Bouabsa Baguettes and Basic Country Bread
I’ve been giving more attention to cooking than baking lately. I’m trying to expand my Asian cooking experience, and Thai food and Korean food go best with rice, not bread. But I did manage to bake some baguettes and a variation on the Tartine Basic Country Bread this weekend.
It had been many months since I’d made any baguettes besides proth5’s “Bear-guettes”. I decided to try again the sweet baguettes from the recipe Janedo got from Anis Bouabsa, as reported by Brother David back in 2008 (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/9839/ficelles-made-anis-bouabsa039s-baguette-formula”). I remember that trying to shape this wet sticky dough gave me fits the first time. Like wrestling snakes made of tar. This time it was easier, mostly because I have had more tar-snake experience in the interim.
These are not the best looking or best tasting baguettes I’ve made. The crumb was not as open as I’d like and the crust was not as crunchy as it should be. I will try to handle them more gently next time and bake them a bit bolder. I also think I just like my baguette in sourdough flavor.
The Tartine Basic Country Bread is my favorite lean sourdough bread. Crunchy crust; moist and tender crumb. I could eat it every day. But, I’ve been thinking it might be even better with a bit more whole wheat flour. So I tried it today with 15% whole wheat, instead of the 10% the formula calls for. I like it. I might even go for 20% next time…or maybe add some wheat germ.
I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again: the crumb on this bread is just what I’m looking for. If I could keep it from going stale, I’d make a pillow out of it.
In case anyone’s interested, here’s a look at the sweet and spicy Korean Chicken I made this week. Korean chile paste is pretty darn spicy. This was almost eye-watering. Good though.