The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

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Atropine's picture

Cavernous sourdough

Hello everyone.  I am new here, hope this is ok for a topic.  I have not seen this addressed on the pages I have looked at.

I have been baking bread for a while, but am branching out into sourdough.

I have started my first sourdough starter (not from scratch...tried that before and I think we have too much mold in our house for it).

 Anyway, got the sourdough starter going, made some bread.  Tasted fine, but both the round loaf and the loaf in the loaf pan had one HUGE bubble under the crust the entire length and breadth of each loaf..... I could have hidden a chihuahua in there lol.  The crust was obviously fairly strong, but I was puzzled by the one HUGE bubble.  Any ideas?

If anyone is interested, my sourdough is actually a commercial starter that they sell up here (for tourists lol).  BUT I have been pleased so far.  After the "secret compartment bread", I made another loaf using some of the tips I found here for increasing the sour of the sourdough....the resulting loaf was VERY good, VERY tender, nicely crisp crust.  It almost had a sour taste--you could tell that it wanted to be a "real" sourdough, but just couldn't quite make it.  However, the more it cooled, the more tang it had.

I am eager to do more, now that I can see that the code CAN be cracked :).  Thank you for your time and for this forum--it really helps!

dwg302's picture

rye starter

does anyone keep a seperate rye starter for baking or do you just use a regular white starter for making your rye bread?  i'm reluctant to keep 2 separate starters to feed full time.   is it possible to convert a portion of my white starter to a rye starter a few days before baking and use that as a substitute?   the bread recipes i'm concerned about that call for a mature rye starter are in the Hamelman bread book under the 3 stage ryes.    any advice from folks that are familiar and baked the 3 stage ryes would be welcome.


AnnieT's picture

oil on counter

I have been enjoying Dan Lepard's "the art of handmade bread" both for the recipes and because it is a good "read". Have any of you tried his method of using a small amount of oil on the counter, kneading for 10 seconds and leaving it to rest for 10 minutes, and repeating with longer rest intervals? It sounds interesting but I wonder about adding oil. I am trying to get away from using extra flour because my only piece of counter suitable for bread making is over the dishwasher and inevitably I forget to cover the door with a tea towel and get flour in the nooks and crannies. I like the stretch and fold method, also the French fold, but I am tempted to try DL's way. Didn't have time to bake this weekend so I am digging some of my old, not so great loaves out of the freezer - no way will I buy bread! A.

Noy's picture

Struan, simply delightful

I baked a loaf of Struan, following Peter Reinhart's recipe and I have to agree with what he said in his book Brother Juniper's Bread Book, "Struan became the mainstay of our bakery, and I still think it is the most beautiful and delicious bread I have ever made or tasted."

My 1st Loaf of Struan

This multigrain bread is simply delightful, from the first to the last bite!


PS: There's a 2nd loaf that's almost proofed and ready for baking in the next few minutes! Gotta go!

Floydm's picture

So far so good

I'm having a good, relaxing weekend here. I hope y'all are doing well too.

Inspired by LilDice's quick rustic pizza, I made pizza last night. I didn't follow the rustic pizza recipe exactly, but I did use a dough with around 90% hydration. I made it around noon and folded at 2 and 4, then baked it around 6.

The results were really good. I did one pesto pie:

green pizza

And one with tomatoes, cheese, basil, olive oil, and garlic. Lildice: how can you forget the garlic?!? ;^)

red pizza

a whole pizza pie



Real nice open crust. Much more sturdy that the neo-Neopolitan dough I usually use and which required the nose to be folded up, NY pizza style. I'm not sure I prefer one over the other, they are just different kinds of pies.

Blueberries are here. I made blueberry muffins this morning. And a batch of banana nut muffins too, while I was at it.


I've still got another day to bake. Methinks my sourdough starter is feeling left out, so I'll have to do something to entertain it.

colinwhipple's picture

Parchment Paper - Temperature Limit?

I bought a roll of Wilton parchment paper. The packaging says the temperature limit is 400 degrees.

Some of the recipes I want to use it with call for temps up to 500 degrees. Can the parchment paper still be used? What can the adverse consequences be?




Paddyscake's picture

Trouble with baking 2 loaves..

I finally made Thom Leonard's French Country bread. Great flavor, crumb was OK..I had a ? about how to shape a "tight boule, without deflating", but I'll work that out. My problem is that whenever I bake 2 loaves I don't have the room to fit them both on the stone at the same time. The first one has a great crust, spring and color. The 2nd one looks anemic. I reheat the oven to 500, refill my pan of water with 1/4" of hot water, the vent has steam pouring out and voila..blah. I'm just wondering what the difference is..the stone has been in the oven for the preheat and bake of the 1st loaf, I bring the temp back up , re-establish the steam..any ideas? This happens any time I bake 2 loaves one at a time.

Bakersdozen's picture

Dinner Rolls

Hi All:

Does anyone have a good receipe for Dinner Rolls.  I'm going to a dinner on the 4th and said I would bring the dinner rolls.  Then I stoped and thought I don't have a receipe for dinner rolls.  Any help would be appreciated.


danmerk's picture

Marble Rye - help me with this recipe

Can someone help me create a marble rye recipe? I am looking for a lighter crumb than my normal sourdough as this will be a few loaves for friends. Here is what I was planning on doing.

Use a refreshed starter and build to 200g (used to split for seperate levains)

Rye Bread

400g white flour
200g rye flour
16g salt
400g water


400g white flour
200g rye flour
16g salt
100g molasses
5g cocoa powder
375g water

Mix seperatly, autoyse, and then knead in 100g of starter to each. Let ferment for 2 hours turning 2-3 times. Shape into balls, let rest. Roll each slightly to flatten, placing one on top of the other and rolling for marbling effect. Let proof until ready. Bake 350 in cold oven. Egg wash.

Floydm's picture

A baking day in pictures

Sunday I finally got a real baking day in. It was the first time in... 2 months? 3 months? A very long time.

I started with the Sourdough English Muffin recipe that Kjknits posted a month or so ago.

They were *amazing*. There wasn't a terribly interesting smell or anything, but when I bit into one it was just one of those "Oh, wow" moments. I will definitely be baking them again.

Pretty nice crumb inside.

I don't have cutter or tins, I just used a mason jar lid. The ones I was happiest with I left about 1/3 inch tall when cutting and then squashed a bit wider and thinner before cooking.

I also make something like a cross between my standard pain sur poolish and the famous no knead bread.

The hydration on this was quite high, probably in the 70-75% range. It spread a little more than I would have liked, but the crumb was very nice (though slightly underbaked). Particularly nice since I'd run out of bread flour and was just baking with store brand AP flour.

I also made three sourdough loaves...

...and experimented a little with the scoring.

I thought it looked like a yin-yang, but my wife says it looks more like the Safeway Logo.