The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Sourdough NK #3

redivyfarm's picture
redivyfarm

Sourdough NK #3

In spite of all the good advice, I have messed up again.  This loaf overproofed and no one suggested that I brush egg and milk on the top before baking. I thunk that up all by myself! It looks kind of nice-

Sourdough NK #3

Sourdough NK #3

Sort of like the Mexican pan dulces we ate as kids, but don't you believe it!  Each of those little chunks in the mosaic are suitable for paving the driveway. And the crumb-

Sourdough #3 crumb

Sourdough #3 crumb

Just a few little worm holes, twisting and turning like, well never mind what its like. I know I can do better. In the mean time I'm going to do some reading and get a bit of theory in my noggin instead of mucking around like, well never mind what I'm like.

Comments

xma's picture
xma

ok redivyfarm, so i just posted a comment asking how you made the mosaic pattern, and after browsing some more, i find out on this page that it was an accident and you consider this bread a failure.  so was it just overproofing?  did you steam?  i really like the design though, so i'd appreciate knowing how you did it so i could do it advertently! :)

redivyfarm's picture
redivyfarm

I think it is a good idea to try to recreate this look but avoid the hardness of this attempt.  I don't think the pattern is necessarily the result of overproofing. This sourdough boule was proofed in the refrigerator overnight, placed in a hot cast iron dutch oven and brushed with a mixture of whole egg and milk. I was trying to avoid the tremendous oven spring that was tearing these loaves. The crust softened up after a couple of days in a zip lock but was inedible on day one. I think that egg yolk thinned with milk or water might work on a bread with good oven spring to give the look without the hardness. You've inspired me to try it again!

xma's picture
xma

Thanks, redivyfarm. I'm a bit circumspect about trying it now that you said it came out so hard, haha. But if you're successful in recreating this look and the crust is actually good, please share. :) Paddyscake gave a recipe for dutch crunch bread with topping from The Bread Bible that indeed looked like the one in your photo, but a separate topping like that is not what I'm looking for right now. I just want an alternative look.

My interest in this kind of design actually sprang from the cover illustration on Jeffrey Hamelman's 'Bread' (the one in the center) and its photo equivalent inside the book (photo #21). That bread was sourdough rye, and I haven't found instructions on how to do it in the recipes. I have attempted it only once based on a guess, which I won't bother relating because it bore no resemblance at all to my aim. I'll try a different method, based on another guess, one of these days. So if anyone knows how to do that, I'll appreciate the tip!

Update two weeks later:  I've had better success on my second attempt (see above paragraph).  The trick is to form the boule by just folding the dough, pretty much like you're preshaping, until you form a decent-looking ball.  Do not pinch or seal the seams (this was my mistake the first time I tried it, and of course it didn't open up).  The idea is to leave weak areas that would open up during the bake, functioning the way scoring does.  Do the final proofing with the seams under the dough, with a generous sprinkling of flour to make sure it doesn't stick.  Invert the dough to bake.  Voila! very rustic looking bread indeed.