The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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dabrownman's picture

Revising isand66's Bacon, Potato, Onion with Cheddar Sourdough Bread

Ian is well known for his interesting and delicious bread combinations.   I had taken his BPOC SD and made it into an even stranger bread by replacing his Semolina with 5% each; WW, Whole Rye and Whole Spelt.  For his bacon, cheese onion and potato I used; home made apple smoked pork jowl, ancient white vapor cheddar, caramelized onions and potato flakes.  The bread came out beautiful inside and out and was just plain delicious.  Definitely one of the 10 breads in my top 5 (actually it is one of the top 3).

I have been eating up all of the half a loaf, boule and batards that I froze after each bake over the last 3 months to see which ones I liked most and how best to rate and present them.  Being a sandwich king, I thought each might be presented as a nice lunch.  I was going to wait till I had finished them all (and have nearly done so), photo with the new old Nikon camera to do them justice this time, but, I had to break this one out separately since it is by far, far and away the best sandwich and lunch I have had these past few weeks.

Since this bread only deserves the best, the sandwich was a Dabrownman Super Special - Curried Grilled Chicken with Mango Chutney.  The sides were cold Rosemary, Pecorino, Parmesan,White Polenta, home grown Field Greens, Meculin and Lettuce Salad, home made Kosher Dill, Bread and Butter with Serrano Pepper pickles and a home grown navel orange.  The curry, chutney and polenta recipes follow the pix's as a bonus for all lunch lovers on TFL.

The first pix is a mis en place recipe for the Grilled Chicken Curry.  It has about 2 T each starting from the far right diced small; celery, green onion, red onion, grilled Italian squash and eggplant, carrot, red pepper, poblano pepper,  each orange mango chutney and mayo,  1/2 tsp Madras Curry powder, 1/2 grilled chicken breast,  1 T each; dried apricot, cranberry and raisin (reconstituted with hot water.) Mix it all up and you are finally done with this fine sandwich's filling.

Rosemary White Polenta with Parmesan and Pecorino

1/4 C medium grain white corn meal

1/4 C white corn flour (ground from WCM above)

1 C milk - any kind

1 C chicken stock - I use home made

1 T butter

1 T fresh rosemary chopped fine

1/2 C Pecorino and Parmesan grated cheese blend


Bring milk and stock to a simmer and slowly add the corn meal and corn flour while whisking constantly.  When the mixture thickens to a thick porridge, stir in butter, rosemary.  Turn off the heat and add the cheese.  Pepper to taste.  Serve warm for dinner but it is much better the next day cold for lunch.

Orange Mango Chutney

 In large fry pan sauté:

 1 T oil

½ T fresh ginger and 2 cloves minced garlic

 Sauté until fragrant about 1 min and add:

1 C brown, white or red onion, Sauté until soft about 3-5 min Add:

 1 C red bell pepper

1 T minced hot chili (jalapeno, Serrano, Thai)

1 ½ tsp Madras curry powder, curry powder or hot curry powder

½ tsp Gharam Masala

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp each cayenne powder and red pepper flakes

1/8 tsp each; allspice, nutmeg, clove, cinnamon

 Sauté for 1 minute until spices are fragrant then add:

 2 C diced mangos

½ C apple cider vinegar

½ C brown sugar

Zest of 1 orange - Supreme the orange and add the segments with the juice of membrane

1 diced pealed and cored small apple (can use pineapple and juice instead)

¼ C raisins

½ cups Macadamia nuts (optional)

 Simmer until the chutney thickens to jam about 20-30 min.  Place hot in sterilized jar and put into refrigerator when cooled.  It also freezes well in small portions which is what I do.

 You can chutney just about anything but you may want to use lemon zest, segments and juice depending on your choice of fruit or vegetable being made into chutney.


wassisname's picture

Schnaitsee Rye

This bread is based on a recipe simply titled Roggenbrot (rye bread) from a cookbook called "Was kocht ma Guats in Schnaitsee".  I can't come up with an English translation for this phrase that has quite the same ring to it as the original Bavarian, but the gist is, "Good things we’re cooking in Schnaitsee."  The entire book is handwritten, accompanied by sketched artwork and favorite food-related sayings of the various recipe authors.   

The highlight of the too short bread chapter is this rye.  Based on how the recipe is written it's pretty clear that the author has made this bread many, many times.  The details that are missing are the same one's I might leave out if I was to write up one of my regular breads.  Even with a few blanks to fill in I felt I was in good hands.  The recipe features a two stage sourdough build, a bake at receding temperatures, and a reminder to have a bowl of water handy during kneading.  I like where this baker is coming from. 

With a lot of help from Mom, I got the recipe translated into a formula.  The first problem was the hydration.  It came out at 51%.  I checked the math again and again, but that’s how it came out.  I had to assume that something was lost in translation so I bumped it up to 70%. 

Next was the problem of sheer size – about 5.2 kg divided into two loaves.  I scaled it down to a single, still really large, loaf of around 2.3 kg.

I made two changes to suit my taste:  I left out the yeast, and substituted freshly ground coriander for the packaged breadspice called for in the original.

Otherwise, the formula that follows is as close as I could get to the original.

The result is a flavorful loaf with a sturdy crust and soft, fragrant crumb.  Very nice!  


varda's picture

Borodinsky, Borodinsky, and Miche

Other people's obsessions can be dull.   That's what the back button, the scroll button and the  block this user button are for.    But if you'll bear with me I have more to say about Borodinsky.    First, misunderstanding a suggestion by eliabel, I searched high and low and found a Russian grocery in Allston, MA which carries Kvas.   So I made the trek over there, and discovered that they also carried Borodinsky.    I bought a loaf, prepared in a sliced sandwich bread format, thinking how good could this be?    The answer - extremely good, extremely fresh, extremely coriandery.   I consider myself corrected.   Then it turns out that eliabel was not suggesting that I buy bottled Kvas, but instead Kvas concentrate.   But I had my Kvas, and by golly (remember, this is a well-mannered site) I was going to use it.  

The Big Sky Borodinsky

The Kvas - It tasted like bread.

Borodinsky with Kvas

Again I followed Andy's Feb 6, 2012 post, but with enough deviations that it warrants specifying formula and method directly.

Rye Sour


2:00 PM

9:00 PM











Dark Rye







Whole Rye



































Whole Rye







Malted Rye














Boiling Kvas







Ground coriander




























Rye Sour





















Final dough







Whole Rye







KA Bread Flour










































Whole Rye







Dark Rye







KA Bread Flour































































Sour factor







Feed starter as above

At second feeding, make the scald

Leave overnight (15 minutes short of 10 hours)

Mix scald and starter

Ferment for just over 4 hours

Add final ingredients - mix by hand until blended

Ferment for 1 hour

Note that paste was very fluffy and aerated at this point

Spoon into greased bread pan.   Smooth down with wet spatula

Spray top with water and do so at intervals (Mini's suggestion)

Using spatula, separate top edge of bread from pan (Mini's suggestion)

Cover with Pullman top

Proof for 2 hours 5 minutes

Note -Very bubbly and starting to get holey on top

Oven preheated to 550F for 1 hour - steam pan for last 30 minutes of preheat

Put bread in oven and bring temperature back to 550  (Note I was too worried to cover it for first 15 minutes since it had risen so much during proof - I could have though)

Then reduce to 350F

Bake for 1 hour 15 min (without top for first 15 minutes with top for an hour)

then remove steam pan, remove bread from pan and bake for 30 minutes

Note that uncooked dough weight was 1275 so lost 52g in between steps

Tastewise, and despite the fact that I used canned Kvas rather than roasted rye malt, this was the best yet.   Absolutely delicious, with sort of a tart, tangy taste overlaid on the (freshly ground) coriander, malt, and molasses.   Addictively delicious.   Watch out.  


As for the miche, I have been wanting to follow David's SFBI miche for awhile now, but lacked what I thought was a suitable flour.   When push came to shove, though, my thinking and flour had deviated too much, so I'll just say that I was inspired by David's miches.

First the flour:  I don't seem to be able to find high extraction flour around here, short of milling it myself.   So I decided to sift.   My first try was unsuccessful and essentially I had whole wheat flour.   So I decided to buy a better sieve.  

That made a big difference.   For this miche, I started with 360g of whole wheat flour, generated 30g of bran, and 30g went missing.   So I can't calculate the extraction but it looked good.   Then I followed David in using only half high extraction.   In my case, I used KA Bread Flour as the other half.   

But before I could get to actually making a SFBI miche, I had to pursue a different line of thought.  I was somewhat startled the other day, when I made a Pain Au Levain with no Stretch and Fold whatsoever.   I am totally imprinted on Hamelman - he says Stretch and Fold, so I Stretch and Fold.    But my curiousity was piqued.     This time I decided to make up a very wet dough and develop it in the mixer for as long as it took and then again no Stretch and Fold.    So I made up an 83% hydration dough and mixed it in my humble Kitchen Aid - first at speed 1 for 35 minutes, and then at speed 2 for 10 minutes, with plenty of scrape downs along the way.   The dough came together quite nicely and strongly at the 45 minute mark.    Then I let it bulk ferment without touching it for  3.5 hours, and continued on my way.

Given the hazards of working with such wet dough, then I stumbled.   I proofed in a big ceramic bowl dusted with flour, but it was too big, so I had to basically drop the dough out of it onto the peel.   This compressed the bottom of the loaf a bit.   Worse yet, it snagged on the peel when I "slid" it into the oven.   To heck with the shape.   Despite all that, I think the crumb came out very nicely.   Undoubtedly it would have been quite different had I done a shorter mix, and a few stretch and folds.    But I kind of like this result.  


Szanter5339's picture

Kenyér élesztő nélkül, csak kovásszal.

Kenyér élesztő nélkül, csak kovásszal.
Én így készítem.350 ml víz       ( + -  2-3 evőkanál)3 kávéskanál só50 dkg BL 55 liszt20 dkg félfogós vagy (rétes liszt)1 evőkanál rozsliszt+ 25 dkg érett kovászEzt előbb olvassátok el a kovászról!!!!!Én is így készítem a kovászt.1. 
3 evőkanál teljes őrlésű búzaliszt vagy rozsliszt vagy tönkölyliszt 
3 evőkanál víz (kb. 40°C-os)
A vizet a liszttel elkeverjük és letakarva, meleg helyen (kb. 20-22 °C-on), 1-2 napot állni hagyjuk.

3 evőkanál teljes őrlésű liszt 
3 evőkanál víz (kb. 40°C-os
Mindezt az 1. lépcsőben elkészített masszához keverjük, amely már kellemes, savanykás szagot áraszt. Ismét letakarjuk, és 20°C-on 1 napot állni hagyjuk.

10 dkg teljes őrlésű búzaliszt vagy rozsliszt
1 dl víz (kb. 40°C-os)
Az előzőekkel összekeverjük, és letakarva, 20°C-on ismét egy napig állni hagyjuk.Kenyérsütés, lépésről lépésre.Délután dagasztok, hogy  este tudjam a hűtőbe tenni.A vízből kicsit meghagyok és beleteszem a sót, lisztet, és a kovászt. Dagasztom, és ha szükséges még adok hozzá vizet, vagy lisztet. Minden liszt más-más, ezért nem mindig egyforma a víz mennyisége.Inkább kemény tésztát dagasztok, fényesre, hólyagosra.  Beleteszem egy tálba és kelesztem 2-3 órahosszáig.Mikor megkelt,kiborítom a tálból és kicsit tenyeremmel megformázom, nem nagyon nyomkodom,.ésbelerakom a szakajtóba.  Betakarom és északára beteszem a hűtőbe.Reggel kiveszem a hűtőből és 20-25 percet várok majd átfordítom a papírral bélelt beáztatott cserépedénybe ,bespriccelem vízzel, bevágom a tetejét éles pengével és ráteszem a tetőt .A cserépedény tetejét is papírral bélelem.210 fokos sütőbe rakom, és 50 percig sütöm, majd leveszem a tetőt, és tovább sütöm a piros szín eléréséigMikor kiveszem, bespriccelem vízzel. Először nagyon kemény a héja de mire kihűl,  ropogós lágy kenyerünk lesz! 


superczech's picture

McCormick & Schmick's Seafood restaurant BREAD

I LOVE McCormick & Schmick's bread. Not sure if their bread varies by what state they are in... This one is in Chicago on Wacker.

This lovely bread has soft golden brown crust and is nice and fluffy. It has a sour dough/vinegar taste to it.

I have baked sourdough bread before, but the crust has turned out to be very hard.... How do I get the crust to be softer?

And does anybody have any idea what kind of bread McCormick & Schmick's in Chicago bake???

Thank you!

superczech's picture

McCormick & Schmick's Seafood restaurant BREAD

I LOVE McCormick & Schmick's bread. Not sure if their bread varies by what state they are in... This one is in Chicago on Wacker.

This lovely bread has soft golden brown crust and is nice and fluffy. It has a sour dough/vinegar taste to it.

I have baked sourdough bread before, but the crust has turned out to be very hard.... How do I get the crust to be softer?

And does anybody have any idea what kind of bread McCormick & Schmick's in Chicago bake???

Thank you!


Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Still baking - now with proof box


As many others these days I mainly baked my tried and tested formulas, with not much new to blog about.

With exception of my proof box - the parts were on top of a cupboard since last summer, but now I am putting them to good use.

I think the quality of my ryes have greatly improved since.

The parts for the proof box

1. cheap picnic cooler

2. reptile thermostat

3. reptile heat mat

4. cooling rack

Here a photo:

Just a few photos from last weekend's bake, which was mainly for restocking the freezer:

1. Some ITJB Vienna Bread and Hamelman's Sunflower Seed Bread with pate fermentee

2. Some Challah (DiMuzio's sweet challah) for a school function:

3. Finally my weekly batch of 40% Rye with caraway seeds, and Russian Rye a la Andrew Whitley

Keeping myself busy ...


Thaichef's picture

Help, my beloved starter died.

Good Afternoon:

  A crisis has happened to my sourdough bread baking! After 6 weeks away to my homeland, Thailand, I came back(4 days ago) to find that my very healthy starter died. My husband who promised to maintain it swore that he had feed it regularly/every Sunday per my easy instructions!  After trying to revived (and in vain) twice now, I have to face the fact that it had died!

 Being spoiled for two years with my own baking and am extremely hungry for a good loaf of sourdough(since Thailand had none and my little village in VA. only have commercial "yucky" breads) I am compel to beg from my TFL family.  Please, please ,please give me some of your starters!  I will pay for the shipment.  I know that I can start anther starter but it will take weeks and I am very hungry. Please, I am desperate.

Thank you.


BoyntonStu's picture

WFO (Rocket Stoves)

If you have not seen a WFO rocket stove, here's a few videos to learn about them.

A rocket stove is essentially a tall INSULATED vertical pipe that burns any wood or biomas at 2,000 *F with NO SMOKE.

AFAIK A rocket stove uses the least amount of wood to cook than any stove made.

Rocket Bread Oven

No gas reaches the bread!

My friend's rocket stove heats his house.

I helped with this design.

Dual Plane Rocket Stove Heater

Energy Conservation with Rocket Stoves in Africa:Aprovecho Research Centre, Southern Africa, Rocket Stoves - Ashden Award winner

badmajon's picture

The basic problem with my sourdough

My main problem with my sourdough efforts is that the dough rises too slowly which means I can't get any oven spring.

When using instant yeast, I make a simple 75% hydration French bread dough which I put in the oven at about 75% of a full rise at 500 degrees. I get great oven spring and a good crumb. I'm really happy with it.

However, my wild sourdough culture seems to be so slow that after extending the rise times 400%, when I put it in the oven, I get almost no oven spring. The crust sets before the yeast can give the final push. I love the flavor of this bread, but the lack of oven spring is killing me.

The only thing I can think of is putting the loaf into the oven fully proofed. However that seems like the wrong way of doing things for obvious reasons.

Or maybe my starter is weak? I double it the day before. I.e., 200g starter, I add 100g of flour, 100g water. Should be ready to go right?