The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Two week biga breads

  • Pin It
sooz's picture
sooz

Two week biga breads

I wasn't sure where to post this -- here, bread machine, or ? Anyways, I've been experimenting with making two week biga breads per The Bread Lover's Bread Machine cookbook by Beth Hensperger. BTW, I use the machine just for the dough cycle. I really like the chewy crumb and crunchy crust as well as the convenience of making the biga only once every two weeks for multiple loaves (have to discard after that). Sourdough starters always seemed a pain with feeding, so the self-sufficent, low maintenance two week biga is perfect for me. This is a firm biga and I am not sure how wet the dough should be for this type of Italian bread to get the uneven holes and not have it collapse. I think I am handling it too much because my crumb looks almost like regular bread (great flavor though). The author is clear on wetness with the Ciabatta recipe but not on the two-week versions. The Ciabatta method was much more complicated and way too much trouble. What I'm looking for is a relatively quick and easy way to get a slightly sourish, chewy, and crusty loaf with irregular holes. I'm on the right track with the two-week biga but the proper wetness of the dough is a bit of a mystery. Thanks for any advice, Sue