A Wet Dough on a Dry Day
This dough behaved more like 65% than 75% in my bone-dry winter city kitchen. I do like the long autolyse and long bulk fermentation, and I understand why txfarmer has this as her regular baguette. There is plenty of opportunity to vary the formula, as she has demonstrated, and there is also plenty of opportunity to observe and try to understand fermentation. The refrigerator is a pretty safe place for this dough, but it does need watching once it's out. I gave this one two hours on the bench and it had almost two more hours with preshaping, resting, shaping and final proof, which was a bit too much, I think. The round loaf, although it looks fine, was on the verge of a starch attack.
I will admit to being skeptical about this dough at first for use as a baguette. It seemed almost like a parlor trick, taking something so wet and forcing it to be a baguette. But i am partial to a sourdough baguette and this one really is both challenging and fun to make. It is also delicious, thanks especially to those long cold intervals. I threw the last of a jar of wheat germ, toasted, into the dough, which is alwys good.