The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Leader's Polish Cottage Rye--the helium really helped with the oven spring!

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xaipete's picture
xaipete

Leader's Polish Cottage Rye--the helium really helped with the oven spring!

This was a delicious bread! It was everything I hoped for (thank you David!). This massive loaf had a delightful sourness with a nice rye flavor, a well-developed structure without any hint of heaviness, and a wonderful aroma. I would definitely make it again.


This was a three-build bread: I made the German rye sourdough Thursday night and the rye sourdough Friday night. I used KA bread flour and home-ground unsifted rye (the formula called for white rye so this was a substitution). Everything ticked along exactly as expected. I put the final dough mixture together Saturday morning and mixed it in my Kitchen Aid on speed 4 for 14 minutes (again, thanks for your help on this David!), scraping the sides down twice. After I literally poured the mixture into a dough bucket, I let it ferment at room temperature for about 2 1/4 hours. Meanwhile I scoured the house for an appropriately sized proofing basket for my 2 1/2 pounds of dough finally turning up a basket from a closet.


After rubbing a considerable amount of rye flour into a flour-sack couche, I emptied--again almost poured--the dough into its center. The dough was too slack to shape, so I just lifted the whole thing into the basket, covered it with plastic wrap, and let it proof for another 1 3/4 hours during which time it nearly doubled. I then placed a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet, sprayed it with PAM, placed it over the basket, flipped it over and watched the dough come tumbling out.


After three quick scores about 1/2-inch deep, I slid the spreading mass onto a preheated oven stone on the middle rack, plopped 3/4 cup of ice cubes in a skillet beneath the stone for steaming, shut the door, and hoped for the best. As I watched through the oven window I was delighted to see a lot of oven spring. The dough expanded both upwards and sideways increasing in volume nearly 50%. I was very pleased and hopeful. I threw a piece of foil over the loaf after 20 minutes because I worried that it was getting brown to quickly and then checked it to see if it was done at 40 minutes. It registered 96º C. so I removed it to a cooling rack. I was very happy to feel that the loaf was wonderfully light. I knew I had a winner.



Notes: I used the rye sour from Leader's book. It had sat in the refrigerator un-refreshed for a month but seemed to perform just fine after only one feeding and 12 hours on the counter (actually, I let it sit on the counter for 24 hours before using it); no doubt, this is a testimonial to the rehabilitation properties of rye flour.


You can see the hole in the top of the loaf where I injected the helium.
polish cottage rye


I took some more pictures but didn't have the CF card in the camera so I'll post more tomorrow.


Here are some more pictures. Vodka is the traditional accompaniment.


polish cottage rye


polish cottage rye crumb


This is a picture of about one-third of the loaf in its proofing basket; I'm including it so you can see how really large this massive loaf was.






After our dinner of sausages, grilled red peppers, and sautéed onion relish, we enjoyed a fre$h cherry pie. The pie's crust was perfectly flakey and delicious owing to the incorporation of a small amount of solid Crisco with the butter (as usual, I promised myself that this was absolutely the last time I would use the white stuff!).


fresh cherry pie



--Pamela

Comments

Marni's picture
Marni

I'm so glad it all worked out just as you wanted.  I love watching loaves rise in the oven- so rewarding!


Your pie looks awesome!  Did you pit all those cherries yourself?


Marni

xaipete's picture
xaipete

My cousin is up for the weekend, so he offered to do it. It didn't take too long.


--Pamela

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Pamela, Beautiful Loaf!  WOW, it's hugh!  The crumb and crust couldn't look better....lovely!  Your dinner sounded delicious to go with the loaf..and the cherry pie is my favorite pie. 


Sylvia 

xaipete's picture
xaipete

The bread was great and the pie was 'greater'.


--Pamela

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I'm happy you found it as satisfying a loaf as I did - both to bake and to eat!


At the moment, I'm stuck in Portland having to settle for Pearl Bakery bread and pastries and to send messages from Stumptown Coffee Roasters over a triple iced latte.


It's a rough life.


David

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

Imagine us poor folks who have to settle for this all the time!


Pamela..gorgeous HUGE loaf! and the cherry pie, mmmm, yum!


Betty


 

xaipete's picture
xaipete

Hi Betty. It's always esp. satisfying to work hard on something and have it come out well. This was my first big loaf so this experience was particularly satisfying.


--Pamela

xaipete's picture
xaipete

Sounds like your weekend is particularly rough and probably pretty boring too! It's a great loaf; we're enjoying it a lot.


--Pamela

hsmum's picture
hsmum

Sorry, Pamela, but your post made me blink several times.  You're just teasing about the helium injection....aren't you?  If not, can you comment a bit for us newbies?  I'm sure my question makes me sound either impossibly naive and ridiculous...or completely ignorant of sophisticated bread-baking techniques, but my curiousity has the better of me on this one.


Karen

xaipete's picture
xaipete

It's amazing today what you can do if you know the owner of a store that inflates balloons with helium. Helium, which is both safe and inert, also adds substantive value to the nutritional content of the loaf when eaten because pockets of helium still trapped inside the gluten membrane are responsible for a rise in vocal pitch which, in turn, influences the thyroid gland which then creates an augmentation of one's basal metabolic rate such that it is easier to lose weight.


--Pamela

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

This is a very controversial topic.


Helium inflates the loaf, but it also makes your tongue swell so it can barely fit in your cheek. Many prefer plain, old-fashioned hot air.


David

SteveB's picture
SteveB

You silver (swelled) tongued devil!  :)


SteveB


http://www.breadcetera.com


 

hsmum's picture
hsmum

Okay, impossibly naive and ridiculous it is, then.  (She said, sheepishly.)


Karen

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

Besides being fantastic bread bakers, a number of these talented folks also are extremely witty! Dave and Steve especially and now I'll have to add Pamela to the group.


Glad you joined us!


Betty

SusanWozniak's picture
SusanWozniak

I have never used Crisco.  I only use butter.  My crusts are always flaky but after I started using KA's pastry flours, they're even better.

xaipete's picture
xaipete

Hi Susan. I used Guisto's Baker's Choice in the pie crust. It was the first time I used it for such a task. Perhaps it was the flour and not the Crisco. I'll have to make another test.


--Pamela

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Crisco makes for great crust.  It adds a flakiness that butter alone cannot.  An all butter crust or Pate Brisee tends to be more crumbly more like a cookie type crust with less flakiness...but has lots of flavor...so a combination of the two can make for a very nice flakey and buttery flavor crust...useing a  french frisage method when making your pie dough makes a lovely flakey tender crust.


Sylvia

SusanWozniak's picture
SusanWozniak

Let's chalk this up to taste and/or perception.  In 30 years, I have baked two pies without butter.  One with lard because my mother and grandmother always said it made the best crusts, although they never used lard.  My mother baked crusts with Crisco.  Her's were not flaky and always tasted like baking soda to me.  I also baked one with Crisco and swore never again.


My mother also used a pair of knives to cut shortening into crust and I find that more difficult to use and far less satisfactory.


I use a pastry cutter and butter.  I allow my butter to be in rather large pieces, not the "coarse corn meal" texture every recipe describes.  Frankly, that would be working it far too much.  I blend the water with a large tined steel fork designed for dough mixing.


I formerly used  one of two recipes, Julia Child's from that first two-volume French cooking book with an egg or the one Martha Stewart published in a holiday book that was made in a food processor.  My processor died and I now just wing the recipe bit.


I have recently started refrigerating my dough for an hour while, formerly, I just immediately rolled in and put it in the pie pan.


I find the French frisage method produces a terrible crust.  I know the founder of that Boston bakery Flour loves the method. She calls it schmerring.  I tried it when I first made pies but thought it an unnecessary step.  I resurrected it again after watching her on video.  The crust was terrible.


i always add sugar to help flavor and brown the crust.  Generally,the sugar is brown or golden.  Sometimes, i add cinnamon.  I never add salt although I have added cheese or pepper to crusts for savory pies.


All of my crusts are flaky and I have a following.  I just think I was born to make pies.  When I switched from KA all purpose to KA Mellow Pastry, even my adult kids were amazed.


 

xaipete's picture
xaipete

Hi Susan. While I tend to side with Sylvia on Crisco (or, is Sylvia siding with me?), I own both of the books that you mention and have presently consumed all of that cherry pie and wouldn't mind at all making another. Please give us a run down on how you make your crust. Also, if you have a favorite recipe for cherry pie, I would love to try it.


--Pamela

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Hey, I'm a crisco and crisco with butter kind of pie person..and save me a piece of your pie, Pamela.  I know you have made more than one pie with crisco and that tells me a lot!


Sylvia

xaipete's picture
xaipete

Sylvia, I'll definitely save you a piece of the next pie I make. I ate all of the last one.


--Pamela

pattycakes's picture
pattycakes

I have made a lot of pie crusts, and the recipe that I make the most now is from Chez Panisse Desserts by Lindsey Shere. She uses a little shortening, both salted and unsalted butter, and combines the butter in two ways: first addition, the butter is mixed to the consistency of cornmeal. Second addition, the butter is left in larger chunks (pea size). The pastry then has to be refrigerated for four hours. (I can't actually remember the exact time.) After rolling the dough out, you refrigerate it again. At any rate, refrigerating the dough means that it is less elastic and doesn't shrink as much in the pan, which is very important when baking blind. I do think that, as in bread baking, technique has a huge amount to do with a good result. That and cool hands...It is a complicated and precise way to make a pie crust, but a lot of effort usually goes into one, and this recipe produces consistent results, so I use it.


Patricia

cryobear's picture
cryobear

Being a Cryogenist, and working with liquid helium for many years, I can tell you that it isn't safe to do what you're doing.  Balloon grade helium has oil from the compressors in it and other toxic gases in very minor amounts.  Helium comes from natural gas wells, but only where Uranium is in the area.  Taken with a breath of air, it will go directly into the blood stream and on to the brain; then exit through the skin. However, your helium was long gone, headed to the Sun, long before the loaf was done, trust me...


Bob Farrell


cryobear     

pattycakes's picture
pattycakes

Wow! I can imagine the thrill of making something like that...I felt like that after I made the Pointe-a-Calliere, but I don't think it expanded as much. Part of my addiction to the process of bread baking is that transformation. It's so magical!


Thanks for sharing so much detail and the pictures. And the pie...cherry is my favorite, but not really in the stores or orchards here yet.


Patricia

xaipete's picture
xaipete

What can I say except California is the land of fruit and nuts! Cherrie$ seem to be featured in every market right now around here.


I couldn't believe that loaf inflated in the oven like it was a helium balloon. It really was a thrill, and the finished product exceeded all my expectations.


--Pamela

kutzeh's picture
kutzeh

I also have  a no fail, very flakey pie crust recipe that I got many, many  years ago and I don't remember from who. It is easy to patch and makes 3 single crusts or 1 double and 1 single. Freezes well before baking.


3 c flour


1 /12 c crisco-can use part butter


1 tsp salt


2 tsp sugar for dessert crusts only


cut into pea size pcs. with pastry blender


mix together in measuring cup


1/3 c water


1 egg beaten


1T vinigar


pour into dry mixture and blend with fork. If too wet add 1 or 2 T flour so as to roll, dough should be soft but not stickey. Roll between plastic wrap sprinkled with flour  and flip from plastic into pan. I nuke my single crusts for 2 min to set and it does not shrink during baking.