The Fresh Loaf

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Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Ready in 3 1/2 hours?  (Make it longer if you wish, use 1/2 teaspoon of yeast, add salt & caraway and use cold water to make it rise slower.)

Wheat shaped form ... White Bread   crusty

  • 450g hot water (you can just manage to keep a finger in it)

  • 7g instant yeast

  • 650 g Wheat flour (250g AP, 400g Bread flour)

  • 1 1/2  to 2 teaspoons table salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground caraway

  • olive oil for bowl & form

Pour hot water into a large 2.5 ltr. mixer bowl and sprinkle with yeast.  Add the flours and stir until all the flour is moistened and a shaggy dough has formed.  Cover and let stand 2 hours or until the dough has risen up to the cover.  Remove cover and scrape out dough onto a lightly floured surface.  Sprinkle with the salt and caraway.  Fold or roll up the dough and knead to blend for about two minutes.  Shape into a tight ball and cover with the bowl.

Soak top and bottom of a Clay form (total volume 2 liters) 10 min in warm water.  Allow to drip dry and surface water to absorb, one minute.  Smear inside with olive oil.  Re-shape and tighten dough to form a loaf.  Rub with oil and place into bottom form.   Oil the inside of cover and place over dough.  Set in cold oven for 15 minutes.   Turn on oven to 225°c  (440°F) on Hot air (convection) and time for 45 minutes.   Remove form and brown loaf another 5 minutes in hot oven on rack.   Cool on rack for 15 minutes and serve warm with bread knife on cutting board. 


I was given this form for Christmas without any instructions.  As you can see the ingredients add up to just over a kilo of dough, about the right amount to fill this two liter volume form.  The loaf crust is very crunchy and thick.  The crumb slightly chewy and tender.  I removed the top for the last 5 minutes of baking but wished I had removed the whole form to let the bottom brown more as well.   Slices are almost round and crumb is fine.  The oil in the form adds to an almost buttery flaky crust.   This loaf was sliced warm.




Smita's picture

Clint is doing well. Tried making a sandwich bread using sourdough starter. Heres what I did.

2 Nights before:
Added about a cup of whole wheat flour and half a cup of water to half a cup starter (100% hydration)

Day 1:
Added a cup of whole wheat flour, a cup of white whole wheat flour and a third cup of AP flour, 1.5 cups of water, 2 tsp salt, 1 tablespoon each butter and sugar.

1. Mixed flours and water to get a shaggy dough. Rest for 30 mins (autolyse)
2. Added salt, butter, sugar and kneaded 8-10 minutes till the dough windowpaned.
3. Rest. Phew.
4. Bulk ferment for 90-120 minutes or till the dough doubles in volume, with stretch and folds every 30 minutes.
5. Shaped and stuck into a loaf pan.
6. Day 2. Pulled dough out of fridge and kept at room temperature for 2 hours. Baked at 375 for 40 minutes.

Soft and pillowy. Good crumb and rise. However, my shaping skills suck. Need to develop a feel for tension in the dough. Looked a bunch of YouTube videos but need to develop a better feel. Also want to try this with whole wheat flour instead of the white whole wheat. Just a personal taste preference. 


hannah's picture

for the recipe at my food blog, click HERE

Debra Wink's picture
Debra Wink

I don't remember joining TFL on Christmas last year, but according to the time clock here, it was that evening. And so, to mark the occasion, naturally, I baked a cake.

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for making me feel welcome in the community. This is the nicest group of people I've encountered anywhere on the Internet---warm, friendly, supportive and encouraging. Thank you, you've made it a great year!

Arbyg's picture


I had the urge to bake a little Ciabatta for Christmas so here are the results.  First batch in years so it needs some improvement.


62%hydration Biga



1/2tsp inst. yeast

Flour KA 200g

biga 600g

Mix with hook until window pane fold once after 1hour, proof until double, bake 420 for30-35min

CaptainBatard's picture

Santa....there is some kind of a mistake....when i made my list I had a 20qt mixer and not 20qts of mixer...can you swing around on your way back from the other coast and make thing right...????


wojo723's picture

I just took my paska out of the oven to cool and snapped these pictures.  It's a traditional polish bread for Christmas Eve.  It's also enormous.  We have enough for dinner and use the leftovers for french toast on Christmas morning.


breadinquito's picture

Hi to everyone of the family TFL, anyone involved in bakery or kitchen should know about mise en place (even though is not french speaking) I found somewhere a translation I really liked: "get organized"...for the newbies is having everything measured, chopped, etc in order start a recipe.

Based on the experience of yesterday, I recommend everyone mise en place: I started the 3 days long recipe of the panettone (only sourdough) and already had the first dough

ready to be mixed with candied fruits, more water etc....I made was supposed to be adding 80 ml of water BUT no...I put 240 ml! hopefully none saw my face in the moment I realized the mistake!! anyway, no way to step back, so I decided to add 160 more gr of flour just to compensate, the result almost 6 pounds of dough that will enable me to make 4-5 panettoni (panettone singular, panettoni plural, according to italian grammar...)

And now ladies and gentlemen, the pics:

The first dough ready to be mixed with vanilla, candied fruits etc:

the dough mixed with fruits, nuts etc:

just before baking:

out of the oven:

 the crumb:


and finally, the most important: a genuine Marry Christmas and Happy New Year!!



PD: sorry if the quality of the pics is "so so", they were taken with a 2mp cell phone camera and the photographer (me) is better making breads....a pitty you can't smell and taste it!!!

dstroy's picture

We have added Irish Shortbread cookies to our collection of holiday treats, the other favorite around here being the Magic Squares - although this recipe we've also called "Zoo Cookies", because they used to have these amazing cookies at the zoo, always expertly decorated to look like various zoo animals, which I admit to having gone sometimes with the cookie being the prime attraction. Then they seem to have quit selling them there, so I had to find out what sort of cookies they were to satisfy the occasional craving. Having found out what they're made of, I now know why they tasted so good, so we have to limit how often they get made. ;) I realized we've been making these regularly now and I've never posted the recipe, so I'm correcting that now.

Irish Shortbread

2 cups butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups flour.

Bring butter to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
Cream the butter until it is the consistency of whipped cream.
Beat in the sugar. Add salt. Add flour in 4 portions (one cup at a time) mixing well after each addition.
Turn out onto a floured board and pat or roll to 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. (Dough was crumbly so required squashing to make it feel clay-like)
Cut into shape desired with a cookie cutter.
Place on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for about 20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Wait till cookies are mostly cooled to ice.

Royal Icing

3 Tablespoons Meringue Powder (I can't find this stuff anywhere so I use some creme of tartar powder instead)
4 cups confectioners' sugar (about 1lb.)
6 Tablespoons warm water*
Add flavoring such as vanilla, almond, lemon, or whatever you like (I use vanilla)
Beat all ingredients until icing forms peaks (7-10 minutes at low speed with a heavy-duty mixer, 10-12 minutes at high speed with a hand-held mixer).
Recipe makes 3 cups.

NOTE: Keep all utensils completely grease-free for proper icing consistency.
* For stiffer icing, use 1 tablespoon less water.

We like to put out small bowls of icing with some food gel coloring and some clean paint brushes and then the kids do our decorating for us.


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