The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Thanksgiving bake: rolls, a pumpkin loaf and baklava

gary.turner's picture

Thanksgiving bake: rolls, a pumpkin loaf and baklava


For turkey day this year the family get-together will be smaller than usual, 18 rather than the more usual 25 to 30. Maybe that's not a bad thing, though. I volunteered to bring the bread and a dessert.

I have wanted to try a baklava since turosdolci posted her version. Then there was breadsong's bread pumpkin, which I thought way cool.

Just in case, I  put some dinner rolls on my list, and since I was about to run out of sandwich bread, and I was using the same formula for the rolls, I mixed up a four pound batch of dough.

Get the picture? Three breads, each requiring a different time and temperature combo and a pastry requiring yet another. Now David (dmsnyder) may feel completely at ease doing six breads, five pies, separate menus for those who keep kosher and the family vegans, and a partridge in a pear tree. I, on the other hand am a bit stressed.

Let me say that I  expect the baklava to taste wonderful, but to say that prep time is 30 minutes might be understating the case. I think if I never try to  handle philo dough again, it will be too soon. For someone with a palsy from a bout with Gillain-Barré Syndrome back in '98, those sheets are just a bit flimsy. Lots of patchwork in that pastry. But, it did  get done Tuesday evening, and it should be properly cured by dinner Thursday. Now, if I can just borrow a forklift to carry it to the car.

The bread pumpkin was interesting. I  had made a test bake, and found the dough less wet than I expected, and with 25% whole grain flours (I only had whole grain rye), it was pretty dense. I  used medium rye this time, but I think the canned pumpkin puree was considerably wetter than that previously used. The dough was wet. Really wet. Even with a new razor, slashing was an adventure. The loaf does look interesting, if not nearly the perfection breadsong got. It might have been easier had I made the same size loaves she made. Mine was just shy of 1kg.

The rolls are nothing special, simply a sourdough white sandwich bread in 2oz balls. I spritzed them before putting them in the oven,  and the oven spring was enough to cause some  of the rolls to split. I consider that a Good Thing.

I don't have a digital still camera, so  I got out the video with the dead battery. :shock: They're always dead when you need them. So, charge up the battery and shoot a couple  of pics. That's why it's 6AM Thursday morning and I haven't been to bed yet. I'll get a few hours sleep, load the car and head to my niece's for dinner and football.

I hope you all have as good a day as I  will.




breadsong's picture

Hello Gary, I'm sure your family will be very grateful for your efforts for your Thanksgiving celebration.
I bet it's all going to be delicious!
I'm glad to gave the pumpkins a try & thanks for the kind reference in your post!   
from breadsong