Help! how do I get a crispier crust?
First off, let me just say how wonderful this forum (and indeed this website) is. I have made several posts with great feedback, and learned a lot of amazing things. Thanks one and all!
My current Bread Adventures have me searching for the perfect baguette - of course, this is rather subjective...it's got to be perfect to me. What that baguette consists of is a light but chewy crumb with large holes and a crust so crispy it tears your mouth apart like eating a bowl of Cap'n Crunch. Over the past few months, I have been neck-deep in Reinhart's amazing "The Bread Baker's Apprentice," trying out recipes and techniques, hoping to create this perfect baguette.
I've tried Poolish Baguette, Pain de Campagne, Ciabatta (made from a Biga) and Pain a l'Ancienne. So far, the Pain a l'Ancienne has come closest. The crumb is certain close to the mark, but my crust seems to come out more chewy than crusty.
So I've come searching for tips...what are the keys to a crustier crust and a lighter crumb? Any recipes I should try? Do I need to move on to sourdough to get what I'm looking for? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!