T65 flour Miche
Some of you may remember the new flour I picked up from the local mill last month, and didn't have the chance to try it in some bread; I’m now glad I did. Since the flour is French style, I decided to use it to make a Miche.
Prepare the Stiff levain by adding a tablespoon and a half of your active white starter to the water, and mix well to disperse. Add the T6- flour, mix well, and let stand for 8-12 hours at room temperature until the surface just begins to recede and collapse. Next day, mix all ingredients except the levain and salt by hand or using a mixer for 2-3 minutes. The dough will be shaggy at this stage, so leave to rest for ½ hour – 1 hour. Add the levain in chunks and sprinkle the salt on top and mix to form a dough (5-8 minutes). Do not knead the dough too much at this stage, as it will continue to develop strength as you stretch and fold it during bulk fermentation. Let ferment in an oiled bowl for 1/2 hour at preferably 78 F or 24-25C, then stretch and fold it. Repeat this step 4-5 times, and after 2.5 – 3 hours, your dough will be fermented and ready. By the end of bulk fermentation, the dough will have risen by 60-80%. scrape your dough onto a heavily floured surface, pat the dough even (Don't knead!) , and form into a round piece of dough. Let rest for 15- 20 min, covered, and during this time, dust your cloth- lined basket with a mixture of all purpose flour and rice flour. Shape your dough into a tight ball, and invert it smooth side down into the basket. Now, you have the choice to either ferment the dough at room temperature for 2-2.5 hours and bake it (watch the dough, not the clock!), or cover it and refrigerate it for 8-21 hours at 5-10C. I refrigerated the dough overnight. Next day, remove your dough from the fridge, and Preheat your oven with a stone in place to a 500F or 260C for 1 hour. 5 minutes before loading the bread, place your steaming dish filled with wet towels on the bottom of your oven. When ready, invert the dough on baking paper lined peel/ board and close the oven immediately. Bake for 15 minutes with steam, and then remove the steaming dish and reduce the temperature to 400F for another 20-25 minutes.
When time is over, remove your bread from the oven. Wear oven mitts, and tap on the bottom of one loaf, It should sound hollow. Furthermore, you may insert a thermal probe into the center of the loaf from the bottom, and the temperature should register 195-200F or 90-95C. If it doesn't, put it back in the oven for another 10 minutes. Leave to cool the bread completely on a wire rack, and ENJOY!
I sliced the bread after 2 hours, and was welcomed by a soft creamy interior, with irregular holes. The crumb was soft, and had a creamy nutty flavor. Most of the flavor was in the crust, which had a caramel/ roasted nut/ sweet/ sour flavors all at once. This flour would make excellent baguettes!
I will try mixing this flour with my standard bread flour to see whether it improves the texture and mouth feel in some of my regular recipes.