Country Bread

This is from Jeffrey Hamelman‘s book “Bread“. Nice and clean loaf. I made this loaf with Dove’s Organic Strong White Bread Flour. Actually I’ve made this bread 2 times – the first time was with King Arthur’s Unbleached All Purpose Flour, which looked much flatter with closer crumb (I didn’t even take a photo). I emailed King Arthur and got a reply that the AP flour is softer and hence it’s better to use bread flour when the recipe calls for. I always thought it could be used for bread as there is a baguette recipe behind the bag of the flour. Maybe it depends on how the flour is used in a recipe? I should also have noticed that the dough with the AP was quite loose when I was making it too. There’s still much to practice and learn for my home baking.

Almond-Milk Loaf

A Dan Lepard‘s recipe from his classic “The Handmade Loaf“. The bread used almond milk made with sugar, water and skinned almonds as the liquid for the dough. I love the crust so much as it tastes crispy and nutty because of the nut milk. It’s so unique compared with what we normally have on a white loaf. Recommend to try.

My bread – I made it so “square”, haha

Multi-Grain Bread

Weekend is a bread baking day for me. Today I also went to a Wine & Dine Festival, trying some different kinds of red wine and food. To me it’s still not as satisfying as baking a loaf of good bread. This multi-grain bread was baked in the afternoon today. It’s adapted from Jeffrey Hamelman’s Five-Grain Bread. I did not have oats that the recipe required, hence I replaced with whole spelt grains (and changed the name to multi-grain bread as spelt is different from the remained grains, haha). Overall hydration was remained the same.

Although this is a direct dough, this bread is still quite flavorful with the grains. Especially the crumb is really soft like those stored bought sandwitch loaves. :-)

There were larger bursts on 2 slashes in the bread than the other 2, which is probably because I cut the former 2 deeper. Yet it’s still a natural beauty for me. :-)

Adapted from Jeffrey Hamelman’s “Five-Grain Bread” in the book “Bread: A Baker’s Book of Techniques and Recipes

Recipe (makes 1 loaf)

Soaker:

Whole spelt grains 36g

Flaxseeds 36g

Wheat bran 24g

Cornmeal 24g

Water 151g

Mix all the above and leave overnight.

Final Dough:

High gluten flour 151g

Whole-wheat flour 121g

Whole-rye flour 30g

Water 121g

Vegetable oil 15g

Egg 36g

Salt 8.5g (1 1/2t)

Instant yeast 7.5g (3/4t)

Soaker – all of the above

1. Mix the final dough ingredients until the gluten network is fairly well developed

2. Bulk fermentation: 2 hours (or overnight retarding). Fold the dough once after 1 hour

3. Shape the dough

4. Final fermentation : 1 to 1.5 hours at 76F

5. With normal steam, bake at 460F for 40 minutes. The egg and oil may contribute color to the baking loaf quickly, so the oven may need to be lowered by 10 – 20F partway through the bake. Round loaf takes slightly longer than oblong one (mine was 50 minutes)

Bo Lo Bao (Pineapple Bun, 菠蘿包) – World Bread Day 2010

The most well-known bread of Hong Kong, Bo Lo Bao represents our food culture and how we interprets bread in this city. “Bo Lo” is the Cantonese of pineapple, wheareas “Bao” is bread. This bread features a golden pineapple-like pattern pastry on top, and therefore the name. Is there pineapple inside? No! It’s no surprise the name of Chinese food or dishes sometimes may be a metaphor of something else. The name “Mooncake” is one of the examples.

Bo Lo Bao is a product of “East meets West”. One common story about the origin was people wanted more from traditional western style buns, and hence used sugar, egg, shortening, flour etc and created a pastry for the top. This bread has a crispy top, soft crumb, golden color, enriched flavor and short fermentation time. It exactly tells our preference for a variety of characters in food at a quick speed. Because of the crispy crust and enriched flavor, this bread is also suitable to serve hot or warm. I do appreciate the creativeness and originality of this bread, and I like it when I want something savory. Notwithstanding our culture is used to have soft, warm and savory bread, it is not easy for people to pay more attention to an authentic sourdough. Um, let’s hope time will change this!

This Cantonese bread will go to the World Bread Day. I would also like to submit it to Yeastspotting. Enjoy! :)

Recipe (makes 6)

Sweet buns

Bread flour 200g

Sugar 53g

Instant yeast 8g

Milk powder 13g

Water 100g

Egg 23g

Shortening 23g

Salt 4g

Egg wash

Knead all above and ferment until double in size (about 45 mins). Divide in 6pcs and shape into buns. 2nd fermentation until double in size for about 45 mins

Crust topping

Cake flour 45g

Sugar 25g

Shortening 15g

Butter 3g

Egg 5g

Milk powder 5g

Baking ammonia 1g (I used approximately 1/5 tp)

Baking soda 1g (I used approximately 1/5 tp)

Baking powder 1/8 tp

Mix all of the above and divide into 6 portions. Shape into balls. Afer the 2nd fermentation of the sweet buns, use your palm or a chopper to press the topping into thin round slices. Size would be slightly bigger than the diameter of the dough (refer to photo). Place on the dough and brush with egg wash. Use a toothpick to make crisscrosses on the topping. Bake at 200C for 16-17 mins until the top becomes golden brown. Serve warm.

(Recipe and last photo adapted from the book “Hong Kong Memorable Bakery”/ “回憶的味道-港式老包餅” by 黎力強)

100% Spelt Levain

I love the 100% spelt bread that I’ve made according to Richard Bertinet‘s recipe in the book “Crust” before, and this time I’ve made a sourdough version of it. I replaced all the poolish by a liquid sourdough (1:1 spelt to water) and added 25% of walnuts (to all flour) to the dough. Others were remained the same as the recipe.

Proportion of sourdough to final flour was 2:1. The bread was only little sour. Crumb was chewier with the sourdough and I like it. I also like it with walnuts, which go well with the sweet and nutty spelt. Love spelt. I am thinking to make a spelt bread with cheese and walnuts next time. :)

Recipe adapted from: Crust by “Richard Bertinet

Baguette(Mini)

They are from Dan Lepard’s French Bread recipe recently published in the British Baker. An interesting recipe for me which uses three-quarters of the flour to make a ferment for the bread. For the flour I’ve used King Arthur’s Organic All Purpose instead of La Campaillette Des Champs flour.

I have only used 150g water for the final dough, as I couldn’t manage slashes on wet dough well. Overall hydration is 59.2%. The crumb still got some nice holes though the hydration is not high and the preferment is stiff (50% hydration). :-)

My dough had bulk fermentation for 4.5 hours instead of 2-3 hours indicated in the recipe. There were some spots of “irregular aeration” at the 3rd hour, however I was not sure whether that was enough. Hence I just left the dough for longer time. Also I proofed the baguettes seam-side down and they were under-proof because I want to make sure they have good oven spring in the oven.

They are some mini baguettes. Dough was 80g each. Just to fit in my mini-oven. I’ve made a 100% sourdough spelt too. I’ll post it up some time later. It’s nice to end my 3-day holiday with some bread baking. :-)

This will be submitted to the YeastSpotting.

Recipe is here.

 

Spelt and Walnut Bread

The recipe I used is from Grégoire Michaud‘s Artisan Bread. I love all the irregular holes and purple stains in the crumb which are created by the levain and walnuts. A natural beauty. Agree? :-)

The spelt and walnuts pair very well too. As always I love the taste of spelt, especially the spelt berries taste really sweet after soaking in warm water overnight. A high amount of spelt in bread doesn’t create grassy and bitter tone like whole wheat. This grain should be more pronounced in making whole grain breads.

I baked the dough on the same day instead of refridgerating at 5C for 18hours for bulk fermentation as indicated in the recipe to fit my schedule. I also made it a big loaf instead of small ones, and baked it at 235C at the beginning and then lowered to 210C after the dough gained color. The bread was taken out at 45mins. The thick crunchy crust goes perfect with the nutty flavor of the walnuts and spelt. :)

I really love spelt bread! What about making a 100% sourdough spelt with walnuts for next time? Stay tuned!

Barley and Rye Bread

I forgot adding salt to the dough of this bread, haha. This was until the dough doubled so quickly during 1st fermentation, I suddenly remembered it! So I kneaded the salt into the dough immediately, and that was the time I really understood how the salt could increase the dough elasticity.

The dough without salt at the beginning was lack of gluten. I thought it was because of the rye and barley flour. However the gluten was much improved after I added the salt. Anyway, I let the dough rest for its final hour of fermentation. I’m not sure how this has affected my bread.

As Dan has suggested in the recipe, I toasted the barley flour before preparing the dough. I really love the nutty smell of it. Mmmmm :) Also a banneton is necessary for holding the dough in its final fermentation, as its strength is not as strong with the rye and barley flour in it. I could see “cracks” on the seam side after its final fermentation.

This is another tasty bread. I agree that the rye and barley have served as friendly background flavors. I also like the mild sourness. It started my week perfectly. :)

Recipe from: The Hand Made Loaf by Dan Lepard

Batard with Spelt

This bread smelt really sweet when taken out from the oven. I am happy that by adding 10%  spelt flour to the pre-ferment and final dough can result with a more delightful bread. Compared with rye and whole wheat, spelt can give a sweeter note to the bread and its wheat flavor is more easy going.

The gluten of spelt is weak, therefore I have only used 10% this time to give it a try. As water absorption of spelt is higher, I increased the hydration to 68%.  This bread is awesome and I will have more bread experiments with spelt soon. I will submit this bread to YeastSpotting. Have fun baking!

 

Recipe (Makes 1 big loaf)

Biga
1/12tp instant yeast
70g bread flour
10g spelt flour
60g water

Mix and leave in the fridge for overnight.

Final dough
220g bread flour
40g spelt flour
1g instant yeast
170g water
6g salt
All of the biga

1)Mix all the ingredients in a bowl, cover and rest for 10 minutes
2)Brush the working table with little olive oil, and knead the dough for 10-15 seconds. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and  rest for another 10 minutes
3)Brush the working table with oil again, and knead for another 10-15 seconds
4)First fermentation for 1.5 hrs (fold the dough once after 45 minutes)
5)Shape into batard, final fermentation for 1.5 hrs
6)Score the dough. Bake with steam at 240C for 10 minutes, then lower the heat to 220C and continue to bake for 30 minutes

Everything Bread

I don’t have time to bake very often and there are a number of grains and seeds in my kitchen going to expire now. There is also a 2-day old rye sourdough in the fridge. It smelt very sour. Therefore I made this bread in an attempt to clear these stuff, and the result is not bad!

The bread contains a soaker with sesame seeds, rolled oats, linseed, semolina and sunflower seeds. The soaker had a strong semolina flavor but the flavor was not noticable in the bread. Instead the bread has a stronger sesame flavor especially in the crust.

The most interesting thing is the bread is only mildly sour. Maybe I don’t have to throw out a 2-day old sourdough now. The bread is  mildly sweet because of the grains too. I quite enjoyed this bread, especially enjoyed throwing anything I have on hand to the bread and returned with pleasing result. :P

My recipe (600 g bread dough):

100% high gluten flour
20% rye sourdough (2-day old)
90% water (40% for soaking the seeds overnight with some salt added)
2% salt
1% instant yeast
30% seeds (sesame seeds, rolled oats, linseed, semolina, sunflower seeds)

Baked at 230C.

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