The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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tattooedtonka's picture

One of the families favorites, pizza..

Pizza is extremely easy to make from scratch, better than delivery, and a great way to impress guests.

Average time of making 3 pizzas from scratch about and hour and a quarter start to finish.

My recipe is simple.

  • 908 grams bread flour (I use KA special)

  • 14 grams instant yeast

  • 29 grams Kosher salt

  • 600 grams spring water (since my tap water is yucko)

I place weighed flour in large bowl, and whisk in yeast.

Once whisked in I then whisk in the salt.

Once done pour in 3/4 of water and mix with bare hand.  When dough in starting to form from mess, add in rest of water and mix by hand until flour is all off of bowl and you have a pretty sticky mess in your hand. 

Dump all onto bare counter (no flour).  Continue mixing with bare hands until you have a good incorperation.  Then start kneading.  I knead until most of the dough has pulled off of my hands leaving my hands fairly clean (about 8 minutes).

I then cut into 3 equal weighing pieces.  I then take pizza proofing pans and spray EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) all around insides of each pan until nice even coating. 

I shape each dough piece into a dough ball and place each in seperate pan and swirl around until evenly coated with the oil.

Then stack pans and let sit about 45 minutes.

At 30 minutes I place my baking stone in oven and preheat to 500'f.

At 45 minutes I will dump out first dough onto floured work surface.

Once dough  is dumped out I flatten into about an 8-10inch round.

At this stage I will start hand tossing pizza dough until large enough to fill a large pizza screen.

Now the easy part, top with your favorite toppings..

Tonight I started with a Turkey Sausage, Mushroom, and Onion.

Top this with hand shredded Mozz. cheese.

Place pizza and screen on stone and bake for 5 minutes, at this time I will open oven and pull out screen from under pizza (I use a pizza peal to aid in this move.  I then continue to bake for another 5 minutes this way it has a nice brown bottom to the pizza.

At ten minutes pizza is done and here you have it.

I do this all over again 2 more times with a pepperoni version, and a plain cheese.


Now everybody has a full tummy, even my side kick Tonka

Though his tummy is filled with mostly Pedigree dry food with some left over turkey sausage, but he seems just as happy...

O.K. So to all my friends out there, I have been watching at times, even when I wasnt posting.  Last year was a great year, I built raised garden beds in my back yard to replace my regular garden, and we had great harvests.  Pic's are on my smugmug site, check it out if you would like.  Its much easier on the back, and there is no weeding to be done, my favorite part.

Thanks for checking out my latest,


korish's picture

Today I'm baking 4 different breads and I decided to write about my bake as I go. Also I created a new adventure that perhaps we as bakers can all have fun in it's called Bake-n-Blog Triathlon.

Please check it out and tell me what you think.


For info on Bake-n-Blog Triathlon


To follow my bake

hansjoakim's picture

I'm still patiently working my way through the Schrotbrot, but with a bubbly and ripe rye sourdough on the counter, I decided to try out a new formula. I love my everyday pain au levains, and I wanted to see how it would work out with a rye sourdough and an increased amount of rye flour. This loaf is 30% whole-rye flour, 70% bread flour and is made with a whole-rye sourdough. You'll find a snapshot from my spreadsheet detailing the formula by clicking here!

With a modest 30% rye, the overall dough behaves very similar to any other pain au levain dough, but slightly stickier. You notice that it's not quite as strong when you tug at it, and the cuts tend to tear easier and be less well-defined than in straight wheat breads. Still, I think it turned out well! Although it looks pretty much like your everday pain au levain, there's a distinctive rye character to the bread - you'll sense that both by the smell of the baking loaf and most definitely in the flavour of the finished bread. I'd say it brings about a surprising lightness to the crumb, even though it still wholesome and filling. A most agreeable accompaniment to many cheeses.

30% rye


This week's dessert is a delicious chocolate mousse cake with bananas: A rum-flavoured chocolate mousse on top of some ripe bananas, sandwiched between two thin layers of a cocoa-almond sponge. Very tasty!

Chocolate mousse cake with banana


dahoops's picture

Does anyone know where I can buy Dakota Maid bread flour in 25 or 50 lb bags in the metro Chicago area?  I live in the far southwest suburbs (New Lenox) and am willing to drive!  I see it on Sams Club website, but not available in my zip.


wayne on FLUKE's picture
wayne on FLUKE

This has been a day of firsts.

  • Actually started last night by making the sponge for my "Wayne Thomas's English Muffins" and leaving it in the fridge overnight for first time.

  • Finished and cooked the muffins this morning, they look great.

  • Decided to try the #111 Romertopf clay baker (that my wife scored at a local thrift shop a couple of days ago for $6 !!) for the first time so I made a simple white bread from a recipe on called One Perfect Loaf.

  • This resulted in the first real "ear" I have managed to get (at least from one of the two slashes). I have started to slash with the double-edged razor on kabob stick thanks to this site. Some work still required.

  • I decided all these firsts were worth my first blog post.

I hope this tastes as good as it looks. It was far and away the most oven spring I have had. As soon as the bread cools I'll get a crumb shot and then post the pics. I imagine some would say this should be a little darker. I agree, but the wife likes it this way for sandwiches. Also, I am baking this in an anemic gas oven on our boat. I followed the recipe as far as soak bottom, proof in bottom, soak top, place in COLD oven. After removing the top for the last 5 mins, I realized it was never going to brown (always a problem in this oven) so I stuck it in the microwave/convection on broil for a few minutes. I think next time I'll remove the top sooner, as it was still moist inside after 45 mins (at an attempted 450+).

Comments and suggestions always welcome. Love this site.






jombay's picture

Had another go at Bouabsa baguettes. I probably could have kept them in for another minute but I decided I would try a lighter crust today. These only had about a 12h bulk ferment.





jgrill's picture

Today I baked KAF baguettes, but I used KAF unbleached bread flour instead of all purpose flour as called for in the formula. It's a simple formula for four loaves—34 oz. warm water, 24 oz. flour, 1T salt, 1 T instant yeast (I used SAF Instant). Mix, knead for just a few minutes (4 by hand, 2 by machine), and let ferment at room temp in a covered container for 2 hours, then into the fridge overnight. The dough can stay in the fridge for several days, and you can bake a loaf at a time, over that period, but I divided it and made four loaves for one baking. 

Because the dough was cold when I divided it and pre-shaped into an oval/rectangle, and let it rest for 15 minutes covered with oiled waxed paper, and still pretty cold when I shaped it into baguettes, I put the pans into my upper oven, covered with the same oiled paper, and set the oven to the "proof" setting for the hour and a half proofing. 

I still have a problem getting the scoring right, and so I scored two loaves before proofing, and two, right before going into a 450° oven. Neither version looked great, but the traditional scoring did look better than my experimental version when the baguettes came out of the oven.

I forgot to spritz the loaves with warm water right before baking, but a 30 minute bake with one rotation at 15 minutes resulted in a nice crust, and a pretty good crumb. Nice flavor, too, comparable to some of my better attempts.

korish's picture

My last bake yielded 10 beautiful loves of bread, that turned out great with a soft crust and a nice mild flavor. This is the first bake that I did with spelt flour, but I got to tell you I absolutely loved the bread. As a meter of fact the next day I went out and bought myself 25lb of organic spelt flour. Back to the bread, this bread was baked in my WFO all 10 loaves at one time. Here is how I made this and I plan to make some other variation of this bread.It takes about 9 hours to bake this bread, meaning 20 minutes for the bake and the rest for kneading and resting the dough.


Ingredients for baking 10 small breads 1.5Lb each.

1kg (1000gram) rye starter 150% hydration.
3kg (3000gram) organic spelt flour.
1kg (1000gram) organic white flour.
2.5kg (2500gram) water, room temp.
75gram sea salt ground.

I start by doubling my starter a night before the bake from 500 gram to 1100 grams, since I will start mixing all the ingredients at about 5 am I figured that I need to mix my starter at about 9:00pm the night before, that way it will have 8 hours to double and become very active.

On the morning of the bake I take all the starter except 100 gram, which I will use to get my new starter for next bake, add it to with all my ingredients and hand mix it for about 3 minutes.

Rest the dough for 20 minutes this will allow the flour to fully absorb the water.

I believe that one of the secrets to having great bread is to make sure that the dough is well kneaded, so after 20 minute rest I knead the bread for about 15 minutes, (you also get a great work out in the morning if you do that).

Rest the dough again for 30 minutes, the dough should feel soft and elastic with a slight stick to it.

Final kneading, again mixing it for about 20 minutes.

First rice will take about 4-6 hours and that can vary, your dough should almost double in size before you will shape it in to breads.

When the dough almost doubled divide into individual breads, you can free form it, or use form. After forming let it rest for the second time, rising until it almost doubled in size, this will take about 2 hours. Cover the breads with a towel and you can spray a light mist of water to prevent it from drying.

Make sure your bread oven is nice and hot, test the floor of the oven by sprinkling some flour on it. After the bread has almost doubled place in the oven close the door and bake for about 20 minutes.

If you are baking this in you home oven you will need to preheat your oven to 455 F, bake for about 30-40 minutes.

This bread will be darker in color because of the spelt flour and the rye starter. You can also use light spelt and spelt starter, adjust the spelt starter to 100% hydration.

What do you think of this bread??


mishchuk spelt sourdough

dmsnyder's picture

Fresno Sunrise January 11, 2010

When I was a little boy, my mother sang me a song. My understanding is that it was learned from a Scottish tenor who was performing when she was very young ....

Ohhhhh, it's nice to get up in the mornin'

When the sun begins to shine

At four or five or six o'clock 

In the good ol' summer time.

But when the snow is snowin'

And it's murky overhead,

Ohhhhh, it's nice to get up in the mornin',

But it's nicer to lie in your bed.

Just to keep it on fresh loaves, here's my San Joaquin Sourdough baked last night, when I should have been in my bed:

Made with 5% dark rye and 5% whole wheat. Crispy, crackly crust and chewy crumb. Quite delicious with almond butter and orange blossom honey for bedtime snack.



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