The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

From goo to good

Franko's picture
Franko

From goo to good

The Rye & Barley Mash Bread I've posted on previously has become one of my favourite breads over the last few months for it's pronounced sour and deep flavour characteristics, much of which I credit to the fermented mash/soaker of whole barley and rye kernels included in the mix. With this latest bake I thought I'd try a lighter version by reducing the rye to 40%, and go with organic white All Purpose for the remaining 60%, eliminating the barley flour altogether, but include a fermented soaker of cracked rye and wheat.

Using the Rye Barley Mash formula as a template I deleted a few things such as the altus and barley flour and changed some percentages to come up with something I thought might work. The soaker had been fermenting away in the Brod & Taylor proofer for 3 days developing a fairly tangy sour note to it indicating it was ready to use, so late Monday afternoon I mixed up the levain in preparation for the final mix the next morning. By the time the 1 hour autolyse was complete the levain had been fermenting for almost 14 hours and looked quite healthy, strong and ready for prime time. The mix proceeded along fine until I added the rye/wheat soaker, after which the mix wasn't looking so fine anymore. I realized the dough was going to be fairly wet because of adding extra water to the soaker to loosen it up a bit, but this was quite a bit wetter than I'd anticipated. Hmm, OK, I'll just get it into bulk ferment and do some stretch and folds in 30 minute increments to build some strength and see what happens.

I like a well hydrated dough but this one was so sloppy that even after 3 stretch and folds it showed very minimal development over the course of almost 1 1/2 hours bulk fermentation. Going back over the formula to see where I'd gone wrong I realized I'd neglected to adjust the overall hydration down from the original formula to compensate for the reduced rye flour and omitted barley flour. A few choice words were muttered, all directed at myself, none of which bear repeating here, but I knew at that point I'd need to make some corrections in order to save this bowl of goo and have it result in something resembling bread. An additional 60 grams of AP were added, adjusting for salt and adding 1+ grams of instant yeast to give it a boost. That little bit of extra flour made all the difference, turning a soupy mix into a very loose but workable dough that could be molded for panning. After rounding the dough it sat on the counter for 30 minutes before molding into a log for panning in a Pullman tin and final proof. After 2 1/4 hours in the proofer at 76F it had risen 3/4's of the way up the pan and appeared to be worth putting in the oven. I decided not to press my luck by scoring the loaf, opting for baking it with the lid on, hoping at the very least it would give the loaf a uniform shape. Lo and behold after almost 70 minutes in the oven, with gradual reductions in heat, it turned out a reasonable looking loaf considering how it started out.

I took the first slice today after letting it cool overnight, wondering what I'd find. I was pleasantly surprised to discover a moist, even and open crumb, with a nice crunchy crust as a bonus.

The flavour has a lot of similarities to the Rye Barley Bread, though not near as tangy as it was, but overall a very tasty loaf of bread. The formula has since been adjusted for hydration, but rather than share it now I'll test it out a few times until I'm confident it can be reproduced reliably and post the results and full formula at a later date for anyone interested in trying it out.

Seafood Sausage en Brioche

This is something I did a couple of weeks ago that turned out nicely and is absolutely delicious! Saucisson en Brioche is normally made using a savoury meat sausage wrapped in brioche dough but I wanted to try it using the recipe for 'Shrimp & Scallop Sausage' from Michael Ruhlman's book 'Ratio'. Making a seafood  sausage is considerably quicker and easier compared to one from pork or veal since no curing is needed, and all you need is a food processor and some plastic wrap to make a casing. The sausage, very basically is a mixture of cold egg white, cream or heavy cream, seafood, and seasonings blended until it's smooth, uniform and thick enough to shape. For this sausage some of the shrimp were coarsely chopped and folded in at the last to give it some added texture.  Tightly wrapped in plastic, then poached until the internal temp reaches 155F. Let the sausage cool slightly and have a brioche dough rolled out and ready for final proof. From there it's a matter of wrapping the sausage in the dough as tightly as possible (which I need to do better next time) and proofing it for 30-40 minutes. Egg wash, and bake in a 360F oven for 20-30 minutes depending on the size. Allow it to cool slightly and firm up (10 minutes) before slicing. The sausage was plated with a cucumber salad vinaigrette, deep fried parsley and caper berries, sauced with a lemon chive beurre blanc. A little elegant compared to my typical dinner choices now days, but sometimes you need to shake things up a bit to get out the food rut many of us fall into. 

Cheers,

Franko

 

Comments

isand66's picture
isand66

I look forward to reading your final recipe for your bread.  Sometimes a mistake turns out to be a stroke of genious and based on your results it looks like you are on to something!

I am very intrigued by your seafood sausage and must try that myself when I have some guests over since my wife won't eat anything swiming or crawling in the ocean...

Regards,

Ian

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Ian,

The loaf in the photo wasn't really what I had in mind when I began, just my best shot at salvaging over 1.2K of dough. What I did learn from this is that the basic flavour of the loaf is good and to try and remember to double check my formulas before mixing. Rhulman's book "Ratio" is the best general cookbook I've run across in some time, so if you plan on doing the sausage it's one to keep in mind, or just Google Seafood Mousseline/Quenelles for a recipe.

Thanks for your comments Ian, all the best,

Franko

 

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Beautiful bread Franko! I enjoy your production stories and reading your thought process. You are a talented guy in the kitchen, in many areas. Thanks for sharing.

Seafood Sausage sounds interesting. Were you happy with the end result? Shrimp and scallops are two things that don't do well with over cooking. Such a small window for tenderness. I'd be afraid to over do it. Yours looks delicious.

Eric

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Eric,

I'm just relieved I didn't wind up having to chuck the thing. The crunchy crust I mentioned in the post is now even crunchier...and not in a good way! The crumb is still soft and moist however so it's OK to eat, but not what I'd hoped for.  

The key part of the process for the sausage is very gently poaching it till it reaches 155F. In his book "On Food and Cooking" Harold McGee recommends between 140-150F for poaching seafood mousseline, but I stuck with the temp in Ruhlman's recipe of 155F. It took the better part of 40 minutes to reach that temp, but the sausage was light, moist and fork tender even after it had been baked in the dough. I was very happy with the texture and flavour, and something I'll be making again.

Good to hear from you Eric,

Franko 

varda's picture
varda

and remarkable story.    What a save!   I would never have guessed looking at the pictures of the bread, that it had been brought back from the edge.    A testament to your skill as a baker.   It seems that you accomplished exactly what you were trying to do despite having to make adjustments along the way.    For your next entry I'm just taking a quick sidelong glance and turning away - far too sinful for me.   Wonderful post.  -Varda

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Varda,

You are too kind and I appreciate your compliments, not sure I deserve them, but thank you! The reality is that on the 2nd day the bread is not as good as it was on the 1st. The crumb is OK but the crust has toughened up, often the case with late stage flour addition. It has quite a chew to it, much more than I like, but I'm getting through it. Still some work to do on this yet.

When I post something "sinful" again I'll put in a warning at the top like "Varda, stop scrolling before the end!" ;^)

Cheers,

Franko  

FlourChild's picture
FlourChild

What a pleasure to read about your projects- it's a testament to your skills that you were able to produce such a good crumb and crisp crust despite the hydration set back.

Seafood sausage sounds like a light and delicious update to the richer garlic sausage that normally ends up wrapped in brioche, how nice!

Julie

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Julie,

Well as you can see from my replies to Eric and Varda it's a loaf that hasn't improved with age, particularly the crust. I'm glad I didn't use any of my good flours for this bake, just generic stuff from the supermarket. I'm really enjoying the B&T proofer for fermenting these soakers over several days. Having it's even, reliable temperature makes it a walk in the park for getting the right level of sour out of the grains to add deeper flavour to the loaf.

Thanks for your kind comments and glad you enjoyed the post.

All the best,

Franko 

PiPs's picture
PiPs

Hi Franko,

I think you did the a great job considering the circumstances ... The crumb looks delicious ... A lot of knowledge was used to save that bread :)

Wonderfully elegant dinner ... a treat for you all. I am more of a garlic sausage person ... but can appreciate the delicate flavours you brought together.

Looking forward to seeing some more test bakes and your final formula. I am still very jealous of the Brod & Taylor proofer you guys are playing with.

Cheers,
Phil

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Phil, 

Well I was just going to wrap up here and come over to your post to look again at some truly excellent breads, but before I do let me tell you your gracious comments are very good to hear. Thank you! I created my own circumstances on this one I'm afraid. 

I confess the dinner was a treat for me only, as Marie is vegetarian and doesn't eat anything containing gluten. After 2 weeks in April with the worst cold and flu I've had in many years I decided to spoil myself with something rich and flavourful. The SF sausage en brioche worked a charm for getting my appetite back to normal again.

The B&T Proofer is a wonderful piece of equipment to have, especially during the cold months, no two ways about it.   I remember seeing a post for a home proofer made in Japan that looked quite good and might be worth looking into. Can't recall the name but I'm sure a search of the site will turn it up in short order.

Thanks again Phil, Cheers!

Franko

 

 

longhorn's picture
longhorn

Bread looks GREAT! Love the sausage! I will copy that when I get back from France!

Way to go!

Jay

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Jay! 

The seafood sausage is a super dish I'm sure you'll enjoy. See my reply to Eric about the slow poaching to get the right texture.

All the best,

Franko

Syd's picture
Syd

Lovely looking bread Franko. Love the open crumb of the Rye and Barley Mash Bread.  That Sausage 'n Brioche is a meal in itself and filled breads like that are very popular here in the east.  Nice baking Franko.

All the best,

Syd

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Syd!

Saucisson en Brioche, which the Seafood Sausage en Brioche was based on, is typically served as an appetizer, but you're right I did make it a main course. The entire item actually gave me 3 nice meals over the course of a 6 day period and kept well throughout.

The bread is 60% wheat and 40 rye, no barley in this one although it's based on the Rye Barley Mash I did previously. It was a 'save' unfortunately due to not checking the formula before mixing. Right idea but poor execution. :^(

Best wishes,

Franko

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

recovery and ending up with such a nice bread.  I just love your  seafood sausage brioche too,  What a nice meal with the greens!  You eat very well indeed.

 

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks da-man, but I really should re-title this post as "From goo to good to really really bad!". After 4 days it was simply inedible because of the tough crust, although the crumb was fairly moist. Taken as a learning experience it wasn't a total failure, but darn near. Glad you liked the seafood sausage en brioche, it's something I'll do again when I feel like splurging on the butter content of a meal, or either have it with a lighter sauce than a beurre blanc. I seldom have something quite this rich but I always try to eat well.

Thanks again,

Franko

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Lovely, Franko!! Absolutely delicious looking rye/ barley loaf! The brioche one looks very inviting too!
Iam happy that you've mastered your rye barley loaf!

Franko's picture
Franko

Thanks Khalid !

Not quite there yet with this particular mix, but I appreciate your comments.

All the best,

Franko

louie brown's picture
louie brown

Two very different but equally fascinating pieces of work. Thanks for the interesting writeups.

To the best of my memory, seafood sausage first got some attention in New York in the eighties with the restaurant Chanterelle, where it was a signature dish. You've done it a favor by surrounding it with brioche. I'm presently working on a blood sausage bread myself.

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Louie,

Thanks very much, glad you enjoyed the post! 

Back in the 70's and 80's I used to subscribe to Gourmet and seem to recall the Chanterelle restaurant name being mentioned a lot. It's quite possibly how I first heard of seafood sausage. Your blood sausage bread sounds interesting, I'll keep an eye out for your post on that.

Best Wishes, 

Franko

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Franko,

I'm very late to your party, but just to note that you are definitely not the first person to miscalculate your formula.   Still you corrected that in time and managed to produce a great final result, even though you didn't get the shelf life you would have hoped for.   The crumb does look so good!

Very best wishes

Andy

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Andy,

You're always welcome to the "party" no matter when you arrive. A pleasure to hear from you! Formula miscalculations happen from time to time, what can I say? I curse myself out when it happens but don't loose any sleep over them either as I know that the odds favour it'll happen again at some point... but hopefully not too soon.:^) The crumb was a nice surprise for sure and very tasty, but the crust was so tough by the 3rd day I could have hammered nails with it. It was returned to the earth from whence it came with minor regret.

Cheers,

Franko