SFBI Artisan I, Day 2
David's photos from Day 2 tell the story well. Except it was really busy and crazy. Having four teams of bakers making 15 baguettes each (5 each of short mix, improved mix, and intensive mix) was almost crazy! By the third bake we pretty much had our act together and it went pretty well, but...it felt really busy!
What SFBI calls the "short mix" is a minimally mixed dough that has a shaggy window and requires a long ferment to develop gluten and about three folds to develop the dough. It is effectively the "hand mixed dough" of olden times. The intensive mix is the "high energy" mixer approach that is so typical of commercial, large scale bakeries and the "grocery store baguette". It is intensely mixed, a bit oxidized, and bland by comparison. The improved mix is a dough mixed to an intermediate level with a nice but not clear windowpane and needs an intermediate level of fermentation and one fold. It yields a loaf that is quite similar in crumb to the short mix but with less labor and is therefore appealing to commercial operations.
Mac didn't cut any of my loaves so I didn't get a comparative crumb shot but the short and intermediate loaves had very similar crumb and similar to the crumb photo from day one. The intense mix dough yielded the familiar fine crumb of "conventional" baguettes.
The photos below are the improved mix, intense, and short mix loaves. More comments on the loaves will follow the photos.
Good news was the scoring fairy showed up today and all of us seemed to score better!
The smell of the intense baguette was a bit strange. Not much aroma and a bit of a chemical smell - not sure where that came from. Decent crumb and texture but relatively bland due to the high yeast, and fast fermentation. A long proof is necessary to compensate for the high development and relax the bread...but the lack of flavor tends to support the logic that flavor doesn't develop in small loaves (or it leaks out??).
The improved mix at the top and the short mix were surprisingly similar. Some preferred the short, others the improved. The short seemed a bit sweeter (less oxidation from mixing?) and a bit fresher to me. The improved seemed to have a bit more acidity (which it arguably should not but...). In any event they were remarkably similar and good.
Handling wise the intense dough was easy. We were using 11.8% protein flour and those loaves were 65% hydration. Our improved mix dough was 70% and our short mix was 71%. They were both a bit sticky but the short was clearly more of a handling challenge. I described it as reminiscent of Peter Reinhart's Pain l'Ancienne but better behaved - to the point that it could be formed and scored.
I am really tired!
Tomorrow we will make another 15 baguettes. Our reference improved, improved with autolyse, and high gluten with autolyse.
Time to have a beer! More tomorrow!