The Fresh Loaf

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trailrunner's blog

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Used the Mock Mill to grind my cornmeal. There isn’t much information out there so had to experiment. I ordered 6# of Hoosier Hill Farm yellow popcorn. Haha I was optimistic about my new project! 

I used “10” to start thinking it would be good for polenta. I then took out one cup of that and moved down to “5” then “1”. 

The cornbread is amazing with fresh ground corn! But there are a few crunchy bits. I reset the mill to get a new set of “10” finer grinds. I started at the new “10” then went to “5” and then tried moving toward “1” but the mill stalled. I quickly moved back to about “3”. Perfect! I was using the same cup of cornmeal for the regrinding. 

The info I would pass on as a result of this is: buy good quality popcorn, start on your coarsest setting and work down. Depending on what your desired recipe is you can go coarse for polenta and finer for grits and finer yet for cornmeal. 

Do not buy dent corn as it is field corn and intended for 4 legged critters. The ultimate would be fresh corn cut off the cob and dehydrated and then ground. That’s my plan come Summer. 

The cornbread is made with buttermilk and tastes like pound cake. Truly wonderful especially baked in my Mom’s antique iron skillet ?❤️

Served hot with local honey... yum!




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This is based on Danni's Peasant Bread...thank you Danni !  I milled my spelt, rye and kamut and ground the flax seed. I sifted out the goodies  from the flours. I have never done this before but decided to give it a try. I used two different starters that I have had going for a while. Not sure what they are but one was fed only AYW and the other was fed only durum...but that was before and they were now going be on a " water and goodies" feed :). They loved loved loved it. Tripled in 2 hrs. Boom !  I did an autolyse with just the flour and water for about 2 hrs. Folded in the levain and salt. Bulk fermented for a couple hours with only two s and f's as I went to play with my grandson. Came back and the dough had doubled . Yikes. Quickly made 3 rough boules and put it in the fridge. My new procedure as of my last bake is to let it ferment at least 36 hrs. Amazing how well it does. Will look forward to seeing the crumb as last time not only did I get great oven spring, and this time too, but I had amazing open crumb.  Baked at 500 then 475 in my granite roasters. 

crumb shots...lovely tender a little sour and beautifully open












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 I fold the dough ove\






I made three 1-2-3 loaves . Each had 100 g of your wheat along with home milled  durum, spelt and my local mill provides my unbleached flour. I used 3 different levain. #1 was my 10 yr old SD starter fed with unbleached  ,#2 was my 7 yr old Apple YW fed with unbleached and #3 was my SD starter fed with semolina. Amazing rising power with almost no hands on time. Process for each bread:  I place all the salt in a thin area and spray well on top of the dough as it rests.  It is  left to rest for 1-2 hours. I then pat the dough to a 1/2" thickness  with sprays of additional water on the countertop and the dough surface. I fold the dough over and over left to right like strudel and then end to end. Rest for one hour. Repeat patting and fold once more. Leave till puffy.. only took 2 the oven with a light on. I don’t shape so much as I pull in the edges and pinch lightly and retard pinched side down. My oven is broken so I have to be careful of temps . It was supposed to be fixed today but that didn’t happen! I am so pleased with the fragrance of the breads and the addition of Lee's  flour made the dough a pleasure to work with. 

 The first crumb shot is the Semolina fed SD levain. Flavor is VERY wheat and only a tiny bit sour. Crumb is extremely tender almost cake like and the crust is shatteringly crisp and caramelized. We love it. The second is the Apple YW crumb. Slightly sweet with no sour at all which is typical of YW. Very tender crumb as well and crust also delicious. The wheat flavor comes through amazingly well. I didn’t cut the batard it is a gift but I will let you know when it is cut on Nov 25th at a dinner we will attend. The crumb is so perfectly fine and uniform. The amount of time spent touching the dough is less than 10 min total.  after the initial mixing of levain/water/flour. All of the gluten development is due to time . The dough is SO extensible after 

Thank you again and I look forward to using Lee's flour . 

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I have started feeding my levain with semolina. I had forgotten how much it loves it... grows so fast triples in a couple hours. This is another 1-2-3  tripled with additional water . I don’t measure but probably 100 g . The barley ,I think, is responsible for the incredible taste of the last bake and the color of the finished bread. Will report when it is cut. 

300g 100% hydration semolina fed levain

600g water ( no YW ) at least 100g extra to hydrate flour and salt and countertop

900 g mixed flours——- 100 g milled barley, 200g milled rye,  

 and 600g KA bread flour 

40g yogurt

60g honey

18 g salt

Mix all but salt just til wet. Let set one hour. Fold in salt misted with water using a large rubber spatula.  Place in PAM sprayed bucket and let rest 30 min. Dough turned out on wet counter patted out to huge rectangle about 1/2” thick. Dough very extensible and had gotten poofy in bucket. Folded up left to right like strudel then folded top over and bottom up and placed in bucket one hour. Removed and patted out again.... amazing gluten sheath at this point and dough very poofy. Same folding procedure and back in bucket for one hour. Barely 25% growth but very very light. Turned out onto floured counter divided two approx 900 g pieces. Lightly shaped by pulling in four sides to make boule and folding to make rough shaped batard and placed in banneton seam down. Covered and retarded 12 h. 

Pictures tell the rest. Graniteware roaster at 500 while oven preheats approximately 15 min. Bake 10 min at 500 covered then 10 min at 475 still covered then 25 min uncovered at 475. Ears and musical crackles . Stopped using ice cubes awhile back... not needed. Amazing gluten development with almost no hands on. Very little bulk proof. 






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Fantastic oven spring. Followed my 1-2-3 tripled it so 300-600-900. Added some extra water along the way to enhance the feel of the dough. There is 100g of apple yeast water as part of the liquid. I had some barley grains so I used 50g of those and 100g of fresh  milled rye with 150g Red Fife and the rest Arrowhead Mills Unbleached. Dough was laminated 3x and I only let it room temp proof till it was about 50%. Same as last time I shortened the bulk proof due to the YW. I divided into roughly 2 pieces  900g boule and batard. Minimal shaping and baked " seam" side up ...I don't really do a seam. So pleased with the way these double levains are turning out. 






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Nice easy very minimal hands on bread. 200g/400g/600g. The levain was built from leftovers after the lovely date pecan bake and 100 g of apple YW was used directly into the 400g of liquid along with 30g yogurt and 30g of honey. Two sets of lamination folds at 30 min apart and a bulk ferment for a couple hours cause I got busy and forgot! It tripled! Yikes. Quickly shaped and retarded. Again due to stuff it sat till supper time the next day . Baked the usual graniteware roaster 10 min covered 500 degrees, 5 min covered at 465 then 20 min uncovered. Unsurprisingly not a huge spring but the crumb is lovely  and creamy and very well developed subtle flavor profile. 

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and ramacinata semolina. Ordered both flours. Amazing quality. The pasta is like yellow velvet. Helps that we had local double yolk eggs. Served with a pasta Fresca sauce. Fresh local tomatoes, caper berries chopped, my preserved Meyer Lemons diced, pancetta , a squeeze of anchovy paste, EVOO fresh basil and Parmesan grated on top. Toasted SD. 



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A mouthful of a title...a la Dab !  This bread has evolved considerably from my initial bakes based on Shaio Ping's posts. The only liquid in the bake is the banana puree. I use two levains just because. I add figs and pecans..well just because. 

The dough is pretty sticky but after letting it set a couple hours  and doing a couple lamination folds it was like silk. I only did a short bulk ferment in a warm oven as it was getting late and I had started the whole process too late in the day. I divided and simply plopped them in  lightly floured bannetons. Covered and placed in the fridge. Baked cold from the fridge with very little discernible rise overnight.  

The bloom of the crust is typical of my loaves with the free-style non-shaping. The first loaf got a little darker than I would have liked but I modified the temp and loaf 2 is perfect. The Fragrance is almost more than a body can stand what with the YW, bananas and the caramel of the figs. I used a LOT of soaked/chopped figs. 

500g levain---250g rye levain from NMNF stash at 75% hydration and 250g white KA and Banana YW at 100% hydration

440g unbleached KA

90g fresh milled rye

110g Red Fife

500g very very ripe banana puree

70g date syrup ( you will find this in middle eastern stores)

70g yogurt

18g salt

lots of hydrated chopped figs ( I have used dates and raisins also) and pecans

Mix all but salt. Let set. Add salt by sprinkling on top of dough and spraying liberally with water. Cover.

Let this all set at least one hour. Flour your board and your hands and pat out the dough to a very flat rectangle. Gently lift and stretch and fold like apple strudel. Do this again and then place in PAM sprayed bucket. Leave for 30 min and repeat. If dough not holding shape do a third time. should be very silky and extensible. Distribute the dried fruit and nuts on the last lamination. 

Place in warm spot and leave an hour or so till beginning to puff up...about 25% rise . Remove and shape. Place in fridge. After 12-15hr. Preheat pan and bake. I use my Granite roaster and only do a short pre-heat at 500 just till oven is ready. Bake 10 min 500, 10min 475 ( modified for second bake and used 465) remove lid and bake 20-30 min more till 210 or so. 

Will post crumb tomorrow if I can wait that long !   




crumb:tastes lie the creamiest fig bread pudding ever! with a caramelized crust its almost too good!



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Best yet with the method and formula that joze had posted....

I took to heart the discussion on over-proofing during both bulk ferment and retard. I also retarded my YW levain. What I consider my somewhat less optimal postings to his thread have tasted fantastic !  As has been noted YW bakes  while fermenting and baking and then when eaten have the fragrance of a rich pastry/cake. I used my tomato YW in the first two bakes as discussed in the linked thread. I hadn't used a vegetable before. This bake used my 6 yr old apple YW. It is SO active and triples in just a couple hours at a warm temp. 

I got great bloom and ears and the fragrance is intoxicating. Will post a crumb pic when I let it cool . 


 pic just before baking. I have gone back to baking direct from the fridge....I am fortunate to have a dedicated refrigerator in the basement so I set it at " 7" which gave me a 47 F temp. for retarding. 




my trusty granite wear roaster. I put it in the oven at 500 and just let it  preheat till oven beeps ready. No extended preheat with this metal. I baked the 540g loaf at 500 lid on for 10min then lowered to 475 for 5 more min. Removed lid and finished at 475 for 15 min to 209 internal temp. 


crumb shots. Shattering thin crisp crust, very wheaty flavor and a beautiful crumb. No giant holes in spite of the huge bubbles and pillowing during the ferment stage but that's OK. 



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Just getting back to baking after extended Spring vacation in Hawaii. 

600g bread flour

150g Red Fife

150g Kamut

100g AYW levain built using one time feed of flour to AYW and left in warm oven a couple hours. Was VERY active

100g Rye levain- did several builds over a few hours to get my 10g of stored starter active again. Left in warm oven all night. Stirred down the next morning and fed again and left for a few hours. 

550 g total liquid - 300g AYW + 250 H2O ( additional water on counter for s&f approx 50-100 g)

50g ground flax misted to moisten before adding to dough

20 g Kosher salt

Mixed everything but salt. Left in sunny window a couple hours. Did a couple stretch and folds added salt on first set then placed in bucket. Repeat this q30 min x 3. Bulk ferment till 75% took a couple hours in warm oven. Shaped and placed in fridge for about 16 hrs. Baked in hot roaster at 475 covered 25 min with 4 small pieces of ice. Removed cover and cont to bake 20 min. Really pretty crust due to Kamut and caramelization of the AYW. Very nice oven spring. Did my usual " no shaping" shaping. Left to crack and make ears as it will. Posting crumb later. 





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