The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Loafing in retirement: San Francisco-style Sourdough ("Take 4") and Hamelman's Sourdough Seed Bread

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dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Loafing in retirement: San Francisco-style Sourdough ("Take 4") and Hamelman's Sourdough Seed Bread

I am retired. This is the first full week since I retired, July 31. Already I see big problems. I no longer have to limit my baking to weekends and vacations. In principle, I could be baking bread any day ... or every day. But, I do not need to be eating more bread than I have been eating. I will certainly be gifting more loaves, but I have to find a new equilibrium. Ah, well. Life is good.

Anyway, this explains how I happen to be baking bread mid-week. 

My San Francisco-style Sourdough quest of last Spring was a ton of fun. Of the various tweaks I tried, my favorite version was "Take 4." (For the formula and procedures, see: My San Francisco Sourdough Quest, Take 4.) I believe I have baked this version about 5 times now, and, for me, it has been pretty consistant in producing my personal ideal bread of this type. Today was no exception. Crunchy, sweet crust and moist, chewy, complex-flavored crumb with moderate sourness. Excellent keeping quality.

It's been very hot in Fresno. My fermentation times for the levain builds were shorter than those indicated in my methods. "Watch the dough, not the clock" applies to levains as it does to final doughs. The times were not so short I felt I had to refrigerate any build, but I would have done so if the times to maturity were so short I thought flavor would be compromised.

Diamond scoring pattern

Cross-hatched scoring pattern

Crust close-up for the bubbly crust lovers

SF-Style Sourdough crumb

I also made the Sourdough Seed Bread from Hamelman's Bread today. In the past, I have generally made this as 500-600 g boules. Today, I shaped two bâtards of 1 kg each.

Sourdough Seed Bread cross section

Sourdough Seed Bread, crumb close-up

This particular bread profits greatly from overnight cold retardation. It is not bad baked the day it's mixed, but it is fantastically delicious if allowed those extra hours of flavor development. 

There are some gastrointestinal conditions for which the standard advice is to avoid eating seeds. If you have the misfortune to suffer from one of these, I suggest you not eat this bread. However, the heavenly aroma of this bread when it is sliced still slightly warm from the oven is not to be missed. So, bake it even if you can't eat it. Give it away ... but only after cutting a loaf and taking a few deep breaths. 

Happy baking!

David

Comments

wally's picture
wally

Beautiful loaves, as usual.  Do I see a farmer's market baker in the future?

Larry

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Farmer's market baking? I seriously doubt I'll want to work that hard, but who knows?

David

LindyD's picture
LindyD

Sleep in and teach bread baking, rather than getting up before the birds to bake for a farmer's market.    Much more civilized hours.

Great looking breads.  But what else would we see coming out of your kitchen?

Congratulations on the retirement, David.   Enjoy!

Lindy

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I've thought about teaching bread baking to kids or teens. That's much more appealing than baking for sales. I have a few other retirement projects, but I do need something that gets me out of the house and socializing.

Strangely enough, I find I am actually waking up earlier than I used to when I set an alarm yet feeling more rested than before. I can only believe the quality of my sleep has improved. 

David

 

Yippee's picture
Yippee

Looking forward to seeing more beautiful loaves from you. Do you dance?   Ballroom dancing seems to be a fun, healthy activity to do with your wife and to socialize.  I always wish hubby and I could spend more time on the dance floor, but our kids are still young and life always gets in the way... Happy retirement!

Yippee

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I have successfully avoided ballroom dancing my whole life. My mother coerced me into taking a few lessons when I was a pre-teen. I have forgiven her. (Now, giving away my comic book collection: That's another story!)

David

Yippee's picture
Yippee

It makes me wonder what you're like when you were a kid, doc.

 Yippee

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

I can tell by your upbeat post and fine looking loaves your good to go : )  

Beautiful crumb shot of the sourdough seeded loaf.  I'm happy to say I've had my through exam just recently and I'm good to go for seeds in my diet 'lol'.

Sylvia 

 

holds99's picture
holds99

on your retirement.  Your loaves are beautiful.  Nice scoring with the raised edges.  The "Crust close up" shot speaks volumes.  I'm sure you'll find lots of fun activities to fill your time now that you have the time.  With your knowledge and skill teaching sounds like a great and rewarding idea.  Whatever you decide to do---have fun.  I'm with you re: ballroom dancing.  

Howard

 

davidg618's picture
davidg618

David,

I hope you find joyful, and delightful moments daily in your new calling: Being Retired. I'm in my fifteenth year in the same calling. It just gets better and better.

David G

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Your bread looks near perfect as usual.  Love the blisters on the SD Quest boule.  Congratulations on  on your retirement.  Now you can do what you love, what ever that is,  rather than loving what you do. 

baybakin's picture
baybakin

Congrats on the retirement David.  Oh man, the fermentation projects I would take on if I had the free time.  Last time I was under-employed (or unemployed) is when I took up baking, and the time before that was brewing beer.  Sounds like the perfect time to build a WFO in the backyard! (Least, that'd probably be one of my first projects, besides designing/building a summer house).

proth5's picture
proth5

 Getting up at 2AM to spend the night baking? Teaching might be better. I like the 2AM routine, truth be told, but I'm not normal...

Nice bread.

Pat

 

 

 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I appreciate your good wishes and kind remarks.

No WFO in Fresno, unfortunately. The air is too bad already. I wonder about how much polution a gas-fired pizza oven puts out.

David

gary.turner's picture
gary.turner

CH₄ + 2O₂ ⇒ CO₂ + 2H₂O

CO₂ and water, both necessary to life, and the present CO₂ levels are well below optimal.

cheers,

gary

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

...and happy grandparenting.  Lucky man.

Don't even think about that farmer's market suggestion.

Cheers,

Tom

 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

Salilah's picture
Salilah

and please keep baking and posting details of such wonderful breads!!

Seriously - congratulations, and hope you find loads of stuff you want to do - enjoy! (and please keep posting)

S xxx

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Not to worry. Baking bread is one of the things I'm retiring to.

David

Franko's picture
Franko

Just wanted to add my congratulations to the others on your retirement David. Now the fun begins! Your idea of teaching young folks about baking real bread is a winner and I'm sure both you and the students would have a great time baking up a storm together. I've said it before but I'm always amazed at the rich crust colour you manage to achieve on your loaves. Your loaves as always are outstanding, slashing, crumb, but the crust is a knockout. Teach a young person how to make a loaf like that and the world will be a better place.

All the best,

Franko 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I appreciate your kind words.

My breads have always had good color, except for some early efforts following the bad advice of one baking book author who shall remain un-named. I'm fortunate to have an oven with accurate and remarkably even temperature. Beyond that, I just follow the procedures I describe in my posts.

I would really like to teach youngsters to bake. The benefits, as we on TFL know, are too many to list. I'll be exploring options.

David

LindyD's picture
LindyD

After I read your reference to the heat shortening the build time of your levain, I wondered if you've ever salted the levain to slow it down.  

I've read about that technique in Hamelman and considered trying it during one hot baking day a few weeks ago, but was unsure about the amount of salt.  While it's now in the 60s here and I don't have to worry about it anymore, am still curious if that's something that was covered during your SFBI courses.  

Thanks.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hi, Lindy.

No. I haven't done that, but I may, if I bake again when the kitchen is over 78 dF. Thanks for reminding me of that technique.

60's?!!!! It was supposed to reach 110 here today. Tomorrow, the same.

David

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi David,

Late to chime in here and comment on your beautiful loaves.  I noticed in reading through responses that you attribute your crust color to your oven being very predictable.  I am wondering what kind of oven you have?  I have to rotate loaves etc as I definitely have hot spots in different parts of it....I am contemplating installing a wall oven in the future so I am paying attention to comments on ovens.

Big change in your life with retirement!  I am semi-retired.  In about 5 days my 2nd child heads off for college leaving me with only  one still at home.....

Don't want to scare you or anything but I started off baking just a couple of times a week too.....then I discovered wild yeast and I now bake daily :-)

Hot here too so I have to tend my leaven differently too.    What I found that works for me now is simply increasing the amount of flour I add each feed and I put the leaven in the basement where it is about 73° currently.  Time between feeds stays at my usual 2-2 1/2 hours.  I feed 3 times prior to using in a recipe at the end of the day which is when I mix my final doughs....As with all in baking - lots of ways to work things out so they work in YOUR own kitchen :-)  I just love all the tricks I have learned here!

Thanks for the post.

Take Care,

Janet

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I wouldn't say my oven is responsible for the crust color I get. It just functions properly and predictably. It doesn't get in the way. FWIW, it is a KitchenAid "Superba Selectra 30" model. It's 16-17 years old, so the model has probably been replaced long ago. 

Regarding levain feeding in warm weather: Adding salt is one method, as Mini brought up. I would describe what you do (If I'm understanding correctly) as decreasing the seed starter and hydration, rather than increasing the flour. But that's baker's math thinking.

Do I understand you are feeding your levain every 2-2 1/2 hours? Why? It can't be "ripe" that soon ... can it?

David

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi David,

Yes,   I am sure your model of KA oven is no longer available as KA no longer stands alone.  It is under the giant wing of Whirlpool.  I have looked at them in my search but they are still having issues with electronics....like many appliances now-a-days..... :-(

And yes again, my starter does double within 2-3 hours.  The first feed is generally longer than the following ones but it doubles quickly.  I use freshly ground whole grains so they ripen quickly.  I strive for a 2-3 hour time frame in order to give the yeast an upper hand.  I want rising power and I want to keep my doughs less sour so this is the method by which I achieve those ends.  

I tried slowing things down and doing only 2 feeds but my starter got more sour - my resident leaven taster confirmed what my nose suspected.  Since I do 3 feeds I don't decrease the seed amount or else my beginning amount of seed would be minuscule - like only 3 - 5 g which is a bit too slim of a margin for me.  I like starting with at least 10g so my summer feeds this year have been  1:.65:1.  When the temps here are cooler my feeds are 1:.4:.66.

I could use less seed on second feed but that would mean tossing our a bit of what I had just 'grown' so this way there is no waste at the end of each build or at the end of the day.  

I am not concerned about flavor development because the majority of my doughs do a long bulk ferment in the refrig. overnight.  With my grains/flour I strive for at least 6 hours of wet time which results in more flavor and a nice soft crumb.

I didn't want to add salt because then it would be a part of my base since my starter is perpetuated from one day to the next.  Too hard to keep track of the amt. of salt plus with how I do it now if I need to slow things down it is an easy adjustment as is speeding things up.

3 feeds is no big deal for me as the times coincide with my regular schedule around the house - meal times that are pretty constant.  We all get fed :-)

Janet

 

 

 

breadsong's picture
breadsong

Hi David,
aaaah, retirement...you're off to a wonderful start with these gorgeous! breads...
Happy news calls for happy bread? :^)
(I baked this bread for in celebration of a birthday, but I thought the happy face was in keeping with your good news,
so here's a photo!)


Wishing you the very best for your retirement/new career as a baking instructor!
Glad you've been enjoying your SFSD#4. That bread of yours is one of my all-time favorites - many thanks!
:^) breadsong

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

And thanks for the happy bread photo.

David

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Great news, David! now you will bake more often, and delight us. Excellent SF SD samples, and blistered crust. an eye candy.

I havn't tried Hamelman's seed bread, but your description makes it sound great. I'll have to try it.

Thanks, and best of luck to you. you have been a help to all of us here at TFL.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I appreciate your kind words. The help I have offered has been abundantly reciprocated by all the help I've received from other TFL members.

I think you would like Hamelman' Sourdough Seed Bread. It is wonderful fresh and as toast.

David

belfiore's picture
belfiore

...on your retirement! I saw the references to teaching younger bakers...I'm younger than you~would I qualify for a class or two???

Enjoy the well earned retirement portion of life...in a couple of months you'll be so busy doing fun things and wondering how you ever had time to go to work! This is the rumor that some day I hope to experience.

Cheers,

Toni

berryblondeboys's picture
berryblondeboys

Ditto for me - but coming all the way to DC to teach me, using different everything I'm sure would produce different results.  Which is an interesting question - how DO traveling bread bakers get consistent results?

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

It's nice to hear from you. I haven't seen you around as much lately, but then I haven't been around as much myself.

The teaching gig is only something I'm considering at present. I still have a ton of stuff to do around my retirement itself. 

David

belfiore's picture
belfiore

I've been surfing but not doing much baking for two reasons...it's too warm to add extra heat in the kitchen and I've been training for bike MS. Having MS and being heat sensitive means I have to ride at daybreak on my days off to get in enough miles. Once the temps drop and after the October ride I'll be back in the kitchen baking bread for us and sourdough dog biscuits for the two Border Collies. Every time I give them a milkbone they give me that look "really, mom...milkbones?"

Retirement is an adjustment but a welcome one, I'm sure.

Toni

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Glad to hear you are once again a free man, able to spend your time as you please. Knowing you as I do, I'm certain you will find many laudable projects worthy of your attention. And, I second everything Franko said.

My MIL says that "Retirement is twice as much husband on half as much money".  I hope you continue to post from time to time.

Cheers,

Eric

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I have no intention of reducing my TFL postings ... I think that's good news. :-)

Retirement is sort of a new career, isn't it? Choosing the first one wasn't trivial. The new one will take a while to choose as well. I have too many interests. The first (and most challenging) "project" will be achieving focus and developing a new routine that permits something resembling productivity. I'm just too good at frittering away hours. I do entropy really well.

"Freedom" is a good thing if it is disciplined; it is not the same as anarchy. I like "autonomy" better than "freedom." 

David

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Gosh David, I don't know whether to congratulate you or kick your butt!  Time to put the starter into long storage, dig out the travel guides and see the world!  Lots of good bargans out there!  Wander the hills in knickers and poke around in the wildlife!  Place the National Geographics into a big circle and spin the bottle!  Go for it!

Mini

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

We will do some traveling. But that won't be my main retirement activity. I'll take your wardrobe suggestion under advisement.

David

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

a couple of years into it was, "I don't know how I ever found time to go to work!"

May your retirement be equally engaging.  Congratulations!

Paul

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

My dad's question to his patients who told him they were about to retire was, "What are you retiring to?" 

I have a long list of avocations. I just need to translate it into a routine of some sort. It's a challenge.

David