The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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SylviaH's picture

Bread Crumbs and then there are Panko Bread Crumbs

I just love those crunchy, flaky, best for coating fried things Panko bread crumbs :)

Making homemade Panko Bread Crumbs.  Fun easy and fast.

Recipes are posted all over the web.  But I've never actually seen one here.  So here goes.

Pre-heat your oven to 300F

The secret weapon.......The Food Processor Shredder Disk : )  little did I know :/

Assemble your food processor with the largest sized shredder blade

Panko is usually made with a very shreddable, soft fluffy type plain white bread.  I like my sourdough stale leftover bread of coarse

Simply remove all the crust

Process the bread in your food processor with your largest shredder disk

Place the crumbs onto a cookie sheet.  

Bake in a pre-heated 300F oven for aproximately 6 minutes..till dry and crispy.   Do not brown

Done, just about..........unless of coarse you want some of those delicious seasoned bread crumbs.  My favorite are Italian.  Add whatever seasoning you like..toss.   

Place into storage bags and freeze for later if you like.



Store bought or homemade breading???  Answer at the bottom on the photo.

storebought Italian Panko...made this eggplant parmesan yesterday with the last of my Italian style panko.  Now I'm a day older and wiser...where have I been.  



Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Sourdough Starter - How Much is Too Much?

Hi all.  I had a previous post on here with my first sourdough bread - Vermont Sourdough from JH.

As mentioned before, I was happy with most aspects of the bread, just wish it had a more sour flavour.  It was barely detectable.

Now, I have seen recipes with all different amounts of starter, ranging from a teaspoon, to a half cup - for a 1 - 2 lb loaf.  My question is, which ratio would produce a more sour flavour?  The ones with more starter, or less?  I understand that most of the sour is developed in the method of retarding the proof, usually 16-18 hours at 5 - 10 degrees.  But would using more starter in a recipe enhance the sour even more or not at all?


Hank Gurdjieff's picture
Hank Gurdjieff

Cottage Food Acts in various states; California's Homemade Food Act awaiting gov's signature - please consider supporting

Thanks to the previous question by  Niashi about a similar law in Washington I learned about the the California Homemade Food Act, AB 1616, which has passed both Assembly and Senate and is awaiting the Governor's signature. I probably won't be in any position to take advantage of this myself, but others here might. Like other similar laws (Cottage Food Acts and the like) it would make it reasonably easy and affordable to become a licensed food producer at home, in part by making sure you take a short class on how to avoid making customers sick, by restricting the types of foods you can cook for sale in a home kitchen (seem like reasonable restrictions: various things like meat and dairy fillings are not allowed, stuff more likely to harbor bugs.) Considering it is currently not legal to bake and sell most anything this would be a big step up. 

Something like 33 other states have similar laws, your state might well have one. 

More information on this law, cottage food laws in general, a link to a pdf listing the laws in other states, and lots of resources for small food startups can be found at 



SylviaH's picture

Butternut Squash Ravioli and Dill Pickles :)

Yesterday I picked up some nice pickling cucumbers.  Since mine were a total flop trying to grow them in my tiny garden's just gotten to shady with my pepper tree.  I'd rather have the shade and stick to the farmer's markets..we have so many.  I don't know why I even attempt to grow anything with all the locally available produce.  Well, I really do know's fun to grow things.  Even my tomatoes were a flop this year...but not the tomato worms..yikes..I cringe at those things and will pick them off sqirmming more than they do.  

I also picked up some other nice organic veggies.  Among them were a nice butternut squash for the fresh ravioli.  I have been wanting to make it with my fresh supply of Caputo Italian 00 flour.

This recipe makes a lot of pasta.  Just for the fresh Ravioli for two.  I use 2 Organic Eggs, 200g C Tipo 00 flour, about a teaspoon of E.V.O.O and a pinch of salt.  

I mix it all in my food processor, until I get a nice texture that comes together in a ball and is not sticky..comes away from my fingers nicely.  I use extra flour while kneading the dough and making the pasta on my Artisan King Arthur (oops edit) thats a Kitchen Aide Mixer using, my pasta roller attachment.

Fresh Pasta Made With Italian Caputo Tipo 00 Flour

6 Organic Eggs

600 G Caputo Tipo 00 Flour

pinch of salt to taste

1 TBsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil

For the Butternut Squash Filling and Cream Sauce.  

I used Fabio recipe.  He has a video making it.  He is so fun and entertaining to watch with many wonderful recipes.  I only changed the cookies that were added and made 1/2 a recipe.  I used some wonderful Italian Lady Fingers from Italy I picked up a Sprouts.  They are dry crispy with a slight sweetness...just delicious.

Dinner was delicious.   Light, Butternut Squash Raviolies, perfect for a hot summer day.




It's hard to get a photo before things get eaten


Easy Dill Pickles-  Great for just making a few jars at a time as your pickling cucumbers ripen.

I like Cold Packed pickles and peppers.  They are the firmest

Wash, slice, pack pickling cucumbers into Sterilized jars.  Use approved canning jars and rims with new seals for safe processing.

In a pot add 3 cups water, 2 cups 5% white vinegar/ or you can use apple cider vinegar, 1/8 cup pickling salt more or less to taste.  More is your making a lot of jars.  Bring to boil..turn down heat and keep hot until ready to ladle into jars.

I added a couple peeled garlics, lots of  fresh dill..I didn't have it so used dried.  Some pepper corns, a small amount of dried red pepper, pinch or two,  mustard seeds to each jar according to your taste...about a teaspoon per jar.  Fill to 1/2 head space with vinegar mixture. 

Remove bands and lids from hot water and skew into place.

Process in a hot water bath for 15 minutes.  

Remove and let sit several hours until cooled and you'll hear a 'pop' they've sealed..or press cooled top and if it didn't seal..just refrigerate and eat after allowing at least 2 weeks to full flavor.  Store 'sealed' jars in a cool place for at least 2 weeks for full flavor to develope.  Refrigerate before eating..they always taste better that way.










Breadandwine's picture

Fun with mincemeat

Found a large tub of mincemeat in the care home I teach in on Thursday mornings - so, using this in varying ways, we made a selection of different breads:

Chelsea buns, German apple cake, Bialys, doughnuts (baked, of course), Swedish tea ring, large tart.

This is a much under-used ingredient, generally only used at Christmas, but it is very tasty - and always welcome in our house!

Here's the story and pics (you might have to scroll down to Thursday, 23rd August):

Cheers, Paul

MANNA's picture

Almond - Honey Tart

Here is my attempt at the Almond - Honey Tart from Nick Malgieri's Perfect Pastry.

It is very rich and flavorful, absolutly wonderful.

mwilson's picture

Soft & Voluminous Loaf

Whenever I make bread my main goal is volume. Admittedly this isn't the most rewarding feature of bread but I am a technical junkie and love taking things to the limit. Not to mention, I love super-light bread.

This loaf is somewhat akin to the improved loaf I made a few months ago but uses acidity from sourdough to boost volume. Milk and diastatic malt are used to soften the crumb.

320g Very strong Allinson flour (High gluten)
200g Water
200g Skimmed milk
153g 00 flour
~77g Italian sourdough (~45% hydration)
55g Wholemeal flour
22g White spelt
22g Red malt
10g Salt
6g Diastatic malt
2g Instant yeast

Mixed dry to wet. Fermented 3-4hrs @ ~30C until tripled. Kneaded by hand until satisfied, 5-10 mins á la Bertinet.

Rounded and left to rest for 20-30 mins at which point it was significantly swollen.

Shaped tightly and placed in the tin.

Proved for 45mins-1hr. Baked with steam, oven off for first 8 of a total 45mins.



isand66's picture

Very Cherry Sourdough Cheese Bread

I recently returned from my 3rd trip to China for work this year and the first bread I attempted to make was this one.  I think I must have been suffering from a bad case of jet lag since I ended up with a puddle of cherry cheese which resembled a flat bread.  I like to work with wet dough but I went overboard on this attempt and didn't take the extra cherry juice from the cut up cherries into consideration.

I am happy to say that my second attempt of this bread was much more successful as I ended up with something that actually resembles a bread rather than a pancake.  I still can't find my wife's cherry pitter so I had to de-pit the cherries by hand which is a messy job to say the least.

I used a nice Havarti style cheese in this bake which melts nicely and compliments the cherries very well.  I used fresh cherries since they are still in season and reasonably priced.  I pureed 218 grams of cherries and cut the balance of 134 grams into pieces.  I used my mini Cuisinart to puree the cherries but you can use a blender or stick blender as well.

I used my standard white flour AP SD starter which I keep at 65% hydration and I added some Oat Flour to give it a little bit of nutty flavor.  I think the next time I make this bread I would add some walnuts or pecans to make it even better.

The final dough came out terrific with a nice moist open crumb with cheese and cherries oozing from its pores.  It smelled amazing with the flavors of cherries and cheese while it was baking and it took all my self-control not to tear into it until the next morning.



71 grams Seed (Mine is 65% AP Flour Starter)

227 grams AP Flour

151 grams Water (85 - 90 degrees F.)

Mix seed with water to break up for a few seconds and then mix in flour until the starter form a smooth dough consistency.  Put it in a lightly oiled bowl and loosely cover and leave at room temperature for at least 10 hours.  The starter should double in volume.  Put the starter in the refrigerator for up to 1-2 days or use it immediately.

Main Dough


425 grams Starter from above

340 grams Bread Flour (King Arthur Flour)

161 grams Oat Flour (King Arthur Flour)

63 grams European Style Flour (KAF--you can substitute bread flour or a little whole wheat)

218 grams Cherry Puree

134 grams Pitted Cherries Cut Up into Small Pieces

200 grams Havarti Cheese or Similar Style Soft Cheese

220 grams Water (85 - 90 degrees F.)  (Note: the Cherry Puree Counts as the Balance of the Liquid)

16 grams Sea Salt (or table salt)


Weigh the cherries and remove the pits either with your hands, knife or if you are lucky a cherry pitter.  Puree the 218 grams per above in your food processor or blender and set aside. Cut the remainder of the cherries into small pieces and set aside in a strainer to drain.

Cut the cheese into small cubes and set  aside.

Mix the starter with all the water except for 20 grams just to break it up along with the pureed cherries.  Next mix in the flours for 1 minute on low in your mixer or by hand and let them autolyes for 30 minutes up to an hour.    Next add the salt and then add the remainder of your water unless you feel the dough is already too hydrated.  Mix on low-speed or by hand for 4 minutes.  Remove the dough from your mixing bowl to your work surface.

The dough will be very sticky so you may want to use a bench scraper to help you do 4-5 stretch and folds.  Leave the dough uncovered for 10 minutes on your work surface or put it in a slightly oiled bowl.  After 10 minutes either on your work surface or in your bowl do another stretch and fold, cover the dough and let it rest for 10 minutes.  Repeat this S & F procedure one more time and let it rest another 10 minutes.  Do one last S & F  and flatten the dough out into a rectangle.  Add the cherry pieces and the cheese pieces and fold up the dough onto itself.  (Note: I goofed up and did this step after the first stretch and fold which made it very difficult to do additional ones.)

Let the dough sit in your bowl for another 1.5 to 2 hours depending on the temperature of your room ( my house is usually at about 70-72 degrees F.).  Next put the dough into your refrigerator overnight up to 24 hours or longer if necessary.  I usually only wait about 24 hours but you can do 36 hours if necessary.

The next day when ready to bake, remove the dough from the refrigerator and  let the dough sit out at room temperature for 1.5 hours - 2 hours until it starts to come to room temperature and is growing slightly. You can now remove the dough from your bowl or dough bucket and form into your desired shapes.  Be careful not to handle the dough to  roughly or you will end up degassing the nice gas trapped in the dough.  Place formed loaves in floured baskets (I use rice flour to make sure they don't stick which works every time).

 Let the dough rise at room temperature for around 2 hours until they pass the poke test.  (When the dough is poked your finger should leave a small indent that springs back very slowly.)

Score the loaves as desired and prepare your oven for baking with steam.

I then baked on my oven stone with steam at 450 degrees until both loaves are golden brown and reached an internal temperature of 205 - 210 degrees F.

Let the finished bread rest on a wire rack until cool and try to resist the temptation to cut into them until thoroughly cooled.

Please feel free to visit my other blog at for all my bread recipes.

loafgeek's picture

Pullman Sourdough Loaf -- No-Knead & 70% Hydration

Has virtually the same crust/crumb texture & flavor as my no-knead sourdough boules.  But this is a handy dimension for slicing for sandwiches, which is what I've been wanting--I love my new pullman pan (baked on a preheated pizza stone @ 450F for 25 minutes covered and then 11 minutes uncovered).

9x4x4 pullman, 70% hydration dough, 750 grams of sourdough.  I'll try 800 grams next time.

(See to see how I did this loaf with a Pullman Pan.)

loafgeek's picture

Pullman Loaf Form DIY

I just got this pullman pan the other day and want to use it for a loaf.  I got creative with a little thread, needle, dish towel, and 2 plastic hangers (cut into sticks):

 (I don't know what I'm doing but I'll give it a try lol.)