The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

1st SD success

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Anjali's picture
Anjali

1st SD success

After trying to bake with a sourdough starter for 2 months and making door-stoppers  this is my first edible attempt of Susan's simple sourdough boule. It was made with AP flour and no WWW flour(not available in India). I think I should have used a little less water because the dough seemed to spread horizontally more during bulk fermentation. My scoring will need practice.

The crust was crunchy and the crumb texture was a little dense. But it tasted very good. I would like to have suggestions from all of you to improve.

I must thank TFLers for the knowledge and experince that they share generously. Especially Khalid and Varda..A big thankyou.

Khalid: The S&F technique in a bowl illustrations really helped me.

Varda:Your suggestion of using a simple recipe headed me in the right direction.

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Congratulations. Looks delicious.

What about Chapati flour? Peter Reinhard (in Crust & Crumb) mentiones that chapatis are made with finely milled wholewheat flour?

I wanted to try this for some time ...

Juergen

Anjali's picture
Anjali

Thanks for your comments.

After seeing Varda's beautiful Durum Filone  I tried it but failed badly. I am still learning what everyone has been saying about 'learning the feel of the dough'. Maybe after getting a little more experince I will try with chapati flour(yes, it is very finely milled WW).

Anjali

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

To keep the loaf from spreading so much, you could proof it in a banneton - purchased or home made with a bowl or colander and a well-floured linen or cotton towel.

David

Anjali's picture
Anjali

Thanks David. I used a steel bowl lined with a muslin/cotton cloth dusted with flour. When I tipped the bowl over on a baking tray the dough seemed to spread a little. That's why I felt  that I should have used 1-2 tbs less water. I wonder if better shaping will plump up the boule. 

 

Just Loafin's picture
Just Loafin

I final my SD almost exactly as you've pictured right there. It's crude, but it does work! Many SD recipes can get very high in the hydration department, so that's not a cause for it to flatten and not recover. Actually, med to large boules will often flatten out quite a bit. Trick is to be prepared before you turn onto baking surface. Get it slashed and into the oven as quick as possible, every minute counts. You should have enough oven spring to bring it back up! Watch any YouTube video on scoring, and you'll see that their boules flatten out quite a bit, it's normal.

Now, if your dough isn't developed enough (gluten strength), or is over-proofed, it will flatten and -not- recover in the heat of the oven. Also, too much enzyme activity in the fermentation can break down your once-strong gluten and cause it to 'brick' on you as well. As you mentioned yourself, of course, poor shaping will lead to weak walls.

You didn't post the recipe, so I don't have an actual hydration number to work with. Your pic looks like a very normal batch of dough to me... extremely hydrated dough tends to look rather ragged, and this dough has a nice skin and sheen to it. I'm really wondering if you might have over-proofed it, which is very easy for a new SD baker to do. Honestly, I'd try the exact same recipe again, but get it to the oven a bit earlier (assuming it will final in about the same temperature). In your first pics, I don't see any blowouts in the crust, nor obvious compression swirls in the crumb, so Ima rule out under-proofing.

Review some YouTube videos on shaping boules, as well as transferring from banneton, slashing, and getting to the oven. Boules are by far the easiest to get tension on, and anyone can be expert at that in no time at all. Once confident that your shape is nice and tight, try and get it in the oven a little earlier so it will spring up.

Edit to comment on this: When I tipped the bowl over on a baking tray the dough seemed to spread a little.

You have to be real careful doing that, as too much of a plop from banneton to tray can substantially de-gas the boule. If you're not doing it, try this: place the baking tray upside-down on -top- of the banneton with the dough in it, then turn the both of them as a unit back upright (softly, but quickly). Lift the banneton off.

- Keith

Anjali's picture
Anjali

Lot of helpful stuff there. Thanks of the suggestions. I used Susan's Simple Sourdough loaf recipe without www flour. I used AP flour only. Yes, it could be over proofed. I followed Susan's recipe without any changes in the durations specified. But temp of the dough just before preshaping was 80F. The ambient temp was 33C. So next time I will reduce the bulk fermentation and proofing times. We are heading into the monsoon season now. So there will be humidity to deal with also. I also plan to make the same bread over and over again to be able to compare notes.

Regards,

Anjali

varda's picture
varda

So glad you hung in there and tried again.    You can see from the bubbly crust that the dough was quite wet.    And amount of water varies with the particular flour so perhaps a bit less water, plus the support that David mentioned.   But very nice.   And now you see it can be done!   -Varda

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Anjali,

Great looking loaf :-).

I know about baking door stoppers!  Now I call them my frisbee loaves and people like them because they don't always want a big piece of bread and the flavor is still good.  Much better than store bought!

I agree with what David said about using support during your proofing time.  Before I got bratforms I used small kitchen bowls lined with parchment paper.  You can also proof your dough in a pot and then bake it in the pot too so it doesn't spread when you turn it out to bake.  With a lid on a pot you get the nice crispy crust.  Just make sure to use parchment paper or dough will stick to your pot.

Not sure if parchment paper is available in India but it is a non-stick paper that can be baked and re-used.  Comes in very handly.

Take Care,

Janet

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Great, great Loaf, Anjali, Keep at it! True, you should cut back on the water here.

What a joy, Anjali!

Anjali's picture
Anjali

Thanks Varda, Khalid and Janet. Yes I needed the success to feel motivated. Though reading a lot helped, ultimately the first-hand experince really cleared the picture. Parchment paper ican be bought here, will do it soon.

Regards,

Anjali 

Syd's picture
Syd

Lovely looking loaf and I look forward to seeing your next bakes.  I think you have got some really good advice, too.

Best,

Syd

Anjali's picture
Anjali

Thank you for the encouraging words:-D. Yes I agree,

Regards,

Anjali