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James Cloud's picture
James Cloud

I am looking for a recipe for stholen ( I'm not sure that I have spelled it right but it is made by german nationals around Christmas time if any one has a good recipe please post or forward to james Cloud ( jdcloud5@gmail.com ).

Thanks to you all !

James Cloud

zolablue's picture
zolablue

I baked my first challah last Thursday and wanted to share.

I was unsure what to expect but it was so much fun. I’d been meaning for some time to bake a recipe from Maggie Glezer’s book, A Blessing of Bread, which is a wonderful compilation of traditional Jewish recipes from around the world. Floyd has written a very nice review of the book here.

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/bookreviews/ablessingofbread

I decided to start with Glezer’s own personal recipe for sourdough challah. I love making sourdough and was interested to see what the texture of this bread would be compared to a yeasted challah which I have eaten only a couple times.

The recipe seemed easy to me despite the fact Glezer calls it expert. I’m not sure why but, again, I’m new to challah. The dough was so easy to mix together and then, as Glezer puts it, the time involved is mostly waiting after that.

She says to bake it to a dark brown which I did. I’m not sure if it is considered too dark or not but it was really a beautiful color and I do typically bake my bread darker as she instructs in Artisan Baking.

The crumb was amazing to me. It was very creamy and soft and almost reminded me of an angel food cake. It has remained moist to this day (5 days later) as there are only two of us to eat and can’t quite get rid of all the bread I bake. I am going to cut very thick slices of what is remaining to freeze and later use to make French toast.

I decided for my maiden voyage into challah bread I would make an elaborate braid. I used the six-strand braid version and got a lot of help from the video Glezer did showing how to do it. Gosh, the internet is awesome! Just as she said it makes a beautiful, very high loaf.

Braiding ChallahFine Cooking Video, Maggie Glezer

http://www.taunton.com/finecooking/videos/braiding-challah.aspx?

I’m posting the recipe so those of you who are new to challah as I am can have a chance to make it and perhaps will be inspired to buy this lovely book. For those who have made challah for years I’d love it if you tried the recipe and let me know your thoughts on it compared the some of your favorite traditional recipes.

More of my photos can be seen here:

http://zolablue.smugmug.com/gallery/3500289#197395950

Thank you to each and every one of you on this site that have been such inspirations in baking such as Floyd, Bill Wraith, Susanfnp, Mountaindog, JMonkey, Browndog, Bluezebra, Eric, SDBaker, Mini Oven, Dolf, Qahtan, Zainab and so many others. All you wonderful bakers have helped me incredibly along the way over the past few months that I have been baking so many thanks to all.

My Sourdough Challah - Maggie Glezer's personal recipe from her book, A Blessing of Bread

Sweet sourdough breads are delicious and well worth the time (which is mainly waiting time) if you are a sourdough baker. The sourdough adds a subtle tang to my challah, and the crumb has a moister, creamier texture that keeps even longer than the yeasted version. While it’s true that challah or, for that matter, all bread was at one time sourdough (the Hebrew word for leaven, chametz, means “sour”), challahs have definitely gotten sweeter and richer since the introduction of commercial yeast. To convert such recipes back to 100 percent sourdough, the sugar has to be cut back in order for the dough to rise in a reasonable length of time (sugar that is more than 12 percent of the flour weight inhibits fermentation), so this version will taste slightly less sweet than the yeasted one, a deficit completely overridden by the rich complexity of the sourdough. I have also changed the all-purpose flour to bread flour, which has more gluten, to counteract the starter’s propensity to loosen the gluten (the acids in the starter change the proteins, a natural part of sourdough baking).

Skill Level: Expert

Time: About 20 hours (about 8 1/2 hours on baking day)

Makes: Two 1-pound (450-gram) challahs, one 1 1/2-pound (680-gram) challah plus three rolls, or sixteen 2-ounce (60-gram) rolls

Recipe synopsis: Make the sourdough starter and let if ferment overnight for 12 hours. The next day, mix the dough and let it ferment for 2 hours. Shape the dough and let it proof for 5 hours. Bake the breads for 15 to 40 minutes, depending on their size.

For the starter:

2 tablespoons (35 grams/1.2 ounces) very active, fully fermented firm sourdough starter, refreshed 8 to 12 hours earlier

1/3 cup (80 grams/2.8 ounces) warm water

About 1 cup (135 grams/4.8 ounces) bread flour

For final dough:

1/4 cup (60 grams/2 ounces) warm water

3 large eggs, plus 1 for glazing

1 1/2 teaspoons (8 grams/0.3 ounce) table salt

1/4 cup (55 grams/1.9 ounces) vegetable oil

3 tablespoons (65 grams/2.3 ounces) mild honey or a scant 1/3 cup (60 grams/2.1 ounces) granulated sugar

About 3 cups (400 grams/14 ounces) bread flour

Fully fermented sourdough starter

Evening before baking - mixing the sourdough starter: Knead starter into water until it is partially dissolved, then stir in the flour. Knead this firm dough until it is smooth. Remove 1 cup (200grams/7 ounces) of the starter to use in the final dough and place it in a sealed container at least four times its volume. (Place the remaining starter in a sealed container and refrigerate to use in the next bake.) Let the starter ferment until it has tripled in volume and is just starting to deflate, 8 to 12 hours.

Baking day - Mixing the dough:

In a large bowl, beat together the water, the 3 eggs, salt, oil, and honey (measure the oil first, then use the same cup for measuring the honey — the oil will coat the cup and let the honey just slip right out) or sugar until the salt has dissolved and the mixture is fairly well combined. With your hands or a wooden spoon, mix in the bread flour all at once. When the mixture is a shaggy ball, scrape it out onto your work surface, add the starter, and knead until the dough is smooth, no more than 10 minutes. (Soak your mixing bowl in hot water now to clean and warm it for fermenting the dough.) This dough is very firm and should feel almost like modeling clay. If the dough is too firm to knead easily, add a tablespoon or two of water to it; if it seems too wet, add a few tablespoons flour.

The dough should feel smooth and very firm but be easy to knead.

Fermenting the dough:

Place the dough in the warm cleaned bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. Let the dough ferment for about 2 hours. It will probably not rise much, if at all.

Shaping and proofing the dough:

Line one or two large baking sheets, with parchment paper or oil them. Divide the dough into two 1-pound (450-gram) portions for loaves, one 1 1/2 pound (680-gram) portion for a large loaf and three small pieces for rolls (the easiest way to do this without a scale is to divide the dough into quarters and use one quarter for the rolls and the rest for the large loaf), or sixteen 2-ounce (60-gram) portions for rolls. Braid or shape them as desired, position them on the prepared sheet(s), and cover them well with plastic wrap. Let proof until tripled in size, about 5 hours.

Meanwhile, 30 minutes before baking, arrange the oven racks in the lower and upper third positions if using two baking sheets or arrange one rack in the upper third position if using one sheet, and remove any racks above them. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C/gas mark 4). If desired, preheat one or two baking sheets to double with the baking sheet(s) the loaves are on. Beat the remaining egg with a pinch of salt for glazing the breads.

Baking the loaves:

When the loaves have tripled and do not push back when gently pressed with your finger but remain indented, brush them with the egg glaze. Bake rolls for 15 to 20 minutes, the 1-pound (450-gram) loaves for 25 to 35 minutes, or the 1 1/2-pound (680-gram) loaf for 35 to 45 minutes, until very well browned. After the first 20 minutes of baking, switch the loaves from front to back so that they brown evenly; if the large loaf is browning too quickly, tent it with foil. When the loaves are done, remove them from the oven and let cool on a rack.

AnnieT's picture
AnnieT

Since the unfortunate demise of my starter and the jar of leftovers I have been busy making new ones. SourdoLady's pineapple juice one and the yogurt one I started out with originally. SourdoLady, the pineapple one started out well but hasn't done much of anything since I changed to ap flour and water. I have stirred like crazy, added a spoonful of rye, even tried the apple cider vinegar. I am now to day 11 and there are bubbles on the surface but no sign of rising. What do you think - should I keep on repeating day 4 or toss it and start again? I really want it to work. On the other hand, the yogurt one is pounding his chest and pawing the ground and today I made some of the best sourdough bread so far, using Susan's recipe with the overnight sponge. Could it be sibling rivalry? Should I sit them side by side to encourage the timid one? If you think I should continue I will, but I still have more pineapple juice so I could try again. Thanks in advance for any suggestions, A

Floydm's picture
Floydm

We had a nice get together this afternoon. Had four regular TFL participants show up (leemid, myself, JMonkey, and crumb bum) and one other reader whose screenname I didn't catch. We had a pretty decent spread:

table full on bread

table full on bread

table full on bread

If memory serves me right, the breads were (starting at 9 o'clock) JMonkey's whole wheat raisin bread and a whole wheat desem bread, my whole wheat sourdough and the honey whole wheat bread with sunflower seeds, crumb bum's miches (one with 15% whole wheat flour and one with 15% rye flour), and leemid white sourdough (made with Carl's starter, I think, or was it Otis?) and a rye he made.

miche

All of the breads were good, but crumb bum's miches (pictured above) blew me away. His formula and techniques can be found scatter around the site, but what I jotted down was:

20 grams starter
1000 grams flour (up to 15% whole grain)
750 grams water
20 grams salt

Mix in the evening, fold 4 or 5 times, then cover and leave out at room temperature overnight. Shape early the next evening, let rise for 2-3 hours, then put in an unheated oven (more on that here). Crank it up to 500 for 10 minutes, then reduce temp and bake until complete.

I will be trying this soon, probably tomorrow.

Thank you to the folks who showed up. And for those of you who wanted to but couldn't, we'll definitely do it again.

wholegrainOH's picture
wholegrainOH

Finally got around to activating a sourdough starter I got at least two years ago from Ed Wood's Sourdough International; did both baguettes and a no-knead loaf. A couple of photos; more at www.alan-ohio-bread.blogspot.com

no knead baked
the no-knead loaf baked

nn-knead texture; didn't let it rise long enough

the baguettes

debbieh's picture
debbieh

Need a recipe for parmeaan herb bread,  anyone got one?

rcornwall's picture
rcornwall

I was wondering if anyone knows how to form a pain de beaucaire. I have found a few formulas but not enough of a description to figure out how the loaf is formed. I have looked on the web, but google does a poor translating job from French to English. Can anyone help?

rcornwall

slidething's picture
slidething

 Been awhile since I've made this bread - made it yesterday ~ not to pretty -But tasty just the same!!

 Did the "ONE" thing I've always stressed not to do - Rushed it a wee bit - LOL - plus used  bigger loaf pans ( 9x5 ) instead of 8x4 .

 Saw Dolfs pics when I got home and on-line - NICE Job - Plus read about autolyse - going to try this method this afternoon - will post results good or bad -

Am a chef / pastry chef for a private club and revamping menu - getting away from fried "Bar food" entrees and into a more classic tavern style food /with less starchs and lighter sauces. Plus starting to do all breads for sandwichs - so far have very good results with the sour dough - even though my starter is only 6 weeks old. Use it for two different sandwich breads - roast beef on garlic caibatta - and a two pound loaf for club sandwichs.

 The One great perk about this job is the kitchen - I have access to it anytime ~~ we open at 4 and close at 11 - monday thru thrusday and open for lunch Fridays,Sat, and Sundays .... So I have tyme to "Play"   Will keep ya'all posted . Plus think its tyme to buy a digital camera .

  Till Later ~

 Slide___Out

bwraith's picture
bwraith

Another Miche

Another Miche Crust and Crumb

Another Miche Crust and Oven

This miche is a lower hydration version of Miche(2) blogged a while back. I accidentally mixed in an entire levain that had been made larger than what I had intended in this recipe originally. I wanted to have an inoculation or percentage of fermented flour to total flour of 15%, similar to Hamelman's VT Sourdough, but I ended up with about 22%. I therefore had a problem with excess acid breaking down the gluten, which made the boule hard to shape and ended up making this a slightly denser miche than I've accomplished before. It's still a good chunk of bread. I baked it in my new brick oven from Woodstone. I managed to get the temperature much more reasonable, and came out with a nice crust and avoided the scorching I'd had in the first few attempts with this new oven, as I learned to manage the heat and the steam in a brick oven.

I have some photos of the process and an html spreadsheet, as well as the Excel spreadsheet that includes the recipe and a model to estimate the bulk fermentation and final proof times.

Miche(3) Recipe

Levain

  • 15g 90% hydration white flour storage starter (use any storage starter)
  • 90g Wheat Montana AP (or any other strong white flour)
  • 105g whole spelt
  • 89g Golden Buffalo from Heartland Mills (Use any high extraction wheat flour or substitute white flour here)
  • 145g water

Overnight Soak

  • 81g whole rye
  • 54g whle spelt
  • 108g Wheat Montana Bronze Chief (or other red whole wheat flour)
  • 338g Golden Buffalo from Heartland Mills (or other high extraction red wheat flour)
  • 257g Sifted White Wheat Flour from Homestead Grist Mill (or other high extraction white wheat flour)
  • 680g water
  • 12g malt syrup

Dough

  • Levain from above
  • Soak from above
  • 219g Wheat Montana AP (or other strong white flour)
  • 139g water
  • 26g salt

Mix Levain and Soak

The night before you plan to bake, mix the levain ingredients, knead minimally, and let it rise overnight, preferably until it has somewhat more than doubled but not much more, about 10 hours. You can also mix it earlier in the day, let it rise by double and refrigerate it. Also mix the soak ingredients, knead minimally just to mix the ingredients, the water, and the malt syrup. Refrigerate the soak overnight.

Mix and Knead Dough

Mix the additional white flour and water and knead minimally into a small dough. Spread the soak out like a pizza. Spread the white flour over the soak, roll up, and knead lightly to mix. Spread the dough out again and spread the levain over the dough, roll up, and knead the dough until well mixed. I have used a technique described by Glezer in Artisan Baking that works very well to mix the dough. It involves working down the dough squeezing it and extruding it through the fingers. I repeatedly dampen my hands to avoid too much sticking. Alternately, I work in some folds similar to a kneading technique in Bertinet's video and also described by Glezer in Artisan Baking.

Let the dough rest for about 30 minutes.

Spread the dough out like a pizza and sprinkle the salt over it. Again, knead to thoroughly mix the salt and to get a soft but not wet dough that is smooth and has some initial gluten development.

Bulk Fermentation

Cover the dough and set aside to rise. Stretch and fold every 30-40 minutes. The total time from mixing the levain in with the dough would be about 3-3.5 hours using my starter. It should somewhat less than double in volume during that time.

Shaping

Shape into a boule and allow it to sit on the counter upright for 10 minutes to allow the seams to seal. Be sure to shape tightly, or you will get large holes or crust separation on the sides or on top. Place upside down in a banneton or a bowl lined with a well dusted cloth. This dough can be sticky, especially if it gets too wet, so beware of sticking couche fabric. Adding about 25% rice flour to the dusting flour may help with this.

Final Proof

The final proof would normally take 2-2.5 hours with my starter. I normally place the whole thing in a ziplog "Big Bag" along with a bowl of warm water to maintain a warm and humid environment for the final proof.

Bake

Turn the loaf onto a peel dusted with semolina or corn meal. Slash as you like. I wasn't paying too much attention to this one, and ended up making a "square" pattern, which is not too attractive in retrospect. I liked a "diamond" pattern I had done previously, which is what this one was supposed to be.

Bake starting at 450F with steam, however you may accomplish that. Drop the temperature in the oven down to 400F, then down to 350F, if necessary, if the crust begins to get too dark. Bake for about 45-70 minutes, depending on your objectives. I did this one for 70 minutes to get a fairly dry crumb and a crisp crust that stays that way. However, sometimes I bake for less time, so I can freeze the bread and then reheat it later. I think it is better reheated or toasted if it hasn't been fully baked at bake time.

Cool

Allow to fully cool.

Results

I'm still very happy with the flavor, which is very similar to miche(2). This time, the lower hydration resulted in a slightly denser crumb, but it is more practical for sandwiches or for toast in the morning. The crust stays crisp with the long bake and lower hydration, which I had trouble with in miche(2). Unfortunately, I think the crumb would have been better and the rise and density better if I had used a lower inoculation, like 15%, and a slightly less ripe levain. That will be the adjustment for next time.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

A beautiful pizza I made this weekend:

pizza

Well, perhaps not beautiful, but tasty.

This was something along the lines of LilDice's ciabatta pizza.

Where did summer go? Man, it blew by.

My apologies for being nearly absent on the site this summer. I read and responded to little questions almost every day, and I baked quite a bit this summer. But for the most part I stuck with my tried and true recipes, only adding 1 or 2 new ones to my regular repertoire, and did very few high quality posts on the site. I find that now that I have two kids who rarely take naps I have a lot less free time that I did when I started this site (with only 1 child who napped a lot and went to bed early). My new job hasn't left me much free time either: I have a longer commute and, given that my salary is paid by charitable contributions I don't feel like it is right to spend time on the clock working on my personal site. So I don't. So my Fresh Loaf time has been reduced considerably.

My best to all observing holy days the next few weeks.

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