The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

BBA: Pain à l'Ancienne (First attempt)

Tmax's picture

BBA: Pain à l'Ancienne (First attempt)

Very pleased with my first attempt - water was @13'c, retarded in fridge for about 20 hours, dough had risen 2.5-3 times which I thought was too much.  Baked on 250'c steel for about 19 mins with steam bath at bottom of oven

Taste is really very nice - slight chew and good flavour

Doing them again now with water @ 5'c - mixed in Ankarsrum 1min slow + 4mins medium - dough temp 19'c after mixing

The dough really is so soft and velvety to handle - I used flour on worktop instead of oil slick

Turned fridge temp down to help retard the rise this time

alfanso's picture

These look great, and I already know how good and sweet the flavor is.  Combined with a crunchy crust and something slathered on top, what more could one want from a basic bread?

During my phase 1 of learning to bake bread, I came across these and found that they were so tasty that I had trouble moving on to the very few other things I was capable of back them.

If this is your first experience with long refrigerated fermented breads, then the door has now opened to so much more.  When you are ready for the next simple bread that requires a long retard try the Bouabsa baguettes.  Plenty of evidence on TFL exists about how good these are.

Isand66's picture

Great Job!  I haven't made these in a long time, but remember how tasty they were and yours look perfect.


Danni3ll3's picture

I love the crumb you got on those and the crust looks awesome! Well done!

bread1965's picture

Well done!!

Titanium Spork's picture
Titanium Spork

For anyone, like me, new to this site:

  • BBA is the book The Bread Baker's Apprentice.
  • Pain à l'Ancienne is a recipe from the above (or formula, as the author calls it).
  • 'c is degrees Celsius
  • Ankarsrum is a Swedish Kitchen Aid type gadget.

I had to look up all of the above; hope this helps someone.

PS:  nice photos, inspired me to get the book from the library and by dough is in the fridge as I write this....


Tmax's picture

Thanks guys for the nice comments and advice about Bouabsa - I'll have a go at these when I get a chance - Alfonso I have watched your YouTube video on it !!! :)

Apologies Titanium, thanks for making it clear about my abbreviations - BTW my go to books are both BBA and Ken Forkish's Flour Water Salt Yeast (FWSY).

Here are some pics of tonight's baking - 2nd attempt:

As you can see from the last picture - the first baguette did not go to waste ;) - The rest in the freezer

dabrownman's picture

Perfect for sandwiches!  This has to be great tasting braed!  Well done!

dmsnyder's picture

The version in BBA is slightly modified by Reinhart. He posted the original formula he got from Gosselin on a Usenet group many years ago. I found the original version no more difficult and even tastier than the BBA version. In fact, they are the best tasting non-sourdough baguettes I've ever made. Of course the sourdough version is even better, at least to my taste.

FYI, follow the links below for my versions of each:

Philippe Gosselin's Baguettes

Baguette Tradition after Phillip Gosselin

Do try the Bouabsa bagettes too, by all means.

Anis Bouabsa ficelles

Happy baking!