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Blog post in progress

As of Mix Day ( February 8)...

Deviated slightly from recipe on percentage levain and included a Semola poolish.

Levain Build, start 36 hours before mix

  • 3 generations x 12 hours, all Bread Flour, 125% hydration 

Poolish, 12 hours before mix

  • 200 g water, 200g Semola Rimacinata, 1/4 t ADY
  • beautiful creamy color, less bulk, denser than AP poolish

Mix target 2000 g dough for 2 batards

  • 286 g levain
  • 392 g poolish
  • 346 g Bread Flour
  • 514 g Semola Rimacinata
  • 470 g water

Machine mix 2 minutes then scrape, cut, cajole in stray flour remaining in bowl, then 2 minutes machine mix. Rest 30 minutes. Lovely butter color dough.

  • 24 g salt

Add salt then machine knead 5 minutes

Yield 2020 g dough @70dF, room @65dF. Rest 30 minutes

4 Stretch and folds @ 30 minute intervals

  • Nice loft and gluten development after just 2 S&Fs

Retard at ~6:00 PM after 4.5 hours total Bulk on counter

First bake after 11 hour retard

  • Dough nearly doubled overnight 3 liters to 5.5 liters with Benny-recommended amount of jiggle (“like jello on springs”?)
  • Pre-shaped, 30 minute rest, shape then 45 minute rest (very easy dough to handle)
  • Bake with steam @475dF for 17 minutes, then 450dF for 25


Wish I had some control of image spacing??? 

  • pretty gorgeous batard, great oven spring, nice ear
  • soft crumb with a creamy tinge
  • crispy crust
  • fairly delicate but distinct flavor
  • On toasting, crust is reminiscent of deli sour rye, crisp but thin

Will bake another from same dough batch in a few days to see if flavor develops, dough retains it’s excellent qualities. After 96 hour retard, dough is on counter rising.

Finally got around to posting results of 96 hour retard. Pre-shape, shape durations, room temperature pretty much the same as for previous batard. 

  • Dough seemed harder to handle, wetter, slacker(?”)
  • Less oven spring
  • Bake with steam @475dF for 18 minutes, then 450dF for 28
  • Good crumb, thicker crust
  • Delicate, but more complex flavor

Conclusion: 96 hours maybe a tad too long for this dough, but overall a nice bread which I will bake again as more normal 800 g batards and maybe baguettes.

foodforthought's picture

I decided I should be more than an occasional commenter on forum posts so thought a formal introduction would be a good way to kick off my TFL blog. I most especially would like to reduce the bloat of the community bake threads so will post a link once to CBs if I participate but try to keep any discussion channeled back here. Worth a try anyway.

I’ve been lurking and learning here for the last few years most notably from the posts of @dmsnyder and the ongoing coaching, support, encouragement of frequent posters Danny @DanAyo, Benny @Benito and TFL’s cast of thousands of friendly bakers.

Oh yeah, the introduction. Grew up at the foot of Julia Child. Discovered real cheese, bread and vegetables in the seventies Berkeley food scene. Twelve years as a practicing ecologist mostly planning vegetation system rehabilitation in National Parks all over the west. Dabbled in catering and even had a restaurant for a year. Then started a family, rediscovered computers and made a second career writing software, building online learning and reference systems for a large semiconductor manufacturer. All along the way retained my interest in food and entertaining which brought me to bread construction and TFL (many thanks @FloydM) after I retired a few years ago.

 A bientot,


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