The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Benito's blog

Benito's picture
Benito

This is my first ever cinnamon raisin bread if you can believe it.  It was feeling very autumnal here in Toronto when I started working on this loaf, but today it will reach a high of 26ºC and feel very summer like.  I followed the general outline for this bread on The Perfect Loaf by Maurizio’s, but used my usual dough development with a bench letterfold, lamination then coil folds.

Total Formula

Bread Flour 66% 290 g 

Whole Red Fife Flour 34% 152 g includes levain 

Total flour = 442 

Cinnamon 1%

Raisins 20% 

Water 81.5%

Salt 2%

8% prefermented flour

 

Levain Build

1:2:2 

Need 70 g levain 

15 g starter, 30 g water, 30 g whole red fife

 

Dough Mix

Bread Flour 290 g

Whole Red Fife Flour 117 g

Ground Cinnamon 4.5 g

Raisins 86 g

Water 325 g

Salt 8.55 g

Diastatic malt 0.5% 2.21 g

Levain 70 g

 

Do overnight levain build and overnight saltolyse 

Also soak raisins in rum or bourbon overnight 

I’ll add the cinnamon and raisins during lamination

 

I used 76 g levain and added another 6 g water with it to mix.

So total flour = 445 g

Total water after levain mix = 369 hydration 83%

 

Overall I’m pleased with the bake but will reserve judgement until after it is sliced, the crumb tells all yes?

 

 

Benito's picture
Benito

This time I used yellow miso which is milder in flavour than the more assertive red miso I usually use, only because red miso was unavailable the last time I bought miso.  Also my homemade miso is far from ready yet needing many more months to ferment.  The furikake I bought for this bake didn’t have the bonito flakes in it so instead was a simpler seaweed and sesame seed.  The furikake is so delicious with just steamed rice and that is what I usually eat it with.

I made a pretty big mistake when mixing this dough.  I was doing my recent overnight process of levain build and saltolyse (salt in autolyse) which I’ve been having very good results with recently.  The main reason for doing this was to give me more time in my day to do other things by having the levain build and be ready by the morning.  However, when I mixed the water into the flours I kind of felt that it seemed wetter than usual but didn’t think much of it because it was late and I was tired.  It wasn’t until the next day after adding the levain and trying to slap and fold that I knew for sure that I had made a mistake somewhere.  In reviewing my notes and formula I realized that I had added the total water which includes the water in the levain instead of the water for the mix.  So the dough was in excess of 90% hydration which for my flours 80% bread and 20% red fife was way too much for them to absorb.  Not sure if this would work, I measured out 75 g of whole red fife and gradually sprinkled this in and mixed until the dough came together.  I added about 60 g of this flour in and did a quick calculation that the hydration was down to 80% but the whole red fife was up to 39%.  So if anything now the hydration is a bit low for the flour.  Oh well, what can you do.  I just hope there aren’t pockets of raw flour or bits of hard dough in the crumb of this bread.

The resulting dough was over 1 kg so the largest loaf I’ve made.  I wasn’t expecting much from this but I think it turned out better than expected considering the early error I made, but the crumb will tell all.

Miso was increased to 5.6% to try to bring out the flavour.  Furikake was added during the lamination but I forgot to add more after the letterfold so there still isn’t as much as I had planned.

Benito's picture
Benito

Back at the same sesame semolina sourdough baguettes but with some changes to try to improve the crumb. So I made some changes in the hopes of achieving a more open crumb. The first significant change I made was to delete the commercial yeast altogether, this change was made by accident and wasn’t planned as removing the commercial yeast wasn’t something that I thought would improve the crumb.  In fact, I thought that the addition of commercial yeast was part of what was giving my an open crumb.


I increased the hydration from 67 to 71% and I also reduced bulk fermentation rise in the aliquot jar from 25 to 20%. My thinking there was increasing hydration is often one route to open crumb as long as you handle the dough well. The reduction in bulk rise was done to make dough handling easier. You see, when I had to transfer the shaped dough to a tray with a wet towel and roll it, then transfer it to the tray with the sesame seeds and roll it, I found that the dough felt like it was getting degassed and stretched out too long. So reducing bulk made the dough much easier to handle this much and once seeded and in the couche the dough was 16” long, the max for my baking steel. Finally to compensate for the reduced fermentation I added a 30 mins bench rest in the couche followed by my usual 30 minute chill in the fridge. The fridge time is intended to firm the dough up to make it easier to score.
I think my changes were very successful and I’m quite happy with the improvement in the crumb compared to my first set. Leaving out the commercial yeast didn’t have the negative effect that I expected in making the crust thicker nor did leaving it out make the crumb less open.

Benito's picture
Benito

I’ve wanted to make a mashed potato bread for some time and just got around to it.  This has 25% butter mashed potatoes, 82% hydration, 9% prefermented flour.  I did an overnight levain build which grew to over 3x and was used young just as the dome started to flatten.  A saltolyse was done also overnight, both starting in the fridge to slow things down.  The mashed potatoes were added to half the dough after Rubaud mixing when the levain was added.  Then was fully mixed with slap and folds on the counter.  The two halves of the dough were combined using a lamination and then the black pepper and fresh rosemary were added during lamination as well. Three coil folds were done.  I was aiming for a 60% rise in the aliquot jar because that is what seems to be ideal, however, for some reason the bulk was going really fast and I was late to shape the dough and there was at least a 65% rise by the time bulk ended.  I believe evidence of the over fermentation can be seen in the lack of ear and relatively poor oven spring of this bake.  It also has more slopping shoulders than I like.  I suppose the 25% mashed potatoes may also contribute to this, but I don’t think so.  

This bread smells so good right now with the rosemary and black pepper aromas filling my kitchen.  I will bake this again and watch bulk more closely than I did this time to get a better bake.  There’s always room for improvement.

Benito's picture
Benito

 

Here is my take on Alan’s (Alfanso) Sesame Semolina Baguettes.  I used his formula generally but made a few changes.  I added 0.07% IDY and also did an overnight Saltolyse and levain build.  I forgot how low hydration this was going to be so in the future I wouldn’t do the overnight saltolyse and would  instead just mix the levain IDY water and flours in the morning then add salt 20 mins later.  I ended bulk at 25% rise in the aliquot jar and placed the dough en bulk in the fridge until the next afternoon.  26 hours or so after the start of cold retard the dough was divided and pre-shaped and left to rest in loose rolls for 20 mins.  Shaping was a bit of a mismash of different shaping techniques but I think I like shaping ala Abel the most and will try to stick to that in the future.  These were very easy to roll out to 16” and in fact with the first one I had to cut one end because it rolled out to 18” way too long for my steel.  It was a challenge to roll these on the wet towel and roll them in the sesame seeds, each time I felt like I was degassing them a bit and then stretching them as well.  I wonder if the next time I was to make these again, if I should proof to 20% and then after shaping let them have a bench rest at warm room temperature to try to bounce back a bit from the shaping, wetting and sesame seed applications.

Having never baked anything with semolina to such a high percentage before I didn’t know what to expect, but the dough was nice and extensible. The flavour of this baguette though, for a sesame seed fanatic is just outstanding.  I’m not sure what the Semola Rimacinata is contributing for flavour but this is my favourite tasting baguette I’ve ever made.   I dare say that it tastes better than the sesame baguette I used to buy at my favourite local bakery Blackbird.

The crumb has a lovely yellow hue from the Semola and is nice and tender without too much chew.  The crust is very crispy with that amazing sesame flavour.

I have a line of dense crumb near the center of the baguette that when I examine it closely, I can faintly see white flour.  I suspect that the dense crumb section is because of raw flour that got into the middle of this baguette when pre-shaping or shaping.  I’ll need to be a better job of brushing off the excess flour.  If it wasn’t for the yellow hue of the semolina I would never have seen this line in the dense area.  I wonder if this causes some of the density in baguette crumb we see?

Anyhow, these baguette taste so good I just downed out plain no butter or anything for dinner.

Benito's picture
Benito

We loved the Kamut flavour in the last loaf I baked last week but wanted a stronger flavour from the Kamut.  This week I decided to inch up they percentage of Kamut to 30%.  Still being unsure about going higher because I wasn’t sure how thirsty Kamut is and what effect on the gluten it would have.  I increased the hydration to 78% with the assumption that more whole Kamut would make the dough thirstier.  I still think that the Kamut adds a lot of extensibility to the dough and doesn’t seem that thirsty compared to other whole grains.  I’d love to know what other more experienced bakers of Kamut think.

For convenience, I recently have been experimenting with overnight levain builds since I’ve been doing that for the baguettes and now also with overnight modified autolyse.  Based on Trevor Wilson and Chad Robertson if I’m not mistaken, if doing an overnight autolyse do it cold and add salt.  The idea being the salt and cold will slow the effects of the amylase enzymes, (saltolyse is what I’ve been calling it).  I’ve been pleased with doing the overnight because it means that I can bulk ferment in the morning and then do final shaping in the early afternoon instead of in the evening and then have a longer cold retard overnight period which should enhance the flavour of the bread as well as improve the blisters in the crust.  This time I didn’t brush water on the crust because I wanted to see if the longer cold retard would give me good blisters without that step.  I’m not sure if it did or not, you tell me.

Another thing I changed is the degree of bulk fermentation.  Last week I bulked to a 50% rise in the aliquot jar and I thought that the crumb was a bit tight and wanted to see if pushing the bulk would open it up more.  This week I bulk fermented to a 60% rise and shaped then and gave it a short 15 minutes bench rest before putting it into the fridge for 18 hours. During the time it took to shape and bench rest the aliquot jar showed a 65% rise.  I’m hoping that the crumb will be more open when I slice the loaf later.

I made a couple of videos the first showing my shaping and the second my scoring.  My scoring wasn’t perfect as it took three goes to get the centre score deep enough.  It would have been better to be only one cut to score but I wasn’t aggressive enough with my first go, I usually do better.

Shaping Video

Scoring Video

Benito's picture
Benito

We LOVED the blueberry rhubarb galette I made last week so much I had to make it as a double crust pie this week to bring to friends.  Because of the pandemic we haven’t seen our best friends since 2019.  We are allowed to have a bubble of 10 people but haven’t really taken advantage of this so far.  

I wanted to see if replacing half of the water in the Bravetart all butter crust would make it even more tender.  I used to make a vodka pastry that was half shortening and half butter.  I really didn’t like the idea of eating shortening with the transfers so I wanted to find another pastry recipe so started to use the Bravetart recipe.  I remember that pastry as being a bit more tender than the Bravetart all butter pastry.  I wonder if it is because of the vodka or not.  Supposedly the vodka interferes with gluten formation in the pastry, does anyone know if that is true?  Anyhow, I will know tomorrow when we get to eat this delicious pie.

Benito's picture
Benito

This is my second go at baking a 20% Kamut sourdough. I wanted to try an overnight levain build and saltolyse (autolyse with salt included) because it would allow me to get the bake done on the same day as the mix while still including a short cold retard.  I think this actually works out quite well and I may continue to do this int he future.  I once again used the aliquot jar and ended bulk fermentation when the aliquot jar showed a rise of 50% and after final shaping did a short bench rest of 15 minutes.

The formula was included in my last post of this sourdough so I won’t rewrite that here.

 

Benito's picture
Benito

This is set number 15 of my baguette trials and tribulations and in some ways one of the most successful baguette bakes I’ve had where I figured something out that has turned out to be critical to my baguettes.  I have been stumped by the lack of ears and grigne on my baguettes, but happy with the crumb.  Well in this bake I reduced bulk fermentation aiming for only a 25% rise in bulk and then eliminated bench room temperature proofing of the shaped dough instead putting the baguettes into the fridge after final shaping.

For three baguettes about 280 g (to account for aliquot jar)

 

 

 

 

 

Total Flour

 

 

 

 

 

Total Dough Weight (g)

 

900.3

 

Prefermented

9.09%

 

 

 

 

Total Formula

 

 

 

Liquid Levain

 

 

Final Dough

 

 

Ingredients

%

Grams

 

%

Grams

 

Ingredients

Grams

 

Total Flour

100.00%

522.5

 

100.00%

47.5

 

Final Flour

475

 

AP Flour/T55

100%

522.5

 

100%

47.5

 

AP Flour/T55

475

 

Strong Bread Flour

0%

0

 

0%

0.0

 

Bread Flour

0

 

Water

67.7%

353.5

 

100%

47.5

 

Water

 

 

Autolyse (93%)

0.00%

0.0

 

0%

0.0

 

Autolyse(cool)

306

 

Final (7%)

0.00%

0.0

 

0%

0.0

 

Bassinage(v cool)

0

 

IDY

0.07%

0.38

 

 

 

 

IDY

0.38

 

Diastatic Malt Powder

1%

5.2

 

 

 

 

Malt

5.2

 

Salt

1.80%

9.38

 

 

 

 

Salt

9.38

 

Starter (in final dough)

2.20%

11.5

 

24%

11.5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Levain

95

 

Totals

176.89%

900.3

 

224%

106.5

 

 

900.3

Fermentolyse

Dissolve diastatic malt powder, IDY and levain in water.  Then add flour and mix.

20 mins later add salt with wet hands and work in with dimpling and pinching.  then Rubaud kneading for up to 4-5 mins.  Remove 30-50 g of dough and place in aliquot jar and keep with the dough.

Rest 50 mins then Coil Fold.

Rest 50 mins then Coil Fold

Once aliquot jar reaches 25% rise then place dough into refrigerator 2ºC overnight and up to 24 hours.

Remove dough from fridge and divide into 3 equal weight doughs and pre-shape lightly as loose rolls.  Bench rest 20 mins.  Shape baguettes and place in floured couche and then into refrigerator for 1 hour.

Next, set oven up for steaming with Sylvia towel and cast iron skillet and temperature set to 500ºF.  In fact I now wait for 30 mins after oven is turned on and then place the Sylvia towel loaf pan filled with boiling water from kettle into oven.  This time I tried pre-heating oven and baking with steam at 525ºF but ended up with slightly burnt bottom crust so will go back to 500ºF. 

Using transfer board place each baguette on a parchment lined peel.  Brush excess flour off each baguette.  Score.  I didn’t brush water on the baguettes this time and still had some blisters.

Transfer baguettes onto baking steel using the peel and parchment.  Pour boiling water into icast iron skillet.  Bake with steam for 13 mins then remove Sylvia towel and cast iron skillet. 

Drop temperature of oven to 500ºF and turn on convection (I forgot to turn on convection which leads to more uneven browning).  After 5 mins turn and rotate baguettes.  Check for done ness in another 5 mins, if not fully browned then rotate and turn again.  Remove once crust is nicely browned.

 

Benito's picture
Benito

I first started baking pies about two and a half years ago, I’ve gone through a pile of different pasty recipes until I tried Stella Parks recipe in Bravetart cookbook.  I’ve mentioned this one before, but if you haven’t tried it you really need to.  It is the easiest to make, the one challenge for us bread bakers is not to knead.  Once I have a dough in my hands I automatically want to knead it, with pastry you really shouldn’t knead it.  In fact, I barely bring this together.  It is a dry shaggy mass that you will fold and roll out, it comes together eventually though and the less you do to it the better the outcome.  You certainly don’t want a tough pastry do you? 

In fact until last weekend I hadn’t make any pastry since the fall, once the pandemic started we weren’t seeing friends so with all the bread I’m already baking also eating a whole pie between the two of us was just gluttony.  Then last week we saw two friends and tonight we’ll have neighbors over so I needed to make dessert since that is what I’ve invited them over for, an evening on our balcony having wine and then dessert.  Galettes are so easy and there is less of it to finish so I don’t feel quite as guilty about making it.

I used 2 cups of blueberries

3 cups of rhubarb.

a pinch of salt

1/2 cup of sugar

dash of cinnamon

2 tbsp of tapioca startch

zest and juice of one lemon.

 

 

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Benito's blog