The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts
albacore's picture

Deck Oven Question

December 16, 2018 - 8:38am -- albacore

In an electric deck oven with stones, are the bottom and top elements in direct contact with the underneath of the lower stone and the top of the upper stone?

Reason for asking is that my domestic oven has top and bottom heat and I wonder if I were to sit my bakestone directly on the floor of the oven, would it emulate the way a deck oven heats, at least at the bottom?


Xaimerafiki's picture

Panettone trouble shooting. What went wrong?

December 16, 2018 - 6:03am -- Xaimerafiki

Hi everybody,

This is my first post so apologies if I make any FL forum faux pas. This weekend I decided to bake my first ever panettone. I decided to use the formula that mwilson posted for "perfect panettone" but almost immediately ran into trouble. I couldn't find the method to go along with it so I aimed to form a dough with the lievito Madre, flour and water before adding eggs, sugar and finally butter. I had refreshed my lievito Madre 3times and it did triple in volume in the last refreshment.

Elsie_iu's picture

Here is a simple formula that I have used after baking a few full-of-add-ins loaves.



30% Sprouted White Wheat 20% Barley Sourdough


Dough flour (all freshly milled):

150g      50%       Whole white wheat flour

90g        30%       Sprouted white wheat flour

60g        20%       Pearl barley flour


For leaven:

26g      8.67%       Starter

27g           9%       Bran sifted from dough flour

27g           9%       Water


For dough:

273g         91%       Dough flour excluding flour for leaven

100g      33.3%       Whey

140g      46.7%       Water

80g        26.7%       Leaven

9g               3%       Vital wheat gluten (can be omitted, I have used it because my white wheat has abnormally weak gluten)

5g           1.67%      Salt



313g       100%       Total flour

253g      80.8%       Whole grain

280g      89.5%       Total hydration


Combine all leaven ingredients and let sit until doubled, around 2 hours.

Roughly combine all dough ingredients except for the salt and let it ferment for 20 minutes. Fold in the salt and ferment for 1 hour 55 minutes longer.

Preshape the dough and let rest for 15 minutes. Shape the dough then put in into a banneton. Retard for 16 hours.

The dough looked very under-proofed out of the fridge so I let it rise for 1 hour 45 minutes longer. Preheat the oven at 250°C/482°F. Score and spritz the dough then bake at 250°C/482°F with steam for 15 minutes then without steam for 25 minutes more or until the internal temperature reaches a minimum of 208°F. Let cool for at least 2 hours before slicing.


The dough had quite a low hydration level considering the grains used. I suspect this was due to the unusual performance of my white wheat berries. It also led to a slightly sticky and close crumb that should be more open if “normal” white wheat was used instead.



Onto the taste: this is the kind of all-round bread that probably suits the taste of most people. It is sweet and nutty from the sprouted wheat and barley but it is not as sugary as bread composed mainly of kamut and durum. It is also a bit tangy and yet it is hardly comparable to that you get with rye.




100% white whole wheat YW flatbread


Shrimps and king oyster mushrooms fusilli in garlicky white wine cream sauce


Shahi soya chunks mixed vegetable curry with YW semola naan (those spongy, curry-soaked soya chunks are the best part!)


Pulled duck enchiladas with roasted peppers sauce and homemade 100% masa corn tortillas


Curried vermicelli mixed vegetables (daikon radishes, peppers and sugar snap peas) and mussels…Spicy in every possible way


aniyahqueen's picture

Bread suddenly rising super fast??

December 16, 2018 - 5:29am -- aniyahqueen


So... I’ve been baking sandwich bread for a few months now and think I’m getting pretty good at it lol.... but I had the strangest thing happen the other day!!


I’m used to waiting around 1 1/2 hours for my dough to rise and double in size — both on the first rise and the second.. I usually use a little bit of black strap molasses or agave to feed the yeast, and I sweeten the dough with stevia and Erythritol. Usually the amounts look like this:


1/2 Tbsp black strap molasses or agave nectar

2 drops liquid stevia

BakerNewbie's picture

Should I cream butter and sugar in a dough?

December 15, 2018 - 2:39pm -- BakerNewbie

I'm wondering if creaming butter and sugar for a dough recipe will help produce a softer crumb in the bread. Creaming seems to be a technique used in cakes, etc. -- but I don't think I've ever seen it used in a bread recipe.

Is there any benefit to using creamed butter and sugar in a dough? Or does all that trapped air in the dreamed butter and sugar disappear due to the kneading of the dough?

BakerNewbie's picture

Develop better gluten by adding flour in parts?

December 15, 2018 - 2:34pm -- BakerNewbie

It seems to me that it's easier to develop gluten when there is a lot of liquid in the flour. I'm working on a brioche recipe that produces a dough that is rollable. The ratio of liquids to flour is such that it takes some time for my mixer to get the dough to window pane stage.

I wonder: could I leave our some of the flour initially so that I have a wetter dough, then let my mixer do its thing until it gets to window pane, and then add the rest of the flour? Is that a valid bread-making technique?


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