The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

My recent breads and two desserts

chouette22's picture

My recent breads and two desserts

Finally I am finding (or rather taking) the time to post about my recent baking activities. And since I am still on vacation, but the semester starts next week, I'd better not rely on having more leisure then...

I have baked quite a bit with my sourdough starter (which is now about 4 months old, but has already spent five weeks straight in the fridge when I was in Switzerland - seems to have survived it well) and we all love the resulting breads. Here are some examples:

The classic Vermont Sourdough (Hamelman):

Susan from San Diego's "Original Sourdough":

Sourdough Walnut and Sultana Bread (recipe by Shiao-Ping):

This bread was absolutely delightful. I put all kinds of dried fruit (the big black spots you see are prunes). The only change I will make next time is to include a tiny amount of sweetness, a spoon or two of honey probably.

Pain de Provence (Floyd's recipe; herb bread, no sourdough):

Delicious! I made it with all sorts of fresh herbs from the garden, chopped very finely.

King Arthur's Monkey Bread (no sourdough):

By the time I got the camera, the kids with the visiting neighbour kids had already torn into it ...

And for good measure, two desserts.

Blueberry Pie with fresh Michigan berries:

And finally, Eclairs filled with Vanilla Pudding and fresh strawberries. They certainly didn't last long!


As I said in my introduction, I LOVE a certain Swiss bread and have been trying to recreate some kind of copy of the patented original. I'll do a separate post on how that is coming along.




Salome's picture

. . . and I was hoping to find more about the Pain Pailasse in this post. ;)

Nevertheless, the breads displayed look "yuuummmiii" and the desserts as well. Even though I haven't got a sweet tooth... ;)

How was the crumb in the first two? Did you get big holes?

I think I have to bake a herb bread soon.

Salome (Who just got the next trial of the 100 % whole-wheat bread with yoghurt out of the oven . . .)

chouette22's picture

Hi Salome,

here is a crumb shot, a bit irregular, but fairly open.

And I'll write about the Paillasse soon, promised.

Looking forward to your whole-wheat experiments. I am in the process of making one from Reinhart's "Whole Grain Breads" that I received a couple of weeks ago. I'll post about that too.

Salome's picture

looks nice! I like irregular holes.

about my whole-wheat experiments: I just had a tiny slice of the third Whole-Wheat bread today, because I cut a loaf in half and gave it to our two neighbour-women who live on their own. So I basically tried somewhat "from the middle", took pictures and had other bread for dinner, which had to be eaten first. I'll publish my post when I had some serious slices. . . ;) But you will find it here.

Whole grain Breads or Laurel's kitchen bread book . . . I don't know whether I should get one of these . . . I love Whole Grains, but I don't like enriched doughs with sugar, butter etc. that much. And it seems to me that many recipes out of Reinhart's and Laurel's books are enriched, sandwich-style breads. What do you think about Reinhart's Whole Grain book?


chouette22's picture

... but you are right that many of Reinhart's breads in that book do have a small amount of sweetness (a Tbsp of honey or two, for example), and a Tbsp or two of oil, and many of his soakers are made with milk, buttermilk, or yogurt.

Since I had just gotten it, I have so far read only the chapters at the beginning about his baking method, and then I just leafed through the recipes. I hadn't noticed that fact about it. However, I feel just like you, I don't like my breads to be sweet at all, so it'll be very easy to adjust the recipes. I did stick to the recipe of the multi-grain bread I baked a couple of days ago, since I wanted to see if that small amount of honey was needed or if it bothered me. With all the whole-wheat and seeds added to it, it balanced the taste very well and I will probably leave that ingredient in the recipe.

I bought the book because it has many breads with soakers and that's what I was looking for. I love breads studded with seeds and grains!

PS: The beautiful picture of your whole-wheat breads now greets us on TFL!

SylviaH's picture

Beautiful display of your baking!   


sharonk's picture

these are magnificently beautiful!

chouette22's picture

... Sylvia and Sharon for the nice compliments. :)

summerbaker's picture

I love the cut out flowers on your pie.  Did you just make extra dough and use a cookie cutter?  The loaves look perfect as well.


chouette22's picture

... and yes, I just cut out a few flowers from a little dough I had reserved for decoration (I didn't make any extra, there's always a tiny bit left).

ques2008's picture

I like the way you scored your breads, but most of all since I have a very sweet tooth, I really liked your eclairs - they look yummy.  I wonder if a recipe is forthcoming!