The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Fougasse from AB&P

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dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Fougasse from AB&P

Davesmall's recent postings of his Fougasses (Fougasse with refrigerated dough ) inspired me to finally make this bread from Provence and the Côte d'Azur. I first had this bread in Lourmarin, in the Vaucluse. My wife and I visited an old high school French teacher of mine. His French wife has a family connection with that village going back generations. We spent a delightful day on a motor tour of the area, including several stops at bakeries, because each had different specialties. We ate the fougasse with a delicious daube de boeuf for lunch that day.


I made these fougasses from the formula in Michel Suas' Advanced Bread and Pastry. it uses a levain but is also spiked with a small amount of instant yeast. Per Suas' formula, I added some rosemary to the dough, fresh from the garden. We dipped it in EVOO with a bit of balsamic vinegar and had it with salmon cakes and a salad of tomatoes, cucumber and radishes with a mustard vinaigrette. A lovely Navarro Pinot Gris was a perfect accompaniment, although a rosé would have been more traditional with this bread.



Fougasses proofing



Proofed, ready to bake (450ºF for 20 minutes with steam)



Fougasses


Fougasse is a crust-lovers' bread. It is very crunchy but with enough tender, highly aerated crumb to absorb dipping oil. I enjoyed dipping it in the salad dressing more than the oil and balsamic. I ate 3/4 of one myself at dinner, demonstrating my customary restraint.


David

Comments

proth5's picture
proth5

the Vaucluse.  Don't make me pine away for it ('cause I'm not getting to leave Okinawa any time soon...)  But surely the Vaucluse is much more red wine country?


Anyway, try oil cured olives (from Les Baux if you can find them...) in the dough.  Rosemary or not.  Now that's a little taste of heaven.


See also, Mr Hamelman's instructions on shaping fougasse.  He delays some of the shaping and cutting until after the proof.  Makes the whole operation easier for my hands.


Nice stuff.


(used to be a bread baker...)Pat

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

A variety of wines are produced in Provence, but my understanding is the rosé is  regarded as the best of them. FYI, see this link: http://www.terroir-france.com/wine/provence_winemaking.htm


I compared Hamelman's and Suas' directions for fougasse. I did have some concern that the cuts would close during proofing or baking if made prior to proofing, but they didn't, as you can see. Actually, the fougasses didn't expand a lot during proofing but had dramatic oven spring. The crumb was very holey. I may give Hamelman's method a try next time. I chose Suas' formula because it uses levain rather than another pre-ferment.


I do sympathize with your lack of opportunity to bake in Okinawa. I have trouble enough if I'm away from my oven for a week.


David

proth5's picture
proth5

Of course, there is Southern Provence and the regions of the Vaucluse and Luberon.  The great red wines of Cotes du Rhone, Cotes du Ventoux, and the famous Chateau Neuf du Pape -  oh, and Gigondas  - are more of what I recall from that area along with the lovely fougasse (or pompes a l'huile). (Although I did have some lovely white Chateau Neuf du Pape).


I will confess that my fondness for "Provence" is more centered in the Luberon and the Vaucluse than the Cote d'Azur, so my perception of a "Provence" wine is skewed a bit.


But hey, red, rose - it's all good.


You can always use a Suas formula with a Hamelman technique.  As I said, my hands just found the shaping to be easier.  Chacun a son gout! :>)


Baking deprivation - not funny.  Not funny at all.

davesmall's picture
davesmall

Looks very good David. I have some fresh Rosemary growing in our garden and will have to try adding some next time.


One detail I neglected to mention in my earlier posts. I did ask the owner of the French Bistro that serves such outstanding Fougasse why they chose the legs shape vs the leaf shape that David used (pictured above)?  He said this is so they can easily serve different size portions in the restaurant by tearing off a leg or two. In other words, if a single diner comes in they tear off a single leg and serve hot from the oven. If a party of four they serve the entire loaf.



 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

One "leg" wouldn't be enough for me! I like the leaf shape, both for its appearance and for the relative increase in crust.


And thanks for inspiring me to make fougasse!


David

longhorn's picture
longhorn

Fougasse is one of those distinctive, great breads that seems to always carry wonderful memories. Thanks for sharing and resurfacing my memories!


Love it!


Jay

txfarmer's picture
txfarmer

I too am a crust lover, hence all the baguettes that I make. Rosemary sounds perfect in them.