What to Do with Stale Bread?

Here are some delicious solutions for stale bread (in Chinese, but you could get translation from Google easily :) ) from “Anthropologist in the Kitchen” by Zu Yi, blogger from Taiwan and now living in Hong Kong.

I am going to make Ajo Blanco (starter) and seafood salad with bread croutons (main) with my left over bread soon :)

http://blog.yam.com/tzui/article/27461135

Süßes Nussbrot (Sweet Nut Bread)

Love it. Never imagine that rum, hazelnuts and sweetness can be such a  perfect match. Not to mention the bread also has a soft crumb and is packed with lots of hazelnuts …  Great sweet treat.

It’s easy to make – 2-hour sponge plus 1/2 hr first and final fermentations. Yet I think it is better to finish eating on the first day to enjoy a soft crumb because of the short fermentation time.

Thanks Bäcker Süpke for the recipe, also his son for translation! : )

Süßes Nussbrot( Sweet Nut Bread) – Make two 800g loaves

(I modified the steps a bit, since I am not sure of some German/ translations, the bread is fine anyway)

  • The day before:
  • Toast 300g of hazelnuts and chopped into about 8 portions for each (otherwise it’s hard to stick them to the dough as there are many. I skipped the hot water compared with the original recipe)
  • 100g toasted walnut soaked in 50ml of rum
  • Sponge:
  • 300g T55 flour (I used King Arthur)
  • 280ml milk
  • 17g instant dry yeast or 50g fresh yeast
  • Mix and leave for 30-60 mins, until it at least doubles under 24°C (my dough was cold so I left it longer for 2 hrs)
  • Dough:
  • 300g T55 flour
  • All of the sponge
  • 60 g sugar
  • 60 g egg
  • 100 g butter
  • 6 g salt
  • Vanilla (I forgot!)
  • Mix until almost full gluten development. Then mix in the nuts. 1st fermentation for 1/2 hr.
  • Shape the dough . Final fermentation 1/2  hr.
  • Slash the dough. Bake with steam at 180°C. Then lower to 170°C for 45 mins.

Bäcker Süpkes’ Joghurt Brötchen (Yogurt Bread)

I love the taste of multi-grain bread. However it always comes with a dense crumb and I wondered whether there can be one with more opened texture. This bread is the right choice. Thanks Bäcker Süpke for the recipe!

The yoghurt in this bread has created the soft and open crumb. A website said it acts like Vitamin C or absorbic acid to give a boost to the dough. The milk in the yogurt also extends shelf life.

Notwithstanding, the crust is quite hard. Maybe it’s the bread crumbs on the crust and I will skip them next time!

Bäcker Süpkes’ Joghurt Brötchen (Yogurt Bread) (original recipe in German. I have tranlated by Google)

Make 30 small rolls

Soaker:

*70 g cracked rye
* 145 g cracked spelt
* 36 g salt
* 215 ml very hot water

Pore water into the the salt and seeds. Mix, cover and wait for at least 4 hrs.

Sponge:
* 280 g wheat flour 550 (I used King Arthur All Purpose)
* 1 g fresh yeast (I used a pinch of instant yeast)
* 280 ml of cold water

Mix the ingredients. Cover and ferment at room temp. for 2 hrs. Put in fridge for at least 16 hrs.

Dough:
* 890 g flour 550 (I used King Arthur All Purpose)
* 70 g rye flour 997 (I used Dove Whole Grain Rye)
* 75 g sunflower seeds
* 140 g pumpkin seeds
* 75 g sesame seeds
* 75 g flaxseed
* 55 g fresh yeast
* 220 g yoghurt
* 400 ml water

Slightly toast the seeds (can use other kinds of seeds).

(Dan Lepard’s kneading method) Mix all the ingredients, cover and wait for 10 mins. On a slightly oiled surface, knead for 10 secs. Cover and wait for 10 mins. Knead for 10 secs again. Repeat the fermentation and kneading process for 2 more times. Then ferment for around 30 mins until the dough is about double in size.

Cut the dough into squares (about 95g each). Moist the surface with water and roll onto some bread crumbs.

Final fermenation for about 40 mins until almost double in size.

My baking temperature is 220c with steam for 30 mins.

WBD 09 – Vermont Sourdough with Increased Whole Grain

This recipe is from Jeffrey Hamelman’s “Bread”, a sourdough made of flour, salt and water only, and no commercial yeast. A “pure” bread that I like the most.

There is another Vermont Sourdough recipe in Hamelman’s book using 10% rye and 15% starter, and this one is increased to 15% and 20%. According to the book, the increased rye provides more fermentable sugar and minerals to the yeasts in the levain. In addition to the increased levain, this bread is more acidic than the Vermont Sourdough. Since acidity has tightening effect on gluten structure, the crumb of this bread is tighter, chewier, and more elastic.

In terms of taste, this version is sweeter and more tang to me. Definitely I prefer this one more.

I’m submitting this beloved bread to World Bread Day 09. Happy Anniversary! : )

Make 1 Loave

Ingredients:

Liquid-Levain Build

Bread flour 91g (I used King Arthur All Purpose)

Water 113g

Mature culture (liquid) 18g

Final Dough

Bread flour 295g

Whole-rye flour 68g (I used Bob’s Red Mill Dark Rye)

Water 181g

Liquid Levain 204g

Salt 8.5g

1. Mix ingredients for liquid levain build. Cover & let stand for 12-16 hours at 70F.

2. When the levain is done, mix all ingredients except the salt of the final dough to medium consistency. Cover and let stand for autolyse for 20-60mins.

3. Sprinkle in salt and mix for another 1 1/2 -2 mins.

4. Bulk fermentation for 2 1/2 hrs. Fold after 1 1/4 hrs.

5. Shape the dough. Final fermentation for 2 to 2 1/2 hrs (or retard for 8 hrs at 50F, or up to 18 hrs at 42F)

6. Bake at 460F for 40-45 mins with normal steam.

Mooncake (月餅)

Mooncake

Today is the Mid-Autumn festival (中秋節), the second biggest Chinese festival besides the Lunar New Year. It’s on the 15th day of the eighth month of the Chinese calendar. This day the moon is the roundest and fullest. Traditionally it represents 團圓,which is to gather with your beloved ones to have dinner, enjoy the moonlight, play lanterns, etc.  Mooncakes symbolize the moon. We give out and share mooncakes to celebrate this day.

Below is the mooncake recipe. I learnt from a Chinese dim-sum chef 3-4 years before. The ingredients are quite different from western pastries. There are more photos of this recipe in Flickr . Hope you’ll enjoy. Happy Mid-Autumn!

Tool: plastic mould 膠模 (Traditionally we use wooden ones 木模. Plastic ones are convenient for moulding and storage)

Ingredients (10 small mooncakes):

a) Flour 40g (This 美玫麵粉 is the popular brand for making dim sum and mooncakes, with different ash and protein than general cake and bread flours)

b) Lyle’s Golden syrup 金獅糖漿 28g (don’t substitute with other brand as the acidity of the syrup will affect the result)

c) Peanut oil 13g

d) Food lye 食用鹼水 1/8 tsp

Lotus seed paste 蓮蓉 300g

Peanut oil (for lotus seed paste) 2 T

Salted duck egg yolks 鹹蛋黃 5pcs (divide into half)

Egg yolk 1pc

Steps:

1) Mix a) to d) which will be the crust. Rest for 30 minutes.

2) Divide the lotus seed paste into 10 portions. Put 1/4 tsp peanut oil in your hand. Fold the lotus seed paste in your palm. The oil will slowly be absorbed, and the lotus seed paste will soften a bit. Roll it into ball.

3) Wrap the duck egg yolk in the seed paste.

4) Sprinkle flour onto the counter. Roll the crust dough into a roll. Divide into 10 portions (9g each).

5) Sprinkle more flour on the counter. Flatten the crust dough. Big enough to wrap the seed paste with duck yolk. The dough will be very thin. Use a scraper to help taking it out.

6) Wrap the seed paste with duck yolk inside with the flattened dough.

(In flickr photos I used a quicker method in 3)-6) for wrapping but it’s hard to describe by words. The above method also works which is to wrap each part step by step)

7) Dust some flour to the plastic mould to avoid sticking. Put in the dough. Press on counter. The moulded mooncake will come out.

8 ) Bake at 180C for 6 minutes. Then take out. The crust should be hardened and set. Brush some egg yolk to the patterns.

9) Bake for an extra 7 minutes. You’ll notice the patterns are turned brown as in 1st photo above with the egg yolk on.

10) Rest the mooncakes at room temperature for at least 2 days. This is the process of 回油, where the mooncakes will absorb the oil from the lotus seed paste, and the crust will get shinier and tenderer.

Orange and Mint Loaf

This is a delicious loaf from a recipe by Richard Bertinet. The crumb is very soft and moist, enriched, and has a hint of refreshing orange and mint flavor. Before making it I wondered if bread with mint would taste good. Now I found that the mint has merged with the orange nicely, and goes very well with the bread. The taste is refreshing. I like it. It’s suitable for summer.

Yea, summer has come. I want to make more soft bread or breads with fruits in the coming days. Something more citrus, appetizing and colorful. : )

Love these little cuts on the crust.

Tender!

Recipe adapted the book “Dough” by Richard Bertinet. For steps please follow Gourmet.com .

Makes 1 loaf

Basic Sweet dough

125g full fat milk

7g commercial yeast

250g strong bread flour

30g unsalted butter at room temperature

20g caster sugar

5g salt

1 large egg

Addition

1/2 brunch of fresh mint (I used 3 sprigs)

Zest of 1 large orange

1/2 tablespoon Cointreau

1/2 egg beaten with a pinch of salt for an egg wash

Flour for dusting

A little butter for greasing

Hot Cross Buns II

Dan Lepard’s recipe. The dough was really easy to work with (no need to knead, just fold 12-14 times after overnight fermentation, as most gluten is developed after fermenting overnight). Believe many people can make it. The bread is really really soft. Delicious & worthwhile to try! I would like it spicier (as always), and will add more spices next time. Happy Spring! :)

Very wet dough. But it’ll be fine after overnight. The wet dough is to facilitate gluten development during overnight fermentation.

Walnut and Red Wine Bread

This is a direct dough, using few ingredients, easy to make, but has a great flavor. It is Dan Lepard’s “Simple Walnut Tin Loaf”, and I bake it on hearth instead (200C for 20mins, each dough weighs 160g). The crust is cripsy, and the crumb is very tender and moist. There are many walnuts in this bread, and the walnut flavor dominates. There is 42% red wine in the dough, but it doesn’t taste strong after baking, the taste is subtle instead. I like this combination of red wine, wheat & walnut. Inspiring & good. :)

Liquid mixture: walnut, red wine, oil & water. Looks purple.

Recipe: from Dan Lepard’s Forum or The Guardian

Coffee Coconut Swirl Bread

Finally I have time to make bread, and this bread came up to my mind immediately. Um, it must be one of my favourites. :)

Besides Bo Lo Bao and Cocktail Bun, which are still the two most popular buns in Hong Kong, this bread is also a specialty here. However, it is not easy to find now as I guess not many people like coffee flavoredbakery foods.

Notwithstanding I still think this bread is tasteful and worthwhile to try. The coffee marries with the coconut very well. This bread is also easy to make. It is a white bread dough, plus a filling made of coffee, coconut, butter and sugar.

The white bread recipe is from Peter Reinhart’s “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice”. It is a soft and tasty dough and I use it as the basic dough for many other breads. The filling is created by myself.

As you see in the photos, the bread is highlighted with a moist filling. So pull apart the swirls with your fingers and enjoy! I’m sure you’ll enjoy the moist and fragrance of the filling with the loaf. :)

White Bread (Adapted from Page43 of Peter Reinhart’s “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice”

Bread Flour 350g

Salt 7g

Sugar 28g

Powdered Milk 21g

Instant Yeast 3g

Egg 14g

Shortening 28g

Water 203g

Mix, knead & ferment the dough as other common straight doughs. To make the swirl, after 1st fermentation, roll the dough to 8inches x 5inches. Sprinkle & slightly press the filling to the dough. Roll tight & seam. Bake at 180C for 40mins (rotate half way) after 2nd fermentation (I think the bread is a bit dry this time with my oven, I’ll try to bake 5mins less next time).

Filling (mix together)

Unsalted Butter 24g

Egg 24g

Shredded Coconut 48g

Sugar 40g

Instant Coffee Powder 1 1/4 tps (dissolve with few drops of hot water)

Olive Levain

Never thought about it, olives and tangy flavor of the levain are greeeeeeat match! This bread tastes good! (though the crumb of my bread is not as airy as that in the pic of the recipe :P)

Recipe: “Bread” by Jeffrey Hamelman

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