The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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CSBaker's picture

oat flour tortillas?

So. last time I was at Whole Foods I  bought a bunch of oat flour, thinking in my    Newbie brain, that I would make some oat bread.  Turns out, oat bread is made with oats (learn something new every day).  Anyway, now I am looking for something to do with all of this oat flour, so I was thinking tortillas.  I usually make my own tortillas with half AP and half bread flour, and I like those results.  Any idea what would happen with oat flour? 

wassisname's picture

A Very Different Result

     I've been hung up on this line from Tartine Bread regarding the Country Rye ever since I read it:  "Use a medium-fine grind of whole-rye flour as opposed to a course pumpernickel rye, which will yield a very different result."  And that's it, end of paragraph, end of story.  He just leaves that hanging there like I'm not going to wonder day after day just what sort of "very different result" it would yield.  Yeah... no, that won't do at all.
     It just so happens that I have a large amount of stoneground whole rye in my freezer.  I don't know where it falls on the official grind-o-meter, but judging by the big flecks of bran and the fact that it is described as "Graham" rye I'm thinking it's a ways away from medium-fine.
     I re-worked the formula a bit.  I increased the rye and all of it went into the starter.  My ww starter doesn't always react well to sudden white flour feedings, and since the numbers worked out nicely as well... why not.  I stayed pretty true to the process in the book so I won't post that here, but I will say that, since I don't own a Dutch oven of any kind, I baked on a stone and steamed according to the wet towel method described in the baguette section of the book.  This has become my steaming method of choice - simple, safe and effective.

The numbers:

The result - Yum.  A little over-proofed maybe (I cut the timing too close with the bread that went into the oven before this one) but still got a nice spring in the oven.  The crust shattered and flew when I put a knife to it.  The crumb was very light and moist with just enough sourdough spring.  The flavor was very well balanced.  Caveat: I've never baked a light rye like this so I don't really have much basis for comparison, but I could eat this all day long.

So, was it a very different result?  I don't think I care so much anymore, I'm too busy devouring this bread!
This one I will be baking again.



SallyBR's picture

Hoegaarden Beer Bread

A small boule, perfect for 4 people, or two with leftovers... :-)

I could kick myself for not writing down the source, I had it in my computer as a text file, so I share with you  - I changed a few things, instead of kneading for 10 minutes I just used stretch and fold at 30 min,  1h, and 1h and 30 min.   First proofing 3 hours, shaped, rose for 90 minutes (should have been longer, but life got in the way). Baked at 450F covered  for 20 minutes, reducing the oven to 435F after, baking 15 min more.

For the sponge:

  • 120 g 100% hydration sourdough starter
  • 60 g white bread flour
  • 45 ml Hoegaarden white beer

For the final dough:

  • 235 g white bread flour
  • 65 ml Hoegaarden white beer
  • 40 ml lukewarm water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped



Hoegaarden white beer, fennel seeds and rosemary sourdough bread


Place the sponge, flour, beer and water in a salad bowl. Mix for a few minutes until combined, then add the salt. Knead for about 10 minutes, adding a little flour or water if necessary. Add the fennel seeds and rosemary, then knead again for a couple of minutes until well incorporated.

Shape in a ball, transfer to a lightly oiled container, cover with a damp towel and leave to ferment for about 2 hours or until doubled in size.

Shape the dough. Place on an oven tray lined with parchment paper or a non-stick mat. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to proof at room temperature for 90 minutes to a couple of hours.

Preheat the oven to 250°C. When ready to bake, place an small oven-proof dish filled with boiling water on the sole of the oven. Dust the loaf with a little flour and slash its surface with a knife. Place the tray in the middle of the oven. Throw a small quantity of cold water on the sole of the oven to generate steam and immediately close the oven door.

Bake with steam for about 15 minutes then remove the small oven-proof dish. Lower the temperature to about 225-230°C and continue baking for a further 15 minutes or until the loaf is golden brown.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a rack for 2 hours before serving.

rossnroller's picture

Wanted: a great recipe for a classic American Apple Pie!

Pls excuse this excursion from breads, pizzas and thangs generally yeasty. Still on the baking page, though - so not the worst of transgressions, I trust.

After the great response to my request for an authentic Jewish New York deli rye, I'm thinking there is no better place to put out a call for a GREAT classic American apple pie recipe (with home-made pastry, of course). Sooo...anyone? I promise to toast you with a slice piled high with whipped cream and icecream (well, that's how I like to have it...but open to correction from the culture of origin, although I should declare I can't promise to mend my evil ways in this respect).

Best of baking!



dablues's picture

Publix French Hamburger Rolls

Hi, I have a question regarding Publix French Hamburger Rolls.  My hubby likes them instead of regular hamburger rolls.  I would like to try and duplicate the recipe if I can without all the chemicals.  I'm not sure about the slashing.  Since the rolls he buys are super soft, and slashed, am wondering if the dough should be slashed after it proofs or before.  Somewhere, I've seen a recipe that states slash before proofing.  I have never done that and would like some input before I do.  Here is a link for the image of the rolls so you can see how they do it.  Thanks!

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Baking with Italian flours, first experiences

Inspired by the recent blogs about Pane di Altamura by Franko

and David Snyder,

and by the then hot weather I decided to try out this intersting bread.

In Britain I found three suppliers of Italian flours, so I ordered some.

I got semola di grano duro rimaccinata (the semolina used for bread) by Divella, from near Bari. The grains seem to be a blend from European countries.

I also got tipo 00 soft wheat flour "La Farina di Don Arcangelo", and durun semolina by the same make, both from Altamura. The semolina is coarser and makes wonderful pasta.


Here a picture of the flours:

No 1: TRS fine semolina (durum), which is availlable in Asian shops. Origin: EU countries (to compare)

No 2: La Semola di Don Arcangelo, from Altamura

No 3: Semola di grano duro rimaccinata by Divella, milled near Bari

No 4: La Farina di Don Arcangelo, from Altamura (tipo 00)

No 5: Shipton Mill No 4 organic strong white flour (my current standard flour, to compare)

To try out the Italian flours I wanted to make a bread I knew well: I used the Pugliese formula I learned at the Lighthouse Bakery with two changes:

1. I used 20% semola rimaccinata and 80% tipo 00 (for biga and dough)

2. I found an interesting baking profile in Italian bread blog: Preheat at maximum temperature, bake for 60min with no steam and turn to 200C immediately.

The result is quite amazing, my best Pugliese yet. The taste is not as sweet as the one made with English flour, but it has more depth, and an amazingly elastic yellow crumb. A good contrast to the thick crunchy crust.

Next I tried an Altamura style bread, but I got rushed, and the temparature in our kitchen dropped.

Not quite understanding the durum leaven I mixed too early. The resulting bread took a long time to raise, the crumb is uneven and it tastes very sour. But I am satisfied with my first attempt, I really like the consistency and feel of the semolina dough.

Here a picture of the loaf:

All in all it is great fun to work with these flours,

and it is really wonderful to find so much inspiration here on TFL.

Special thanks to Franko and David,


 /* UPDATE */

The inside of the Altamura bread:

I think the main problem here was fermentation control: The temperature in the kitchen dropped by about 5C during the last elaboration of the starter, and the effect was more drastic than on wheat or rye starters. I used the starter far too early. Lesson learned

The sources for the flours: for the Divella semolina for the altamura flours - they seem to be out of stock now (as of 8 July 2011)

DeCecco has an online shop (for European countries) where they sell Semola di grano duro rimacinata. They are based in Puglia,but like Divella they seem to use grains from all over the place. I didn't try that (yet).




breadbakingbassplayer's picture

7/5/11 - Last Bake 'til Fall (Drying Sourdough Starter)

Hey All,

It's getting hot and sticky here in NYC, so I have decided to do one last bake and then dry up my sourdough starter so I don't have to keep feeding and discarding until fall when it cools down.


Stiff Levain
50g AP
50g WW
50g Organic Rye Flour
80g water
156g SD starter (whatever I had left in the fridge 50% hydration)
386g Total

9:15pm - Mix starter, knead until all combined, form into ball, cover and let rest.
10:00pm - Divide 300g, form into ball, cover and let rest.  With the remaining 86g or so, on a floured surface, divide into 4 pieces, roll out really thin with a rolling pin, and dry.  When dry, store in a tightly covered container.  I will test this starter out in the fall to see if I can revive it…  Fingers crossed. 

This starter has treated me very well leavening extremely reliably.  I believe it is about 2 years old.  It started out as a liquid starter and was converted to a stiff starter, back to a liquid, and then finally back to a very dry starter kept at 50% hydration in the refridgerator.  It was fed on an odd schedule every 3 to 5 days varying proportions of AP, WW, and organic rye flour, kneaded, left out for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the temperature, and then refrigerated...

Final Dough
600g AP
50g WW
480g water
16g Kosher salt
300g of above stiff leaven
1446g Total

11:45pm - In a large mixing bowl, add the water, leaven, flour, and salt.  Mix with a rubber spatula until a shaggy down forms.  Cover and let rest.
12:15am - Knead briefly (30 seconds or so with the stretch and fold method).  Cover and let rest.
12:30am - Stretch/fold, cover and let rest.
12:45am - Stretch/fold, cover and let rest.
1:00am - Shape into boule, place into a well floured linen lined banneton, flour top of dough, cover with kitchen towel, place into large plastic bag, and into refrigerator on top shelf overnight.  Go to bed.
9:15am - I over slept.  Dough has slightly overflowed the banneton.  Leave in refrigerator.  Clean off baking stone, place on bottom rack, arrange steam pan with lava rocks and water on top rack.  Preheat to 550F with convection.
9:45am - Turn off convection, turn oven down to 500F.  Take banneton out, turn out onto floured peel, do not slash as it seemed overproofed…  Place directly onto baking stone.  Back 500F for 15 minutes, take out steam pan, turn down oven to 450F and bake for 50 minutes.  Let loaf cool completely on wire rack before cutting, at least 12 to 24 hours.

Notes:  300g of stiff levain for 650g of final dough flour when it is warm is too much for an 8 hour refrigerated proof.  Or, my rising basket is too small for 1446g of dough...

Happy Summer!

IBringThePain's picture

Pros and cons of high-gluten flour

I've been operating for several months under the assumption that the higher the protein level in the flour, the better the bread I make would be. I guess I can blame Daniel Leader for this a little bit. But in the past few weeks, I've finally started noticing all the recipes on TFL that call for AP flour, and when I saw Anis Bouabsa's baguette recipe I realized my assumption must be wrong. What I need help understanding is when to use high-gluten flour and when to use AP. I thought that higher gluten levels meant more elasticity, more strength, and a better rise. But if the best baguettes in Paris use AP, I have to be wrong. Right? Help me, please. I'm hopelessly confused.


varda's picture

White Batard

Over the last month or so I have been chasing the elusive yeast water open crumb.   I was working under the theory that one could replace a regular poolish with a combination of yeast water and flour and then bake as usual.   This ran into some technical problems - namely aggressive protease action.   In trying to figure out how to respond to this, I came upon the following enlightening sentence in Hamelman: "Protease is an enzyme whose function is to denature protein, and in a loose mixture like poolish, protease activity is relatively high."  I think this means that protease is generated by yeast as it tries to digest (i.e. denature) the proteins in flour and that in a poolish environment at 100% hydration and with an unknown quantity of yeast in my yeast water  that I was overdoing it.   This time, I pulled back on the amount of yeast water and the hydration of the poolish but not on the hydration of the bread.    The result was much better.  

I have still not got the cuts to open as I would like, but I am quite happy with the flavor which has a lot of depth and somewhat happy with the crumb.   Suggestions for improvements are most welcome.








Final Dough









Yeast water


























Mix yeast water and flour night before.   Leave on counter for 12 hours.   Add flour and water for final dough and mix to develop dough.   Autolyze 1/2 hour.   Mix in salt and mix again.   Ferment for 30 minutes, then stretch and fold in the bowl.   After 30 minutes stretch and fold on the counter.   Gather dough together and do a loose shaping.   Do a third stretch and fold after 30 minutes and another shaping.   Let ferment for 30 more minutes.   Cut in half and preshape.    Rest for 20 minutes.   Shape into batards and place in couche.   Proof for just over an hour.   Bake for 20 minutes at 450 with steam, 25 minutes without. 

A few notes about this.   The dough was quite liquidy until the first counter stretch and fold when it came together pretty nicely.   This was despite two 3 minute mixes in a kitchenaid at progressively increasing speeds.   It was difficult to slash because it was quite sticky and the blade got caught.   

dablues's picture


I'm not sure if I'm posting in the right place.  Hope so.  Does anyone know of a online source that sells skins for stuffing sausage.  Since I've never bought them online before, am looking for a place that is reliable.  I can't find them in Athens, GA.  I thought they would be easy to find.  I had no problems when I lived in NY.  I could purchase them at our local supermarket.  Also, if anyone makes their own sausage, do you use the real or synthetic skins?  Thanks in advance for any help I can get.