The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Bolillos with poolish

baybakin's picture

Bolillos with poolish

Living in San Diego for school, I gained a love for the little rolls brought from the local panaderia down the street.  Like little mini batards, pulled from the oven and placed in bins alongside racks of pan dulces.  Alas, here in the oakland hills the closest panaderia is a 15-20 minute drive away, and the bolillos just aren't quite like the ones I used to get in San Diego.

Most of the recipies I've seen are straight-dough, and being that I can't leave well enough alone, I have developed the following recipe, based off of the Poolish Baguettes in Hamelman's Bread.  The percentages of fat and sugar are from a bakery near mexico city (I don't remember quite where).

166g Flour
166g Water
Pinch of yeast (less than 1/8 tsp)

Let poolish sit overnight or at least 8 hours, untill poolish begins to pucker in the middle.

Final Dough:
All of the Poolish
334g Flour
164g Water
15g Fat (Lard or shortning)
10g Salt
10g Sugar (unrefined cane or honey)
2g instant yeast

Mix everything but the salt together into a shaggy mass.  Let autolysis for at least 20 mins.  Add salt and kneed dough untill it passes a windowpane test.  Let rise until doubled.  Divide into 6-8 pieces, preshape into rounds and let bench rest for 10 mins.  Shape into ovals and place into a floured couche like you would for baguettes.  Preheat oven to 500F at least 45 minutes before baking.  Slash bolillos once lengthwise and place into oven. Bake for 5 mins with steam at 500F then turn down oven to 450F for 10 mins (or untill a dark hazlenut color is achieved).  Remove breads and let cool (if you can).  Enjoy with some avocado, pickled jalapenos, ham, and farmers cheese, or just with some butter.


Bread behind is some oakland sourdough, made with Central Milling's type 70 high extraction flour.



breadsong's picture

Hello baybakin,
Your bolillos are beautiful, and your formula just what I've been looking for, wanting to make bolillos for a friend who just returned from Central America.
I've been thinking about these breads for awhile now, off and on, and it's a delight to see your post.
Muchas gracias!
:^) breadsong

baybakin's picture

Thanks breadsong!  I hope they turn out well for you, regional differences being quite common they might not be quite what they are used to.  If I remember correctly further south in mexico they like them longer, crustier, and levained with sourdough! I'll probably be posting some more interpretations of some of my panaderia favorites, probably some pan dulces next. 

dabrownman's picture

bolillos are scrumcious.  You are right, crunchy SD, slightly pointier, not quite as fat is the bolillo in the south of Mexico and the Brownman household since we don't stock commercial yeast.  You have inspired my apprentice to try some yeast water ones....

Very nice bolillos!

baybakin's picture

Thanks for the compliment! I'd love to get the percentages/method you use for sourdough bolillos, I'm quite curious about how they'd taste.

dabrownman's picture

Since you have developed the recipe you like, I would just replace the poolish with the SD levain builds below and skip the yeast in the final dough too.  Do the levain build over 3 stages of 4 hours each - 12 hours total.  Then do some S&F's, maybe (6) 15 minutes apart, then let the dough rest, develop and ferment for 1 1/2 hours and then refrigerate it overnight.

Let it come to room temperature the following morning say another hour or so then shape into bolillos as you normally would and let rise till they pass the poke test - probablly about an hour and half ( be patient - unlike me).  You should end up with a fine SD bolillo as a result.  I would use a mix of lard and butter for mine (and honey too) but you have developed a fine recipe that you should convert to SD and see how they differ.  I bet you will like them both.  Happy Bolillo Baking !

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dablues's picture

means stretch and folds

aarmogan's picture

I found a video on the bolillo shaping.