The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Most bookmarked

  • Pin It
Neo-Homesteading's picture



So this is my first Introduction entry to the fresh loaf site. My name is Cat, I'm a homemaker, wife and mother of two young sons. My primary passion is of course being a mother but my real fascination is being a cook and baker. I run my own blog at, my short term goals are satisfying my families need to eat, and ideally I'd like to publish a cook book. My long term goals well... I'd like my children to be grown with fond  memories of how I tried extra hard to give them cherished food memories, for as long as I can remember I've documented things in my mind by the foods of each occasion. Many years from now I really just want my family to have great memories and to be proud of me. 

Although I maintain my own personal blog regularly I plan to update on this site as well. For a few years now I've become mildly obsessed with all things bread, and sourdough especially. I do bake from scratch and often make every meal as home made as possible but my passion is baking and fermenting. In addition to being obsessed with bread I also home brew my own meads, wines and beers, and I'm fond of home preserving. The absolute perfect supper to me is a glass of home brewed mead, a loaf of crusty bread and sometimes even a home preserved chutney or jam. So this is my hello I hope to offer something to this lovely bread head community! 


Dearest Regards, 


carnub's picture

London bakeries & bread baking utensils



I'm travelling to London for a week later this month and really want to visit a good bakery. Any recommendations?


I'm also looking for a good shop to pick up a few good baking utensils, again any recommendations would be a great help.


Many thanks in advance.

RobertS's picture

pH strips to the rescue!!!

Still working on making a seed culture, using dark rye flour, so I can create my first barm, so I can make my first sourdough loaf. To make a long story short, conflicting information I had read caused two misfires with my first two starters. Both misfires hinged on the problem of knowing for certain when a seed culture has been successfully created. In one source, it said wait for bubbling and doubling. In another source, it said wait for yeasty smell AND doubling. In another source, it said if there is a yeasty smell, it means the yeast are dead!   OK, so I plunged ahead.  Well, on my first starter, I got the doubling and proceeded to next stage, i.e., mixing up a sponge. Nothing whatsoever happened, not even bubbling, for 5 days (not the 4-6 hours I was hoping for!!). On next attempt, I got bubbling and doubling, but understood that was just bacteria action. For 6 days now, nothing further has happened, despite my following instructions faithfully.

Then I whipped up another batch as per BBA seed culture instructions, but ordered in some food pH test strips. Day 3, which is today, I got doubling, and followed Reinhard's instruction to toss 1/2 and feed again, nevertheless. But where, really, really, is this concoction at, anyway, I asked myself? Gas or yeast expansion?  The smell is --- i don't know--- definitely not yeasty, but it is not unpleasant. My nose hasn't told me anything, really. So I dipped in my handy-dandy pH strip and discovered the culture is at 5. And a couple of bubbles are just starting to make their appearance.

Now I KNOW where my culture is at. (Thank you, Debra Wink.) I look forward to tomorrow, when I probably will be ready to make my barm, and definitely will not be tempted to think that maybe any future doubling is bacteria-caused. And yes, I will take another pH reading just to make sure.

I don't know if anyne has used pH strips in their baking, but as for me, I believe they are a great and really cheap tool which I intend to use from now on.




ramat123's picture

My favorite loaf recipe

Hi tfl,

I am baking artisan bread for quite some time now and use your info on this site intensively.
It is now the time to try to return something back to the forum and ask a question.
The recipe is taken from a mix of a few sources and was developed during dozens of loaves in a home oven where my colleges at work who keep buying it twice a week helped me a lot with their comments.
The overall characteristic of the bread is a 33% bread flour, 33% whole wheat flour and 33% whole rye flour. The leaven is 70% hydration with the same mix of flours. The crust is quite thick and stays very crunchy for several hours after the bake. The crumb is somewhat dense and a little chewy. Just a little. It gives the bread a great country taste.

Here is a picture of it. (It's better than the pictures).



Here is the overall recipe:

Dough intergradient's
240 gram whole rye flour.
280 gram whole wheat flour.
280 gram bread flour.
590 gram water.
270 gram 70% hydration starter.
Salt 24 gram

12 hours before the final mix add the following to a mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. Cover with plastic and put in about 24c for 10-14 hours until it ripens.
60 gram whole rye flour
60 gram whole wheat flour
60 gram bread flour
125 gram water
25 gram of mature starter.

Add all the intergradient's to mixing bowl except for the salt.
Mix 30 seconds after the dough comes together on first speed.
Add the salt.
Mix on second speed for 3 minutes. The dough should be developed and not very wet.
Put the dough in a lightly floured plastic for a bulk fermentation of 2 hours.
Fold once after 1 hours.

Final fermentation
Shape two oval or round loaves. Let rest in proofing baskets for 4-5 hours. 45 minute before the bake start the oven to 230c with a pizza stone on the bottom of the oven.
2 minutes before the push the loaves to the oven steam the oven with ½ cup of water. Then, another ½ cup just before loading the loaves.
Score the loaves and load them to the oven.
Bake for 1 hour.
Slightly open the door 3 minutes before the end of the bake.
Cool down.
Preferably, let rest for at least 4 hours.

Hope some of you will find this bread as good as me.
Please let me know if you know of other recipes with similar characteristics.
Thanks a lot,



truman's picture

Need help identifying name of bread.

I am transcribing a journal from 1904. It's about a group of guys hiking their way in the woods in northern Minnesota to stake their timber claim. They have a cook which keeps making this bread but the guy's writing is not the best. It looks like Gullette but I can't find anything like it searching in Google. This is what he writes:

Wm. who is our cook makes what we call “Gullette”.  This is a very palatable bread and is made as follows:  He mixes a can of baking powder into about 20 pounds of flour and then opens the sack pushes the flour up against the sides so as to get a hollow, into this he pours water and mixes his dough, then takes the dough and puts the dough into the frying pan and places it in the fire.  After it has baked there for about 5 to 10 minutes the bread is baked and he puts in some more dough, this is repeated until enough bread has been baked.

Has anyone heard of Gullette - perhaps I'm intrepeting it wrong or he mispelled it. Any help would be greatly appreciated. He also appears to refer to this as "Dough-Gods" or "Dough-Goods" though it looks more like gods. He always puts quotes around these.

Thanks very much!


Trishinomaha's picture

Jewish Bakers Tests - Stan's Poppy Horns

Obviously we can't share the recipes - you'll have to buy the Jewish Baker's Cookbook for that =) but I made the poppy horns yesterday and they turned out beautifully. The dough is a dream to work with and the flavor is unbeatable! 

jombay's picture

Daniel Leader's Sourdough Croissants

Here are my sourdough croissants from Daniel Leader's Local Breads. It's the nicest croissant dough I have worked with thus far.




Baker's Percentage

Whole Milk

Liquid Levain

Instant Yeast

300 gms

100 gms

15 gms




Unbleached AP flour

500 gms


Unsalted Butter (for dough)

60 gms


Granulated Sugar

15 gms



Unsalted Butter (for roll in)

10 gms

200 gms





jennyloh's picture

Beer Bread Roll

I was in for a pleasant surprise when I made the beer bread from Jeffrey Hamelman's Bread book.  It was sweet and tasty.  I had my fun turning this into rolls.  

I've adapted the recipe a little,  reducing whole wheat,  and using the diastatic malt powder as I just couldn't find barley that I could sprout.  

I'm beginning to appreciate the stretch and fold method,  as I do see the impact on the crust.  I'm also learning how to steam my oven such that I get the thin crispy crust.  

Check out my full blog here.  



SteveB's picture

Tahini Bread

For any who might be interested, I've described the baking of tahini bread here.





bread10's picture

Kamut (Khorasan) vs Spelt Flour



I have used wholemeal spelt for both bread and pasta and also white spelt for bread.

I have used Kamut / Khorasan / Egyptian Gold once for pasta, but am not very familiar with the properties of this flour, apart from that it is very similar to spelt.


I would like to know how Kamut compares to spelt particularly for breadmaking. (Health & nutrition, protein, ease of digestion, breadmaking, taste etc...) ??

and anything else that may be of particular interest regarding these flours?


Thanks Heaps!