Thursday, August 19, 2010

Rustic Italian Bread

I just pulled these babies out of the oven! Man, they smell great. Maybe I should have painted them with egg white before they went in to give them some gloss.

The recipe is from Cookography, a food website like this one. It's a little involved. We'll see if it's worth the trouble. The bread is started the day before, mixing a little yeast with some flour and water and letting it raise for 3 hours. On baking day, the rest of the dough is made and combined with the fermented dough. This rises basically 3 times and is then made into loaves and baked. See the recipe for details. I'll add a crumb shot later and let you know how it was. These were very light and feathery and had good flavor. The crust was crisp and chewy.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Cinnamon Crispies

      What to do with leftover homemade bread? It's so good the first day, and not too bad the second day, but now it's the third day and it's losing its appeal. 
1. Slice the bread into about 1/8 inch slices with a good bread knife.

2. Place on parchment paper on a cookie sheet and bake at 300F for about 15 minutes.

3. Flip over and bake 5 more minutes.

4. Spray with spray oil and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake for 5 more minutes.

5. Eat immediately before anyone else notices you made them. Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

123 Sourdough

Over the weekend I made a 123 sourdough recipe that I found on  It was originally from Flo Makanai. You can learn to make this if you have sourdough starter around the house and you can learn a couple of techniques. You must use a 100% hydration starter which just means it is half flour and half water (by weight). All ingredients are weighed precisely. I strongly urge anyone who is wanting to really get into bread making to read all you can from and start trying things. Even the loaves that don't turn out will taste good.

Very Active 100% Starter
123 Sourdough

Use 100% hydration starter! (half water, half flour by weight)

The formula:

For every 1 gram of starter, use 2 grams water and 3 grams flour. Use 1.8-2.0% salt to flour ratio
450 F oven for about 30 min.
Example: with 125g sourdough, I'll bake bread with 250g liquid and 375g flour + 6 to 7g salt

My version:

123 Sourdough

250 g starter
500  g water
750 g flour (half all purpose and half bread flour)
14 g salt

Put everything in the KA mixer and combine. Let sit for 30 minutes to give time for the flour to absorb the water. With a dough hook, knead the dough until it passes the window pane test. Mine took 10 minutes.
Window pane test: Pull out a small piece of dough and stretch it into a thin rectangle in the air. It should hold together and form a film you can almost see through. Here's a video.
Plop the dough onto the counter and do a stretch and fold. Place in a lightly oiled bowl. Repeat the stretch and fold every 30 or 40 minutes for 3 or 4 more folds, returning to the bowl each time.
Stretch and fold: Here's a video.
It is a very wet dough and hard to work with but keep going. Eventually you will be able to make it into 2 loaves about 15 inches long. Let rise until puffy and risen. Slash with a serrated knife. Bake on a stone in a 450 oven for about a half hour. Spray with water a few times in the first 10 minutes.

Wet dough rising!

 The bread came out very crusty and tasty. We ate it dipped in olive oil with garlic and salt.

In the oven