The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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MangoChutney's picture
MangoChutney

Meat Grinder Opinions?

I am looking to buy a standalone electric meat grinder (not a stand mixer attachment).  I have scoured Amazon's selection for hours on end and cannot tell which one of those with a moderate price is best.  I am wanting to grind poultry, pork, and perhaps lamb or beef, for meatballs, meatloaves, steamed meat dumplings, sausage patties, etc.  Stuffing sausage casings is not something I am interested in doing.

 

 

txfarmer's picture
txfarmer

Parmesan Batter Bread - so easy, so quick

Recipe is from KAF(http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/parmesan-batter-bread-recipe), I used instant yeast rather than active dry, which means I could skip the "warm milk to proof" bit, and make the whole thing even easier. Also skipped the cream cheese on surface, since I didn't have any. Very delicious though, a good base for all kinds of add-ins, next time I will try green onion and bacon.

 

I highly recommend using a cast iron pan to make this, the crust is perfection

 

And a fluffy soft delicious crumb

 

Sending this to Yeastspotting.

dvuong's picture
dvuong

What to do with sweet dough?

I've been making cinnamon rolls nearly every weekend now at the request of my brother.  I'm starting to get a little bored of the cinnamon rolls and have been trying to think of what other things I could do with a sweet dough.  Any ideas?

codruta's picture
codruta

New STARTER from scratch

I made a new starter few days ago, just to taake photos of the process.

I started with 100g (tap) water, 50g AP flour and 50g rye flour, let it sit 24 hours at room temperature. It almost tripled it's volume.

The next day I switched to a 12 hours feedeing schedule, keeping 75g culture, adding 75g water, 50g AP flour and 25g rye flour. Here are some pictures taken in day 2, 3, 4

after day 4, I feed it only with APflour and water, and in day 5 it looked like that:

The smell changed during these days, from sour, sprouted grains, yogurt, sweet and sour, yeast.

This is how it developed in 5 days:

I'm happy with the result, but I don’t know what to do with it now, cause I don’t want to keep two starters, I want to give it away, but I’m from Romania and I don’t know if there is a safe way to “mail” it.  It's a shame to throw it away in the garbage...

I'll bake a bread with it to see if it has a different taste than my old starter, I'm very curious.

For a complete post and pictures, you ca visit my romanian blog Apa.Faina.Sare. (whitch means Water. Flour.Salt.)

And if any of you have any idea what to do with it... I'm all ears.

codruta

lilosa's picture
lilosa

Tartine bread failures

Hi Everyone,

I recently got so enthused with my new Tartine bread book and eagerly started baking. My first attempt gave me 2 delicious tasting, but flat pancake loaves. The second attempt rose a little more but still flat. Then for the third attempt, since I had to bake at a friends place that day, I baked in loaf tins instead of the dutch oven. These rose beautifully, though the crumb wasn't full of huge air bubbles like I wanted. And to get through the steam problem, I simply had a tray on the bottom rack of the oven and poured some water into it a couple times. This seemed to work well.

My first attempts with the dutch oven proved that the steaming wasn't sufficient as when I lifted the lid after the first 2o minutes of baking the crust was already forming, preventing the loaf from rising to its ful potential. So I decided I wanted to do what I did when I baked in the loaf tins and pour water into a tray at the bottom of the oven to create steam.

I really like the rustic free-formed loaves so instead of baking in the tins I wanted to bake on my oven stone. However, my fourth and fifth attempt didn't turn out so well. The whole process seems to go very very well and pretty much look exactly as the book displays, that is, right up until I have to turn the loaf out to bake. I have been trying to turn the loaf out gently onto a sheet of parchment on a cutting board and then taking the board to the oven stone and sliding the loaf onto it followed quickly by a cup of water under it to create steam.

The problem is, and always has been when I've done this, is that when I turn the loaf out it totally has no tension and basically blobs out like a flat pancake. In the book, it looks as though it should hold its shape a bit more. And it is so soft and fragile that I can not really score it, even with brand new sharp razor blades. 

I have tried the final rise at warmish room temp (25-27 celcius) for everywhere between 2 and 4 hours and the results have been the same - a blob.

I'm not sure where the problem is. Am I overproofing? Underproofing? Not building enough tension in preshape or final shaping?

Any help is much appreciated!

Lisa

freerk's picture
freerk

royal crown's tortano

shaping slugs again, but hey, they are still photogenic, right? X Freerk

 

 

P.S. You would do me a big favor endorsing my BreadLab iniative. Every "like" will get me closer to realizing a 6 episode documentary/road movie; chasing the best bread Europe has to offer. Thanks in advance! 

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Herb rolls

Hello,
There are a couple of herbs in my garden, that thankfully, come back each year –
I so look forward to when these fresh herbs have started growing!
Chervil is one of the first things to start growing in spring. It reseeds itself, and there will be new chervil in the fall also :^).
I love the tender, lacy leaves and delicate anise flavor.
Golden sage, which I am so grateful made it through our cold winter, is now producing some pretty
golden-and-green variegated leaves.

Time for some herb rolls! 
(the image is an experiment with merging photos):


This idea I first saw in a Better Homes and Gardens ‘Holiday Cooking’ magazine, from December 2000.
After proofing, the rolls are gently brushed with egg white; the herbs are applied; then the rolls are gently brushed with egg white again, making sure the whole herb leaf is covered; then the rolls are ready for the oven.
Parsley (Italian flat leaf) is another nice herb to use for this technique.

Susan at WildYeast also made a lovely! version, using parsley, for her Roasted Garlic Bread.


The chervil rolls were the herb version of this recipe:
http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/dinner-rolls.aspx

The golden sage rolls were based on Sylvia’s excellent ‘buns for sandwiches’ recipe (Thanks, Sylvia!).
The potato adds such a nice flavor and texture to these rolls!

  

The chervil rolls were baked in a pan on a rack in the oven (no baking stone). The chervil didn’t brown at all and kept its green color through the bake :^)

I was a little worried about the golden sage browning as the leaves are thicker and wanted to lift off the roll a bit after being brushed with egg white. Also, these rolls were baked on a baking stone, starting out at a hotter temperature but baking in a reducing oven. After 2 minutes of baking I covered the rolls with foil, turned the oven down to 325F convection for the last two minutes of baking and removed the foil, so the tops of the rolls would finish browing (but hopefully not the sage!).

  
Crumb shot, Sylvia's sandwich bun:

 

I want to try making a big loaf using some Italian parsley – Susan’s loaf was so pretty!
Happy baking everyone!
from breadsong

Submitted to YeastSpotting

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Chile and Cheese (two quickbreads and one sourdough)

Hello,

These are three bakes using chile (jalapeno or chipotle) and cheddar cheese (I've had a craving lately for some spicy things!).

The first bake is a Cornmeal Biscuit with Cheddar and Chipotle, an old favorite from Bon Appetit Magazine, March 2006: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Cornmeal-Biscuits-with-Cheddar-and-Chipotle-234118

The baked biscuits (cheesy, oniony, with some background heat from the chipotle); we love these!:
 

It mixed up into a wettish dough; I folded the dough a few times incorporating some extra flour.
I froze the biscuits before baking:
  


The second bake is Sourdough Cheese Bread from Advanced Bread and Pastry (scaled to 1500 grams for two loaves, including 212 grams cubed sharp cheddar and 90 grams diced, seeded jalapeno slices (from a jar)).  Lots of gooey cheese melting out during the bake! I’ve been wanting to try making a cheddar and jalapeno bread for a long time.
We couldn’t wait to let this cool down before cutting into it to try. Mmmm, good!:
 
  



The third bake is Southwest Corn Bread, from Baking Artisan Pastries and Breads by Ciril Hitz.
With thanks to Mr. Hitz for this lovely corn bread formula! This is a Cheddar, Corn, Chile and Lime version.

I included the zest and juice (50 grams) of one lime, and 60 grams of crème fraiche, in place of some of the milk called for in the formula.  The lime flavor really came through and was very tasty.

I added four roasted, diced jalapenos and although my husband thought this was fine!, some parts were very spicy
(I thought sometimes the heat overtook the lime and other flavors). Next time, I might just add two jalapenos.
I roasted four peeled cobs of corn, and took the corn off the cob, to add some deeper corn flavor to the bread.
The tops of the corn breads are decorated with roasted red pepper. We really enjoyed these too!
Here is the crumb shot:


Happy baking everyone!
from breadsong

 

 

 

amateur's picture
amateur

New to sourdough - what to do?

Okay, I'm sure this has been covered many a time; my apologies.

I have sourdough starter in a crock-pot in the kitchen. No mold. Brown stuff on top - hooch, is that what it's called?

I made a loaf out of it. The loaf didn't rise. Even after two days at room temperature. I finally gave up and baked it. It rose, and I ate some. SOUR! I mean, really sour.

So, since it didn't rise, I made another loaf, added a lot of honey to it, and just baked it without leaving it at room temperature. It's dense and heavy. It tastes all right, but it didn't rise at all.

What's the best way to approach this thing called sourdough?

 

 

 

varda's picture
varda

Vermont Sourdough with Banana Yeast Water

Yeast water Vermont Sourdough with peony...

After being pushed over the edge by Akiko's magnificent baguette, the desire to ferment just became too strong.    So over the last few days I've been making banana yeast water.   I followed Akiko's instructions in her blog post which also refers to a very detailed and helpful web page.   I replaced raisins with sliced bananas but otherwise followed instructions.   This means that I started with banana and water only rather than weaning my flour based levain to fruit as I have seen others write about.  After 5 days it seemed that the yeast water was ready.   I strained out the water, took half of it, added flour, left it overnight on the counter and baked with it the next morning.   The results were tasty but not quite ready for prime time.    Meanwhile I fed the yeast water with another banana and water as per Akiko's instructions and this morning was ready to try again.   I decided to bake Hamelman's Vermont Sourdough partly because it's good and Codruta reminded me of it, and partly to have a well recognized formula to experiment with.   Further I baked two loaves - one with a banana yeast water levain and the other with my regular levain.   Since these were different hydrations the only difference in the two doughs was how much water I added to the final dough.    All of the percentages matched Hamelman's instructions.   While preparing both doughs, I noticed that the yeast water version was always more manageable and with a more silky texture.   Really though, there was very little difference between the two doughs.   However during final proof it became clear that the one with regular levain was fermenting much more rapidly.   In fact so quickly that the oven wasn't entirely ready for it when I put it in.   Unfortunately this caused me to stumble technically.   The loaf bottom split in the oven and so the whole loaf came out misshapen.    I am almost sure this was due to the fact the oven wasn't steamed properly and also possibly the stone wasn't sufficiently preheated.   Oh well.   I waited until the first loaf was done (and the oven resteamed) before putting in the yeast water loaf.    This had definitely needed the extra 55 minutes of proofing and did much better in the oven.  As for taste, what can I say - they are both tasty breads, but the regular levain sourdough has a tiny bit of sour tang which is quite delicious, where the yeast water loaf is a bit flat.   Also if you look at the crumb shots below, even with the poor misshapen loaf, the regular levain wins the competition.   So maybe I simply chose the wrong formula to test out my yeast water on and picked one that is more appropriate for a regular levain.    I will probably try, try again, and I simply love the fact that I can take a piece of fruit, doctor it for a few days, and end up with something that very competently raises bread.   

 

Yeast water Vermont Sourdough crumb...

Vermont Sourdough with standard levain crumb...

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