The Fresh Loaf

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SylviaH's picture



Kingudaroad's picture

   I have recently become a big fan of the high hydration doughs with an overnight cold fermentation. The morning I took this dough out of the fridge, I cut it with my bench knife and flipped the smooth side down on my well floured couche. The knife left a scar on the edges of the bread which left an opening for the bread to bloom without the need for scoring. This may have been my best crust yet. It carmelized very dark and crackly and the taste was fabulous.



I baked four loaves, two at a time, and the only one I cut was the worst one. The two that got baked second had a much bigger bloom, and probably a bit more of an open crumb. Those were given away. I think I needed to either let the dough warm up before shaping. or just proofed a while longer than the one shown below. I did have fun with these and look forward to more experimentation.



RugBoy's picture

Congratulations on your purchase!  I have been using my DLX for about a year now, and I must say I love it. 

Even though it is quite powerful, it's super slow lower speeds work for me quite well. 

Lately I've been experimenting with Semolina flours in my sandwich bread.  This flour is easily over worked, and sereral sources recommend hand mixing.  Even here though, with careful attention, my DLX performs quite nicely.  It makes mixing day almost as much fun as baking days. 

ahhsugar's picture

Let me begin by saying that I'm a newbie when it comes to baking bread.  My experience consists of baking 4 loaves of baguettes every week for the past year or so, and the occasional trial of something different ... such as croissants, raisin/walnut bread, etc ...

I wanted to try a recipe for bagels that I have, but one of the ingredients (barley malt syrup) is causing me great dismay.  I can't find it anywhere.  So, this morning I "googled" it and one of the sites that came up was "thefreshloaf" (it was a subject of a blog).

Oh my goodness.  What a gorgeous site!  I feel like I'm in "bread heaven".  I began browsing through here and a big smile came on my face when I realized that this place is meant for people just like me .... people who love bread!!!  I not only LOVE eating bread, but I LOVE baking it.  I enjoy the entire process of creating something so lovely from such simple ingredients.

I am really looking forward to checking out the recipes here and learning from all of you.  I will probably have a gazillion questions, but perhaps one day in the future, I may be able to help someone else who is just starting out.   :)


bubba3113's picture

I continue to get loaves that are flat on the top or "spill" over the sides of my loaf pans...what am I doing wrong?


Neo-Homesteading's picture


So I tossed back and forth as to if scones are actually bread or not, I know TFL does do general baking posts but for me I'm trying to keep my posting to primarily my bread obsessions and adventures. For this breakfast I decided to make a scone probably my first "more traditional" style scone, in the past I've mostly made biscuits and called them scones. I made these with irish cream and chocolate chips and they were so amazing. I served them with a home made lemon curd and could not be more surprised how well they actually went with one another. I'm hoping to do another scone sometime soon but lately with the high temperatures I'm keeping my baking limited to nights and very early mornings. I have made these and frozen them, baked them directly from the freezer but it does extend the baking time which seems to defeat the purpose. I almost wonder if I do something without chocolate could I just do them like farls or skillet scones?. 


External Link to blog post and recipe:


Neo-Homesteading's picture



So this was about my third time making soft pretzels only the first making them with sourdough. I'm having a bit of a time mastering technique but getting closer with each try. This day my kitchen was hotter than hell so it caused a bit of an issue I believe the pretzels came out of the fridge and then over proofed wicked fast. I've got my shaping more consistent but my problem seems to lie mostly in the water bath. I researched authentic german bagel recipes and even watched a few german bakers videos. I was surprised to find out that a lot of German bakeries don't even do the boiling bath they only do egg wash or they dip them in the lye solution for a second and then bake. I really wonder though does the texture and crust form anywhere close to what I'm accustomed to? I'm highly tempted to actually try not doing the water bath next time, I love soft pretzels so much but they keep coming out so ugly. They always taste amazing and those I share them with dont complain but as I'm trying to master the authentic recipe, I think the outer crust still needs a bit of work. I hope to find the closest authentic german brezel recipe I can. 


External Link to Blog Post:


hansjoakim's picture

They call it the most important meal of the day, and I tend to agree with them. Get off to a good start, for instance with your morning newspaper, a cup of black coffee and some still-hot-from-the-oven breakfast rolls, and you're at least halfway there. Yesterday, I mixed, bulk fermented and shaped some mini-batards from a batch of Hamelman's "Semolina bread with a whole-grain soaker" formula (p. 137 in "Bread"). This delicious and simple formula is extremely versatile; I've used it for regular breads, rolls and some uttely delicious, crunchy baguette-shaped loaves in the past. The durum flour makes the crust crisp and crunchy and the whole-grain soaker adds plenty of chew to the crumb. I rolled half of the mini-batards in sesame seeds and kept the other half plain, before placing them in the refrigerator for proofing overnight (approx. 14 hours). I had also prepared a batch of raisin bun dough, and these were also proofed overnight in the fridge, ready for baking first thing in the morning. Here's a snap of the plain durum mini-batards just before they hit the oven:

Durum bread rolls - proofed


As the goodies baked and filled my apartment with the most pleasant smell, I brewed a couple cups of coffee ("black as midnight on a moonless night", to quote Twin Peaks' Special Agent Dale Cooper) and leafed through the newspaper. Below is a photo of the raisin buns (at the back), the durum minis and some oatmeal raisin cookies (to go with that glass of milk). Enough to lighten up my monday morning!

What's for breakfast, honey?

lief's picture

I have to give a shout out to Dan Lepard for the inspiration on this bread. You see, I really like tamarind so I've been kicking around the idea in the back of my head that I would like to make some bread with tamarind in it. However, I wasn't taking the thought too seriously given the tartness of tamarind fruit. Then the other day, I happened to be randomly perusing Dan Lepard's website,, and I came across his recipe for a tamarind date cake. I thought, oooh, that sounds delicious... and then lightning struck! Of course! Dates are the perfect complement to tamarind, and I felt that the addition of dates would make my elusive tamarind bread idea reasonable. Dan Lepard's cake also included walnuts, and I thought that was a great idea, so I included them in my bread as well. Here are the results of my first formulation:

The boules were wrapped in floured cloth inside mixing bowls for proofing, so there is a bit of flour on the crust, but the crust is STILL being whitened due to insufficient steam. This is the second time I've baked bread and been aware of what the most probable cause of the whitening is. As such I made one final adjustment to my steaming method (on top of my adjustments from last week) and went for it. Usually, after shutting the oven door I immediately go and set the timer. This time I watched the oven and sure enough, as soon as I closed the door, I was able to see a bunch of steam rise out from the top of the "closed" door. Within 5 seconds it was gone. Argh!! BTW, I'm a renter, so short of buying a new oven for the landlord, my last hope rests in the covered "self-steaming" method.

But enough about crust whitening! This bread is delicious! It is fairly sweet with a wonderful taste and texture imparted by the walnuts. The taste of the tamarind is more subtle than I was going for, so I will be making adjustments to the recipe. Also, I wanted the bread to be a bit crustier, so I'll probably give it a longer bake next time. I was fooled by the gorgeous dark, reddish brown crust that I saw near the bottom of the boules (since the top was whitened) and took them out of the oven a little sooner than I should have. All in all, I'm fairly pleased with the results (whitening aside) given that it is my first attempt and I was not following a recipe.


Floydm's picture

Actually a few of these are from Montpellier too, like the first few:

Macarons are all the rage.

This bakery had the dark baguettes set aside for people like me who like them that way.



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