The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Greetings from Walworth, NY

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Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

Greetings from Walworth, NY

Hi all, name is James, I'm a furniture maker by trade, bread maker by hunger.

 

Very much enjoying the site, such a wealth of information.

 

New to bread making, have been in love with great bread for many years, finally took the plunge.

 

I grabbed a copy of BBA, and jumped right in and made pain a l'ancienne per Peter's formula. Was a little worried about the outcome, but doing my homework and being thorough, I think the results are not bad for a first loaf. They taste amazing, isn't that the point? Looking forward to picking the brains of many of you bread makers here.

 

j

 

 

karladiane's picture
karladiane

Hi there:

 Lovely bread!  I bought BBA in March, and I've been tip-toe-ing through it with great joy.  Your bread looks incredibly yummy and beautiful.  I'm now working my way through Daniel Leader's "Local Breads" with much enthusiasm.  Bon Chance with your baking adventure!

KP

Eli's picture
Eli

Beautiful Crumb!! Welcome and I hope you enjoy TFL, everyone is wonderful. And, by the way the peel or board is beautiful as well. Did you make that?

Eli

Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

Thanks for the welcome and compliments.

 Yes, the peel is mine, one of the benefits of having a furniture making business run out of the home.

I found out with this batch that I need a substantially larger cooling rack, so that's on the workbench at the moment as well.

 

j

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I like your style James. Nice entry into the "Loaf". The crumb on your baguette looks very nice.

The board is great looking also. Is that Cherry on the outside laminations? 

Eric 

Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

Hi Eric, and thanks!

 The peel is made from curly maple and walnut, it fits my smallest stone a 14 incher nicely, just right for sliding pizzas on and off.

 

j

ehanner's picture
ehanner

James,
I have a number of wooden peels from various times and an aluminum pizza peel I use most often. I also use a 10"X18" 1/4 " plywood loading board I sharpened so it slides easily under the bread.

But, my most recent brainstorm is to laminate the top surface of the aluminum peel with some thin wood veneer. I found some high temp glue that should hold it fast and I'm just about to try it out. I should get the benefits of the wood not being sticky and also the thin yet strong shovel to place the dough. It sounds like the ideal situation. I have some nice match book veneer large enough so it will look nice.

I'll post the results when I try it out.

Eric 

Jolly's picture
Jolly

Greetings James:

 

I'm going to have my Son in-law make a peel for me after seeing yours. He loves working with wood.

 

The baguetts look delicious and are mouth watering.

 

I got my baguett dough setting in a cool room to develop the flavor over night. I hope they turn out like your's. Especially the crumb.

 

I've been baking sourdough breads for years but only baking breads for sandwiches and rolls. I simply didn't have the time to make French breads or boules and so fourth. Now I'm retired and finally have the time.

 

Very carefully I've been taking notes on everyones thoughts on baking Artisan breads. Through all the years of making boring sandwich breads and rolls I did learn how to work with dough and how it should feel whenever I'm working with different recipes. So It shouldn't take me too long to develop and sharpen up my baking skills a little further. Its amazing how much you can learn from this site.

 

I finally found the time to make Sourdough Lady's Wild Yeast Starter. James if you haven't used her method of making a wild yeast starter please do so. I'm baking beautiful high rising loaves with this starter. Using no yeast and producing light and airy bread. 

 

Sourdough Lady's starter is started with pineapple juice. My old sourdough starter was started with flour and water and was very acidic and very unperdictable. Her starter is mild tasting and not as acidic but mighty powerful in giving your breads a good rise and adding a depth of flavor to your breads. Just make a search for Sourdough Lady's Wild Yeast starter.

 

My elevation is 5,000 feet. So I use a firm starter for all my baking, it keeps my dough rising at a slow easy pace and develops its flavor through a long fermentation period. You didn't say what elevation you're baking at. 

 

Jolly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

Hi Jolly,

 Thanks for the wild yeast starter tip, I'm going to give it a try this weekend.

 Good luck with the peel, I've had several offers of making these for sale, but at the moment I just am jammed for time.

I live just off Lake Ontario, about 800 feet above sea level.

 

j

Soundman's picture
Soundman

James, welcome to TFL!

But you're gonna hafta do better than that: "new to bread making." Those loaves look gorgeous! Beautiful shading with the flour and nice shaping as well.

Well, OK, maybe you were just born to bake!

The peel too is lovely to look at. How nice to get the satisfaction of making your own bread-tools.

Soundman (David)

Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

I have to admit that I was suprised as well about how beautiful these came out for a first effort.

 I have found already some interesting parallels with bread making and woodworking, planning and then sticking to that plan indeed makes controlling the outcome a lot more predictable.

 I have a few different types of bread that I'm going to try tonight, I'll have pics and text to go with on the regular forums tomorrow I think.

 

j

Soundman's picture
Soundman

James,

I can't wait to see your second act!

Soundman (David)

Eli's picture
Eli

I have a 120 year old bread browl that was my great great-grandmothers and one that a man made me from a piece of Tupelo Gum. My housekeeper has been oiling the new one with vegetable oil and I didn't notice until I came in and found her doing it yesterday. It is a gummy mess. I don't use it all the time and haven't paid attention. I washed to no avail. Any thoughts?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Eli

Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

Hi Eli,

 That's a new wood to me, let me look into it with a few people I know that may have some info on it.

I'd be hesistant to offer advice on it like I would for a maple or oak or somesuch that i know the properties of, especially in light of the piece's age.

 It may just come down to you having to put some serious elbow grease into cleaning it out. I'd probably not recommend any kind of mechanical scraping for the same reason, the age of the piece. You might do damage to it.

 I'll get back to you in this thread with what my friends have to say. Would you happen to have a picture of it? I'm intrigued at what the bowl looks like.

 

j

Eli's picture
Eli

I will post a photo tomorrow. It isn't a big deal I will get it clean somehow. I didn't think to tell her to use the mineral oil I just said once they are cleaned just wipe 'em down with some oil, verbatim. It doesn't smell so good either. I tried some baking soda and just a little water and it may take a couple of weeks of that. I don't think that will hurt them but I will wait and see if you discover anything.

Thank you!

Eli

Eli's picture
Eli

Here is a photo. One on the right about 110 years and the one on left is 10 years.

not a very good photo on the smaller one. I will try another photo later.

Thanks,

Eli

Unclefacts's picture
Unclefacts

Hi Eli,

 I spoke to a few people I know about your bowl and it's situation.

 The concensus was to not use any harsh chemicals on it, such as a stripping agent. I showed them the picture of this bowl and another thought jumped out at me while we were talking about how to go about cleaning this up. The fact that it is so old, it has developed a natural patina to it that may or may not still be under the oily/gummy layer you have there now.

 So the pile of us agreed that you should CAREFULLY on the bottom of the bowl, using warm water with a natural dishsoap and a scotchbrite green pad, gently clean an area that isn't visible from the top of the bowl, and see if you make a dent in the layer of gum. Clean it a bit, then dry it and look to see ifyou've removed the gummyness and not the outer layer of the wood itself.

 This is probably goign to take you a while to get this cleaned up, as the level of care you're going to have to show will make getting the bowl back to where it was before critical.

 If it wasn't so old, and so beautiful a piece of wood, I'd simply break out the sand paper and scrapers and get to work. You're going to have to look at this as a restoration, and use the level of caution this piece deserves.

 Best of luck with this, I'd really like to see how you make out, and what this lovely piece looks like when it's back to where it should be.

 

j

 

Eli's picture
Eli

Thank you so much!! I will give that a try this evening! I will try and be careful with the old one as it has great sentimental value. I will let you know how it works. Thank you again for all your help.

Eli

Eli's picture
Eli

James,

I have done as you instructed. I cleaned a lower portion of the bowl and allowed it to dry. I think it may take several cleanings but it seems to be coming off, reluctantly. Hopefully, the inside will not be as bad. As for the newer one, I think it may be easier to just sand it as I don't think it is cleaning as easily. It is replaceable.

Thanks and I will keep you updated.

 Eli