The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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Nici's picture

Doughnuts - baked not fried ?


In the summer we visited Swindon (UK) railway museum and at the farmers' market outside ate the most wonderful light, filled , round, doughnuts; which I would like to emulate.   I have read lots of the posts here on doughnut making, but I think most end up being fried.  Has anyone experimented and succeeded in making a light, yeasted ( not sourdough) doughnut which is baked in the oven, and would you like to share the recipe ? 

Many thanks. 


ianb's picture

Strong but bland starter

I've started to store my starter in the fridge, as opposed to feeding it every day. It's a fairly new starter - maybe a couple of months old. After a week or so in the fridge,  I "woke" it and fed it. No problems - it grew happily.


But, the loaves I've made from it are a bit disappointing - they aren't as sour as I remember. More like a good ordinary loaf. Is this just what happens when you put into hibernation/stasis? Or, is the starter just young? Or, what?



hankjam's picture

Loaf structure....


I've not been baking Sourdoughs too long, started last year and it's going alright. The bread often tastes fine but I have a slight problem with my looks... my hydration is usually around 67%, 300 g water and 450 g strong white flour. I usually build with 100g starter, 100g water and 100g flour, mix and leave till bubbles are good, then 150g water and 300g flour, autolyse for 30-60 mins, add salt and knead. Leave 45 mins, knead for 2 mins, repeat and then place in floured basket. Pop into bag and seal, leave to rise.

When it comes to transferring to Dutch oven the dough nearly pours out and there is no way I could handle it as I've seen on some videos..

Question is: why is my dough so weak, 67% is not too wet?



acebaker's picture

Dry on top of sour

I have a starter I use twice a week. It's doubling when I feed it and turning out tasty loaves. The only thing is it's started "drying out" between feedings. I use it twice a week as I said, and feed it both the day before I plan to use it and also the day I use it, so I'm feeding it at least 4 times a week. It sits on the counter in a glass canning jar (the kind with a glass lid, rubber gasket seal)  in the meantime. It's not particularily dry or humid where I live and heat is a comfortable room temp.  On days when I don't feed it, it gets a dry skin on top.Should I be concerned.

It's 100% hydration, 70% unbleached all purpose, 30% organic light rye

chris319's picture

Good Cheap Mixer

chris319's picture

Two Posts Swallowed

Twice I tried to post but the forum software choked and swallowed the posts when I tried to preview them -- something about a server error. The content was not retrievable. It's a shame, too, because I think readers might have found the information useful, but dang if I'm going to retype them all over again, so they simply won't be posted.

You need some better softare for this board.

Now let's see if this message will post (ingers crossed).

Skibum's picture

Skibum's Sochi onion buns

This bake was based loosely on Norm's onion buns recipe and hey, the way the buns lined up in the Lodge cast cooker looked somewhat like the Olympic logo. I soaked 2 Tbs dehydrated onion and 1 tsp dehydrated garlic in boiled water until reconstituted, then used the resulting water for the mix and the onion and garlic for topping mixing salt and oil as per nbicomputers - I think. I used about 20% white levain, forgot to add the egg, but used lots of malt syrup and sugar . . . The house smelled amazing when these were baking, covered in the Lodge CC for 10 @ 450, then another 12 @ 425 convection, turning. Great crisp crunch to the crust! and really nice flavour!!  Just a schmear of butter is good when warm, but these are calling out for smoked meat, grainy mustard and Rene's garlic ceasar dressing!

I forgot to add fresh rosemary and sauteed garlic on this bake. Oh well next time. . . 

Happy baking, cooking and eating TFLoafers!

hanseata's picture

Cecilienhof Vollkornbrot - The Bread to Honor the Potsdam Conference

In September I offered this challenge to my fellow TFLers: to recreate an ancient grain bread I had enjoyed during my recent stay in Potsdam, in Cecilienhof Palace, where Churchill, Truman and Stalin met for the Potsdam Conference.

Several of you rose to the occasion, and came up with your own versions of this interesting bread.

Inspired by all this activity I sat down with my Breadstorm program to create my own formula. Except for the emmer, I had all the ingredients from the list in my pantry.

The bread turned out to be one of the best loaves I ever made, we absolutely LOVED it! Whether it was the complexity of the ingredients, or just an optimal process to develop and marry the different flavors I can't say.

Here you find my post with my formula and the links to all TFL friends' who took the challenge.

Thanks, Janet, DBM, Brian, Jürgen and Ian for your enthusiasm!



breadsong's picture

Sesame Semolina Rolls - for World Bread Day

Hello everyone,

                          Today , October 16, is World Bread Day.    World Bread Day 2013 - 8th edition! Bake loaf of bread on October 16 and blog about it!

Zorra’s invitation to participate described the idea behind World Bread Day:

“…to honor our daily bread and be grateful that we have sufficient food. Not all of us are this lucky.”


In the spirit of gratitude and our recent Canadian Thanksgiving, I’m offering my Thanksgiving dinner rolls as a contribution to World Bread Day.

Many thanks to Nancy Silverton for her recipe for Sesame Semolina Sandwich Rolls, and to Richard Bertinet for a shaping idea I saw in one of his books – a beautiful, braided sesame roll :^)

This was a soft dough but with careful handling it braided OK. Ms. Silverton’s formula includes instant yeast –
I reduced the yeast and retarded the dough in bulk overnight so it would be cold when I started to braid and shape, hoping this would make the dough easier to handle.

Dividing 30g strands, then preshaping

                     Preshaped (top), ends tapered (middle), and extended to about 6” in length (bottom)

Braiding, starting at center, flipping 180 degrees away from you, then finishing the braid

The tops of the rolls were gently pressed onto a clean, damp tea towel, then gently pressed onto a tray of untoasted sesame seeds.
After proofing, the rolls were baked with steam for 15 minutes at 425F, turned for even browning, and baked about 10 more minutes at 375F.


There was enough dough left over from the batch I made to make a small bâtard - 
  a bread basket for the Thanksgiving table

The flavor? Delightful, sweetness from durum flour, lovely toasted flavors from the roasted sesame topping, and a good, crunchy crust!

Ms. Silverton's Sesame Semolina dough made nice breadsticks, too :^)

             (breadsticks baked, slightly visible on the left)

Thanks to Zorra for putting together the bread display for this year's World Bread Day - looking forward to seeing all of the breads that were baked for today!

Happy baking everyone,
:^) breadsong


DrPr's picture

Can I pinch off the poolish to make a starter?

I made a poolish using a quarter tsp of instant yeast. Can I take a tbspn or so and begin a sourdough starter?