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How to make sourdough bread...

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  • Pequod
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
    • 480
    • Crozet, VA
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    Focaccia (naturally leavened, of course). This month's featured recipe at The Perfect Loaf.

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    Last edited by Pequod; December 15, 2018, 03:29 PM.

    Comment


    • MBMorgan
      MBMorgan commented
      Editing a comment
      That looks awesome!

    • Spinaker
      Spinaker commented
      Editing a comment
      Perfect! Thanks!

    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      That looks fantastic!
  • Pequod
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
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    Top view. Mangia!
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    • Spinaker
      Spinaker commented
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      Thanks!

    • EdF
      EdF commented
      Editing a comment
      Can I please have some more, please?

    • Pequod
      Pequod commented
      Editing a comment
      Three of us nearly wiped this thing out in one meal. Soooooo good!!
  • Potkettleblack
    Club Member
    • Jun 2016
    • 1961
    • Beautiful Downtown Berwyn
    • Grill: Grilla Original / Weber Genesis EP-330 / OK Joe Bronco Drum
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      Disqus: Le Chef - (something something something) - it changes

    My first original recipe. Forkish Walnut bread, with modified as follows:

    Three loaf recipe.
    Instead of 338 g of walnuts I used
    113g of rehydrated raisins
    112g of walnut pieces
    112g of walnut paste made of 3:3:2 walnuts:water:honey

    In retrospect, I should have factored the extra liquid from the raisins and the walnut paste, as I think the hydration got to about 80%. Between that and the three loafs being mixed at once by hand, this was a real pain in the ass to work. I also sought out black walnuts as they were recommended by more experienced walnut bakers as being better flavored. I found them a bit boozy flavored, like a walnut liqueur I had once. Oddly, made from black walnuts, so maybe that’s the association in my brain.

    I shipped out two of the loafs, and retained one to make a bread pudding for work. The bread pudding was amazing, largely due to the bread, as the custard was pretty straight forward, with some fresh grated nutmeg and a half tablespoon of whiskey as the only real flavor enhancements beyond some vanilla extract. I took this picture before cubing for the pudding. I have gotten the crumb exactly where I want it. I’m not sure if this is better starter management, superior salt, better process, or what, but for stuffing and bread pudding, you really can’t have mouse holes or really uneven crumb. I’m very very pleased with the openness of it, without unevenness. Third bake in a row where I’ve nailed that to where I want it.

    Mom and dad dad got their loaf nearly a week after I baked them, and raved. Brother got his a week after I mailed, and still waiting on report, though in typical fashion, he wrote back, “seems legit.”

    Click image for larger version

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    • Potkettleblack
      Potkettleblack commented
      Editing a comment
      This was my second, and the walnut paste idea was a large improvement over the previous one. Half the weight of walnuts as a paste with water and honey. Diffuses the walnut flavor through the bread better.

    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      That looks totally legit! You certainly did get a very open texture without any large holes in the crumb. And that crust loooks incredible!

      I have to try this. Well done sir!

    • Potkettleblack
      Potkettleblack commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks. I did a bunch of loaves over the holidays, but I felt a special accomplishment in this experiment getting such high praise.
  • Thunder77
    Founding Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 2747
    • Halethorpe, MD
    • Weber 26.75" Kettle with SnS. Broil King Baron 5 burner. Akorn Kamado, and Akorn Jr kamado. Primo Oval Junior. Love grilling steaks, ribs, and chicken. Need to master smoked salmon Favorite cool weather beer: Sam Adams Octoberfest Favorite warm weather beer: Yuengling Traditional Lager All-time favorite drink: Single Malt Scotch

    So thanks again to Pequod for the inspiration. I had some sourdough starter discard that I was reluctant to throw out. Pequod sent me the link to the “123 sourdough” he had made some time back. Following that formula:
    325 grams starter @ 100 % hydration
    650 grams water
    975 grams bread flour.
    20 grams kosher salt (2% of weight of flour)
    1/4 teaspoon yeast. (Not in the recipe, but I cheated) 😃

    The great thing about this bread is that I hardly did anything with it. I mixed all the ingredients using the “pincer method” from Ken Forkish. I gave it two folds, then a 24 hour ferment in the fridge. I pulled it out of the fridge, shaped it, and proofed until it passed the finger dent test.

    I baked the boule in a pre-heated cast iron skillet, and the rest in a mini-loaf pan. 450 degrees Fahrenheit. I used the water in the broiler pan method to get steam, hence the weird shape of the boule. Baked to internal temp of 200 degrees F.

    Long story short, it was fantastic! Especially for bread that was hardly any work at all.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by Thunder77; February 5, 2019, 10:35 PM.

    Comment


    • Mudkat
      Mudkat commented
      Editing a comment
      That looks great!

    • Skip
      Skip commented
      Editing a comment
      Wonderful!

    • Pequod
      Pequod commented
      Editing a comment
      Looks great!
  • Thunder77
    Founding Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 2747
    • Halethorpe, MD
    • Weber 26.75" Kettle with SnS. Broil King Baron 5 burner. Akorn Kamado, and Akorn Jr kamado. Primo Oval Junior. Love grilling steaks, ribs, and chicken. Need to master smoked salmon Favorite cool weather beer: Sam Adams Octoberfest Favorite warm weather beer: Yuengling Traditional Lager All-time favorite drink: Single Malt Scotch

    Today I took a snow day off from work. The weather was crap, and I decided that some bread was in order. I decided to experiment a little, and I “sourdoughized” my Pilgrim Bread. Instead of
    using regular yeast, I used 250 grams of starter discard to leaven the bread.

    This is is some of the best Pilgrim Bread I have made. The longer, slower fermentation really developed the flavor of the final loaves.
    Attached Files

    Comment

  • Thunder77
    Founding Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 2747
    • Halethorpe, MD
    • Weber 26.75" Kettle with SnS. Broil King Baron 5 burner. Akorn Kamado, and Akorn Jr kamado. Primo Oval Junior. Love grilling steaks, ribs, and chicken. Need to master smoked salmon Favorite cool weather beer: Sam Adams Octoberfest Favorite warm weather beer: Yuengling Traditional Lager All-time favorite drink: Single Malt Scotch

    Not really sourdough, but close. This is Harvest Bread With Poolish from Ken Forkish. I made two mistakes. Because I am me, I had too many things going on at once, and I forgot the folds.
    Also, on the first loaf, I didn’t notice that the oven was on Broil. OOPS! So the top of that got a little brown.

    This is has a nice buttery, nutty flavor. I am definitely making this again.
    Attached Files

    Comment


    • Potkettleblack
      Potkettleblack commented
      Editing a comment
      I think Forkish would approve of the one that went with the broiler.

    • Pequod
      Pequod commented
      Editing a comment
      Potkettleblack -- LOL!

    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank goodness it was in a Dutch oven, or l would have been setting off the smoke alarm!🤪
  • scottranda
    Charter Member
    • May 2015
    • 1731
    • Charlotte, NC

    I got some whole grain spelt from the grocery store. Should I just do my normal 70% hydration with KA bread flour, or should I go higher or lower? I'm thinking of adding 20% spelt seeds/grains.

    https://www.swansonvitamins.com/bobs...xoC-88QAvD_BwE

    Comment


    • scottranda
      scottranda commented
      Editing a comment
      Pequod got it!

    • scottranda
      scottranda commented
      Editing a comment
      Pequod how long should I soak? overnight? or for an hour?

      I tasted the raw grain just now (I opened the bag) and you're totally right, it needs to be softened. I'm just wondering soaking times and if it'd get soggy.

    • Pequod
      Pequod commented
      Editing a comment
      I'd start with overnight and check it in the morning. My guess is you'll have to boil it for a bit, but not sure if that will turn it into a porridge or just soften the grain.
  • Willy
    Charter Member
    • Apr 2015
    • 1819
    • High Desert of the Great Southwest

    I'm not a big fan of making breads according to a rigid schedule. My usual go-to method, regardless of the dough being leavened with commercial yeast or a sourdough starter, is to make the dough with cold water (or sometimes beer). I cheat and use a KA mixer. I just don't get the thrill of mixing by hand--I must not be a true artisan. After stretch and folds, it goes into the fridge, covered, overnight. Next AM, I let it rise out of the fridge more fully (if necessary), then divide and do the final shaping of the dough balls. Depending on the time I want the bread or pizza to be cooked, the balls may or may not go back in the fridge for a while to delay the second rise a bit. I haven't the experience so far as to do this to a precise timing, so...dinner time is necessarily flexible, especially with pizzas. OTOH, having a loaf come out an hour or so early isn't a deal breaker for me. It's good to be retired!!!

    On a separate issue, I cannot grok the distinction between the primary and secondary fermentations/rises. Seems to me the total time of fermentation is all that should matter. The again, I am most definitely NOT a super taster and I'm not looking to win any contests. Any thoughts from you more experienced bakers?
    Last edited by Willy; March 5, 2019, 04:26 PM.

    Comment


    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      I'm with you on hand mixing. I have heard that it produces a more open crumb, but I will put my stand-mixer bread up against hand-mixed any day. Ken Forkish says he bakes some of his bread straight from the fridge.
  • Pequod
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
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    Willy - Here's what the bread cognoscenti would say about that.

    Bulk fermentation/proofing is where the majority of your flavor is developed, gluten is developed, and the dough structure is developed.

    Final proofing is mostly for "inflating the balloon" into it's final shape & structure. Fermentation continues here too, but the primary goal is for the loaf to expand, hopefully hold it's shape, and be made ready for baking.

    Peter Reinhart describes the 12 stages of bread baking in his book, The Bread Baker's Apprentice. For those addicted to bread baking, this is not unlike a 12 step program.

    Step 3: Primary Fermentation (aka bulk fermentation) -- is where most of the flavor is determined.

    Step 9: Proofing (aka secondary fermentation) -- is where the dough is leavened to the appropriate baking size.

    My favorite is step 12: Eating.
    Last edited by Pequod; March 5, 2019, 03:52 PM.

    Comment


    • Pequod
      Pequod commented
      Editing a comment
      My guess is it is very similar to the cycle your starter goes through after feeding — an initial rapid rise due to lots of food and a slightly fruity, yeasty smell. A few hours later it’s deflating, producing acid, and a faint smell of acetone. It’s not so much the formality of bulk vs final as that the initial punch is where the action and flavor is.

    • Willy
      Willy commented
      Editing a comment
      Pequod I'm really NOT trying to be contrarian here but I must note that, unlike a collapsed starter (maybe due to lack of gluten?), my doughs (probably yours too) are still continuing to rise well through the second rise, quite healthily. I take that to mean their food sources are not exhausted. I still can't find a rational reason to distinguish "flavor production" between primary and secondary fermentation.

    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      If fermentation takes place at different temperatures, it develops different profiles also. Cooler fermentation temps (fridge) lead to more acetic acid production, warmer temps lead to more lactic acid production. The bacteria culture as well as the yeast make up the flavor profile.
  • RonB
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
    • 12695
    • Near Richmond VA
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    I have added various seeds, (flax, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), to bread in the past, but none of them were hard. However, I always soaked the seeds so that they would not affect hydration. I did drain well for the same reason.

    Comment


    • scottranda
      scottranda commented
      Editing a comment
      I really love a seeded loaf. I’ve just never done it myself! I made a walnut loaf today which was delicious. King Arthur back of bag recipe for that one!
  • Pequod
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    • Apr 2016
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    Willy -- I suspect you're right from the flavor development standpoint. Dough will continue to rise (inflate from CO2 production) as long as there is sugar left in the flour to feed the yeastie beasties. It will deflate once that food is gone. You want to bake before that happens, but not too much before, so we do the poke test.

    A similar question has been discussed at The Fresh Loaf forum. How do you know when bulk fermentation is done? Further, there are different philosophies on this. Forkish says when the dough has tripled. Trevor J. Wilson says he prefers to bias toward cutting bulk fermentation short with only a 30% rise. Others say 50%. Furthermore, pizza dough is usually divided and shaped shortly after mixing (or within 24 hours if a 72 hour dough), so most of the flavor is developed after bulk (if any at all). So...who is right?

    Probably all of them, depending on what result you are after. Trevor J. Wilson's book Open Crumb Mastery is all about how to achieve the desired crumb through handling throughout the entire process (he significantly downplays hydration, which is interesting because that's what most people fixate on). Bulk ferment is for:
    1. Flavor development -- flavor will develop as long as there is sugar for the yeast to feed on
    2. Gluten development -- per Trevor J., gluten will develop with time even if you don't handle the dough. Hence all of the no-knead recipes out there.
    3. Structure development -- this is probably the biggest reason for bulk ferment. Stretch and folds (or whatever technique you use) are all about building structure so that the dough can hold shape during proofing and, especially, the final bake.
    It is possible that Reinhart is wrong...or at least incomplete. Bulk ferment *is* for flavor development, but more importantly it is for structure development.
    Last edited by Pequod; March 6, 2019, 07:34 AM.

    Comment


    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      I have tried many "no-knead" recipes, and some are really good. I made the 123 sourdough without any kneading, only a couple of folds, and it was great! The New Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day stresses a "gluten cloak" on the loaf. Their main recipe also allows fridge storage up to two weeks.
  • Thunder77
    Founding Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 2747
    • Halethorpe, MD
    • Weber 26.75" Kettle with SnS. Broil King Baron 5 burner. Akorn Kamado, and Akorn Jr kamado. Primo Oval Junior. Love grilling steaks, ribs, and chicken. Need to master smoked salmon Favorite cool weather beer: Sam Adams Octoberfest Favorite warm weather beer: Yuengling Traditional Lager All-time favorite drink: Single Malt Scotch

    Willy, Pequod, this discussion reminds me of the sign at the music store where my daughter takes her lessons.
    "Master your instrument. Master your Music. Then forget all that stuff and just play!!"

    Learn the basics, learn about your flours and techniques, then play around and find what works for you.

    Comment


    • Pequod
      Pequod commented
      Editing a comment
      Yeah! At the end of the day, if the flavor and texture work for you, then how you got there doesn't really matter.
  • Pequod
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
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    Just loafin’ today. 50% fresh milled hard red wheat sourdough.

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    Comment


    • RonB
      RonB commented
      Editing a comment
      Well done Sir!

    • Skip
      Skip commented
      Editing a comment
      Nice!

    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      That's beautiful!
  • Pequod
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
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    Just loafin'. This time with 10% fresh milled hard red wheat, 10% fresh milled spelt, and 10% fresh milled rye.

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    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      That is absolutely gorgeous! I have no proper words to describe the beauty of that loaf.
  • scottranda
    Charter Member
    • May 2015
    • 1731
    • Charlotte, NC

    Basic boule with chocolate chips mixed in!! 😍
    Attached Files

    Comment


    • RonB
      RonB commented
      Editing a comment
      I knew you still had an inner child in you.

      Niiiiice.

    • scottranda
      scottranda commented
      Editing a comment
      RonB try it! It was really good. Pain au chocolat-esque

    • Thunder77
      Thunder77 commented
      Editing a comment
      Beautimous!

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