The Fresh Loaf

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XVI - My First Version of Mebake’s Second Version of hansjoakim’s Pain au Levain ; Inspired by Arlo, pushed by Syd

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lumos's picture
lumos

XVI - My First Version of Mebake’s Second Version of hansjoakim’s Pain au Levain ; Inspired by Arlo, pushed by Syd

It all started when Arlo blogged about his beautiful Pain de Urban made with rye levain.

 A few days later, it was Syd followed it with a STRONG recommendation that everyone and their grandmother and their dogs should bake it because it was so good. 

 So I had to do it. My first experience with rye sour, which was a revelation. Even though I have baked loaves with similar combination and ratios of flours but with wheat flour sourdough,  using rye for starter seems to develop a different kind of flavour profile.  Really impressed.

Then came Khalid with his second version of  "Hans’s loaf with rye levain",  of which formula I had printed out when it was posted last year……and got buried somewhere in my ‘Bread to Bake’ file which has now  grown to the size of Jupitar.  The only reason I hadn't baked it was because I didn't have rye sour.  But now I do!

So, I dig it out and and baked it.  And this is my result.  My version of Khalid’s version of Hans’s Pain au Levain which he made ‘when his life gave him too much rye starter.’ (Kudos for his ‘life’!)  

 

 

 I’m so grateful to all those four great bakers for creating such wonderful recipes and sharing them with us and for their kindness and patience in replying to my relentless questions.

Thank you, guys! ……and sorry, I tweaked your formulae quite a bit again…..Just can’t help it! :p

 

 

Pain au Levain with Wholewheat and Rye Sour

    (Makes two medium sized loaves – dough weight = around 640g each)

Rye Levain –Rye 120g, water 90g (75% hydration)

              Feed twice during 8-12 hr period before use; first feed = rye 30g + water 25g, second feed = rye 90g + water 65g

 

Main Dough – All of rye levain above (210g)

                               Strong 460g

                               WW  120g

                               Spelt  20g

                               Wheatgerm  2 tbls

                                Salt  12g

                               Water  430g

                             (Note :  Both rye and WW are about 17% of total flour)

 

  1. Mix all the ingredients except for salt and 10g of water. Autolyse for 1 hour.
  2. Add salt and remaining water. S & F vigorously in the bowl until salt is distributed well. Cover and rest.
  3. S & F 3 – 4 times over 2 1/2 – 3 hrs.
  4. Divide into two. Pre-shape & shape and put them into banettons.
  5. Cold retard for 10 – 12 hours.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes with cover at 240-250 C.
  7. Lower the temperature to 200 C, remove the cover and bake for another 20 minutes or so.

 

 

This bread is now one of my ‘Top 3 Favourites.’ :)

lumos

 

 

 

            

Comments

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Perfect! in every way
      :^) from breadsong

 

lumos's picture
lumos

Thank you, breadsong. :) 

hansjoakim's picture
hansjoakim

A beautiful loaf, lumos! I love the vibrant colour you got in the crust; I'm sure it was crackly and bursting with flavour. As you write in your blog, it's quite remarkable how pronounced an effect the starter has on the dough and the final bread! A parameter that I never really played much around with, was the rye sour hydration. I tended to keep that around 100%'ish, basically because it was a very convenient consistency to use when feeding. I wonder if a stiffer rye starter (with hydration of say around 70% - 75%) would give an even more pronounced tangy flavour to the bread?

Once again, great bake, lumos!

lumos's picture
lumos

Hi, Hans!

Thank you so much for creating such a wonderful formula and sharing it with us. Your posts and blogs have always been great inspiration for me. (sorry for belated gratitude). 

Yes, it was really surprising changing the flour for the starter makes such a difference to the bread.   I'm so glad I've finally know the reason why bakers use different starters......and  I'm not rye sour shy anymore. :p

I always keep my starter at around 70-75% hydration.  It's partly because I couldn't make up my mind whether I wanted the effect of liquid levain or that of stiff levain and partly because it's about the same hydration for most of my breads.  It makes adapting various recipes  easy for me when I want to scale it up/down because I know exactly how much water I need whatever the total amount of flour in main dough is.  

Never compared two (or three) breads with starters of different hydrations, but I'm hoping the effect my starter has is something in between liquid and stiff; I like a bit of tang in my bread but not much. Acidity in bread is the result of many factors as you know, but,  in my experiences, as long as the starter has been fed regularly and healthy and active, the breads always comes out with just very mild tang, almost undetectable,  especially ever since I started feeding the starter twice before use, instead of one feed previously which gave me more tangy bread. Feeding twice (or sometimes three times, if I need a larger amount of starter) definitely gives my starter more vitality, even the total amount of flour is the same, and it slightly shortens the fermentation time which, I think, helps reduce acidity, too.

The children of my friend who buy breads from me everyweek had hated sourdough breads because  they thought sourdough breads were always sour. (their mum loves it)  But they seem to like my breads,  so I think the acidity in my breads are not too pronounced to their palate either.

Thanks again for letting me borrow and mutilate :p your wonderful formula. :)

lumos

 

 

 

arlo's picture
arlo

Excellent! I bet they taste pretty good!

lumos's picture
lumos

It's all thanks to you, arlo!  If you hadn't done that, I didn't do this.

I'll be baking your rye sour bread again very soon, too. :)

Thank you so much for your inspiration!

lumos

Mebake's picture
Mebake

:P I like the Subject at the top.

Really Beautiful loaves, Lumos! What's even better, is that it gets chewier and delicious as it ages.

You did a great job with scoring, too.

 

 

lumos's picture
lumos

hehe thought you might like it.  The original 'subject' was actually longer but shortened it at the last minute, thinking people'd fall asleep even before their reached the main part. :p

Thanks a lot for your 'version2' and giving me lots of useful info and advice.  Couldn't have done it without you, either. :)

Yeah, I'm having a breakfast after posting this and am really looking forward to tasting the second-day version of this bread.

See you later! :)

lumos

ETA: Actually, I think I should've have stuck to the original 'title' to show respect to all four of you. Edited it, so there! :p

 

 

wally's picture
wally

Crust, crumb and scoring! As much a treat to the eye as I'm guessing they are to the palate.

Nice bake,
Larry

lumos's picture
lumos

Thank you so much, Larry. :) 

My scoring improved quite a bit when I changed my lame. I used to use a flat metal skewer as an improvised lame, but recently I bought a real one which is commonly used by French bakers.  It's thinner than my skewer and it curves a razor blade slightly less.  It was rather surprising how much easier scoring became with such a subtle difference in the angle of the blade.  Learned another lesson  certain tools have been there for a long time for a good reason.;)

lumos

varda's picture
varda

and great to carry on with what other bakers on the site have accomplished.  -Varda

lumos's picture
lumos

Thanks, Varda!

Lovely to be a part of this great forum where there're so many inspirational bakers gather and help and encourage each other. The BEST community for bread geeks! :)

lumos

Syd's picture
Syd

Lovely bake, Lumos!  I had a good chuckle at the title, too!  Great scoring: very attractive triangular shape.  I will try that soon.  Was just lamenting my lack of creativity in the scoring department to Varda recently.  :) Now it is time to change that.  Lovely crumb, too.  Yes, there is something that a rye sour brings to a loaf that has a very unique flavour.  A whole wheat starter has its own distinct flavour, too. 

Great baking,

Syd

lumos's picture
lumos

Thank you, Syd!....and BIG THANKS for your helpful advices and  forceful push! :p

I was actually intending to score  a square shape and got the angle  of the second scoring wrong and ended up in a triangle. :p  Have you got any of Richard Bertinet's books?  His books, especially the first one ('Dough') have beautiful pictures of loaves with different scorings.

God, are you pushing me WW starter now?! :p

lumos

 

P. S.  I really  liked the way you scored the loaf which had been on the top page. ;)

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Just a beautiful bake lumos. And a very thoughtful post. Thanks for sharing.

Eric

lumos's picture
lumos

Thank you so much, Eric, for kind words. :)

lumos

AnnaInMD's picture
AnnaInMD

'nuff said !

 

lumos's picture
lumos

Whatever that means, thank you, Anna! :)

lumos

AnnaInMD's picture
AnnaInMD

'nuff said, short for 'enough said',  or -  more words not needed to exalt this beauty of a bread.

:)

Anna

 

lumos's picture
lumos

:)  I know what "'nuff said" means. (I use it myself)   What I meant was I didn't know  if "WOW" was an exclamation for approval or not....which I actually knew, but just pretended to look modest. :p  Sorry, it was confusing.....please don't take me seriously, because I'm not.....as you already know. :p

love,

lumos

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Lumos,

Well this loaf of yours finally made it to the top of my 'to bake' list and I am so glad it did.  Why I chose your version of this loaf I don't know but I am glad I did because it was a wonderful dough to work with!

I was expecting sticky due to the rye sour and was very surprised to find the texture anything but sticky.

When reading through the previous posts that inspired you I found it interesting that both Syd and Arlo's proportions of flour to leaven were a lot higher - that would have resulted in sticky for me I am sure....

I only use freshly ground whole gains - not sifted - and I was surprised that this loaf kept it's volume.  So nice when that happens. I did my substitutions for the flours you used based on what I have at had.  THe primary flour was a hard red ww and the 2 minor flours were soft white ww and spelt.  I guess they all got along well together because of the wonderful outcome.

A keeper for sure and I love it's simplicity.  So easy to mix, retard and bake.  (I did the retarding in bulk form and then formed the final loaves in the morning after the dough had had a chance to warm up a bit.  My doughs would overproof if shaped and retarded afterwards.)

THanks for your post and for following the lineage of this loaf :-)

Take Care,

Janet

lumos's picture
lumos

Hi, Janet

Thank you for reporting back. So glad you liked it! Yeah, it's a beautiful dough to work with, isn't it?

The reason I decreased the prefermented flour (=levain) is because Arlo's original formula didn't use long retarded proof but I wanted to incorporate it in my formula.  Thought it'd be safer if I decreased the levain so that it wouldn't over-proof during long, cold retard.

It's become one of my regular loaves to bake and actually I've just fed my rye levain 10 minutes ago (the first feed) to make another batch this weekend. So it's a lovely coincidece you posted about this today.  Something must've been channeling between us! :p

best wishes,

lumos

 

p.s.  Any photo? ::nudge, nudge::  :p

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

HI Lumos,

Thanks for explaining the leaven difference. Interesting in that since I have learned about retarding doughs I have simply followed any formula and made it as outlined or have retarded it depending on my schedule so I never would have come up with your variation on my own.

You have just educated me in yet another one of the numerous details in my journey with dough. Another tool to use in adjusting doughs based on time variables. Seems so obvious now but I generally miss the finer points until someone points them out to me :-) Or, having missed earlier voices telling me the same - I am finally able to hear what is being said….Interesting learning process.

I am now wanting to add rye leavens to a lot of my favorite recipes to see what happens in terms of flavor. I like to change things around tho my family prefers I stick to their old favorites….cinnamon raisin and lean sd. They don't like spices or nut/seeds in breads but I love experimenting so their favorites have to wait in line :-)

I have dabbed into the photo arena but get overwhelmed pretty quickly when I can't get the results I want….a case of too many variables to deal with on top of the baking on top of running a home occupied by 2 teens, a revolving 21 year old (2 weeks here, 2 weeks on the job), 2 large dogs and a yard full of leaves and a husband who works loooong hours to keep us all afloat….In other words - a lack of time to devote to grasping the finer points of taking pictures and getting them into my computer and getting them where I want them. (Family members are very hesitant to assist me in any kind of computer education skills :-)

Good luck with your loaf this weekend. I am going to try adding a rye sour to txfarmers ww sandwich loaf with bulgar to see what happens.

Take Care,
Janet

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Well here I am giving this a try after all.  The leaves can wait I guess....actually I know they will still be around this afternoon :-)

Here goes my attempt at getting my photo of the loaf here - no crumb shot though...one thing at a time :-)

Phew.....now on with my day :-)

Janet

varda's picture
varda

So nice to see a picture of your bread.   It's gorgeous.   -Varda

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Varda,

You know if you say flattering things like that it only encourages me to spend even more time obsessing about breads and the leaves in my yard will never get raked up :-)

Thanks for your kind words!
Janet

lumos's picture
lumos

Beautiful loaf, Janet!  Thank you very much for trying out my recipe.

Mine's not doing well today....or I haven't even been able to start making it.  It was colder than the weather forecast promised today, and my rye levain hasn't ripen at all yet!  Looks like I'll have to resort to what I did with the seeded Swiss last time;   wait as long as I can stand without collapsing from sleepiness, mix everything quickly and damp it in the fridge and forget about it until tomorrow morning....

Glad at least one of us did have a success. :p

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi Lumos,

Sorry to hear about your sleepy leaven....

Our temps have gotten cooler here this time of year and I was experiencing a similar thing with my doughs and leavens.  I have an old halogen lamp of my husband's, it is one of those office type of lamps that can be adjusted height wise and the bulb is a 50watt bulb so not too powerful, and it keeps the tops of my bowls warm but the dough at the bottom of the bowls wasn't able to benefit from the heat so my doughs were proofing/fermenting unevenly.  

I read ideas here on making proofing boxes but many seemed too bulky for the space I use.  Several posters mentioned heating pads which sounded a lot more reasonable so I bought one and it is working like a charm!  I simply turn it on low, place a plastic lid on top of it and then place my bowls, pans or baskets on top of that.  Now my doughs are getting heat from the top as well as from below. :-)  I do watch the temp. closely and simply turn off the heating pad when the temp. is getting too high.  The lamp can simply be raised a bit and that drops the temp. from above too.  Easy breezy :-)

You probably already know this but another trick I have resorted to when things aren't progressing as I had hoped is that of simply placing the ripe sour into the refrig. and then, in the morning, I mix my final dough and proceed as usual after I have let the sour sit out at room temp. for a couple of hours. (Peter Reinhart recommend. in his book WGB)  The 'overnight in the refrig.' doesn't seem to effect the flavor since it is such a short time period.  I also sometimes put the sour into the refrig. before it has ripened completely too - it then ripens further in the refrig. and in the morning I proceed as described above.  This has worked just fine when I have had to do it.

All tricks are complements of posters on this site....those bits and pieces of information that work their way into various posts that I stumble across and somehow remember. :-)

Take Care and good luck with the loaf.  I am now curious to hear how it turns out!

Janet