The Fresh Loaf

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greedybread's picture

Kuchen Anyone???

Ja danke!!Apricot, Almond and Apple Kuchen

Today in case you haven’t guessed we are off to Germany. Not a country I have been to apart from a short stay at Munich airport and Frankfurt Airport in the dead of night and early early morning!!

So without further ado….  What are we aiming for today?

I was a DUH and forgot that Kuchen means cake in German so I have used my kuchen ring piccies as no other piccies gave a good indication of what I wanted to portray prior to showing what I baked.

Apricot, Raisin and Apple Kuchen

This recipe was adapted from the stunning recipe by Ruth Joseph in her Delightful and beautiful book “Warm Bagels & Apple Strudel” . I will be working on and testing a few more of these wonderful recipes. I understand the Hairy Bikers tested this and gave it the thumbs up!!

Shabbat Apricot, Apple and Raisin Kuchen.


  • 200 mls of warmed milk
  • 3 tsp dried yeast
  • 4 cups of strong bread flour
  • dash of salt
  • 100g butter (or dairy free margarine)
  • 100g castor sugar
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 4 tbsp orange/ lemon zest
  • Extra egg and 2 tsp milk for egg wash

Fruit all ready to go

  • Filling :
  • 1 can (440g) of Apple slices or pieces (not cubes though)
  • 1 can of drained apricot pieces
  • 1 cup raisins
  • lemon/orange zest to taste
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 cup of icing sugar
  • lemon juice to mix
METHOD: I used quite a bit of zest as i love it, you may like to use less .
  • Add 3 tsp of the sugar to the milk , mix well until slightly dissolved 
  • Add yeast and leave in a warm place until creamy and frothy. Usually 10-20 minutes.

While yeast is feeding:

  • Put all dry ingredients into a bowl , Flour and salt.
  • Rub in the butter to the Flour mix
  • Stir in sugar and zest
  • Remove yeast from warm place. 
  • Add beaten eggs to the yeasty mix and beat well
  • Pour into the dry butter mix and combine until a smooth dough
  • Turn out on floured area and knead well for 6 minutes.
  • Place in lightly oiled bowl and cover with a tea towel and leave in a warm place for 1-2 hours or doubled in size. 


    Rolling up the Kuchen

When Dough is almost ready:
  • Mix apple, walnuts, apricots, raisins and zest together
  • Tip dough out on floured area and roll out into a rectangle.
  • I think mine was 40cm by 20cm.
  • Spread the apple filling over the dough and fold the edges all around the dough in slightly  and then roll up like you would cinnamon buns,Chelsea buns or a Chocolate log.
  • Place on Baking tray
  • Slash a few slits along the top of the Kuchen.
  • Cover and leave in a warm place for 45-60 minutes.
  • Pre heat oven to 200 Celsius.

Rolled up and ready for egg wash and baking!!
oops and slashing:)

  • Brush beaten egg wash over the kuchen and place in the oven.
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes (dependant on your oven)

ready to ice


  • Remove from oven and cool on the tray.

Very delicious

  • When cool, make up Icing by combining 1 cup of icing sugar and enough lemon juice to make a paste
  • Drizzle over the kuchen when cold.
  • As soon as icing is set, cut a HUGE slice, pour a large cuppa and enjoy!!

theprudenttart's picture

no-knead almond bread

I adapted Jim Lahey's no-knead walnut bread. While the crumb is a little dense, the bread itself tastes amazingly light. 

Recipe, step-by-step instructions, and photos found here


BreadBro's picture

Rye Starter in a Regular Sourdough Recipe?

I've been thinking about ways of kicking up the flavor in my usual sourdough recipe. I use Peter Reinhart's recipe from Artisan Breads Every Day with a slightly higher hydration at ~ 75%. I was thinking about substituting the regular sourdough starter with a rye starter, which would add about 56g of rye flour into a total of 794g of bread flour.

I've done regular soughdough rye and I've done pain au levain, so I wonder if this would be somewhere in the middle.

Thoughts on this? Is this too little rye to notice any difference? If I add more, by how much do you figure I should alter the amount of water?


DavidEF's picture

How do I get a softer crust?

I am trying to bake a soft sandwich loaf from sourdough, using this recipe: but I don't have any powdered milk, so I leave that out. Also, I usually am scaling the recipe to make more than it calls for, and using a slightly higher hydration. The recipe makes about a 64% hydration dough, and I usually keep mine at about 70% hydration (counting only the flour and water, because I don't know how to calculate the other ingredients for hydration). It almost always turns out wonderful bread, but the crust is thick, and when I store it, it turns tough. I was wondering if there is a way to get a lighter (as in thinner) crust on my bread, or at least a crust that is not tough. Is that little bit of milk powder the magic ingredient that does that? I know I've read that milk does make the bread softer, because it inhibits some of the gluten formation. Help me out here, please! Susan, if you happen to be around, tell me what I'm doing wrong with your recipe!

One thing I have already tried is baking at a lower temp for a longer time. I've also tried baking with and without steam.

isand66's picture

7 Grain Double Starter Soaker Bread

Well since the last few bakes have been very white I started to feel the Force draining and I was being pulled towards the Dark Side!  This bread is a 70% whole grain power-house made with a soaker which I scalded to make sure it was nice and soft.  I used 5 different whole grains in the scald and 3 whole grain flours plus some French style flour in the double starters and main dough.

I also wanted to try something a little fancy for the shaping and placed a small ball of dough along with a double braid in the bottom of my basket before placing the rest of the dough on top of both of them.  This formed a nice hat on top of the bread.

The soaker was brought up to a boil and scalded for about 10 minutes until all the grains were nice and soft and then put in a bowl and covered for 5-6 hours until the levains were ready to use.

The end result of this bake was a nice wholesome tasty bread. The crust was excellent and the crumb was soft and chewy chock full of grainy goodness.




Levain Directions

Starter 1

Mix all the levain ingredients together for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled.  I usually do this the night before.

Starter 2

Mix all the ingredients listed with the levain from the first build and let it set at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled or before it starts collapsing on itself.  Either use right away in the main dough or refrigerate for 1 day.

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours and the water except for around 75 grams, together in your mixer or by hand until it just starts to come together, maybe about 1 minute.  Let it rest in your work bowl covered for 30 minutes to 1 hour.  Next add the salt, starter (cut into about 7-8 pieces), honey, and soaked grains and mix on low for a minute.  Add the rest of the water  unless the dough is way too wet.   Mix on low-speed for another 4 minutes.  Remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds.  Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold.  Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold.  After a total of 2 hours place your covered bowl in the refrigerator and let it rest for 12 to 24 hours.

When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1.5 to 2 hours.  (I used my new proofer this time and it only took about 1 hour at 80 degrees).

Remove the dough and shape as desired.   Place your dough into your proofing basket(s) and cover with a moist tea towel or plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray.  The dough will take 1.5 to 2 hours depending on your room temperature.  (Again, I used my proofer set at 80 degrees and let it rise for about 1.5 hours).

Let the dough dictate when it is read to bake not the clock.


Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 500 degrees F. and prepare it for steam.  I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf.  I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.

Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, score as desired and then add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.


After 1 minute lower the temperature to 450 degrees.  I baked for about 10 minutes at 450 and then lowered the oven to 435 since this is such a large loaf.  Bake for around 50 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 205 degrees.

Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.





Wingnut's picture

New Flat

New Flat first bake. Going take a little to familiarize myself with the new oven, but not a real bother.

30% Whole Wheat Flax Seed Sourdough

Close up

The next two are without Flax Seeds



Salvi's picture


Hi, i am Lianne, 25 y/o and i live in the Netherlands. After a short break in Ireland this year i started baking bread, i fell in love with sodabread over there. That and a possible sesame-allergy... well, i found myself a new challenge: bake bread!

So, some of my attempts:

Flax seed wheat bread

Second attempt with poolish, a bit to pale on the outside...

And one of my sodabreads:


I hope i will find a lot of inspiring ideas over here to make more and more bread :)


Regards, Lianne






greedybread's picture

Schiacciata con L'uva ....Its Focaccia BUT not as you know it!

Ohh, just digress a minute, I saw "song of the bakers" Rosemary Ficaccia on here..


Spaghetti looked good too....

Schiacciata with Raisins & MuscovadoPosted on June 9, 2013 by  Standard

This is one of my favourite breads.

Very yum

Very yum

Fresh from the oven..

Fresh from the oven..



Ok, I lied, all bread is my favourite…

This is one of the ones I eat more often:)

This bread reminds me visually of the fly cemetery slice that my gran would make…which I HATED!!

Schiacciata though is divine !!

It is traditionally made with fresh grapes and its name,  Schiacciata all’uva.

In Comegliano, in the Veneto, they make it with raisins and sugar, thus not reliant on the grape season.

This is the version we will make today

 Schiacciata con L’uva.

I like that!!

It can be made ALL year:)

Schiacciata is the Tuscan word for what we would call or recognise as Focaccia.

History lesson over….Lets get yeasty!!



What will you need??

For the sponge:

3 tsp of dried yeast

3 tablespoons of muscovado (or normal sugar)

1 cup of warm water

2 large eggs

2 cups of Bread flour.

For the dough:

1/4 cup of Olive oil of Olive oil

2 cups of Bread Flour

Big Pinch of salt

75 g butter.

For the filling:

3- 4 cups of raisins

1.5 cups of muscovado sugar (white is fine too)



Combine the yeast and sugar in a bowl and add in warm water, mix well and stand, allowing to froth (about 10 mins).

Beat in the eggs and then add in the flour.

Mix well.

Cover with gladwrap and rest for 45 minutes.

When resting is complete, add in the

olive oil to the sponge and mix well.

Add in the flour and the salt and combine well.

Slowly add in the butter, a tablespoon at a time.

This is quite a stiff dough in comparison to other doughs.

Similar to my focaccia, if you have made that.

Knead for 5 minutes, then place in a well oiled bowl, cover and allow to rest for 90-120 minutes.

the dough...

the dough…

2 bits...

2 bits…

gently stretch out..

gently stretch out..

While the dough is resting, soak the 1/3 of  the raisins in water (these will go on top )and drain well after an hour.

You could soak them in rum or the like:)

Kidding…well the inner raisins you could:)

I like to use a well oiled used big roasting dish for this or a well used etc tray.

Turn rested dough out on the floured bench,

Cut in 2 pieces and stretch dough out to the rectangle shape you need for your tray…(see above).

I usually do 30 x 45 cm…

But lets not get anal about it:).

Place the first piece on the tray/dish and then sprinkle with raisins and sugar (2/3′s of the raisins/sugar).

Place the 2nd piece on top of the first, like a sandwich and cover (see below).

Sprinkle soaked raisins and remaining sugar on the top of the dough and poke holes/indents all over the bread with a knife tip to allow steam to escape.

Cover and rest for 1 hour.

Raisins on...

Raisins on…

add the muscovado...

add the muscovado…




All covered:)

Final Sprinkle...

Final Sprinkle…

Rested and ready to bake

Rested and ready to bake

Fresh as...

Fresh as…

Pre heat oven to 210 Celsius and bake for 40 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly and then remove to racks for final cooling.

Ready to slice...

Ready to slice…





Stack em high

Stack em high

Needless to say the greedyboys LOVE THIS!!!

Hopefully you and yours will too!


Parnell community centre

Parnell community centre

If you enjoyed this recipe, KEEP those eyes peeled for my up coming bread workshops @ Parnell Community Trust in term 3/ 4 this year.

Italian Breads

NZ breads

World Breads.

I will also host a bread workshop @ Epsom Community centre in October along with Onehunga Community Centre in November.

Details to come:)

Perfect for after school..

Perfect for after school..

Don’t forget to try the Greedybread Focaccia if you liked this!

Adapted from the ever wonderful Carol Fields ” The Italian Baker” 2nd ed.

My Bible!!

Focaccia in question.... enjoy!

Focaccia in question…. enjoy!

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Rosemary Foccacia

I didn't have much time to bake this weekend, so I decided to fit in a simple focaccia bake to go along side a Spaghetti Pomodoro I was planning to make for dinner.

I used some recently dried home grown rosemary, freshly cracked pepper and coarse sea salt for the topping.  I also used a very nice California brand olive oil that I brought back from our recent trip to Arizona.  The flavours came through nicely but the crumb was very Wonderbread 'white bread-ish' for my liking.  I like my Focaccia with a bit of stronger structure within the crumb.  Considering I made this with very little effort and time, I can't complain for a simple and fresh-out-of-the-oven accompaniment to the pasta.


freerk's picture

large mass fermentation

This is a question I have been wondering about lately; at what mass of dough, do you start getting the full benefits from the effects of a large mass fermentation. And what are the actual benefits?

curious for your input