Archive | January, 2012

Semolina Barley Sourdough with Wheat Germ

31 Jan

I have about 100 recipes and counting I want to try from old cookbooks as well as new cookbooks, not to mention all the recipes I have saved from various blog posts and websites.  Having said that I decided to experiment on my own instead and came up with a variation of Peter Reinhart’s San Francisco sourdough using durum flour, stone ground barley flour and some roasted wheat germ as well.  I was very happy with the results with the exception that I didn’t do a great job of shaping the loaves and they became slightly misshapen.  I do have to say though that the malformed shapes fortunately did not affect the taste.  The crumb was a little tighter than I would have preferred, but overall the bread had a nice nutty sweet flavor and went well with my wife’s bow-tie pasta and chicken in a cream sauce she made tonight for dinner.

If anybody decides to try this for themselves, I would love to hear about your results.

Ingredients

15 ounces 65% Hydration Starter Refreshed

2.5 ounces Stone Ground Barley Flour (I use King Arthur Flour)

10 ounces European Style Flour from KAF (or Bread Flour)

5 ounces Extra Fancy Durum Semolina Flour (King Arthur Flour)

2.5 ounces Roasted Wheat Germ

14 ounces Luke warm water, 90 – 95 degrees Fahrenheit

2 1/2 Teaspoons Sea Salt

2 1/4 Teaspoons Instant Yeast  (you can omit the yeast if desired and let the dough sit for 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours before refrigerating)

Directions

Using your stand mixer or by hand, mix the water with the starter to break up the starter.

Add the flours, salt, yeast (if using), and mix on the lowest speed for 2 minutes.  Let rest for 5 minutes.

Mix for 4 minutes more on medium speed, adding more flour if necessary to produce a slightly sticky ball of dough.

Remove dough to your lightly floured work surface and need for 1 minute and form into a ball.

Leave uncovered for 10 minutes.

Do a stretch and fold and form into a ball again and cover with a clean moist cloth or oiled plastic wrap.

After another 10 minutes do another stretch and fold and put into a lightly oiled bowl that has enough room so the dough can double overnight.

Put in your refrigerator immediately for at least 12 hours or up to 3 days.

When ready to bake the bread, shape the dough as desired being careful not to handle the dough too roughly so you don’t de-gas it. (If you did not use yeast, let it sit in your bowl for 2 hours before shaping).

Place it in your bowl, banneton or shape into baguettes.

Let it sit at room temperature for 2 hours covered with oiled plastic wrap or a wet cloth.

Pre-heat oven with baking stone (I use one on bottom and one on top shelf of my oven), to 500 degrees F.

Slash loaves as desired and place empty pan in bottom shelf of oven.

Pour 1 cup of very hot water into pan and place loaves into oven.

Lower oven to 450 Degrees and bake for 25 – 35 minutes until bread is golden brown and internal temperature reaches 200 degrees.

Let cool on cooling rack and enjoy!

This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here: http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting

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Sourdough Corn-Barley-Bread

29 Jan

I recieved my new delivery from King Arthur Flour the other day so decided to use some of my new ingredients and threw together a sourdough bread with eggs and corn flour (it’s supposed to be finer and less gritty than corn meal).  I also decided to add some Barley flour which I find adds a nice nutty flavor to the bread.  The final loaf was a little dense, but overall I was satisfied with the end result.   This bread is perfect for a hearty stew or simple toast and butter or jam in the morning.

Ingredients

15 ounces 65% Hydration Starter Refreshed

4 ounces Barley Flour (I use King Arthur Flour)

15.5 ounces European Style Flour from KAF (or Bread Flour)

2 ounces Corn Flour (King Arthur Flour)

2 Eggs beaten

1 Tablespoon Freeze Dried Shallots or fresh if preferred

14 ounces Luke warm water, 90 – 95 degrees Fahrenheit

2 1/2 Teaspoons Sea Salt

2 1/4 Teaspoons Instant Yeast  (you can omit the yeast if desired and let the dough sit for 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours before refrigerating)

Directions

Using your stand mixer or by hand, mix the water with the starter to break up the starter.

Add the flours, salt, yeast (if using), and mix on the lowest speed for 2 minutes.  Let rest for 5 minutes.

Mix for 4 minutes more on medium speed, adding more flour if necessary to produce a slightly sticky ball of dough.

Remove dough to your lightly floured work surface and need for 1 minute and form into a ball.

Leave uncovered for 10 minutes.

Do a stretch and fold and form into a ball again and cover with a clean moist cloth or oiled plastic wrap.

After another 10 minutes do another stretch and fold and put into a lightly oiled bowl that has enough room so the dough can double overnight.

Put in your refrigerator immediately for at least 12 hours or up to 3 days.

When ready to bake the bread, shape the dough as desired being careful not to handle the dough too roughly so you don’t de-gas it. (If you did not use yeast, let it sit in your bowl for 2 hours before shaping).

Place it in your bowl, banneton or shape into baguettes.

Let it sit at room temperature for 2 hours covered with oiled plastic wrap or a wet cloth.

Pre-heat oven with baking stone (I use one on bottom and one on top shelf of my oven), to 500 degrees F.

Slash loaves as desired and place empty pan in bottom shelf of oven.

Pour 1 cup of very hot water into pan and place loaves into oven.

Lower oven to 450 Degrees and bake for 25 – 35 minutes until bread is golden brown and internal temperature reaches 200 degrees.

Let cool on cooling rack and enjoy!

This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here: http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting/.

Crumb Shot

Bacon Semolina Potato Sourdough with Cheddar Cheese Bread

24 Jan

I was in a creative mood the other day and after my wife fried up some bacon I felt inspired to use the leftovers in a bread.  You know what they say…..”bacon makes everything taste better”.  It’s hard to argue with this logic, so I decided to combine the bacon with some cheddar cheese, toasted onions and added some wheat germ I just bought from King Arthur Flour to add some nuttiness to the overall flavor profile.  I boiled some potatoes and left the skins on when mashing them up since I like the flavor and look of the charred bits of potato skin in the finished bread.  I decided to combine Durum Semolina flour and KAF European Bread Flour (you can use regular bread flour if preferred).  I do have to say I was not disappointed with the end result as it has a nice hearty bacon flavor with bits of cheese that makes it hard to stop eating.  I made 2 loaves and was going to freeze one for later in the week, but I have a feeling I will end up finishing both loaves in the next couple of days.   It’s a cold and snowy day here on Long Island, NY and this bread goes perfectly with soup or chile which my wife is planning on making for dinner tonight.

If you decide to try this, feel free to add some additional bacon to give it  even more bacon flavor.

Ingredients

15 ounces 65% Hydration Starter Refreshed

5 ounces Durum Flour (I use King Arthur Flour)

12 ounces European Style Flour from KAF (or Bread Flour)

2 ounces Wheat Germ

5 ounces Mashed Potatoes (I used plain mashed potatoes but if you have left-overs from dinner you can feel free to use them up)

3 ounces Cheddar Cheese (I cut into small cube pieces but you can shred if preferred)

4 Slices of cooked crisp bacon cut into small pieces

1 Tablespoon Toasted Onions (you can use chives or roasted onions if preferred)

14 ounces Luke warm water, 90 – 95 degrees Fahrenheit

2 1/2 Teaspoons Sea Salt

2 1/4 Teaspoons Instant Yeast  (you can omit the yeast if desired and let the dough sit for 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours before refrigerating)

Directions

Using your stand mixer or by hand, mix the water with the starter to break up the starter.

Add the flour, potatoes, salt, yeast (if using), and mix on the lowest speed for 2 minutes.  Let rest for 5 minutes.

Add the bacon (note if you shred the cheese you can add it now, otherwise I suggest kneading it into the bread by hand which is what I did).

Mix for 4 minutes more on medium speed, adding more flour if necessary to produce a slightly sticky ball of dough.

Remove dough to your lightly floured work surface and need for 1 minute and form into a ball.  Flatten into a rectangle and add the cheese and form dough into a ball.

Leave uncovered for 10 minutes.

Do a stretch and fold and form into a ball again and cover with a clean moist cloth or oiled plastic wrap.

After another 10 minutes do another stretch and fold and put into a lightly oiled bowl that has enough room so the dough can double overnight.

Put in your refrigerator immediately for at least 12 hours or up to 3 days.

When ready to bake the bread, shape the dough as desired being careful not to handle the dough too roughly so you don’t de-gas it. (If you did not use yeast, let it sit in your bowl for 2 hours before shaping).

Place it in your bowl, banneton or shape into baguettes.

Let it sit at room temperature for 2 hours covered with oiled plastic wrap or a wet cloth.

Pre-heat oven with baking stone (I use one on bottom and one on top shelf of my oven), to 500 degrees F.

Slash loaves as desired and place empty pan in bottom shelf of oven.

Pour 1 cup of very hot water into pan and place loaves into oven.

Lower oven to 450 Degrees and bake for 25 – 35 minutes until bread is golden brown and internal temperature reaches 200 degrees.

Let cool on cooling rack and enjoy!

This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here: http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting/.  This post has also been submitted to http://www.girlichef.com/p/byob-bake-your-own-bread.html, so please visit them for even more baking recipes.

Old-School Jewish Deli Rye

14 Jan

One of my favorite things to eat is a hot Pastrami on Rye with Thousand Island dressing.  We happen to have a little gem of a pub in town called Reese’s which is one of the oldest on Long Island, New York where I live and it serves one of the best pastrami sandwiches I’ve ever had.

Anyway, if you want to make your own pastrami sandwich you have to start with a great Jewish Rye bread which is easier said than done.  I’ve tried many recipes over the years and few have lived up to my high expectations.  I recently purchased a new book to add to my extensive cookbook library called Inside the Jewish Bakery by Stanley Ginsburg and Norman Berg.  I’ve only read about 25% of the book so far, but I really have enjoyed the history lesson regarding the origins of Jewish bakeries in America.  I do have to say, after reading a brief description of the daily life of a Jewish Baker I don’t think I’m ready to open my own bakery just yet if ever!

I have tried several of the recipes so far in this excellent book with some mixed results but I was very happy with how my attempt at the Old-School Jewish Deli Rye came out.  This loaf is a 40% rye that has a nice tangy flavor as a result from a three-stage build for the sour.

One thing that I found interesting in this book is the brief description debunking the need to add “altus” or  left-over bread to make an authentic Jewish Rye bread.  It is a fact that many old-school Jewish bakers did add the altus to their loaves, according to the authors it has a marginal effect on the final outcome of the bread.  In other words, unless you have left over bread you want to get rid of it is not necessary to create an authentic Jewish rye bread.  I have tried this method in the past in other recipes and have not found it to make that much of a difference in the final outcome of the bread.

To make the recipe below I converted my 68% hydration white flour starter to a 80% rye flour starter.  If you already have a whole wheat starter you can use that instead to create the rye starter below.  Also note that most Jewish Rye recipes call for the use of First Clear Flour which is taken from what remains after the millers sift the patent flour out of the straight flour.  Patent flour is the purest and highest quality flour available.  First clear flours come from hard wheat and has a protein content of 15.0 – 18.0% which is ideal to strengthen the lower protein content of rye flours which are normally around 6.5%.

High-gluten flour can be substituted for First Clear and has a protein content of 13.5- 14.5%.

White rye flour is very important in authentic Jewish style rye breads and comes from the heart of the endosperm.  It contains only 6.5% protein.

Medium rye flour is milled from the whole grain after the bran has been stripped away and is used for high-percentage rye recipes (heavier breads for sure).

Dark rye flour, is what remains of the rye kernel after the white rye flour has been sifted out.  As you can imagine it is very dark and strong flavored flour.

Day 1:

Ingredients

0.5 oz. (15 grams) Wheat or Rye Sour Starter (80% Hydration)

2.5 oz. (70 grams) White Rye Flour (you can get this at King Arthur Flour or other online sources)  You can also use medium Rye Flour for a stronger Rye Flavor in your bread.

2.0 oz, (55 grams) Warm Water (90 degrees F./32 degrees C.)

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl until thoroughly mixed and cover with a saucer, plastic wrap or dish towel in a warm place for 5-6 hours.  The starter should increase in bulk and have a fresh, sour smell.

After 5-6 hours add the following:

5.0 oz. (140 grams) Sour from above.

9.0 oz. (255 grams) White Rye Flour

7.0 oz. (200 grams) Warm Water (90 degrees F./32 degrees C.)

Add all ingredients together and cover and let ferment for 4-5 hours until bubbly and then place in refrigerator overnight.

Day 2:

Ingredients

21 oz. (600 grams) Rye Sour from Day 1

17 oz. (480 grams) First Clear or High-gluten Flour

10 oz. (285 grams) Hot Water (108 degrees F./42 degrees C.)

1 1/4 tsp. (0.2 oz. or 5 grams) Instant Yeast

2 3/4 tsp. (0.6 oz. or 15 grams) Salt (sea salt or table salt)

1 Tbs. (0.5 oz. or 15 grams) Ground Caraway Seeds

4 Tbs. 92.0 oz. or 55 grams) Caraway or Nigella Seeds (Optional)

Add the hot water to the sour, and blend together.  In a separate mixing bowl combine the flour, yeast, salt, ground caraway and 2 Tbs. of the seeds (if using) and blend together by mixer or hand with a whisk or wooden spoon.  Now add the sour mixture and continue mixing until the dough is smooth and firm.

If using a mixer, switch to your dough hook (I have a Bosch which only does not use a dough hook) for 6 to 8 minutes  or knead by hand until the dough is smooth and firm.  Place in a glass or plastic bowl covered to rise until doubled in bulk.  Depending on how hot it is in your kitchen this could take anywhere from 60 minutes to 2 hours.

Around 20 minutes before baking, pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees F./190 degrees C. and put a pan to hold water on the bottom rack of your oven along with a baking stone.  Put the risen dough on your work surface and degas it completely.  If you are afraid of the dough sticking to your work surface, you can use some bakers spray or oil spray.

Divide the dough into 2 pieces and press the dough into a flat oval and roll it towards you and form a football shape with rounded edges.

Set the loaves on a peel or parchment paper that has been dusted with cornmeal with the seams facing down.  Cover loaves with a damp towel and allow them to rise until they are about 1 1 /2 times the original size.  This should take around 60 minutes or less and if you poke your finger gently into the dough it should leave a slight dent.  You can now brush or spray the loaves with water and apply the seeds if desired.

 

 

 

 

 

Pour  cup of boiling water ( I usually use the hottest water I can get from my tap which works fine) into the pan on the bottom shelf of your oven, slash the loaves 2 to 3 times crosswise and slide them onto the stone in your oven.  I usually also spray the inside of my oven 2-3 times for good measure.  After 3 minutes pour 1 more cup of boiling water into the pan on the bottom.

Bake the loaves for another 15 minutes and turn them to make sure they are cooking evenly.  After an additional 20-30 minutes the crust should be a deep golden brown and the loaves should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.  I usually check with an instant read thermometer and make sure they are 190 degrees F. or 200 degrees F.

Transfer the loaves to a cooling rack and try  your hardest to let them cool for an hour before slicing.  (This is a rarity for me as I usually can’t wait that long!)

This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here: http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting/.  This post has also been submitted to http://www.girlichef.com/p/byob-bake-your-own-bread.html, so please visit them for even more baking recipes.

Whole Wheat Sourdough Miche

1 Jan

Whole Wheat Sourdough MicheI have been baking up a storm this week since I am about to  venture off to China for 12 days for my first trip of the New Year.  I travel to China for business 4-5 times a year visiting the factories that make my company’s sporting good items.  Anyway, I can tell you that good bread is definitely hard to come by in China so I think I may bring some with me this trip!

I decided to try and make a recipe from Dan Leader’s Local Breads and settled on the Whole Wheat Sourdough Miche, inspired by Pain Poilane.  This is supposed to be light and tangy bread and is so large that it is ideal for stenciling if one desires.  I didn’t have the time to do the stenciling effect, but I may give it a try the next time.  I followed his directions pretty closely and converted my white flour sourdough starter at 68% hydration to a whole wheat starter at 80% hydration.  His starter may be slightly different as he started with a Stiff Dough Levain that included a small percentage of Rye Flour as well as all-purpose four, while mine started off with bread flour only and was converted to a whole wheat starter only.

I have tried making some of his bread before, and it seems every time he says it should bulk ferment for a couple of hours it seems to take me 3 times as long.  It took so long to ferment the dough for the first rise that I ended up refrigerating the shaped Miche and baking it the next day.  I believe that probably caused the end product to be even more sour tasting than it would have if I had baked it the same day.

Ingredients

Water (70 to 78 degrees), 13.2 ounces (375 grams)

Type 55-Style flour (French Style from King Arthur Flour (I actually used KAF European Blend which as a slightly higher protein content), 3.5 ounces (100 grams)

Stone-ground Whole Wheat Flour, 14.1 ounces (400 grams)

Whole Wheat Levain (Starter at 80% Hydration), 7.9 ounces (225 grams)

Sea Salt, 0.4 ounces (10 grams) (1  1/2 teaspoons)

Directions

Pour the water into the bowl of your stand mixer and add the flours and mix just until the flour absorbs all the water and a rough dough forms.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a towel and let it sit and hydrate  for 20 minutes.  This will allow the gluten to start developing without too much mixing.

After 20 minutes, add the Levain (starter) and the salt to the dough and work it into the dough.  The original instructions are very confusing here and say to add only 4.4 ounces/125 grams of the starter, but in the ingredients list it includes the entire amount.  I added the entire amount of starter to the dough and mixed it in with the salt.  The original recipe also says to add it in with a spatula but I turned my mixer on low and added it in this way.

If you have a dough hook for your mixer, switch to that attachment (I have a Boche Mixer which only has one mixing/kneading attachment for bread).  Knead the dough on medium speed until it is glossy, smooth and very stretchable for about 10 – 12 minutes.  The dough will not necessarily clean the sides of the bowl so you may need to scrape the sides down once or twice during the kneading process.  The book says to use the window pane test to judge if it is ready and if not to continue kneading until you can pass the test.  This means you tear off a small piece of dough and stretch it thin so you can see through it without it ripping.

Next, remove the dough from your mixing bowl into a lightly oiled (I use Pam or Baking Spray) plastic or glass container and make a mark to indicate where the dough needs to rise to double in size.  Let it rise at room temperature, 70 to 75 degrees until it doubles in size. Make sure you cover the bowl. ( The book says this should take an hour, but my kitchen was only 68 degrees and it took around 3 hours to finish the first fermenting).Dough Ready to Rise

After it doubles in size, remove the dough from the container and knead it on a lightly floured or oiled surface for a couple of minutes to stimulate the yeast with some fresh oxygen.  Return the dough to the container and cover until it doubles in size again.  This should take 2 – 3 hours.

Once the dough has risen properly, flour a banneton or a bowl lined with a floured kitchen towel.  Next turn the dough onto a lighlty floured surface and form into a miche by tucking the edges of the dough underneath the bulk as if you are making a bed, to shape a rough round.  Now place your hands on the side of the round and move them in a tight circle as you pull the dough towards you.  You don’t need to make it perfectly round, but be sure to pinch the bottom edge to seal the dough.  Place the miche into your banneton or lined bowl, seam side up and cover with a lightly oiled plastic wrap or kitchen towel sprayed with a mist of water.

Now proof the Miche at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours until it doubles in size.  When it is ready to bake if you press your finger into the dough the indentation should spring back slowly.  (This is where I ended up putting it in my refrigerator for 24 hours).

Baking the Miche

About 1 hour before baking, place a baking stone on the middle rack of your oven with another rack right below it.  Add a metal or aluminum foil pan on the bottom rack.  You can also use a cast iron skillet if you prefer.

Preheat your oven to 470 degrees.

Once the oven comes up to temperature, turn the Miche out onto a bakers peel with parchment paper and score the loaf as desired.

Slide the Miche onto your bakers stone and immediately pour 1 cup of boiling water into the pan in the oven.  I also like to use a spray bottle and spray the sides of the oven 2 times in 30 second intervals.

Bake for approximately 40 to 50 minutes until the crust is walnut brown and the internal temperature is around 200 degrees.

Let the loaf cool for at least 2 hours before slicing.

Please visit the Yeast Spotting Site here: http://www.wildyeastblog.com/category/yeastspotting/ for lots of cool recipes.  Also this post has been submitted to http://www.girlichef.com/p/byob-bake-your-own-bread.html, so please visit them for even more baking recipes.