The Fresh Loaf

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Miche, Pointe-à-Callière from Hamelman's "Bread": visiting an old friend

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dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Miche, Pointe-à-Callière from Hamelman's "Bread": visiting an old friend




The “Miche, Pointe-à-Callière” from Jeffrey Hamelman's Bread has been one of my favorite breads and was my favorite miche for a long time. It's been quite a while since I last baked it. Since then, I've been doing more hand mixing of doughs I formerly machine mixed. I've found a new and wonderful high-extraction flour, Central Milling's “Organic Type 85.” And last, but my no means least, I've baked miches according to the formula we used in the SFBI Artisan II workshop last December. Many TFL members have baked this marvelous miche since I posted the formula, and they know what a wonderful bread this can be.


After these months of enjoying the SFBI miche, as well as Chad Robertson's somewhat similar “Basic Country Bread” from Tartine Bread, it seemed time to revisit the “Miche, Pointe-à-Callière.” I made it using Central Milling's “Organic Type 85” flour. I followed Hamelman's formula. I altered his procedures only by mixing the dough entirely by hand.


 


Overall Formula

Wt.

Baker's %

High-extraction whole-wheat flour

2 lbs

100.00%

Water

1 lb, 10.2 oz

82.00%

Salt

0.6 oz

1.80%

Total

3 lb, 10.8 oz

183.80%

 

Levain Build

Wt.

Baker's %

High-extraction whole-wheat flour

6.4 oz

100.00%

Water

3.8 oz

60.00%

Mature culture (stiff)

1.3 oz (3 T)

20.00%

Total

11.5 oz

 

 

Final Dough

Wt.

 

High-extraction whole-wheat flour

1 lb, 9.6 oz

 

Water

1 lb, 6.4 oz

 

Salt

0.6 oz

 

Levain

10.2 oz (all less 3 T)

Total

3 lb, 10.8 oz

Procedure

  1. Make the levain about 12 hours before you want to mix the dough. Dissolve the mature culture in the water, then mix in the flour.

  2. On the day of the bake, mix the Final Dough flour and water to a shaggy mass and autolyse in a large covered bowl for 20-60 minutes.

  3. Sprinkle the salt over the dough and add the Levain in several chunks. Mix thoroughly.

  4. Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly oiled bowl and cover tightly.

  5. Ferment the dough for 150 minutes, with stretch and folds on a floured board at 50 and 100 minutes.

  6. Form the dough into a tight boule and transfer it, seam side up, to a floured banneton. Place the banneton in a large plastic bag or cover with a towel or plasti-crap. (Note: Hamelman recommends the usual pre-shaping and resting before the final shaping. I did not do this, since the dough was rather slack, and the gluten did not require “relaxing,” in my judgement.)

  7. Proof for 2-2 ½ hours.

  8. One hour before baking, pre-heat the oven to 500ºF with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

  9. Transfer the miche to a peel. Score it with a single square, “tic-tac-toe” pattern or diamond pattern. Load the miche onto the baking stone.

  10. Steam the oven and turn it down to 440ºF. After 15 minutes, turn the oven down to 420ºF, and bake for about another 45 minutes.

  11. When the miche is fully baked (internal temperature is 205ºF), turn off the oven. Leave the miche on the baking stone with the oven door ajar for another 10-20 minutes to dry the crust.

  12. Transfer the miche to a cooling rack and cool thoroughly. Then wrap it in baker's linen and let it rest for at least 12 hours before slicing.

Note: All times are approximate. Watch the dough, not the clock.

Miche, Pointe-à-Callière: Profile

Miche, Pointe-à-Callière: crumb

I rested the loaf for about 18 hours before slicing. The crumb structure was similar to that pictured in “Bread,” but I think I slightly under-fermented the dough and over-proofed the loaf.The crust was chewy. The crumb was rather dense and chewy. The flavor was not really sour but was very wheaty – more intense than I recall from other bakes with this flour.

Next time I make this miche, if I hand mix it, I'll add some S&F's in the bowl during the first part of the bulk fermentation and lengthen the fermentation, hoping to increase flavor complexity.

David

 

Comments

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Nice bake, David.  Great even crust color and very open crumb.  3 pounds, 10 ounces is one Monster Miche!  Did you finish eating it yet? 


So glad you're enjoying the CM Type 85.  I baked with it today, too.  Blog post to follow.


Glenn

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

The big holes are characteristic of this bread, unless you cut down the hydration or purposely de-gas the dough.


Actually, the last miche I made was bigger than this - 4.4 lbs, but this one does have a largier diameter. It spreads a lot when transferred from the banneton, again, at this hydration level.


I have not finished eating it. I'm on a diet.


David

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Hello David,
Admiring yet another beautiful miche.
from breadsong

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

varda's picture
varda

After having seen several of your loaves with the diamond scoring pattern, including the beautiful one above, I have been wondering about how much expansion you are getting.   I see that each of the scores seems to open a half inch or so, but there are a lot of them.   How do you get the openings so even?   I know it probably isn't just one thing but your overall skill level, but still, is there any thing you can say about it?   -Varda

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hi, Varda.


Well, you're right. It "isn't just one thing." Here are some of the things:



  1.  Boule well formed with good, equal surface tension of the gluten sheath.

  2.  Optimal proofing: If under-proofed, you can get bursting, as I did in one cut. Over-proofed and your cuts won't open up enough.

  3.  Evenly spaced cuts.

  4.  Cuts of equal depth with the blade at 90º to the loaf surface.

  5. Well steamed oven so the crust is able to expand sufficiently to open the cuts.


The diamond cut is made with the sets of cuts at 45º to each other.


I hope this helps.


David
varda's picture
varda

Each one of those points is a lesson in itself.   Thank you.   -Varda

MarieH's picture
MarieH

Hi David,
Will you explain the difference between a miche and a Boule? Thanks,
Marie

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hi, Marie.


A miche is a large boule. Just how large a boule needs to be to be called a miche is not precisely defined, but it's around 3 lb/1.5 kg or greater, I'd say. Pain Poilâne, probably the best known commercially produced miche, weighs 4lbs/1.9 kg, according to the Poilâne web site.


David

HMerlitti's picture
HMerlitti

I went to the SFBI Artisan II class last December and have been baking from the class notes since then.   Somehow I have avoided the Miche.    Too many other formulas looked more interesting.   ALSO, once I got into a formula I was thinking and trying ways to make it just a little bit better.


However here is April and I read Dave's blog and thought I would give the miche a try.


WOW.    The crisp crust and the delicious crumb was remarkable.   I am my own worst critic and I was complementing myself.  The thing was coming out over a foot wide and 3" tall.


Once I figured out how to optimize the second rise/ferment/proof, it was coming out over 4"tall.


Going forward, I am not sure I want to bake any other formula.

HMerlitti's picture
HMerlitti

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

And just think of the 3 1/2 months of self-deprivation until you broke down and baked the SFBI miches!


It's a truly wonderful formula.


David

HMerlitti's picture
HMerlitti

These three are on a 5 burner gas stove top.   They cover it.


 



 


The one on the right show the rise on the second proofing.   This bowl was 3/4 full when I put it in the frig.