The Fresh Loaf

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San Joaquin Sourdough Baguettes

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

San Joaquin Sourdough Baguettes

San Joaquin Sourdough Baguettes

April 1, 2013

My San Joaquin Sourdough originated in Anis Bouabsa's baguettes which had won the prize for the best baguette in Paris in 2008. Bouabsa's baguettes departed from convention in utilizing a 21 hour retardation after bulk fermentation and before dividing and shaping. Jane Stewart (Janedo on TFL) and I initially modified Bouabsa's formula by adding a bit of rye flour and some sourdough starter for flavor. I then omitted the commercial yeast altogether and began using the modified formula to shape as bâtards. Over time, I have tweaked the formula and method in various ways, but have settled on the current one as providing the best product.

Today's bake takes the San Joaquin Sourdough back to its roots, so to speak. I used my current formula and method to make San Joaquin Sourdough baguettes. I am very happy with the results.

 

Total ingredients

Wt (g)

Bakers %

AP Flour

479

89

WW Flour

33

6

Medium rye Flour

29

5

Water

392

72

Salt

10

1.8

Liquid starter

17

3

Total

960

176.8

9.2% of the flour is pre-fermented

Liquid Levain ingredients

Wt (g)

Bakers %

AP Flour

29

70

WW Flour

8

20

Medium rye Flour

4

10

Water

42

100

Liquid starter

17

40

Total

100

240

 

Final dough ingredients

Wt (g)

AP Flour

450

WW Flour

25

Medium rye Flour

25

Water

350

Salt

10

Liquid levain

100

Total

960

 

Method

  1. Mix the levain by dissolving the liquid starter in the water, then add the flours and mix well. Ferment at room temperature, covered tightly, until the surface is bubbly and wrinkled. (8-12 hours)

  2. Dissolve the levain in the water, add the flours and mix to a shaggy mass. Cover and autolyse for 30 minutes.

  3. Add the salt and mix to incorporate.

  4. Transfer to a clean, lightly oiled bowl and cover tightly.

  5. Bulk ferment for 3-4 hours with stretch and folds in the bowl every 30 minutes for the first 2 hours, then a stretch and fold on the board after 2.5 hours. The dough should have expanded by about 50% and be full of small bubbles.

  6. Refrigerate the dough for 18-24 hours.

  7. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and transfer it to a lightly floured board.

  8. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces and pre-shape as logs or round.

  9. Cover the pieces and allow them to rest for 60 minutes.

  10. Shape as baguettes and proof for 45 minutes, covered.

  11. Pre-heat the oven to 500ºF with a baking stone and steaming apparatus in place.

  12. Transfer the baguettes to your peel. Turn down the oven to 480ºF. Score the loaves and load them onto your baking stone.

  13. Bake with steam for 10 minutes, then remove your steaming apparatus and continue to bake for another 10-12 minutes. (Note: After 10 minutes, I switched my oven to convection bake and turned the temperature down to 455ºF.)

  14. Remove the loaves to a cooling rack, and cool for at least 30 minutes before serving.

 

 

When tasted about 2 hours after baking, the crust was crunchy and the crumb was soft. The flavor was complex, with a caramelized nuttiness from the crust and a sweet, wheaty flavor from the crumb. There was some mild acidity but no discernible acetic acid tanginess. These are among the best-flavored sourdough baguettes I have ever tasted. Very yummy fresh baked and with great sandwich, crostini, toast and French toast potential.

David

Submitted to YeastSpotting

Comments

eLuke455's picture
eLuke455

Hi David,

I am making the Baguettes now - can you explain why you "stretch and fold on the board after 2.5 hours" - its not clear why you take the dough out of the bowl to do this final stretch and fold. I have a large wood pasta board which I will use for this, and shaping.

Thanks

Luke

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I think the stretch and fold on the board contributes more gluten strength than the s and f in the bowl. Actually, what I have done for years I see is now called "lamination." This is the approach I use with most of my sourdough breads these days - S&F in the bowl at 30 and 60 minutes after levain and salt have been added, then "lamination" 50-60 minutes later. 

David

Benito's picture
Benito

David, I wanted to share with you my first time baking your San Joaquin baguettes.  I generally followed your formula except that I ended bulk fermentation when the dough in my aliquot jar was at 20% rise.  The dough went into cold retard for 24 hours and I baked today. Divid and pre-shape, bench rest in loose cylinders for 20 minutes then shape.  The dough was much more extensible than I was expecting.  I then did a room temperature bench rest en couche for 30 mins and then back in the fridge to chill and firm to make scoring easier.

This was a bit of a disaster, ok maybe that is a bit dramatic, but because of a really boneheaded mistake of mine, it didn’t turn out as well as it might have. What would be a critical thing to miss doing related to the start of baking your baguettes? Steaming, no I remembered that and it was all set up, boiling water poured into the cast iron skillet. Let’s see I loaded the baguettes and they’re in there on the hot baking steel steam doing its thing. Maybe 1.5 minutes into steaming, OMG I didn’t score the baguettes!!! Have you ever wondered what baguettes would look like it you forgot to score them, then took them out, scored them as they were just starting to rise? Now the dough is warm instead of cold after having had them in the fridge for 60 minutes to firm up to score. Opening the oven of course lets the built up steam out. 

Anyhow, taking them out to score them compromised the oven spring and thus the ears and grigne.  You will be surprised, maybe not as surprised as I was at the crumb though.  Surprisingly open.

David thank you for sharing your formula with us here on TFL.  I will have another go at this and hopefully not make a big mistake, maybe just my usual small less consequential ones.  ; )

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

In the continuum of errors, you could have done worse. The oven spring looks pretty normal, and the crumb is really nice. How did you like the flavor?

Thanks for sharing!

David

Benito's picture
Benito

Thanks David, I quite liked the flavour, enough that I ate a whole one myself for dinner last night!  I hate these silly errors, fortunately only visual issues resulted, I’m still quite surprised that the crumb turned out so well despite the error.  Thanks again for sharing your formula.

Benny

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