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Sourdough Potato Focaccia




   For Dough

      Starter (70% hydration)   70g

      Strong flour   100g*

      T65 flour    100g (or 95g Plain flour + 5g WW)*

              *(or alternatively, 195g AP + 5g WW)

      Salt  4g

      Extra Virgin Olive Oil  1 tbls

      Water   155g (78%)


  For Topping

     150 – 200g Small new potatoes (no need to peel)

     1 clove garlic, crushed and chopped


     Salt and freshly ground black pepper

     Olive oil

     Coarse sea salt

     Optional … Parmesan cheese



  1. Mix all the ingredients for the dough and autolyse for 30 minutes.
  2. S & F 3 times in the bowl every 40 minutes or so until medium gluten development.
  3. Put in the fridge and cold retard for overnight – 24 hrs.
  4. Take it out of the fridge and leave for 30 minutes -1 hr at room temperature.
  5. Letter-fold the dough once or twice to give extra-strength if necessary. 
  6. Rest until fully proofed.
  7. Meanwhile, thinly slice the potatoes to a thickness of ₤1 coin….which may not give much clue to people outside UK. :p….it’s about 3mm thick. The important point is that the slices should be quite thin or they won’t cook in the time the dough bakes.
  8. Put the sliced potatoes, olive oil, rosemary, chopped garlic and salt & pepper in a large bowl and mix well.
  9. Spread the dough into 20-21cm X 30-31cm rectangular on a well oiled baking parchment, dimpling all over with oiled fingertips.
  10. Layer the potato slices over the top and scatter the rosemary and garlic over the potatoes.

  11. Cover and leave for 1- 1 1/2 hours until dough increase the volume and the edges get puffed up a little. 

  12. Pre-heat the oven to 200 – 210 C.

  13. Sprinkle coarse sea salt over the top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese (if using). Drizzle with more olive oil and bake for 25- 35 minutes until golden and potatoes are soft and cooked.





Roast Turkey Sandwich with the left-over focaccia next day


lumos's picture

 All the experiments I’ve done with T55 since I got my hands on with the flour was to get used to the temperament of much softer French flour than we are used to in UK… make baguette with T65.  After the initial disaster of ciabaguetta incident and subsequent trials & errors with playing with formula adjustments, I felt I was gradually getting a hang of dealing with soft T55 flour to incorporate in my regular formula, though it’s faaaaaaar from perfection.

 And now that I’ve finished two bags of T55 (still one left in the freezer!), it’s time to brush with my dream flour, T65. ……Well, maybe I should’ve continued my experiments with T55 until I can make a decent baguette with 100% T55, as I suggested in my last blog on the baguette  obsession quest,   but to be frank, I just got bored!!  Needed a new toy to play with. :p 

 So I stepped into a new territory of T65 now.  Reckless, perhaps, but here I come!

T65 I used was one of 6 bags of flour my daughter was forced to bring  brought back for me from Paris. (3 x T55 + 3 x T65)   It’s again probably a bog standard one from the supermarket shelf as the T55s,  but at least it’s organic this time. The protein level id 10.8%, so it’s a tiny bit stronger than the T55 earlier (=10.5%).  It has distinctive yellowy tint, just like T55.

The formula I used is exactly same as my new revised formula of my regular Hamelinet poolish baguette, which you can find here,  with 1/3 of flour used for poolish.  As in the base formula, I used strong flour with small amount of rye for poolish and all the flour for main dough was replaced by T65.  No added WW this time, because the whole point of adding WW was to emulate T65. Everything stayed the same.

It was easier to work with, less sticky and the dough got good strength. With the previous experiences with T55, I sometimes felt like giving it a set or two of letter-folds after cold retard to give it more strength, but with this flour it was nice and firm, yet supple, after the cold retard. Not sure 0.3% difference in protein was responsible for it, or the difference in the ash contents between the two flours.  But it’s easier flour to handle, nevertheless. And here’re the results. (Excuse the weird colours. Taken under night lights.)


(yeah, I know….my same old crossed-baguettes picture….:p)




And the flavour?  ….Not bad. Definitely had more depth and complexity than than T55,  and was slightly sweeter, too.  The crumb got more sheen, as well. 

If I’d made very basic baguette without pre-ferment like poolish nor long fermentation, I’m sure the difference of flavours between the ones made with T55 and the ones with T65 would be more apparent. But with my formulae both of them benefit quite a lot from the combination of both pre-ferment and long, cold retard, the difference in the flavours may not be standing out as much. Still, this one definitely taste better than T55.  I’m now really intrigued how better tasting better quality T65 would be….

btw, the title 'At Last!' means just 'at last' I reach the first step on T65 journey. It'll be another hundred years until I can reach anywhere near the perfection and proclaim 'at last!'.....if I'm lucky.....







lumos's picture

 Pissaladiere is a sort of pizza's distant cousin, originated in Province, Southern France, said to have been brought to the region by Romans.  Not sure if the Romans had a pizzaria back home in those days :p, but it was probably their flat hearth breads Romans used to make that gave the inspirations to the locals.....though I have read one or two articles by patriatic French who claimed it's their pissaladiere that gave the inspiration to the Romans for making pizza. :D

 Anyway.... It is more bready than pizza and is topped with thinly sliced and fried onions (lots of it!!), anchovy and black olives. That’s it. Not much variation, really, but salty anchovy and black olives are wonderful contrast to meltingly sweet, caramelized onions. One of those dishes made of simple ingredients with not much room for improvement because it's so good already. 

I love this so much and have been making this well over 20 years, in spite of my husband’s dislike of anchovy.  A cook's perk = get to make whatver I want! :p   And I've always made it in the classical way.

But when I went to Lighthouse Bakery School  the pissaladiere we had for lunch was the one with a few twists…and very nice ones at it, too.  Some tomatoes were cooked with the onion topping, which is a bit unusual for pissaladiere (though I wouldn’t say ‘never’),  and also added capers along with more classic black olives.  I was a bit dubious about them first, but it turned out to be one of the best pissaladieres I’d ever had.  They used cold-retarded overnight-dough and their professional deck oven could reach the temperature my humble domestic oven couldn’t, so those are the helping factors, too, but the new (to me, anyway) combination of the toppings were rather good as well.

 So last night I made it myself.  Forgot to ask the formula for the dough at Lighthouse, so I improvised with my regular sourdough focaccia dough instead, with a few modifications.  Also I was out of black olives, so I used small Turkish olives with beautiful tint of orange and subtle lemony aroma I’ve been in love recently instead. 




Sourdough Pissaladiere, Inspired by Lighthouse Bakery



   For Dough

      Starter (70% hydration)   70g

      Strong flour   100g

     T65 flour    100g (or 95g Plain flour + 5g WW)

           (or alternatively, 195g AP + 5g WW)

      Salt  4g

      Extra Virgin Olive Oil  1 tbls

      Water   140g (70%)


  For Topping

     500g thinly sliced onions

    1-2 cloves crushed and chopped garlic

    Herbs (thyme, rosemary, bay leaf)

    Salt and freshly ground black pepper

    Olive oil

    1/2 tsp sugar

    1 tbls  tomato puree (optional)

    Anchovy, small olives, salted/brined capers (capers optional)



  1. Mix all the ingredients for the dough and autolyse for 30 minutes.
  2. S & F 3 times in the bowl every 40 minutes or so until medium gluten development.
  3. Put in the fridge and cold retard for overnight – 24 hrs.
  4. Take it out of the fridge and leave for 30 minutes -1 hr at room temperature.
  5. Letter-fold the dough to give extra-strength. (you need it, so that the dough can support the weight of toppings).  Rest for 1 hr.
  6. Give another letter-fold. Rest until fully proofed.
  7. Spread the dough into 20-21cm X 30-31cm rectangular on a well oiled baking parchment.  Make sure the edges are slightly thicker than the rest.
  8. Spread the onion toppings (See below for the recipe)  evenly on top, leaving about 2 cm edges along the sides.
  9. Cover and leave for 1-2 hours until dough increase the volume and the edges get puffed up a little. 
  10. Pre-heat the oven at the highest temperature with a baking stone set at the middle rack. (If you have two baking stones, set another one on the top shelf. The radiant heat it produces will give a wonderful result)
  11. When the dough is ready, and lay the anchovies in cross-cross pattern. Scatter olives and capers on top. 

                     (Note on the toppings : Stone the olives if you’re feeling kind enough, especially if you're making this even though your husband hates anchovy. :p

                       Soak capers in water for a while to remove salt, if you like.

                      And if your anchovy fillets are quite large, you can cut them into two lengthways,  so that the pissaladiere won’t get too salty.  But believe me, you’ll need more anchovy than you’d think.  Many recipes suggest to use a whole tin of anchovy for this amount of dough! )


 (The time for a confession : I caramelized the onions too much!!!  It should be lighter colour, just like this, before you add tomato puree)

 12.  Lower the temperature to 200C and slide the dough on to the hot baking stone. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the dough is browned and the edges of the onions are catching here and there in the heat.

13.   Serve hot, warm or cold. Choice is yours!

It's lovely as a part of a meal with nice salad and soup, etc. But it also makes great canape if cut into small pieces, too. If you're serving this for a big dinner party, you can make this several hours in advance, cut them when it's cooled, and reheat it gently in the oven just before serving.


To Make The Onion Topping

  1. Warm the olive oil in a thick saucepan large enough to take all the onions. Add the onions, garlic, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf and a little salt and pepper.
  2. Stir for a few minutes until the onions start to soften and become slightly translucent. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, lower the flame and cook gently for 30-40 minutes, stirring 2-3 times to prevent the onions from sticking and burning.
  3. When the onions are meltingly tender, add the tomato puree and sprinkle in the sugar.  Increase the heat to caramelize the onions and boil down the liquid, stirring occasionally to prevent it from burning.
  4. Take it off the heat, fish out the herbs and adjust the seasoning. Do not over-salt. (Think of all the salt in anchovy, olives and capers!)



Verdict : In spite of slightly over-caramelized onions, it turned out to be a really yummy pissaladiere.  There many versions of pissaladiere dough, but generally it's something between pizza and focaccia in thickness and how bready it is.  For this one the use of T65 in stead of my regular plain flour,  resulted in less bready and thinner crumb than I'd liked because T65 I have is weaker than my usual plain flour.   It needs  stronger gluten than dough for pizza because it has to support the weight of onions and other toppings.  You can adjust the ratio of strong/plain flour, depending upon the strength of the flours you're using and  to achieve the level of breadyness you'd like, probably up to 3 : 1 = Strong : plain.


Bon Appetit!



lumos's picture

I was actually thinking of blogging about something else, but since Codruta’s brilliant idea,  World Bread Day was launched today,  I decided I’ll post a formula for the cocoa sourdough submitted to her project.


So thisblog  entry is for you, Codruta. 

Well done on your wonderful project and thank you very much for letting us be part of it.




This bread is basically same as Cocoa Flavoured Sourdough with Cranberries and Walnuts I wrote about in my second blog entry,  but with some modifications and addition of orange peels.

This converted my friend (the culprit of misleading naming of  ‘Faux Poilane’),  who used to think dried fruits should belong to cakes, never to breads  into a avid fruited bread eater……..well, almost.   This is the only fruited bread she eats, and she always includes this bread in her order of breads.

Hope you like it, too.  


WARNING to hardcore chocoholics - This is NOT a gooey and sweet chocolate heaven you may be dreaming of.  The cocoa powder is there to give some depth and richness to the crumb, with just a hint of cocoa aroma. Nothing more, nothing less. You are warned! :p


Cocoa Flavoured Sourdough with Cranberries, Walnuts and Orange Peels



Very active S/D (75% hydration)  90g

Strong Flour  210g*(See 'Note1' below)

Plain Flour  60g*(see 'Note1' below)

WW Flour  30g

Instant active dried yeast  0.2g (optional)

Skimmed Milk Powder  1tbls

Cocoa powder  15g

Clear honey  2-3 tsp (or more if you like it sweeter)

Olive Oil  1 tbls

Water  215 – 225g

Salt 6g

 Filling … 60g dried cranberries,  50g chopped walnuts (see Note2, below), 30g chopped orange peel 



  1. Feed S/D during 8-12hrs period before you plan to use it.
  2. Mix flours, skimmed milk, cocoa, dried yeast(if using) in a large bowl.
  3. Put S/D, water, honey and olive oil in a separate bowl and mix to loosen S/D.
  4. Pour S/D water mix onto the bowl of flours and mix until no dried bits is left. (Cocoa powder seems to have a tendency to stiffen the dough, so you may want to add a little more water)  
  5. Cover and rest for 40-45 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle salt on the dough and stretch and fold until the salt is well distributed through the dough.
  7. Rest for 45 minutes.
  8. Two more sessions of S & F at 45 minutes intervals.
  9. 30 minutes after the last S & F, put the dough on worktop and spread it  spread into a large rectangle.
  10. Sprinkle 2/3 of the fillings onto 2/3 of the surface of the dough. Letter-fold the dough, firstly the part without the filling then the other part.  Repeat the same process with the remaining fillings.
  11. Cover and rest for 20 minutes.
  12. Shape and put in a banetton and cold retard in the fridge for 8 – 16 hours. (See Note3, below)  
  13. Take the dough out of the fridge and leave for 30 minute-1 hr to bring it back to room temperature. (Note: You may need to leave longer if the dough is not fully-proofed during the cold retard)
  14. Bake in a pre-heated pot/pyrex casserole with a lid at 240℃ for 20 minutes. Remove the lid, lower the temperature to 200℃ and bake for another 20-25 minutes.


*Note 1 :  If you can get hold of AP flour, you can replace all the white flours (Strong and Plain) with it.

*Note 2 : I usually dry-roast walnuts in a frying pan before I use it to improve the flavour, but it’s optional.

 *Note 3 :  In my original formula, I bulk-fermented in the fridge, then pre-shape → shape → proof at room temperature, which works just fine, too.  But I’ve found cold-retarding after shaped would give me more texture, so this is how I do it lately.  But if you do, prepare yourself for a possible stained banetton from the cranberries!! You are warned. :p











lumos's picture

 It wasn’t meant to do like that.  I fed my starter the first thing in the morning, hoping it’d be ready for the second feed sometime in early afternoon, which would be ready to be used by early evening, as usual. Then I would prepare the dough, bulk ferment with a few S & F, shape it and put in the banettons and proof overnight in the fridge, so that I could bake it the next day. That was my plan, anyway…..

 But it was unexpectedly and unbelievably cold for early October on Saturday, even for English standard.  It was almost 11:00 pm when the starter at last looked just bout ripe enough to be used.  Just.   I would’ve stayed for 2 – 3 hrs or so normally to complete the routine of mix – autolyse – a few sessions of S & F before I put the dough in the fridge for overnight cold retard, but it was a very busy day and I was soooooo tired I could collapse onto a bed (or any horizontal surface, soft or hard) at any minute.  

 So, I put all the ingredients, except for the salt in the bowl, mixed them quickly, did the quickest S & F in the human history just to make the dough 'look' sort of even and smooth(-ish),  put the whole thing in the fridge,  and went to bed with my fingers and toes and every crossable thing crossed,  hoping it’d be alright, dreading how the dough would be like the next morning.

 The next morning……  I took the bowl out of the fridge, removed a cover to have a look with some trepidation. But what I found inside the bowl was a smooth ball of dough, slightly grown in size than when I left it the previous night.  When I pushed the surface, it felt nicely supple  with quite assuring strength. I did a quick window-pane test and was happily surprised it had a good gluten development, just  shy of full development.  So relieved and rather chuffed that I managed to get to that stage just by leaving it overnight, I left it for an hour or so to bring it back to room temperature,  and did a couple of S & F over 3 hrs to finish the bulk fermentation.  And another delight I found, during those S & F, was that the seeds were so well blended in and gripped by the dough, they didn’t escape and fall off from the dough (like they’d usually do) while I was stretching and folding.  So much easier to handle without loosing some seeds than my usual method. 

 I’ve done Jim Lahey’s no-kneed method but only with quite high-hydration as he suggests.  This one was more normal 70-ish% hydration and was only overnight, so it didn’t quite achieve a complete no-knead effect. But it was good enough for me. It made my life much easier with much less handling of dough with as good result as I can usually get.

  So from now on, this is going to be my method of making seeded dough.  Just mix it, put in the fridge and forget about it for 8 -12 hrs! The rest of the procedure will be much easier than usual, too!


   Note :   For this seeded bread, I used my sourdough interpretation of Heinz’s Swiss bread as the base dough, but with white levain instead of 50/50 = white/ww levain. Also all the white flour used in main dough is strong flour, instead of the mix of strong and plain in my original formula, so that the dough has strength enough to support the seeds.



 Seeded Swiss Bernese Oberland Sourdough with White Levain


    Ingredients : (makes one medium loaf. Dough weight around 770g)

   Sourdough (75% hydration)   120g 

        Feed a small amount of starter twice during 8-12 hr period before use with strong flour  (strong 60g + spelt 10g + water 50g = 120g)


    Mixed Seeds*    100g   

    Water   50g

       Soak the seeds in the water for a few hours. 

         * I used pre-mixed seeds from Waitrose  which contains  Sunflower seeds (57%), pumpkin seeds (17%), golden linseed (10%), hemp seeds (8%), sesame seeds (8%).  - The photo below.


   Main Dough

      Strong/bread  flour   180g

      Stoneground WW  flour     80g

      Stoneground whole greain rye flour     40g

      Wheatgerm     1 tbls

      Soaker (all of above)

      Water     200g

      Salt   6g



1.   Feed S/D twice during 8-12 hr period before you start making the bread.

2.   Mix all the flours, wheatgerm, soaker in a large bowl.

3.   In a separate small bowl, mix S/D and water to loosen S/D a little.

4.   Pour S/D+water to the bowl of flours and mix briefly into shaggy mess.  Stretch and fold in the bowl briefly.  Cover and put in the fridge and long-autolyse overnight. Have a good night sleep. No need to worry. :p

5.   Next morning, take the dough out of the fridge and leave for 1 hr.

6.  Sprinkle salt on the surface of the dough and S & F vigorously in the bowl until salt is evenly distributed. Cover and Leave another 45-50 minutes.

7.   Two more sets of S & F in the bowl every 45 - 50 minutes.

8.   Pre-shape and rest for 20 minutes.

9.  Shape and put in a bannetton and proof at room temperature.  (You can cold retard for 6-10 hrs if you like, too.) 

10.   Bake in a pre-heated covered pot at 240 C for 20 minutes.

11.  After 20 minutes, remove the lid, lower the temperature and bake for another 20-25 minutes.





 Must say nutty kick of seeds did work very well with Swill BO sourdough, too.  Throughly recommend this.



lumos's picture

Just so that  you know I haven’t given up on T55 baguette challenge. ;)

Been always wondering the reason behind using 30% flour for pre-ferment for poolish baguette formula and 50% for Pain Rustique with Poolish in Hamelman’s book.  Thought higher proportion of pre-fermented flour would give you better flavour, that’s his Pain Rustique with poolish recipe was what my regular formula for poolish baguette was based upon…..Which works fine for baguette using a mix of UK strong flour (70-75%) and plain flour (30-25%). But didn’t with 100% T55.

Replaced plain flour with T55 but kept strong flour in poolish, but still not quite right.   Wondered if its very low protein level can’t withstand my formula of combination of poolish & very long cold fermentation, I tried reducing the ratio of pre-fermented flour to about 1/3, as in Hamelman’s poolish baguette formula…..and it worked, more or less, though not perfect. But the imperfection was probably due to shortcoming of my skill rather than the formula. The dough was much more manageable and easier to handle, easier to shape, easier to score. Though admittedly it lacks the complexity and depth of 50% pre-fermented flour option I’d been using, and the crumb had lighter texture, too, which can be said it’s more baguette-like. 

So, it might be ‘bout time I need to learn to compromise on something to achieve something better in other parts. Maybe the case of a lesson; there can be a good reason for everything. (most of the times….)

So this is the new formula for my latest version of revised Hamelinet Poolish baguette.  The only thing I changed is the ratio of pre-fermented flour used for poolish and the amount of yeast and water, accordingly. The method remains same as the original (the link above).



Hamelinet Poolish Baguette – Revised with 1/3 poolish

 Ingredients (To make 4 x 40cm mini-baguettes)

Poolish --- Strong flour 155g

                    Rye  15g

                    Dried yeast  0.3g

                    Water  155g


Main Dough --- T55  330g

                             WW  20g

                              Dried yeast 1.3g

                               Salt 10g

                              Water 200g




 Obvious next step may be to replace strong flour in poolish with T55.  Been contemplating that…a lot....though I have a feeling it may needs more intense kneading rather than just several sessions of S & F to develop enough gluten strength for this T55,  at least at the initial kneading stage. Will look into it….perhaps…. Maybe back to my old favourite of Bertinet’s slap & fold technique?  Another case of there's a reason for everything, possibly......


lumos's picture

The autumn has come (though the summer seems to have decided to come back for a few days at the moment in UK), and some of the posts on TFL are reflecting the change of season. Floyd’s post on the beautiful grape focaccia was one of them.

Tuscan speciality, Schiacciata con L’Ulva (or grape focaccia, for people outside Tuscany) is one of many breads I’d been meaning to bake but hadn’t yet.  But the colour of the juice oozing from the grapes on Floyd’s picture looked so enticing, I decided I really need to give it a try, at long last.

The authentic one is made with black grapes, but I only had red grapes at hand when I felt the sudden impulse to bake it.  I could've waited until next day when I was due to go grocer-shopping, but thought I didn't do it then and there, I might leave it forever again, so it's Red Grape schiacciata I made. Also instead of sweet version of Tuscan original, which sometimes uses raisins in the filling, too, I only put much smaller amount of sugar in the dough (my trusted, regular sourdough focaccia dough + added sugar. See below) to make it savour to accompany the sautéed pork with blue cheese for dinner.  And lots of rosemary, of course, and a bit of black pepper and coarse sea salt as  a subtle contrast to the sweetness of grapes. 


Sourdough Schiacciata con L'Ulva - Savory and unauthentic, but who cares, it tastes good! :p


   For Dough

      Starter (70% hydration)   70g

      Strong flour   100g

     Plain flour    100g

     Skimmed milk powder    1 tbls

     Sugar  1 tsp

     Salt  4g

    Extra Virgin Olive Oil  2 tbls

    Water   155 - 160g (78-80%)


  For Filling/Topping

    Grapes   200-250g


    Freshly, coarsely ground black pepper

    Coarse sea salt

    Olive oil



  1. Mix all the ingredients for the dough and autolyse for 30 minutes.
  2. S & F 3 times in the bowl every 40 minutes or so until medium gluten development.
  3. Put in the fridge and cold retard for overnight – 18 hrs.
  4. Take it out of the fridge and leave for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  5. Spread the dough on a lightly-oiled worktop and scatter a half of grapes and rosemary on a half of the dough.


   6.  Fold the other half of the dough (the part without grapes/rosemary) over to cover the grapes/rosemary.

                Note : If you feel the dough lacks gluten development at this stage, you can gently letter-fold once to remedy that. (Try not to deflate the dough, though)

   7.  Scatter the remaining grapes and rosemary, lightly pressing down the grapes into the dough.


  8. Cover and proof for 40 minutes – 1 hr until it almost double in size.

  9.  Pre-heat the oven and baking stone at 250C.

 10.   When ready to bake, lightly press down grapes again,  if necessary. Drizzle some olive oil all over with sprinkle of black pepper and a tiny amount of coarse sea salt on top. 
 11.  Place on the baking stone, shut the oven door and lower the temperature to 200C.
 12.  Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until puffed up and golden.
 13.  Cool on the rack before serving.


......and I'm supposed to paste a photo here to show you how it turned out.  But in the midst of hectic dinner preparation, I forgot to take the pictures.....::sigh::


 So this is the picture of a remaining piece next day....., showing two pics of a same piece taken from different angles doesn't really make them look whole....what a silly trick.....:p


Crumb shot


Made into sandwich for lunch, which worked perfectly with stilton and salad.

 I think it'd be good with cold chicken, too.  Really, this is worth making just for making it into sandwiches next day, too.




lumos's picture

 This is my version of bread which became very popular in Japan some years ago.  Apparently some Italian restaurant in Tokyo started serving this some years ago and it became so popular,  other restaurants and bakers followed suit, so did home bakers.

 It’s basically basic French lean dough made with small amount of yeast and long, cold retardation, filled with young green soya beans or young broad beans and  Pecorino or Parmesan.  It would’ve be  more ‘Italian’ if you use broad beans, but 'edamame' (枝豆 = young soya beans) version seems to be slightly  more popular there; a sort of French got married to Italian by Japanese matchmaker. :p

  My verson uses same dough as my regular baguette dough (Hamelinet poolish baguette).  To that, I add about 60-70g young soya beans (frozen. Defrosted) and 30-40g Parmigiana Reggiano (chopped small) by scattering them over the dough when letter-folding the dough twice to shape it into a pave just before the dough goes into the final proof. 

Sometimes I bake it large like that, in that case in a pre-heated Pyrex casserole with a lid on for 20 minutes @ 240C and another 20 minutes without a lid @ 200C, like this......

(Using a Pyrex casserole upside down, the lid as a cover)


Other times, I cut it into 6 small pieces, like petite paves (no need to shape. just cut it with sharp bench knife),  bake them for 10 minutes @ 240C with steam on hot baking stone and 10-12 minutes more without steam @ 200C, as it's always done in Japan.  (For some reason, they seem to think that sort of roughly cut small rolls, like petite pave are called ‘rustique.’  Another case of something lost in translation….:p) 


And these are how they look like….

A large pave



This large one was for my friend, so no crumb shot, but here’s the petite pave version I baked a few weeks ago for ourselves…..of which I only remembered to take a photo after I sliced into the last remaining piece. Blame my brain….


Note :  You can adjust the amount of soya/broad beans and cheese to your liking, of course, but please try not to  over-load with cheese too much.  Cheesy note is supposed to be in the background of this bread as a contrast to bring out the delicate sweetness of flavour and aroma of young beans, not to overwhelm it.  The beans are in the leading role and the cheese is there to support it.



lumos's picture

It all started when Arlo blogged about his beautiful Pain de Urban made with rye levain.

 A few days later, it was Syd followed it with a STRONG recommendation that everyone and their grandmother and their dogs should bake it because it was so good. 

 So I had to do it. My first experience with rye sour, which was a revelation. Even though I have baked loaves with similar combination and ratios of flours but with wheat flour sourdough,  using rye for starter seems to develop a different kind of flavour profile.  Really impressed.

Then came Khalid with his second version of  "Hans’s loaf with rye levain",  of which formula I had printed out when it was posted last year……and got buried somewhere in my ‘Bread to Bake’ file which has now  grown to the size of Jupitar.  The only reason I hadn't baked it was because I didn't have rye sour.  But now I do!

So, I dig it out and and baked it.  And this is my result.  My version of Khalid’s version of Hans’s Pain au Levain which he made ‘when his life gave him too much rye starter.’ (Kudos for his ‘life’!)  



 I’m so grateful to all those four great bakers for creating such wonderful recipes and sharing them with us and for their kindness and patience in replying to my relentless questions.

Thank you, guys! ……and sorry, I tweaked your formulae quite a bit again…..Just can’t help it! :p



Pain au Levain with Wholewheat and Rye Sour

    (Makes two medium sized loaves – dough weight = around 640g each)

Rye Levain –Rye 120g, water 90g (75% hydration)

              Feed twice during 8-12 hr period before use; first feed = rye 30g + water 25g, second feed = rye 90g + water 65g


Main Dough – All of rye levain above (210g)

                               Strong 460g

                               WW  120g

                               Spelt  20g

                               Wheatgerm  2 tbls

                                Salt  12g

                               Water  430g

                             (Note :  Both rye and WW are about 17% of total flour)


  1. Mix all the ingredients except for salt and 10g of water. Autolyse for 1 hour.
  2. Add salt and remaining water. S & F vigorously in the bowl until salt is distributed well. Cover and rest.
  3. S & F 3 – 4 times over 2 1/2 – 3 hrs.
  4. Divide into two. Pre-shape & shape and put them into banettons.
  5. Cold retard for 10 – 12 hours.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes with cover at 240-250 C.
  7. Lower the temperature to 200 C, remove the cover and bake for another 20 minutes or so.



This bread is now one of my ‘Top 3 Favourites.’ :)






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Note : "The method"  edited on 11th Oct. '11.  Sorry I forgot to write you need to lower the temperature of the oven after 20 minutes! Sorry!!!!!!!!


It doesn't happen all the times, sadly, but there're a few breads I was lucky enough to come across during our holidays abroad of which the momory has been staying with me even now.  A beautiful bread we had at breakfast in our hotel in a charming little village of Wengen, at the foot of Jungfrau in Bernese Oberland region during the first holiday in Switzerland long time ago (just after dinosaurs had become extinct) was one of them.  

 Judging from the colour and flavour, I knew it had good proportion of wholemeal and probably smaller amount of rye, but its relative lightness and  soft-ish crumb also told me it probably had more white flour than other two. And I was also quite sure it was commercial-yeast based rather than sourdough.   But those were the days well before my breadmaking became ‘obsession,’ so I didn’t know how to ask right questions as to how it’s made or what sort of grains were used.  When one of the waiters in the hotel’s breakfast room told me it was a most common bread in the area and I was satisfied with the info, (naively) thinking I’d find a right recipe for that easily enough when I got home….……and that was more than 20 years ago and I hadn’t been able to find one, yet.                                

But one day, the Saviour arrived in the shape of our fellow TFLer, Heinz.  He shared with us a recipe for Swiss artisan bread he ate as a child when he was growing up in, no other than, Hurray!, the glorious Bernese Oberland! 

  I was overjoyed and decided to try out the formula straightaway, but wanted to incorporate my starter instead of commercial yeast in Heinz’s recipe.  He assured me as long as I kept to the basic ratio of 4 : 2 : 1 = white : ww : rye, it should be alright, so that’s what I did…..nearly 2 months ago and have forgotten to blog about it until this morning……..::sigh::

So, this is my take on Heinz’s wonderful artisan Swiss bread, made with sourdough.  By no means it’s as beautiful or artistic as his beautiful crust and scorings, but still, this is the closest I’ve had ever made so far  to the bread we had in Switzerland, and,  though it’s not exactly the same, I liked the flavour very much.  So much so that a formula I conjured up some years ago and had been calling ‘Swiss bread’ was rescinded of its title immediately and now this is my ‘Swiss bread.’ 

Thank you very much, Heinz, if you’re reading this. I owe you so much!


 Swiss/Bernese Oberland-style Sourdough Loaf, inpired by Heinz

 Ingredients : (makes one medium loaf. Dough weight around 650g)

   Starter (75% hydration)   125g 

        Fed twice during 8-12 hr period before use with 50/50 = strong/wholemeal (strong 37g + WW 37g + water 55g = 129g)


   Main Dough

     Strong/bread  flour   140g

     Plain flour    40g

    Stoneground WW  flour     80g

    Stoneground Rye flour     40g

    Wheatgerm     1 tbls

    Dry yeast (optional)    1/8 tsp or less

    Water     220 – 230g

    Salt   6g



1.   Feed S/D twice during 8-12 hr period before you start making the bread.

2.   Mix all the flours, wheatgerm in a large bowl.

3.   In a separate small bowl, mix S/D and water to loosen S/D a little.

4.   Pour S/D+water to the bowl of flours and mix briefly into shaggy mess. Cover and leave for 30 minutes to autolyse.

5.    Sprinkle salt on the surface of the dough and S & F in the bowl for 20 times or so until salt is (probably) evenly distributed. Cover and Leave another 40-45 minutes.

6.   Two more sets of S & F in the bowl (just 8-10 S&F this time, enough to circulate the bowl once) every 40-45 minutes.

7.   Cover and cold retard for 8-12 hours.

8.   Make sure there’re a few large bubbles on the surface of the dough after cold retard. Take it out from the fridge and leave at room temperature for 1/2-1 hr.

9.   Pre-shape and shape. Put in a bannetton and proof at room temperature .until your trusted finger-poking test tells you the dough is ready, which can be anytime between 2-4 hrs depending upon the temperature and the strength of your starter.

10.   Bake in a pre-heated covered pot at 240 C for 20 minutes.

11.  After 20 minutes, remove the lid, lower the temperature to 200C and bake for another 20-25 minutes.

 *Option – You can also bulk ferment for 1-2 hours at room temperature and cold retard in a bannetton after shaping.

 (Note:  This is slightly adjusted version of Heinz's original formula, in the attempt to make it (hopefully) closer to the bread we had in Switzerland.  The ratio of  flours for main dough is roughly 4.5  : 2 : 1 = white : ww : rye, which makes the overall ratio,  including the sourdough,  roughly 5.3 : 2.9 : 1 = white : ww : rye.) 









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