Newbie baker from NZ
Just dropping in to say hi, and to say what a fantasic site. I've only just begun learning to bake bread really, well when I say begun I've been baking it on and off for about a year. However I always find myself back at this site as it is a fantastic resource with such abundant information. Anways, today was a milestone for me as after having made basic bread doughs for a while now I decided to give a high hydration bread a go. So yesterday I made a sponge/poolish and let it rest overnight and tonight I turned it into what I believe to be a 74% hydration dough ... if I got my ratios correct.
What made me truly stoked though is that I kneaded it by HAND. boy was it messy and I even got some of it on the walls and ceiling. No hyperbole! Regardless, using the stretch and fold/slap method I managed to get it to come together to the point that it stuck less to me - and boy did it stick! - and more to itself. Then after proofing a couple of times with some stretches and folds in between I baked it on my stone and I must say it was the most colourful delicious and airy loaf I have ever baked. So I wanted to take this opportunity to thank the community here there support by posting helpful information that any beginner can come along and learn to bake artisinal bread.
So thats my story anyway.