The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Bouabsa Ciabatta

alfanso's picture
alfanso

Bouabsa Ciabatta

Two words I had never thought of stringing together before yesterday.  

But just for the fun of it I hand mixed the Bouabsa dough at its normal 75% hydration with it's quite low iDY at 0.16%.  Modifying the remainder of the method, the dough was BF'ed for ~100 minutes with "ciabatta-like" folds in the vessel at 30 60 & 90 minutes.  Then off to retard for ~20 hours.

Today the dough was pulled from retard and allowed to warm up for ~100 minutes.  Treating the dough as I would for ciabatta I emptied onto a floured surface, folded it in half alla Cyril Heitz and then shaped it as I do for the Scott MeGee version I adhere to, and couched seam side up.  A tad sloppy on the shaped ends.  45 minutes to prove and then stretched onto the baking peel.  15 minutes with steam at 480dF, then rotated for another 13 minutes and finished off with 2 minutes venting.

For a first time out of the gate I'm pretty pleased with this experiment.  The first two slices off the end yielded a tight crumb, which for even a Bouabsa baguette is unusual.  But the further into the loaf I cut, the more open the crumb became.  The crust carries the coloration that I crave.

Considering the minuscule amount of IDY I can't say anything bad about it.  My next bake will be the same but with a significant boost of IDY, but not nearly as much as a typical IDY ciabatta takes.  I should be able to better emulate a more traditional ciabatta dough with more oven spring.  At that point it will no longer be a Bouabsa ciabatta, rather a Boufanso ciabatta.

500g x 2 ciabatta loaves

Comments

tothpianopeter's picture
tothpianopeter

Another beautiful bake, and an interesting formula I hadn't been familiar with until now. So it's essentially a straight dough with a very long cold fermentation and minimal yeast. Have you noticed any difference in the flavor when you compare it to a formula that includes preferment, like a biga? I have always been curious if a very long fermented straight dough could produce similar flavor characteristics to a dough with preferment.

alfanso's picture
alfanso

is a noted baker in Paris and his awarded best baguette in Paris more than a decade ago and reproducing it became the goal of two early TFL islanders - Janedo and dmsnyder.  Copies of his baguette are well strewn throughout the pages of TFL with some extraordinary versions.  My first baguette success was with the formula here as interpreted initially by those two intrepid TFL folks.

Although it is a straight dough, its residence in retard for basically a day untouched pretty much yields the entire dough as its own 100% preferment.  The IDY percentage is similar to a biga or poolish, but the dough magically requires no further yeast enhancement. 

The Bouabsa carries a sweet somewhat sophisticated flavor, a typically crisp crust and a soft open crumb.

thanks, Alan

tothpianopeter's picture
tothpianopeter

Thanks for the explanation. I always learn something new. The power of yeast is just amazing, so little amount can do so much over time.

Peter

jl's picture
jl

The end result looks more than acceptable. Is that all white flour?

alfanso's picture
alfanso

Although these days I almost always use King Arthur AP flour, it can be, and has been, made with any brand of supermarket grade AP flour.

thanks, Alan

Benito's picture
Benito

Mon sacre coeur, what would the baguette gods say about the bastard child!!  😝

Love the crust.  So you're thinking around adding more IDY next time, is it that you think it’ll open up the crumb more?

Benny

alfanso's picture
alfanso

"So your thinking around adding more IDY next time, is it that you think it’ll open up the crumb more?"

If you don't blab about it, the baguette gods will never find out, so mum's the word!

I guess I'm still on my reign of ciabatta terror since coming back from our first foray into our post-vaccinated world, and a visit to in-laws in NYC.  I don't know for sure why I thought of it, perhaps after reading Peter's recent post about his hand mixed ciabatta.  I opted for my French Fold world of 50 FFs, 5 minute rest, 30 FFs.  A universe away from the intensive machine mix I use for ciabatta.

I'll try boosting the IDY, perhaps doubling it to 0.32%, still about half as much as a "normal" IDY dough.  Although the dough had increased in volume nicely at the end of retard and counter top warm up, it didn't have quite the volume I typically see from a ciabatta at divide time.  As with this bake, my attitude is that if it fails to work as hoped for, I'll still have a few days of decent toast to look forward to!

And the crust is my type too.  The crumb can be soft but my incisors demand a crunchy exterior.

thanks, Alan