The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

First bake from Bertinet's 'Crust'

Franko's picture
Franko

First bake from Bertinet's 'Crust'

This past Sunday I was in the book store browsing...where else.. but through the cooking section. One of the books that interested me the most was Richard Bertinet's 'Crust', in particular for some of the unique recipes in it. It also included a DVD of Bertinet demonstrating his techniques for hand mixing and kneading brioche and levain. The book has some very good photography as well and the price was reasonable so I went for it. Mr. Bertinet has been mentioned a fair bit lately on TFL so I was curious to see what I could learn from him. While the book is not particularly technical, primarily being meant for an advanced home baker I think, his methods are that of an expert baker who has a clear and easy style of explaining a formula or procedure.

When I mentioned in a thread on Sunday http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/19547/richard-bertinet-wins-major-uk-award that I'd picked up the book a couple of members replied mentioning that they had it as well and thought it was a good one to have, although they both thought the hydration for his Ciabatta formula was too low. I looked at it and didn't think it seemed out of range but decided to try it for myself and see. Now normally I'm not a real stickler for being exact when it comes to scaling water, but going more for the feel of the dough as described by the author or any included photos. This time though I weighed out all the ingredients right to the specified gram and followed his times and oven temps fairly close as well. Of the half dozen or so ciabattas I've made over the last eight months I think this is one of the better ones. It may be partially due to having used a lower protein flour (10%) for this one than I have in the past or maybe because I spent more time developing it by hand than I normally do, but whatever the reason it made a good loaf. The crust is fairly thin and splintery and the crumb while being a bit more open than I prefer, has a good chew to it for an all white bread. The flavour is just what I expect a ciabatta to taste like, wheaty, toasty, with a bit of richness from the extra virgin olive oil coming through. Very tasty!


Franko


 


Comments

MichaelH's picture
MichaelH

A fine looking loaf that is likely delicious as well. Beautiful crumb and photography.


Michael

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Michael, I appreciate your comments!


Ciabatta to me is not the most interesting bread out there, and I think sometimes that far too much is made of it on this forum, but it does have it's merits. Eaten on it's own it's OK, but it really shines with fresh tomatoes, olives, cheese or sauces. I like that it's simplicity is it's greatest strength.


Franko


 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Nice looking Ciabatta, Franko! Yummy


khalid

Ruralidle's picture
Ruralidle

Franko


Looks good, better than my last attempt when I reduced the hydration slightly from RB's recipe.  All you need now is a good topping to make bruschetta from it or some very nice extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar to dip it in!


Ruralidle

Franko's picture
Franko

Hello Ruralidle,


Funny you should mention those toppings because that's almost exactly what I did. I have a good bottle of Spanish olive oil and a really good authentic balsamic vinegar.  I mixed a little anchovy oil with the olive oil and drizzled in some of the syrupy balsamic .  Molto Bene!


Thanks for your comments.


All the best,


Franko

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Khalid, always good to hear from you!


I think you might enjoy this book as it has a few breads in it that use some of the flours I know you like to use such as spelt, kamut/khorason, and buckwheat flour .


ATB,


Franko

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Really, i'll dig into the shelves next time, thanks Franko!