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Mark6221's picture
Mark6221

French Baguette (sp?)

Hi


I have been searching the net looking for improvements to my french baguette (sp?), any way, I've seen pictures of baguettes with large air voids yet I can't seem to reproduce in my kitchen. My bread comes out just fine and looks and taste great but I'd really like to bake one with large air voids. I'm new to home baking so I'd need step by step instructions. Thank you in advance, Mark6221@gmail.com

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

Follow-up to "Never saw a dough break down like this before"

Twelve days ago I posted this topic about my troubles with an all white flour version of my successful whole wheat and rye starter.  Since then I have been nursing that starter with multiple daily feedings, and keeping it quarantined from my other starter to avoid cross-contamination.  Based on research, and excellent direct advice, the issue was diagnosed by David Snyder and Debra Wink (Thanks to both of you!) as thiol degradation and I proceeded to try to "feed through it".


I started out by stepping up the interval but maintaining the 1:1:1 (s:w:f) ratio I had been using.  That proved too hectic, and I could not count on getting even the brief mid-day work break I needed to stay on schedule.  Even though I work at home, I seemed to end up on the phone for an hour starting just before the starter should be fed.  It felt like I was not going to be able to make it work that way so I increased the food supply by going to a 1:3:3 ratio and reduced the frequency to every 12 hours.  I also reduced the initial inoculation from 30 grams to 10.  I thank Eric Hanner for his valuable input that led me to this action.


I was able to maintain the 12 hour interval successfully, and true to Debra Wink's assurance, on the 10th day things changed.  I did not know what I was looking for, but Debra was right:  when it happened it was obvious.  What I noticed first was a difference in the matured starter when it was time for the next feeding.  The viscosity of the "discard" was lower and it was much less sticky as well.  It dropped off my spatula almost of it's own accord into the discard jar and left the spatuala mostly clean.  Previously I had to scrape and wipe and eventually wash the spatula to get the stuff off.  The other change was the volume in the jar.  While the bad bugs were in charge there was little loft to the mature starter, even after 12 hours of obvious activity.  After the change it started nearly tripling in 12 hours. 


I decided to try some loaves, with high hopes for something better than the results pictured in the original post linked above.  I made another batch of dough by exactly the same formula and approach as outlined in that post.  Because I was not certain where it was going to end up I took pictures at many of the steps, starting with the dough made up, without the salt, and resting for autolyse:


After adding the salt and completing the first set of stretch and folds in the bowl:


I did a total of 3 sets of stretch and folds in the bowl, and here is the dough after the third set:



The original batch of dough that led me here in the first place had broken down almost completely by the time I got this far.  Results this time are obviously worlds better.  I decided to do a stretch and tri-fold on the bench to get a bit more development, (and because I wanted to get my hands on it and in it to reassure myself it was going to hold together!) so I stretched it out:



and then I folded it up:



At this point I knew I had a dough that was holding up well, with a smooth and supple consistency that had me quite excited, shall we say.  I put it into a dough bucket, let it ferment on the bench for about 30 minutes and then put it in the fridge to retard till I could bake it, what turned out to be some 20 hours later.  Here it is just before going in to retardation:



and again after the retardation, some 20 hours or so later:



I let this rest on the bench for an hour to take some of the chill off, then preshaped:



and then (45 minutes later) final shaped and put them to proof:



I failed to take a photo of the proofed loaves before baking them, but once ready I baked them sequentially in my La Cloche ceramic baker, at 525F for 7 minutes under lid, turned down to 475 for 5 minutes under lid, removed the lid and baked for 17-20 minutes more, until done.  Both loaves were baked to internal temperatures of roughly 205F-207F.


So, after all of that, I pulled these out:



and the crumb:



I found that I am so accustomed to my "other" sourdough that includes both a home-ground whole wheat flour component and a dark rye flour component that on first encounter this bread tasted somewhat bland to me.  As we worked our way through that first loaf though I began to detect subtle flavors that brought the bread to life for me.  It is still a much milder flavored bread than "my" sourdough, but it is also a very pleasant flavor that goes well with sandwiches, and as toast or french toast at breakfast.  Also, because it is almost entirely All Purpose flour, I find it almost too soft and fluffy in the crumb.  This also makes the crust somewhat insubstantial, and I will start increasing the bread flour to gradually work up to a crust and bite that is more pleasing to us.


It has been a rewarding journey, and it was nice to "win the battle" with that whatever-it-was nasty that took over my starter.  Interestingly, although I did have to significantly modify how I was feeding my starter in order to get to this point, I did not have to reduce the hydration.  I maintained the original 100% hydration in this starter all the way through, even to now.  Having gotten this far, though, I think I will split the starter into this original and a lower, perhaps about 60%, hydration version so I can experiment with the different flavors they produce.  The mildness of the flavor of this 100% hydration version may make the differences easier for me to pick up on my unsophisticated palatte.


I want to thank everyone that contributed advice on this issue.  The expertise shared, and the spirit of generosity with which it is so readily shared, here on The Fresh Loaf is a true blessing.  You are helping to make me a better baker.


Thanks for stopping by
OldWoodenSpoon

dthet's picture
dthet

Response: dmsnyder's modification of Hamelman's 70% Rye with a Rye Soaker and Whole-Wheat Flour

I would first like to acknowledge my deepest respect for all of the notable bakers, with special appreciation to dmsnyder, Txfarmer, and others.  Being a retired concert violinist now living in Amery, WI., my new vent for creativity is baking and my constant knead to change things as in violin (bowings, fingerings, dynamics, etc.); thus, I may tweak here and there, to suit my own tastes.


This is a violinist's concerto of the 70% Rye.  My additional passages include added ingredients and increased bulk and fermentation times.  I will provide my list of added ingredients with rising times, as provided by dmsnyder's rendition and interpretation of Hamelman's 70% Rye with a Rye Soaker and Whole-Wheat Flour.  The whole wheat flour was ground from wheat berries in my Vita-Mix "Whole Grain Container."  I used Organic Rye Flakes instead of Rye Chops due to availability.  New ingredients include: Strong coffee, Wild Flour Honey from Amery area, Date Molasses, Ground Carroway, Dutch Processed Cocoa, Toasted Walnuts, and Dark Raisins.  Baking temperatures (in F's) and times are from the Hamelman and dmsnyder recipies.


Soaker: 


    Liquid to equal 11.2 oz---Strong Coffee 8 oz, Water 3.2 oz


    Organic Rye Flakes---11.2 oz


    salt---.2 oz


Sourdough:


    Medium Rye Flour---11.2 oz


    Water---9 oz


    Mature sourdough culture---.6 oz 


    Wild-Flour Honey-Amery area---3 T


    Date Molasses---3 T


    Ground Carroway---1 T


    Dutch Process Cocoa---1/4 c


Sourdough mixture ripens 14-18 hours at 70 F; mix soaker and add to sourday on 2nd day; the blended mixtures rest covered 90 to 120 minutes.


Final Dough:


    Set aside: toasted and chopped Walnuts---5 oz; Dark Raisins---8 oz.


    Whole Wheat Flour---9.6 oz


    Water---4.8 oz


    Salt---.4 oz


    Yeast---1.5 t


    Soaker---all of the above


    Sourdough---all of the above


On a well-floured countertop, place final dough, add a sprinkling of flour in order to make a large rectangle of dough, add the walnuts and dark raisins. Fold gently until all ingredients are thoroughly incorporated, divide into two equal portions, shape into boules, place into bannetons (if you have them),cover, and let ferment for 120-180 minutes. Preheat oven to 470 F one hour before baking bread.


Place on parchment and with nnormal steam for 15 min. then lower the oven to 430 F for approximately 40 min. Check the loaf temperature (when it reaches 205 F), remove from oven, cool loaves on rack.  When thoroughly cool place them in a sealed brown paper bag for 24 hours.



Enjoy the rich complexities.


Pictures to follow in this violinist can download them.


David T.


 


 


 

varda's picture
varda

How to paste a spreadsheet into a post without losing formatting

Can anyone tell me how to post a piece of a spreadsheet?    When I copy and paste it looks great in the editing window but loses format such as gridlines when it is posted.   I see other people do it so I know it must be possible.   Thanks.  -Varda

Boulanger D'anvers's picture
Boulanger D'anvers

Newbie from the Netherlands

Hi everyone,


 


As a long time lurker I decided to finally get myself an account and introduce myself. I'm a 39 old guy from the Netherlands and I have been baking bread for about 1,5-2 years now. As many I started out with a bread machine but soon got a little bored with it and went for the hand kneading and shaping. I bought Peter Reinhart's Bread Baker's Apprentice and read it from cover to cover and started making some of the breads from the book, some more succesful than others. But it did make me even more enthousiastic about baking breads. Having baked on and off for the last six months I got myself back to making it a (almost) every other day routine. In recent months I have experimented with different types of flour like spelt and even though the taste is good I always seem to go back to the basic white loafs made from wheat flour. Luckily my little town has it's very own grain mill (www.windotter.nl) that sells good quality flour.


I have been reading this site on a daily basis for a while now and got some good ideas from it with regards to some of the techniques, like stretch and folds, cold fermentation, shaping, slashing, etc. My latest discovery is baking in a pan, which has improved my breads a lot. Somehow I never got the over spring and crust I was looking for before but baking in a pan seems to improve my success rate. While not perfect yet I am starting to get really happy with the results of my bakes. Even my wife now has to admit that she likes the taste of my breads. So let me show you the results of my last bakes. I don't have crumb shots of all of them but you will just have to trust they were good.


These breads are mostly based on the Anis Bouabsa recipe found elsewhere on this site: autolyse, add salt and yeast, stretch and folds, cold ferment for 20+ hours, preshape, shape and...bake.


First off is a half spelt, half wheat flour boule (75% hydration).


Half spelt, half wheat boule


Next up a boule made from something called 'nature flour' (70%+ hydration).



And last but not least a basic white boule (68% hydration).


Whitel boule


And the crumb.


White boule


The crumb of the last one is holey but not too much and the crumb is nice and chewy.


I am quite happy with the results and would like to hear from all of you how you think the results turned out.


Thanks everyone for sharing your knowledge on this site. I find it extremely helpful and am looking forward to share some of my own ideas every now and then.

medex's picture
medex

If no-knead is so good, why bother with anything else?

I had a bread machine I had to return because it was defective twice.  I then thought it a good idea to get a mixer, which I haven't gotten yet, but I still may.  Anyway, people keep raving about no-knead bread and how it's the end all be all of bread.  If this is true then what's the point of kneading in general?  it is certainly a lot of work.

Is it better to just forget the mixer and buy a dutch oven?

earth3rd's picture
earth3rd

Ciabatta - No Knead Bread

I found this recipe for Ciabatta No Knead Bread on the internet at this site: 

http://www.5min.com/Video/How-to-Make-No-Knead-Ciabatta-Bread-213126958

Watch the video... I followed every step as seen in the video.

I converted the recipe to weight measurment... here it is...

 Ciabatta -no knead bread 1 loaf

455 gr. - APF (all purpose flour)

64 gr. - WF (whole wheat flour)

0.9 gr. - yeast (active dry yeast)

9.5 gr. - salt (table salt)

473 gr. - warm water 105 - 110F  

 

The bread smelled and tasted fantastic, I would definatly make it again. Very easy to make. Here are a couple of pictures of the finished product.

By the way... it went very nicely with the Moroccan Lentil Soup I made as well!!!!

The soup recipe can be found at this site:

http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Moroccan-Lentil-Soup/Detail.aspx

 

 

 

geraintbakesbread's picture
geraintbakesbread

Casola Marocca/Marocca di Casola


I’d been wondering lately what to do with a small amount of chestnut flour that was languishing in a bowl in the cupboard when I saw this thread started by dorothydean (Thank you Dorothy!) after she’d read about Casola Marocca on the Slow Food Foundation website.


Chestnut Flour


I brought back around a kilo of chestnut flour from a holiday in Tuscany last October. The holiday had been organised by The Handmade Bakery, the UK’s first Community Supported Bakery (CSB), and included three mornings of baking classes (which turned into more like 3 full days!). We were staying in a villa in Ponte a Moriano, near Lucca, in the foothills of the Alpi Apuane in the north west of Tuscany (Garfagnana region).


October sees the start of the chestnut harvest in the mountains (the chestnut trees only grow above a certain altitude, above the level of the olive groves & vineyards) and on the first day of our holiday we visited the mountain village of Colognora where a chestnut festival was being held. The weather was atrocious, and by the time we arrived (after getting a little lost) the torrential rain had caused the smattering of small food & craft stalls that had been erected amidst the narrow, steep & stony streets, to start packing up. A few hardy souls continued to roast chestnuts, distributing them gratis in soggy paper bags. We were treated to a tour of the Chestnut Museum by the museum’s director, who unfortunately spoke no English. With long fluid sentences & elaborate hand gestures (translated into curt one-liners by our Australian guide!), he explained the innumerable applications of the sweet chestnut; we’d run out of time before we even got to the culinary uses, but there’s a useful summary here.


In order to make flour, chestnuts are dried over smouldering chestnut wood & old husks, in specially built smokehouses, before being shelled & stone-ground.


There seems to be some dispute over it’s keeping qualities, with some sources saying it keeps well year round, whilst others say it needs to be kept in the freezer. This might be affected by production methods which I believe also vary. Mine has kept perfectly well in the cupboard since October.


In the UK, Shipton Mill produce a flour from ‘chestnuts [that] are sourced directly from a small hill farmer, Patrice Duplan, who gathers them from the hills in the Ardeche region of Southern France', according to the blurb. In Tuscany we were told that the French use a different method of drying the chestnuts (I forget how - I've got a vague memory it involved paraffin?! – although I'd be surprised if this was the case with the Shipton.


Other UK sources (thanks zeb) include http://www.luigismailorder.com/ & http://www.flourbin.com/


I have also seen it stocked in wholefood shops.


In the US, Dorothy found this online supplier: http://www.chestnutsonline.com/ & breadsong found it here.


The flour seems very expensive in relation to bread flours, but when compared with other nuts, ground or otherwise, it is very reasonable.


Recipe


The recipe that mrfrost dug up was a hybrid whilst Daisy_A found a pure sourdough version.


(Thank you both!)


Both recipes were in Italian but had been google translated. I started the mrfrost recipe before seeing Daisy_A’s post but had decided to leave out the commercial yeast anyway.


I didn't have as much chestnut flour as the mrfrost recipe called for, so made up the amount with extra white bread flour. After all the additions, the dough was still dry & crumbly, so I added the potato I had left over & extra milk to make a stiff, sticky but workable dough.


So my modified recipe was as follows:


290g  chestnut flour


210g  strong white flour (Doves Farm)


10g    salt


150gr  sourdough


100g   milk


80g   water


20g   oil


110g   mashed potato


Method


I only kneaded it briefly after mixing as I figured there wasn’t much gluten to develop. I gave it a ‘fold’ after the first hour - a bit of an exaggeration: the dough had lost a little of its stickiness but was still stiff, so all I did really was to form a slightly smoother, taughter ball than before.



After another hour, the dough had some spring & had lost it’s stickiness. I just tightened up the ball, being careful not to tear the surface, and put it into a floured banneton. I’m not sure what my reasoning was for doing this, it was more an instinctive act! I guess I felt that the dough wouldn’t benefit structurally from any more folds. If I do this again, I might knead just a little longer after mixing until the stickiness is gone & then put it straight in a banneton.



Another 2.5 hours later, the dough had risen only slightly, almost imperceptibly. I was faced with a choice (since I had to go out an hour later): I could either bake it, leave it on the counter for another 4 or so hours, or refrigerate it (if I could find the space, which was doubtful). I decided to bake. I turned out the loaf and scored it with a deep cross, as mentioned in Daisy_A’s post.




I baked in the same way as I usually bake my sourdough wheat breads: on a preheated kiln shelf, starting high (250-60c) with steam (boiling water in tray below) for 15mins, then down to 200c. I checked internal temp after 30 mins (c.60c) & 40 mins (c.75c). After 55 mins, the internal temp was 92c but the bread still felt very heavy & moist. I needed to leave, so I turned the oven off but left the loaf in.


Results


The dough was obviously underproofed & the bake a bit high, but the result was very visually appealing. I don't think the picture gets the colour very accurately: the crumb was quite purple when first sliced (think darker & more purple than walnut bread), with a purple-red-brown crust, which darkened & mellowed overnight to a chestnut brown (go figure!); the crumb colour too was less pronounced a day later.


When I sliced the loaf in half, I was worried that it wasn't quite done & would be gummy like rye can be, but not at all. Although visually, the crumb texture resembles a rye bread, it feels very different to the touch & in the mouth: it's much drier for a start; this might be due in part to the manner of baking, but I also think that the chestnut flour retains less water than rye. I imagine that one reason for adding the potato is to preserve moisture.



The high bake led to a crunchy crust, like a sweet nutty biscuit (I think the milk contributed to this), which is a great contrast to the close textured, almost meaty, crumb. The sweet smoky flavour is terrific & I’ve had some rapturous responses from some friends who tried it.


I had it first with some Manchego, & the following day with a very similar, but more authentic(!), Pecorino Toscano, both hard ewe’s milk cheeses: a wonderful combination. I also made a mushroom soup, using fresh mushrooms & dried porcini, which was also a good accompaniment.


Other suggestions are soft goat’s cheese & (chestnut) honey, and lardo di Colonnata, or any other salty Tuscan (or other) cured meat.


Why not give it a go!

earth3rd's picture
earth3rd

Ciabatta - No Knead Bread

I found this recipe for Ciabatta No Knead Bread on the internet at this site: 


http://www.5min.com/Video/How-to-Make-No-Knead-Ciabatta-Bread-213126958


Watch the video... I followed every step as seen in the video.


I converted the recipe to weight measurment... here it is...


     Ciabatta -no knead bread 1 loaf


455 gr APF (all purpose flour)


64 gr WF (whole wheat flour)


0.9 gr yeast (active dry yeast)


9.5 gr salt (table salt)


473 gr warm water 100 - 105F  


 


The bread smelled and tasted fantastic, I would definatly make it again. Very easy to make. Here are a couple of pictures of the finished product.


By the way... it went very nicely with the Moroccan Lentil Soup I made as well!!!!


The soup recipe can be found at this site:


http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Moroccan-Lentil-Soup/Detail.aspx


 



 


pollyanne's picture
pollyanne

Tartine Starter

Hi - beginning sourdough baker - though quite a bit of commercial yeast experience


If I am trying to listen and observe my starter, for when to feed, do I feed it when it has doubled and seems fresh and alive?  Or wait until sometime later, when it apparently will fall and/or get hooch on top?  My question is regarding regular feeding, either to keep it going, or to rebuild it to then use it to inoculate leaven.


Thanks for any information.

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