The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Latest Sprouted Sourdough, 6 Grain Pullman Cube Bread with Sunflower Seeds on Top

dabrownman's picture

Latest Sprouted Sourdough, 6 Grain Pullman Cube Bread with Sunflower Seeds on Top

This I the latest iteration of a fine bread that Lucy puts together for her other master that treats her even worse than I do…if that were possible.  When ever my wife gets low on bread for her daily lunch smoked turkey sandwich that she carts off to work every day, Lucy gets right to work crafting a new version that my wife says she might like.


Hitting the pan size

I think she will like this one because it isn’t far off from the normal or as dark on the outside as usual since it was only baked to 207 F on the inside.  She said she wanted to be less dark so we left it in the pan for 2 minutes longer than normal and took it out of the pan for only 6 minutes of finish baking on the stone.  Total time was down 3 minutes overall.

Coming out of the fridge after 12 hour retard

The other thing that was new was putting a layer of sunflower seeds on top when it got to 95.125% proof.  It looks nice and smelled even better than normal as it baked.    My wife said she doesn’t like stuff in her bread but she never said anything about stuff on it so Lucy took full advantage knowing that she can just cut it off if the beatings continue until the moral improves.

Seeds on at 98% proof, lid going on and into the oven it goes

Speaking of taking advantage.  Lucy went to the salon to get beautified and the lady said she had sticks in her coat that she had to cut out so she just shaved her like it was her summer cut to get them all out.  It was really cold here last week with new low high record for the day of 47 F breaking the old record by of 54 F by 7 degrees and it has been around freezing at night. Now global warming is killing critters with coats!

It also rained well over and inch too but before that, thankfully, poor Lucy was cold and she took it out on us by going out to the back yard and rolling around getting sticks stuck all over her again.  My daughter had to pick them out – a lot easier chore when the hair is short though.  Thankfully it rained that night and then all day too so she wasn’t muddy with sticks.

Personally, I don’t care what Lucy does, as long as she isn’t biting and barking at the neighbors that we like and I am certainly not picking sticks out of her coat any time soon.  She did get a nice Valentine’s Day red heart bow on her collar that the groomer put on.  Lucy hates it of course and wanted taken off desperately but, I won’t do that either.  When it falls off ….it falls off. 


Grilled Baja chicken taco with all the fixings - Pico, Guacamole, cilantro, Mexican key lime,  scallion and hot sauce, cheddar and queso fresco.

Lucy could be trained, she would put it in the trash bin herself and I don’t pick stuff up off the floor anymore so it might be where ever it falls for a while.  Being retired means you have unique privileges.  That means you don’t have to do anything other people seem to think they have to do and I’m sticking to that creed on most everything not worth doing.  My wife seems to think differently about this and most things in fact, don’t they all? 

We have grilled garam masala salmon once a week with a salad and steamed mixed veggies and in this case Alton Brown's rice pilaf that Lucy gussies up to make it really special.

She has a list of things she wants me to do claiming I don’t really do anything and have lots and lots of time on my hands.  But that’s not it at all.  I have another retirement rule about not doing stuff that magically appears on someone else’s list ……and I never, ever make a list of stuff for me to do either.  What a total waste of time.  Why make a list of stuff you know you are never going to do?  This makes making a list of stuff for someone else to do, a really huge waste of time in my book, if I had a book.

Got to love a good salad at least once a day!  This one has yellow peppers and avocado with trumpet and crimini mushrooms, carrot, cucumber, Roma and cherry tomatoes, chunks of Parmesan, red and green onion, thinly sliced Brussels sprouts with green salad bowl and red Romaine from the garden.

But, as some might know, I’m big believer in going to the library and not wasting money buying books when you already bought them and pay the maximum amount possible more to take care of them too.  They get treated better than humans do and way more than they are worth.   Still, It is just one of things that lets you not spend money on buying more books you already own and take of so well.   By not buying books, you can retire early and not have to do stuff on someone else’s list ever again.

You have to have a good breakfast on bake day with sourdough blue berry pancakes, bacon sausage and strawberries

Seems like kids today have all retired early come to think of it.   They don’t do much of anything we tell them to do.   So, making a list for them is totally worthless too.  It sort’a makes me proud that they at least learned something from me, quite the legacy, even though it is all totally wrong for them because they are nowhere near retirement age.


One of Lucy's best recipe, voted by her in house girls, is her Gumbo that is half Cajun and half Creole with 2 kinds of smoked sausages; Louisiana hot links and Andouille with shrimp, scallops and smoked chicken thighs secret gumbo spices with gumbo file.  Do not listen to people who say not tp put gumbo file in gumbo - that is what makes it gumbo!

Retirement age is where they should expect to get free stuff all the time like I do.  Just saying, they need to pay their dues and do stuff on lists for someone else for at least 4 or 5 decades before they can expect to get free stuff.  It’s only fair and quite r=traditional ….till now.

Don't forget grilled salmon steaks.  Yea there are bones ....with a salad

What youngsters need to learn is that you don’t get rich by spending your money, like at Starbucks for one example, when you should be investing it.  Warren Buffet bought his first stock for $115 when he was 11 years old which is now worth $606,000 today – 77 years later.  It isn’t all peaches and cream for Warren even though he is in fine health and able to do just about anything worth doing with an extra $606,000 and 60 odd billion lying about on top of that.  

He is really ancient at a ripe 88, and still working for living too.  Why is that?  He can’t possibly be happy if he is still doing stuff on lists that his wife gives him ….no matter how rich he is ….and he is really, really rich.  I suppose, as a libertarian at heart I do not care what he does though.  The important part is that he does whatever he wants because he didn’t spend money on worthless stuff - he invested it instead.

My daughter and I made her mom a fancy do triple chocolate, pudding birthday cake made with non fat yogurt that had chocolate chinks and raspberry puree hidden in the center of the bunt cake with a raspberry 72% dark chocolate ganache made with water instead of  cream and butter - it is better without the fat.  We wanted to put some corn syrup in to make it shiny but my wife said not to.  It was her cake but she was wrong - put it in there to shine it up!

This chicken noodle veggie soup is made from scratch with the exception of the noodles

 Still, I can think of a whole list of things I would be doing instead of working.  It’s OK to make lists of stuff you would do when you retire but working or working to do anything on someone else’s list should never be on it.  In fact I recommend not even buying paper or pen, and saving that scratch,  so you can never write out a list once you are retired.  Old habits are hard to break and the temptation may be too much for some. Back to bread.

Grilled Chicken Tacos start with the marinade of tequila, lime, fresh cilantro, mixed dried red peppers, Mexican oregano, garlic and green onion and black pepper, a bit of EVOO and balsamic vinegar with  splash of thick mushroom flavored soy sauce to make it Baja Style and don't over do it with the fixings so you can still taste the meat you worked so hard to make just right.  Melt a little cheese on the shells and top it gingerly.  Or really spruce it up like another version above:-)

A recipe is just a list of stuff to do so I never write them down either.  I don’t even make them up in my head either.  I have an apprentice who does that for me.  Lucy is not retired and needs a job if she ever hopes to be retired as a First Class Baking Apprentice….. with the extra notch higher retirement pension that comes with it.

Different day different chicken noodle soup with more broth in a prettier bowl

This one is 16% whole grain with all of the sifted bran and part of the high extraction flour making up the 100% hydration, 10% pre-fermented flour bran levain.  We broke our usual and did not retard the levain this time and went straight into autolysing the dough flour which consisted of the remaining 6% HE whole grains, 8% Bob Red meal sprouted spelt and 8% BRM sprouted durum with 34% each LaFama AP and BRM artisan Bread Flour.

Love blueberries in salad to make it different

The autolyse was 40 minutes holding back 3.33% of the water for a double hydration with the Pink Himalayan sea salt sprinkled on top.  Once the held back water went in with the bran levain, the total hydration was 78% overall.  After mixing with a spoon, Lucy’ fur started flying with 150 slap and folds followed by 2 more sets of 50 and 25, followed by 3 sets of Sleeping Ferret Folds from the top top bottom and the left and right – perfect for slack dough.

Still, nothing beats a simply dressed tingua taco!  Back to sliced cube bread

All of these exotic dough manipulations were done on 30 minute intervals with a 30 minute rest at the end.  Since it is cold, between manipulations we rested the dough on a heating pad covered with an oiled plastic sheet covered by a SS bowl and a kitchen towel – our normal winter technique that Lucy hasn’t come up with a catchy name for yet – probably because I don’t make a list of things for her to do either.  I find yelling and screaming at here good for the lungs at my age instead.  It’s all part of a well-constructed retirement plan that was never written down.

The wife likes them thin and these are a bit over a quarter inch each.

We shaped this dough with 4 slap and folds to get the large bubbles out and rolling it tightly into a loaf shape and then plopping it into the oil sprayed Yippee Pullman Pan for proofing with the lid slid on.  We let it sit 40 minutes on the counter and them put it into the fridge for a 12 hour retard where it didn’t much maybe rising 30%. 

 Not every great bread has to be 'Grand Canyon' open

The next morning, we put it on the heating pad to finish proofing.  When it got to 95.125% proof we sprinkled on a layer of sunflower seeds that Lucy found in her pantry and waited for it to get 98% proof before slipping it into the 500 F oven for 20 minutes of baking with the lid on.


The seeds don't fall off after baking when mooshed into the bread by the Pullman top as the bread proofs to make the cube.

So, there you go, another cubed sprouted sourdough that tastes fantastic and looks pretty square.  Soft moist and easy to slice with a bit of sunflower seed - just perfect for sandwiches.  600 g of flour at 78% hydration is perfect for this pan with 12 g of salt and this mix of whole, sprouted and white flour.


DesigningWoman's picture

That's not a loaf, that's architecture! 

Really mind-blowing and gorgeously yummy looking food.

I hope Madame enjoyed it. If not, make another one and put it on a pedestal.

Keep on baking,


dabrownman's picture

as the Cubist movement in art that Pablo Picasso led.  The great Cubist era buildings still standing from the early teens of the 20 th century are pretty much in Prague although architects still study and take inspiration from the buildings still left and from the Art World too.  Cubism was the most important art movement of the 20th century that eventually led to abstract art, my personal favorite.  Cubism was the tearing apart and putting back together in un-natural ways using straight lines and still be able to tell sort of what it was, a person. a table whatever.  Glad you liked the post and food - we sure did.  Here a piece, an eggshell tempera painting on copy paper, called Paintbrushes from 1999 that I did for the Millennial Series at the turning of the century.  Cubism was just getting started in 1901 and Abstract sprang form it and fwas ull flowered by 1999.   Happy baking Carole


DesigningWoman's picture

I like it! I have a soft spot for the Cubists, even own a drawing by Fernand Léger that used to belong to my MIL. Had a real 'aha' moment, too, when we stumbled upon a show at the Picasso museum in Antibes many years back, a painter I'd never heard of: Alberto Magnelli. Fell in love and have never been able to find any kind of catalogue raisonné of his work. 

Thanks for the insight into this particular bake.

Keep on baking, dab!


Abe's picture
Abe (not verified)

Your wife is going to need to spell things out to prevent these get out clauses. I think you were a lawyer in another life Dabs. And what a great idea to coat the top with seeds. Apart from being delicious and decorative I would think it prevents sticking too. 

What a lovely blog and the delicious food is neverending. 

dabrownman's picture

back yard since it is starting to look like a jungle back there where there should just be rocks.  I told her to put it on a list for me so ! wouldn't forget to do it :-)  And she did so now I don't have to do it!  I spray the pan so it's not going to stick but the seeds just make sure it won't for sure..  Glad you liked the bread and blog - it has been a while since we made a post so there were more photos to chose from!

Happy baking Abe

Danni3ll3's picture

the seeds on top? The loaf really look fantastic with them on there. 

dabrownman's picture

but she hasn't complained about them so far.  As long as the bread is loaf like and thinly sliced is all that matters to her really:-)  It does tast nice though.

Happy baking Danni

Elsie_iu's picture

The tongue has to be my favourite but the grilled chicken looks extra spicy and juicy as well! Next week I'm going to make Costillas de Puerco Adobadas (pork ribs in adobo) using the peppers I just ordered to serve with rice. I'll probably accompany it with some blackened white fish tacos and salsa (or salmon? Your grilled salmon seems pretty nice too) Really getting excited to use whole dried ancho and guajillo peppers for the first time! I already used the kashmiri chilli peppers bought along with them in a goan shrimp curry. The upgrade in flavour was almost unreal :)

Everything looks great, even the sandwich bread (and I usually don't care for it)! Lucy's been doing such a good job that I'm sure the girls were pleased.

dabrownman's picture

adobo is the cinnamon in the rub and overnight marinade then smoking them over alder wood for 2.5 hours and then finishing them till the fall off the bone in the adobo low and slow or Instant pot.  You will have a great time making and eating these fine ribs for sure.  Peppers are the spice of life for good reason so get a dried chipotle in the rub mix too..  We are blessed here to have so many fresh dried peppers  to choose from year round.  Lucy's standrad chili powder has 7 different ones in it:-)

Glad yu liked the food but you wold like ht=this sandwich bread.  Whole and sprouted multi grain sourdough made in a pan tastes the same :-)  Canlt wait to see your next post but first I have to check to see if I missed one of yours this past week or so.

Happy baking Elsie.

David R's picture
David R

I've never had the honour of being the one assigned to fold the sleeping ferret. Most of my life seems instead to have been spent hand-knitting a gabardine suit out of Jell-O, getting the pattern wrong, and having to undo it and start again.

So, how do you fold a sleeping ferret? I know how to fold an awake ferret, you use two square Le Creuset frying pans, an anchovy, and a very long stick with a hook at one end (plus a good deal of string, obviously) - but the sleeping type just has me stumped.

dabrownman's picture

another Fresh Loafian, Lazy Loafer if I remember correctly.  It is used on slack white dough that is too loose for Slap and folds or stretch and folds.  When you pick up a sleeping ferret in the middle or toward one end, they are very pliable, slinky  like and kind of stretch out on their own hanging down.  Same thing with dough you pick it up and easily stretches out and hangs down on its own so that you can gently fold it over.  Now the Strutting Peacock Fan Fold is much more aggressive and only used for add ins.

isand66's picture

All that amazing food and an awesome sandwich bread but "Store bought" noodles for the soup!  Oh the horror!  

I just finished talking them down from the back stoop and they recovered enough to go terrorize a squirrel.  In any regards,  the addition if the sunflower seeds is a big 👍🏻 and of course all the amazing food is almost too much to take 😜.  That chocolate pudding thingy looks like something fit for my last meal!

Happy Snow Storm Baking!  


dabrownman's picture

at the Mekong Vietnamese Market?  They were very good and fresh If I remember correctly:-)  They have the  huge assortment of fresh noodles there to choose from in the Phoenix area.  When the dried packaged ramen noodles go on sale 8 or 10 for a dollar, I buy few dollars worth to give to the soup kitchen.  Those flavoring packages in them are all salt and ajinamoto should be banned as a heart attack in a tiny foil foil pouch though.

It is heading to hard core summer before you know it here.from a 47 F high to 80 F in about a week. The tomatoes are starting to set on so maybe we will get some in about 2 months.before they burn up and turn to dust.  Wow, the wife told me to pull the weeds in the back yard and when I didn't do it as fast as she wanted done she went ahead and did it herself this time!  This not doing stuff on other people's lists really works!  She did leave me the side yard though where the weeks remind me of Nam for sure.  i didn't know a weed could grow over your head height?

Lucy sends her best to the Big Black Ones in the LI pack.  She really enjoyed sunning herself yesterday.

Happy baking Ian

DesigningWoman's picture

what someone else can do today 😄

dabrownman's picture

that are all blooming.  I told her when they stopped booming I would trim them and that all she needs to do is put it on a list for the end of May or so.    By then I can get thee landscaper to do it .  My son in law is flying into town to strip the citrus trees this weekend and put the LED spot light bulb in the ceiling in the family room!  Just thinking about it all is pretty stressful and I kind of feel victimized  or at least put upon.wrongly:-)