The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Sesame Semolina Sourdough Baguettes Set No. 2

Benito's picture

Sesame Semolina Sourdough Baguettes Set No. 2

Back at the same sesame semolina sourdough baguettes but with some changes to try to improve the crumb. So I made some changes in the hopes of achieving a more open crumb. The first significant change I made was to delete the commercial yeast altogether, this change was made by accident and wasn’t planned as removing the commercial yeast wasn’t something that I thought would improve the crumb.  In fact, I thought that the addition of commercial yeast was part of what was giving my an open crumb.

I increased the hydration from 67 to 71% and I also reduced bulk fermentation rise in the aliquot jar from 25 to 20%. My thinking there was increasing hydration is often one route to open crumb as long as you handle the dough well. The reduction in bulk rise was done to make dough handling easier. You see, when I had to transfer the shaped dough to a tray with a wet towel and roll it, then transfer it to the tray with the sesame seeds and roll it, I found that the dough felt like it was getting degassed and stretched out too long. So reducing bulk made the dough much easier to handle this much and once seeded and in the couche the dough was 16” long, the max for my baking steel. Finally to compensate for the reduced fermentation I added a 30 mins bench rest in the couche followed by my usual 30 minute chill in the fridge. The fridge time is intended to firm the dough up to make it easier to score.
I think my changes were very successful and I’m quite happy with the improvement in the crumb compared to my first set. Leaving out the commercial yeast didn’t have the negative effect that I expected in making the crust thicker nor did leaving it out make the crumb less open.


mwilson's picture

 The first photo shows a fashionable quality, the latest designer mini baguettes.

Do you think more or less bulk is better for baguettes?

That crumb is also pretty great too.

Nicely done!


Benito's picture

Thank you Michael, very nice of you to say.

From my limited experience with baking baguettes my impression is that you can get even more open crumb by pushing bulk fermentation to around 35% but then it is at the expense of oven spring which compromises ears and grigne.  If you bulk a bit less, I think you can still get a good maybe slightly less open crumb, but good ears and grigne.  Now, in the hands of someone more skilled than I am, this might be quite different.  I think I still have some work to do on my shaping for sure, perhaps if I was able to shape better with my tension, then maybe I could push bulk further and still get ears and grigne.  But with my current skill set bulking to a lower degree seems like a good balance.  Also, although I need to confirm this with another bake, cutting bulk earlier aroun 20% rise and then allowing more proofing at room temperature also seems to work as I described earlier.

GlennM's picture

Im using the aliquot jar now and find that I have been over-proofing for a long time. It doesn’t seem to matter if you over proof a bit with yeast but sd is a completely different animal!

Benito's picture

Thank you Glenn, I am quite pleased with the crumb on this second set, the first set was definitely a bit under and tight, this was much better.

I'm so glad that you're finding the aliquot jar helpful, I know that using it has been helping me a lot as well.

Happy Baking