The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Working on method

DesigningWoman's picture
DesigningWoman

Working on method

Still very much liking Wendy (Lazy Loafer)'s 1:2.8:4 formula, I've been trying to come up with a way to bake during the week, and I think we're getting close.

These are a 50/50 mix of T65/T110 (I believe T110 is roughly equivalent to first-clear flour), with 150g of rolled-grain scald (1:2 flakes:water) and a small handful of miscellaneous seeds (poppy and fennel, mostly). And some improvised bread spice.

Day 1 (very) late: Made the first stage of the levain, left it to ferment at room temperature until morning. Made the scald.

Day 2 morning: built the second stage of the levain, left at room temperature. Went to the office.

Day 2 late afternoon: stirred down the lovely, bubbly levain, whisked together flours, sprinkled salt over the bread spice so I wouldn't forget it. Then went about dinner prep.

Day 2 after dinner and clean-up: mixed levain and flours and let rest for about 30 minutes. Added the scald, spices and salt, and mixed using about 150 SLAFs with a 20-minute rest about halfway through. Rested 30-40 minutes, then two sets of letter folds on the bench about half an hour apart. Then into the fridge, with freezer packs beneath and atop the dough tub, since our fridge takes its time to cool things down.

Day 3 morning: removed dough from fridge. The freezer packs seemed to have worked a treat; the dough, while only slightly bigger than the previous night, was nowhere near as proofy-looking as the previous bake. I let it warm up slightly and gave it a set of folds, then back into the fridge -- without the freezer packs -- and off to the office.

Day 3 late afternoon: removed dough from fridge, let it warm up about 90 minutes, divided, preshaped, rested, shaped and proved for about 90 minutes. The dough felt nice; airy, mildly tacky, soft. I had thought the proof time would be longer than that, but the loaves had grown by about 25% and the dough was feeling "ready". Baked together in my improvised roaster.

I tried two different shaping methods (if you could call it that): the loaf on the left was rolled up "backward croissant" style (starting with a triangle and rolling from the point to the base). The other was an attempt at a more "traditional" approach (start with a rectangle, fold one third toward the middle, then the other third toward the middle, seal each time, and then fold the thing in half and seal it). I scored each one differently, so I could tell them apart after baking. It would seem that the more "orthodox" way does give a more disciplined looking loaf, but that may also be the scoring, since it looks like the cuts opened better on the lumpy loaf. So the next step would be to shape them both the same way, but score each one differently, I guess.

Unfortunately there may not be a crumb shot, since the plan was to give these away. But that may change :-D

So, while these are not as beautiful as so many other loaves here, I'm pretty happy with this bake, and especially thrilled that I seem to be working out a process that accommodates time away from home. Wish I could taste these.

Update: Crumb shot!

Well, grandsons couldn't decide if they were coming or going, so one loaf was given away and the other, "disciplined" loaf was finally cut open. Here are the first couple of slices:

Still a long way from the lovely, glistening crumb that more talented bakers get, but I'm happy with the progress. Crust is thin and crisp. I need to calm down on the fennel and maybe up the other bread spices, which didn't come through too much (maybe a tsp for 680g of flour and 50g rolled grains).

There's always the next bake!

Comments

Abe's picture
Abe

Lovely bake! Nice oven spring with ears. I'm a sucker for seeds too!

Gotta be delicious toasted.

DesigningWoman's picture
DesigningWoman

Love the seeds! I think I'm going to put together a list of seeds and their benefits.

We may never know -- these loaves are slated to be given away, but we're having trouble connecting…

leslieruf's picture
leslieruf

love the ear, i am not getting them much atm but with oats, its a very cool look.  waiting for the crumb shot with fingers crossed :)

Shaping is going to be my focus too so it was interesting to see your two ways.

lovely bake Carole

Leslie

DesigningWoman's picture
DesigningWoman

Yeah, the ear was a bit of a bonus and a happy surprise. Crumb shot is now there. Nothing like your beauties, but it's all good.

Thanks for the kind words.

Carole

leslieruf's picture
leslieruf

Often I think we aim for a more open crumb and are disappointed. This crumb is ideal for sammies etc   

I agree with Hester it is a great bake and I bet it tastes great!

look forward to your next bake

Leslie

hreik's picture
hreik

I would love to see a crumb shot if plans change and you keep one (or both).  What is 1:2.8:4 formula,?

What a wonderful bake. 

hester

DesigningWoman's picture
DesigningWoman

Crumb shot is now posted. As I said to Leslie, I have a ways to go before catching up to you guys, but I'm happy enough with the progress.

LOL: That started with Wendy's Sage and onion levain loaf. When she wrote that the levain was 25%, I figured it was easier to say 1:4 for the flour :-D  Unfortunately, the water part doesn't work out to a nice round number, and I'm too chicken to push it to a nice 1:3:4 -- but I bet you could try -- that would mean a bit more than 75% hydration.

Thanks for the kind words and keep on baking!

hreik's picture
hreik

you have a ways to go.  I'm seriously wondering that.  Your loaves look grand and crumb simply perfect.  I wish I was there to taste it.

 

hester

not.a.crumb.left's picture
not.a.crumb.left

with everybody and these are great loaves with a beautiful crumb Carole! I bet they taste great and I love the porridge bread toasted best... Kat

DesigningWoman's picture
DesigningWoman

Thanks for all the kind words about the crumb! I think I was a bit too heavy-handed with the fennel, so have decided to omit it in the bake I'm working on now and ramp up the poppy seeds. I'd wanted to do poppy seed/lemon zest, then realized that I had run out of both -- so I've ground up some dried clementine peel and we'll see how it goes!

You all are so encouraging, it's a pleasure to bake :-D