The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Murph's 1st Bake of 2021

BXMurphy's picture

Murph's 1st Bake of 2021

100% flour
67% water
10% levain
2% salt
179% total

500g Loaf
257g flour
179g water
40g pre-ferment at 85% hydration
6g salt
Total 512g

Watch the dough not the clock

Bake at 232°C (450°F)
15 minutes covered in a Dutch oven
15 minutes uncovered

I am not bitterly disappointed  but thought I could have done a better job.

I love the crust. It is thin and crispy. I didn't think I would see as many blisters since I did not mist with water before putting the cover of the Dutch oven on.

The crumb is not dense but still a touch gummy.

I wish I checked the internal temperature before pulling the loaf out of the oven.

I also wish I let it cure in the oven. Which is to say leave it in there with the door ajar and the oven off.

AND... some note-taking would have been nice. And maybe follow some sort of recipe.

This was inspired by the 123 Sourdough No Knead - Do Nothing Bread. I found i couldn't handle that recipe's 70% hydration yet and wanted to practice with a smaller loaf.

I thought the proof was perfect. The poke test had the indentation come back slowly but it did fill in. Maybe go longer?

I bulk fermented for four hours at 23°C (73°F) room temperature. Two hours into bulk, I remembered that it's a good idea to add strength to the dough. I stretched and folded every 30 minutes for the next couple of hours.

The dough was retarded overnight and brought up to 32-33°F (89-92°F) in the morning where it doubled in volume.

Proof went 2-3 hours including a couple of pre-shapes and final shape.

The dough was light, lively, and airy. I had to bring my wife over to feel it; it was that much fun to touch.

*I* think (therefore I am a target) that my shaping needs work. Maybe a tighter shaping as there were many large bubbles on the surface (I popped many of them) and I know I folded some in.

I hate the caverns on both sides of the crumb.

I also think I could have baked it longer but I am not sure if that would solve some of the gummy texture. It's not bad... just could be drier. Or something.

The flavor is wanting. No sourness. There is nothing "there" there. It's just "bread."

I would so love your thoughts on how to help this new baker in the new year.


Abe's picture
Abe (not verified)

Excellent! What a great start to 2021. That loaf looks delicious, Murph. 

semolina_man's picture

Looks great, especially the crust. 

gerhard's picture

now where is my breakfast? ?

Benito's picture

Excellent Murph, it is a good way to start your year, congratulations.