The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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breadnerd's picture
breadnerd

Played with the mud oven again today, and we got it good and hot! We even succeeded with the apocryphal "four minute pizza" of lore.

 

 

Ever since we built the oven we've heard that the ultimate woodfired pizza ovens cook in four minutes. BTW, I did bake them straight on the hearth (on parchment), they're just waiting on the sheet pan for the last pie to come out of the oven. The parchment pretty much turned black on the edges but did not combust, so I think I can safely vouch for 600 degrees + for parchment use!

 

Anyway, nothing like homemade tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella from the farmer's market, with chopped basil, zucchini, peppers, and onions from the backyard (plus mushrooms and pepperoni).

 

Besides that, the usual batches of bread for some good summer eating for the next few weeks: sourdough, ciabatta, and a jalapeno cheddar loaf I've been playing with. I overproofed this batch but it still looks pretty tasty.

 

Also roasted some beets and garlic, and just pulled a couple of zucchini quick breads out as well. I'm pretty pooped but may still stick some tomatoes in to dry overnight, but then again, maybe I'll save it for next time!

Dorothy's picture
Dorothy

Trying to make sourdough bread rye flour starter. I can't get mine to double after 7 days. Should I start over? I added 100 percent white flour to the 2nd feed.  Could this be the problem???

browndog's picture
browndog

Here is an adaptation of an adaptation. The original recipe was featured in a bed & breakfast cookbook, adapted and published by the Boston Globe, and tweaked once again by me.

Cranberry Nut breakfast Rolls

1/4 c orange juice

1/3 c sweetened dried cranberries

1/4 c unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 c buttermilk or 1 c water + 2 tbsp buttermilk powder

2 eggs

1/4 c granulated sugar

1/2-2/3 c marmalade

1 1/8 tsp salt

2 tsp active dry yeast

3 c unbleached all-purpose flour

1/3 c coarsely chopped roasted pecans

6 tbsp butter, softened

(This is a good place to use up some starter discard if you have it. I used 50 grams firm discard and reduced the liquid by 1/4 c initially, then added a little more during kneading to make a tacky, silky dough.)

1. Combine juice and berries in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, remove from heat and let sit 10 minutes. Drain and reserve liquid.

2.Warm your buttermilk, add yeast to proof, then combine with the melted butter, eggs, 1/4 c sugar, and salt. Stir thoroughly.

3. Add flour and knead til dough comes together. Add cranberries and nuts, continue kneading til dough is smooth and elastic.

4. Let rise til doubled. Grease two 9" cake pans. Divide dough in half. Roll one half into a 12x8 rectangle. Spread with 3 tbsp soft butter, then enough marmalade to cover in a thin, even layer. Roll up from the long side and seal seam well. Cut into 12 even slices. Place the slices cut side down, in one of the cake pans. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

5. 30 minutes before bake time, remove from refrigerator and set in a warm place to rise til doubled. Set the oven at 375. If desired, drizzle 1/4 c heavy cream over each pan of rolls. (My Puritan up-bringing would not allow this.) Bake 20-30 minutes, til golden brown.

Icing

1 c powdered sugar

reserved juice

additional milk as needed

Combine, stir, and spoon over rolls. Serve warm.

Note: Not needing, for a family of three, 24 rolls to face first thing on a Saturday morning, I chose to make and bake the same day a small pan loaf with the remaining half of the dough. I spread the dough with butter and marmalade, rolled it without slicing and baked it for about 30 minutes. Lovely. The original recipe did not call for marmalade but a quarter cup of granulated sugar and half an orange's worth of zest. I found the marmalade to donate a fine bit of texture and piquancy.

And with this entry I'm pleased to be part of Bread Baking Day #2.

zainaba22's picture
zainaba22

4 + 3\4 cups flour,unbleached,whole wheat,or a mixture of the two.
4 Tablespoons butter,divided.
2 Teaspoons yeast.
1 Teaspoon baking soda .
2 Teaspoons salt.
2 cups water.
2 tablespoons evaporated milk (low fat).

for Topping:
*milk.
* olive oil +zaatar.
* sugar.
* toasted sesame seeds.

1)place all ingredients+ 2 Tablespoons butter in the bowl of mixer ,beat 10 minutes to make a soft dough.

2) add the rest of butter to the dough and knead it by hand until well combined.

3) Cover and let rise for 1-2 hour.

4) Divide dough into 4 pieces.

5) shape each piece into a ball.

6)Roll each ball into a 20cm round.

7)Brush the top with milk ,prick the dough all over with a fork, and sprinkle it with sugar and toasted sesame seeds or olive oil +zaatar .







 

8) Bake at 550 for 7-9 minutes.

http://arabicbites.blogspot.com/

umbreadman's picture
umbreadman

 

These two loaves are my first. I think they were the Country Bread recipe out of Hamelman's book. I didn't really know what pictures to take at that point, so this is all I have. Don't look too shabby...I remember them lacking a little in salt though.

 

 

These are my first ciabatta loaves. They were really good. I made these with a stiff pre-ferment. I was still figuring out how the oven works and all these loaves up until my present ones would be a bit underbaked on the inside. 

 

In between each of these batches were numerous undocumented loaves. Though they are not with us today, let us remember their wondrous journey and hope they are now in a better place. 

 

 

 

The first time I've ever gotten the little 'ears' to work on a baguette/batard loaf! Incredible! 

 

 

 

 My latest batch, Pain au Levain with a little whole wheat in there. I had take my starter out of the fridge only a few hours earlier, but eventually it did its work, though I probably should have given it more time to really get going. Either way, I finished baking them at 1am yesterday and without tasting them, set them aside to cool, a feat that would be excruciatingly difficult under normal circumstances, but I was exhausted and just wanted to get to sleep. I'm going camping today on North Manitou Island in Lake Michigan, and am bringing a chunk of this loaf along for sandwiches.

 

Well, now I've got all my progress up here. I'm glad I can finally share these with everyone.

Onward!

bfrankel's picture
bfrankel

And so it begins and I am hooked! Several months ago I was taking a course in Microbiology (don't ask, it'd take too long to explain), and we were studying yeasts. As I have gout, I can't drink, so making beer was out. That left bread. I bought a sack of King Arthur Bread Flour, and on the back was a recipe for their Oatmeal Toasting Bread. I made it. And made it again. And again. And again.

My final version uses KA Whole Wheat flour as well as Bread Flour, a mixture of molasses and Splenda Brown sugar, and is mixed in my brand new KitchenAid mixer that my wife bought for my birthday.

My mother and sister enjoyed the bread so much, they bought me the KA Whole Grain baking book and are expecting many more breads and I am happy to oblige. However, as my kids really like the Oatmeal bread, that is a staple in my house with at least one loaf a week.

Thegreenbaker's picture
Thegreenbaker

I have been making some nice bread lately.

My shaping is coming along and I am favoring shapes like ciabatta and just very rustic looking breads and rolls in general.

 

I go between rye and semolina doughs and am enjoying making Fenu shapes. They look so cool :)

 

 

I also decided whilst I was shaping to try shape some into bagguettes......not the best I must say buuuuuuut, still tasted great :)

 

Here are two batards with varies slashes

 

My lovely Rustic Rolls that went down a treat with my family

 

And after an entire day of baking, I think a well earned glass of Cab sav was in order!

 

I DO LOVE baking bread :)

 

Thegreenbaker

 

yeastArt's picture
yeastArt

This is day 5 of my first starter using recipe from King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking.  It is made with flour and water only.  I have been reading comments on this site and I am SO confused.  My starter bubbled right from the beginning, which I thought was great until I read the first bubbling isn't real yeast and it should go flat then rebubble  for the real thing.  But the starter has never gone flat.  Also, my kitchen is way warmer than the 65 degrees recommended for rising, so I'm not sure how often I should be feeding starter.  It's quadrupling in size after 8 hours.  Then there's the consistency issue.  It's rather thick, like old oatmeal but aerated. Should I use more water?  I've been throwing out all but 4oz of starter then adding 4oz spring water and 4 oz rye flour. Should I put the starter in the fridge?  How will I know when it's ready to use in baking?  Thanks for this great site.

manuela's picture
manuela

These are nicely flavored with cocoa and cinnamon and lightly frosted.

Full recipe is here

http://bakinghistory.wordpress.com/2007/07/25/cocoa-buns/

cocoa buns

beenjamming's picture
beenjamming

So I have been a busy little beaver this past week and fate has been mostly kind. Even though i was hobbled by last week's unfortunate encounter with a slow cooker box, I wasn't really slowed down too much in the kitchen. First up this week was a garlic and asiago cheese ciabatta built on a poolish.

Outside:

and inside:

the picture is a bit washed out but it had a nice open crumb laced with asiago and chunks of garlic. crust was thin, toasty and plenty chewy. I'd to get it a little thicker in future attemps which I think will happen if I use my starter instead of commericial yeast (lower the ph) and bake it a little longer.

 

The following day, I hit up the restaurant supply store and went on a bit of a shopping spree. A metal peel, two bannetons and an oven thermometer (finally) later, I returned, anxious to bake. I whipped up some jalapeno and cheddar bread with some levain from the day before. It looked great going in the oven, but then mr thermocouple died awfully dead and left me with a slowly cooling oven and these half-cooked loaves:

and the marvelous crumb that would have been:

The next day that old clunker of an oven was one part younger and back in action, but it was a bit too late for me. I had taken off for NJ/NYC with my grilfriend for the weekend. We found ourselve in pasticceria bruno which, despite the prominently displayed copy of Artisan Baking, took me all of a half hour to realize that this was the bakery Glezer featured in her book along side Biago's pandoro recipe. I ordered four seasons pizza and a cup of dulce de leche gelato. The food was delicious. The pizza crust was a bit soft for my liking, but the out of this world creamy fresh mozz more than compensated.

I also got a loaf of sourdough bread to take home. From the looks of the camera-shy crumb, it was about 70% hydration and have a small percentage of whole wheat flour. We ate it the following day with some herbed olive oil. The bread was subtley sour and its hearty crust and airy crumb were very well balanced. I hope to make some progress towards achieving this kind of balance in the coming months. Here's the loaf:

We got back last night and this evening I started baking for my trip on the 27th to lake placid. I'm staying in a house with 20 bread lovers so I'm planning to bring about 5 loaves with me. I made two boules to take and a baguette for myself. The dough is built on pate fermentee, 65% hydration, and had a small percentage of whole grain rye and wheat germ added. Tastes slightly sweet and nutty, with a very light crumb.

The outside, all washed out with that pesky flash:

and the crumb, which refused to stand still for its close-up. Please, forgive the blurriness:


phew. well, once school starts again i'll have something to keep me from baking non-stop, but until then I've got another month to blow paychecks on flour. This week i'm working on returning my starter to glory, and might bake one more batch of bread to take up to lake placid. I'm thinking about making some pizza with some friends on wednesday night too... we'll see.

benji

 

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