The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Dr. Evil Bread!

SulaBlue's picture

Dr. Evil Bread!

After going to I decided to try the Poilane-style miche. I was amazed at how easy it was! Unfortunately the crust went from 'done' to 'oops' in the last couple of minutes that the inside was finishing. I probably should have put the lid back on as it got a bit more toasty especially on the ears. BUT, I shall focus on the good qualities!

It's poofy, the slashing turned out nicely and didn't have -huge- ears. It SMELLS wonderful, and it is the first well-shaped loaf I've made with the starter I made from scratch. I think some of the darkness comes from the fact that I substituted stone-ground whole wheat for lighter wheat, rather than simply being overdone.

The inside texture is nice and chewy with a slightly open crumb typical of whole grain breads.

I think the next time I will add a tiny bit of sweetener as it does have that very 'whole grain' flavor. The butter, though is just enough to counter it. As you can tell, I couldn't wait!


Oh... and why 'Dr. Evil Bread' - because it's a Mini-Mi(che) of course!

niagaragirl's picture

Sometimes it takes a couple of times to get things right. I made two Itallain style loaves the other night, and the bottoms looked burnt. I said "oh no!" but on the smell test, there was no burnt smell - it was he very last stage of a deep caramel before getting to charcoal. The loaves were great.

The variable on the almost burned bottoms? I used a brand new large sheet pan which apparently is the best heat conducting pan on the planet ;-) I'll be adjusting the baking temp and method next time around for this pan.

xaipete's picture

You could also double-pan your new sheet pan. That should prevent the last stage of deep carmel without adjusting the heat.


proth5's picture

and someone who has closely examined a real Poilane miche in the recent past.

One secrets of a real Poilane miche is the "high extraction" flour.  Of course, I work like a maniac to mill the stuff, but you can approximate it by taking most commercial whole wheat flours (not all) and sifting them to remove the bran.  If you have one of those sets of stainless steel strainers, use the largest to sift the flour.  Some bran, but not all, will sift out in this process.  It really does make a difference.

Alternatively you can blend in 20% of AP flour, but I have found those results to be a little less satisfactory than sifting the whole wheat flour.

A "boldly baked" loaf like that sometimes has many good qualities. Congratulations on a good tasting loaf!

SulaBlue's picture

RE  niagaragirl: I think I really need to get myself a thermometer for the stove itself. I've always had problems baking in this bloody thing, with times being off anywhere from 5-10 minutes.  I have decided that my best way to go, as the oven is so bloody temperamental, is to cook inside my Le Creuset dutch oven. Of course, this means I shan't be making anything but round loaves until I can figure something else out!

RE proth5: I really do like the idea of it being "boldly baked" rather than "overdone." It's actually NOT overdone. The inside is still quite moist and tender. I think if I'd just left the lid on a bit longer I would have gotten a more golden brown than sienna hue ;)