The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Some Recent Bakes

golgi70's picture

Some Recent Bakes

You know your in a drought when it feels strange to have rain up here in Northern California where it usually rains nearly half the year.  Some can't handle it but I've come to love it.  I get to live just minutes from a variety of beautiful beaches, have a Redwood Forest for a backyard, and an amazing marsh that draws a ridiculous variety of bird life.  Not to mention just an hour from beautiful rivers and mountains going the other direction.  Finally it rained yesterday.  And instead of the non stop mist we are so accustomed too it actually down poured with thunder and lightning.  And we need it desperately with all the wildfires going on.  Let's hope for a wet winter up on the Pacific Northwest.  

I thought I'd share some bread I've baked in the past few weeks .  I now do the Farmer's Market less regularly and focus on my Tuesday bake for barter/donation.  As we all know home ovens don't lend to production so In the past few months I've worked on increasing the output without having to bake for 20 hours straight.  The primary solution was introducing my "tasters" to tinned Rye Breads which by surprise has been very popular.  I'm able to bake 4 pullman pans a few days in advance which get quartered and double my previous output.  Most weeks they get reserved faster than the levain breads.  I've also added some simpler breads like pain rustique, SJSD, slowrise baguettes, and some focaccia flats.  These fit in to the bake day and follow right after the levain breads have finished baking without much effort.  

70% Whole Rye with Whole Wheat and Soaker

For 1 Pullman (2.2 KG)

Rye Sour: 16-20 hours @ 70-73F


21 g   Refreshed Rye Sour

335g  H20

411g  Whole Rye Flour

4 g    Sea Salt


Soaker:  Make at same time as Rye Sour


421  H20

421  Coarse Rye Flour

8      Sea Salt


Final Paste DDT 80-82F this will require the final water be very warm

All   Rye Sour

All   Soaker

220 H20 (very warm)

361 Whole Wheat, 

8     Instant Yeast

11   Sea Salt


Mix Sour and ferment 16-20 hours.  MIx Soaker, cover, and set aside.

Mix All together (I mix for about 15 total minutes by hand)

Bulk Ferment:  30 minutes

Place in lightly greased pan and smooth out with wet spatula.  Sprinkle lightly with Rye Flour.  

Proof 50-60 minutes

Bake 470 with steam for 15 minutes and turn down to 400 and bake an hour longer rotate pans half way through.  Temp @ 208-210F

Cool on racks.  Wrap in linen at least 24 hours


Some 36 hour fermented SJSD with fresh milled whole grain and added malt.  Really Good Stuff

And finally my most recent Pane Maggiore bake which I continue to tinker with.  This is made with a stiff levain and as always freshly milled whole grains.  Not bad but more tinkering to come.  






wassisname's picture

Nice baking, Josh.  I would be all over that rye, too!  I’m with you on the wet (and hopefully snowy) winter – the dryness is getting old. 


golgi70's picture

Thanks Marcus. We don't get snow here but plenty of mist for days and days on end.  



pmccool's picture

Now why did I think you were in upstate NY?  Glad to hear that you are getting much needed rains.

What are the dimensions of your Pullman pans?  2.2Kg of paste is quite a bit more than I would put in my 9-inchers.  That bread is just begging for some cured meats, robust cheese, and strong mustard.


golgi70's picture

I hail from Westchester NY but have been living at the top of California coast for 8 years now.  And I often mention NY breads as my inspiration for many a loaf.  

The pullmans are 16"x4"x4" and 2.2 KG barely gets to the top.  I probably need more like 2.4KG to fill right.  I got some super fresh local tuna and served part raw for the lady (no raw fish for me) and then poached the rest in olive oil that I infused with jalapenos.  Cooled it down and made a real fresh chunky tuna salad with it.  It's amazing on the Rye.  



Janetcook's picture

Hi Josh,

Just checked in and read your post.  In the past couple of weeks I have been tinkering with dense breads too and was very surprised when my son, whose favorite loaf of mine in the past has been my Honey Whole Wheat, announced that  the dense loaf I held back for us is his new favorite!  (I have baked Borodinsky's in the past but they have not been favored under this roof so I just assumed any dense loaf was off the menu.)  I got the same response from my brother-in-law so now I am on a roll and other people I bake for are loving them too.

I find it interesting that your loaves are being met with the same comments as mine.  We must be onto something good.:)  I know I love baking them because, like with your schedule, they fit in nicely with my baking schedule too since they can be mixed up in a variety of ways depending when they are needed.  Versatile dough compared with other breads.  I know people like them too because they last a long time without drying out due to the moist crumb.

Thanks for the post and update.  Yes, it is hard to believe you have been in a dry spell.  I grew up in S.F. and we always considered your neck of the woods as the 'rain forest'.

Take Care,




golgi70's picture

Small spaces call for new approaches.  I'm really adamant that my "tasters" get there loaf with it's entire shelf life even if the loaf is good for 5 days I'm not comfortable selling it on day 2.  They deserve the entire span of life the loaf has even it is an excellent loaf worth buying on it's second day of life.   I've considered doing such with a Tzitsel/Ny Rye as they are actually best eaten 12 hours after they come out so selling early on day two they would still be primo.  Making these German style rye breads we are doing them justice by making them a few days in advance so the bread is ready for eating as soon as they get home.  And it's shelf life is 2-4 weeks so I'm doing no injustice.  Like you though I'm still shocked this bread sells as well as it does. My friends son who is quite picky and doesn't usually eat the crust of regular bread loves the rye bread.  Maybe we were just missing out on something great growing up.   I have them in my business plan but on the smaller scale and I'm starting to believe they may do better than I've predicted.   This would be great news as they are easy to prepare and can be done in a less specific time than ordinary loaves.  


Cheers and Happy Baking



Janetcook's picture

Hi Josh,

Agree about their holding ability as well as staying fresh ability.  They are ones that I have no qualms about sending out in the mail knowing that time is on their side.

I have been having fun toying around with different flours, grains and sweeteners - honey, molasses, barley malt and sorghum.  I tossed some bulgar and some altus into today's loaf and am experimenting with no bulk fermenting time.  The dough was instantly 'shaped', if one can call these loaves shapeable - more like molding and, once in the pan it was put into the refrigerator.  Will see how much rise there is come morning.  In the book 'Home Baked'  some of the loaves stay shaped and refrigerated for 24 hours!  

I do think that it is exciting that people are really liking these breads because, to me, they are 'real' bread.  A hearty meal in themselves.

Thanks for sharing!


dabrownman's picture

SJSD.  Your version is exceptional inside and out plus I like my wholegrain breads, especially rye to have some sprouts, soaker, seeds, nuts, scald, prunes or all of the above on the inside to break up the bleak looking crumb and put some real healthy and hearty in it :-)  Glad you got some rain to help put out the fires.  We both could use some more.  We onlt got a tiny bit from the last hurricane the last 2 days with the real rains of 5" going more East this time - to Tucson and New Mexico. 

Lucy pulled a another fast one today.  While I was gone for a couple of minutes to get propane for the grill, she jumped from the back of the couch to the kitchen pass through counter top and ate the 3/4 of the Fat Bag we baked today!  She has done this before.  She left another bread I had out untouched so she voted for the one she wanted.  Now she is cooling her paws in the kennel until she looks like she really looks sad she did it and is gong to die.  She ate it before my wife got a bite.  Luckily I froze one of them.

If I were you I would never take on an apprentice - even if a German one.  Your baking looks grand as usual - well done and

Happy Baking Josh. 


golgi70's picture

This SJSD was my best run yet.  And with such a long ferment I thought malt would be a nice/helpful addition and it was.  Believe it or not this is of my favorite Rye's.  So simple yet so delicious.  The freshness of the grains really shines.  I have other varieties with seeds, nuts, fruit etc... They are great but in the end mask the simple flavor from fresh flour and good fermentation.  I highly recommend this loaf.  Seven would love to eat my bread but she's too old to get to it.  And she knows the breads not for her.  When she was a younger girl with a tougher stomach we'd let her chew on day old sour baguettes from work.  She very much enjoyed it.  

Cheers DAB


bakingbadly's picture

Beautiful bakes, Josh. I hope to one day bake something similar to your 70% rye for my clients and customers. Will need proper pullman pans and whole grains to do that.

Can you explain more about your Tuesday bakes for barter / donation?  Would be great to know a bit more about your baking schedule, breads you produce, and whatnot.

Many thanks,


Mebake's picture

Nothing fits more than to bake some hearty loaves in a rainy day, and a cup of coffee in your hand. All bread looks great, as always, Josh. I should promote rye more in my future bakes. yours are truly worthy of a following.