pate Maison that we had baked and smoked up for the Holidays the day before.  Hopefully, both will pair well with a nice Malbec from Argentina, if one could afford it and a plate of various exotic cheeses from other places even more expensive.


Hey, it’s the Holidays and who needs another pair of Santa socks, snowflake ties and Snowman stocking caps anyway.  So, as an option, save enough bread by not getting those things and splurge on some foreign hooch and cheese to share with family and friends instead - all while making the bread and pate that much better.

The crust came out dark, shiny and crispy but, after a 24 hour wait before slicing, it went soft with a slight chew.  This bread cut ¼” slices easily without crumbling.  The crumb was not heavy, slightly open, soft and very moist with little gloss.


The taste was where this bread really shines.  Subtle coriander and caraway flavors combine with a stronger caramelized onion taste and the chew of the wild rice and sprouts to go with the complex flavors of the porter, cocoa and coffee.  Very tasty indeed. 


We have now eaten it plain, toasted with butter, as a sandwich and toasted with pate – just delicious and the perfect pate platter mate.    



The method was straight forward if you remember to start the WW sprouts a day before the spelt and rye sprouts since they take 48 hours to chit instead of 24.  The levain was built over (2) stages of 8 and 4 hours each with an overnight retard of 12 hours following the 12 hours on the counter

The flours, salt, Toady Tom’s Toasted Tidbits, ground flax seed and the red and white malts were autolysed with the Baltika  #6 Porter for 1 hour after my apprentice had tasted about 205 ml of the 500 ml bottle to make sure that it wasn’t a covert left over cold war poison of a 3rd kind.

Once the autolyse and levain came together, we did 10 minutes of French slap and folds and then 3 sets of S&F’s on 30 minute intervals where the seeds and rice were incorporated in the 2nd set and the sprouts on the 3rd set. 

The dough was allowed to ferment and develop for 1 hour before being shaped into an 800 g and one near 500 g loaf and panned. The dough was allowed to proof for 1 hour in a trash bag on the counter before being retarded for 12 hours in the fridge. 

Once out of the fridge the small loaf was allowed to proof for 4 hours on the counter.  The larger one proofed for 4 hours on the counter at 65 - 68 F and an additional 1 ½ hours at  85 F in the make shift microwave proofer that had a cup of boiling water in it. 

Both of these should have been baked in the mini oven but Big Betsy was preheated to 500 F instead with 2 of Sylvia’s steaming pans and a 12”cast iron skillet full of lava rocks on the bottom rack.  The stone was put on the very top rack of the oven to project radiant heat downward to the top of the loaves.

As soon as the small pan went in the temperature was turned down to 450 F for 15 minutes of steam. When the steam was removed the temperature was turned down to 350 F, convection this time.

After 5 minutes the bread was removed from the pan and finished baking directly on the oven rack.  The bread was turned 180 degrees every 5 minutes until the internal temperature reached 190 F. Total baking was 30 minutes when the bread was removed to the cooling rack.

The larger loaf was baked the same way through steam but took an extra 15 minutes at 350 F to reach 190 F internal temperature.


Mixed Combo Starter

Build 1

Build 2



SD Starter





Yeast Water

























Total Starter




















Levain % of Total










Dough Flour





Toady Tom's Toasted Tidbits





Whole Wheat





Dark Rye





Whole Spelt










Dough Flour















Russian Baltika Porter





Dough Hydration










Total Flour





Water & Russian Porter 305





T. Dough Hydration





Whole Grain %










Hydration w/ Adds





Total Weight










Add - Ins





Red Malt





White Malt





Barley Malt





Ground Flax Seed





Add- In Total










Multigrain Sprouts




















Total Sprouts










Other Stuff





Caramelized Onions.










Instant Coffee





Caraway Seeds





Coriander Seed





Cooked Wild Rice





Total Other Stuff





This lunch plate has some thin sliced sliced pate with 100% whole spelt bread, aged super sharp crumbly cheddar cheese, a pickled Serrano pepper, half a Granny Smith apple, some carrot coins, half an avocado, black and pinto re-fried beans, cabbage salad with black raspberries on non fat yogurt.