The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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sunhana's picture

Preferment dough in warm water "bath tub"

Does anyone know this method of SOAKING a prefermented dough in WARM WATER? i came across this method from the video clip ( The prefermented dough is left in a tub of warm water and let it slowly ferment. Once the dough floats to the surface of the water, it will be used to mix with the remainder ingredients.

I wonder what is this technique? wonder if by using this method, it will give better texture to the bread.

Will give this method a try as i love to try out new method to achieve better bread texture (without the use of bread conditioner/improver).

Allenph's picture

Souffle fell!

I'm new to baking, and it's probably ill advised but as you may know, I'm in it to make my OWN recipes. :)

After doing some research, I decided to go right for what I perceived as the holy grail, souffles. After doing some research, I came up with this.

My lemon souffle recipe is...

(4 Eggs)

1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Lemon Juice
1/2 Cup Flour

Egg Whites
1/4 Sugar

What I did:

I started by separating the egg whites and the egg yolks, CERTAIN not to include any fats that might ruin my meringue in the form of dirty pans or yolk. Leaving the whites to warm to room temperature, I began working on the custard. I combined all of the ingredients, and beat them with a whisk until it was a smooth slightly thick liquid, close to the consistency of good hot chocolate. I then put my stove on the lowest heat setting, and cooked while constantly stirring for about 25 minutes, when it started to thicken slightly. I let it cool, and as it did it turned a perfect custard yellow, and took on a perfect consistency, while tasting slightly of flour. 

Then, while I waited for my custard to cool, I went to work on the meringue. I added the egg whites to a pristine stainless steel bread mixing bowl, washed my whisk thoroughly, dried it, as not to disturb the fluffing of my egg whites, and began beating. I beat them by hand for about thirty minutes, mostly because I'm a sentimental man, and I felt it would be almost sacrilegious to put so much work into something and use a machine to do it. As it took on a white color, and a texture similar to whipping cream, I added my 1/4 cup sugar in small increments, until I could lift up my whisk, turn it upside down, and have my meringue stay at about a 45 degree angle. Satisfied, I measured out 2 cups of the meringue, approximately half. I added it to a bowl and vigorously stirred it into an equal 2 cups of the now slightly above room temperature custard. I then took the other half of the meringue and gently folded it into the mixture I had already.

After thoroughly mixing, I heated the over to 400 degrees, and added the pan of my souffle batter. This pan mind you is not for souffles, it's a standard round, glass pan (See the picture I included.) that I thought would work. I set the timer for 25 minutes and practically tiptoed away after shutting the oven door gently. The timer went off, and I turned the oven light on to check the souffle. It was golden brown, slightly depressed in the middle, and not overflowing from the pan as I expected all though it had risen. I dared not leave it in any longer, and took it out gently only to spend about two or three hours for the result I posted above.

Not only did it not hold, but it tasted very "eggy."

Looking for pointers, is there anything I did wrong? Adjustments that need to be made to my recipe?

Thanks in advanced, I assume this is the right place, a souffle is "almost" a cake right? :)

Allenph's picture

New here! :D

Hi, my name is Allen Hundley. I'm a 17 year old web developer in Florida, and I have taken an interest in baking. :)

I know this is probably a terrible idea (It has turned out well so far.) but I've been creating my own recipes. I used information on this site, mainly all of the tutorials, and my first loaf was an attempt at a boule spiced bread, surprisingly it turned out, and I went out and bought more flour and yeast. :)

This first loaf was basically my attempt to see if I had learned anything from the tutorials, so I tried everything I thought I knew how to do. All though I foolishly did not write down the recipe, I do recall that other than the obvious ingredients I included whole milk, honey, olive oil, basil and oregano. I raised the bread three times, then basted with olive oil and egg before scoring, then popped it in the oven, steaming every 5-10 minutes. The result was outstanding, light thin crust, subtle taste of the herbs, rich flavor, etc. The one thing I did not like was that after the first few hours it was relatively dense, whether this was from insufficient needing on my first loaf or not, we will never know. In my next load I added an egg white to remedy this problem. 

I do have the recipe for my second loaf, which had an excellent taste, but was a terrible attempt at a batard. I'll probably be asking a lot of questions around here, thanks guys!

Canyongap's picture

Tartine Starter Question

I'm a newbie (both to this forum and to Tartine bread).  I'm on my second starter attempt and not sure if what I have is working.

i started with 50 grams of 50/50 white all purpose and wheat King Arthur flour and 50 grams of bottled water.  By the third day I had a mix that had risen at least double.  I stirred all of it together, then discarded about 75 to 80%, leaving about 25 to 30 grams of starter, which I then fed with 50 grams of the 50/50 mix and 50 grams of water.  Covered with a single layer towel.  24 hours later it had risen about 300%.  I repeated the feeding.  Almost no activity for the next 7 to 8 days except for some bubbles around the edge.  Now, after about 10 days, I'm getting bubbles around the edge and a rise of about 50% after 10 to 12 hours, but it doesn't drop.  It's still at that level (or close) after 24 hours.  I'm still feeding every 24 hours, but unsure why the rise doesn't drop.  It stinks somewhat after 24 hours, not much odor after feeding.  Temperature is about 74 degrees, sitting in a fairly dark corner with no drafts.

Would appreciate your thoughts.  Thanks.







FatTony's picture

Please help! Wholemeal bread keeps sinking?

Hi all,

Hopefully someone can help me as I am tearing my hair out trying to figure out what is going wrong?

Every single wholemeal loaf I try to make in my breadmaker, sinks on the 3rd rise/bake? I have tried numerous recipes, different flours, less liquid, more liquid, hot, warm & cold water, less yeast etc... all to no avail? They always taste good but they look awful. I have even tried a different breadmaker. 

My white bread is great and looks & tastes really nice so I know that the machines are not faulty? 

Can anyone offer any tips, as surely you must be able to make a decent wholemeal loaf otherwise what's the point off having the function on the machines?

Thanks in advance. 

JDavidG's picture

First Post

I am a relatively new baker of bread from WV, USA. Saw this site this morning ... read a few of the posts and feel ... not so alone. None of my friends or acquaintances bake bread (or much else from scratch) and it is great to find so many who share my interest. Most of my efforts have gone well but I'll be back soon to get help for, at least, one issue.

I just want to stop and say, "Hello" to the Fresh Loaf community. And ... thanks for being here.



108 breads's picture
108 breads

Sourdough Starter - Loosey Goosey Approach

I do not measure. I go on vacation. Here's how I started and now maintain my happy, healthy, bubbly starter. And no, I am not raising it to be independent and go to college. The starter is a productive pet. (Photo is from a Roman mosaic at the Art Institute in Chicago.)

Abelbreadgallery's picture

Rustic loaf. 70% bread flour, 20% whole wheat, 10% kamut.

Rustic loaf. 70% bread flour, 20% whole wheat, 10% kamut.

snead hearn's picture
snead hearn

Wheat Grinder - Nutrimill vs Vitamix

I confess to being a lurker - I bake quite a bit, but have my repertoire of recipes so don't comment as much as I should but I will try to be better!

Here's my question: I grind almost all of my own wheat (and other grains, Kamut, teff, quinoa, etc) in my Nutrimill. It works well. It is loud, slow (although I have nothing to compare it to) and makes some dust. 

We recently were given a Vitamix Blender thing. It did not come with the dry container. 

What I wonder is, given my very limited kitchen space - should I sell the Nutrimill and buy the dry container for the Vitamix? Has anyone compared these? I'd love to save a little bit of space, and if I can even break even, I'll be happy.


Will the Vitamix Dry Container grind with any sort of the flexibility I've come to love with the Nutrimill, or should I just suck it up and keep them both?



RobynNZ's picture

Serious Eats' Taste Test SF Sourdough

Serious Eats have conducted a taste test on some San Francisco Sourdoughs.