MyKitchenInHalfCups

Once Upon a time: Cooking … Baking … Traveling … Laughing …

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Jachnun ~ BBB ~ Questions of BREAD ~ 12 hours baking

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What makes it bread?  Is it one or more ingredient? Is it how we use/eat it?  Is there any one thing about bread that makes it bread?  The Babes have danced around this question in various ways from time to time.  Coffee cake? Does it qualify as bread because it uses yeast … because we eat it like bread … or because we eat it drinking coffee for breakfast?  Does a quick bread using no yeast but baking soda qualify because it’s named bread?  What qualifies bread to be bread?

Lien  brought us to the kitchen table with this introduction and question and her answer to the question:  This recipe was stuck in my head for a while. I guess the 12 hour baking time did that. Then I wondered is this a bread? No yeast, but baking powder?! No yeast can still make real bread, think flatbread, wraps and so on. But baking powder is linked to pastry in my brain. Things like banana bread (with baking powder/soda) is called a bread in English, but for me that’s a loaf cake and absolutely not a bread. So I let it sink in for a while to decide if it was bread worthy or not. It is not sweet, not eaten with sweet things, even if it is a breakfast item. And it’s function is a bread… I can see it like that, and so it is, and that’s what we’re baking. … It feels like an adventure…

What makes bread BREAD?  Not sure I have the answer but this is bread by any qualifying test I can come up with.  What do you think?

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Jachnun ~ BBB

Serving: 9-12

500 g bread flour, 100 grams of the 500 white whole wheat
45 g date syrup, recipe called for 20 of honey
pinch of baking powder, generous
12 g fine salt
300 ml water to make spongy dough
60 grams butter, melted

*Zhug
1 teaspoon chili flakes, or 1 red fresh chili pepper (or 1 tsp chili flakes)
1 teaspoon black pepper, ground
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
½ teaspoon coriander, ground
4 medium garlic cloves
Pinch of cardamom, ground
Pinch of cloves, ground
½ teaspoon salt
30 g coriander leaves (or parsley if you dislike coriander)
Olive oil, enough to make a sauce-like consistency

Place all ingredients in a bowl and crush it to a sauce in a blender or with a stick blender.
Place the Zhug in a clean jar and refrigerate.
(Fridge shelf life about 2 weeks)
Serve with:
8 eggs, poached
1 large tomato (or 2 smaller ones)

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1. DOUGH
Mix the flour, date syrup, baking powder, salt and water together to form a sticky wet  dough and knead for a few minutes. Let it rest for 10 minutes to let the gluten relax.  Next time: use at least half white whole wheat flour.  I think using the bread flour probably gave this the gluten needed to give this dough needed stretch so I’ll stick with bread flour for at least 50%.

To develop gluten you now start to knead the dough for 5 minutes. Place it in a lightly greased bowl and give it a stretch and fold like this: Lift up the side of the dough and fold it over, turn the bowl and repeat this for about 7 or 8 times.
Cover with plastic and leave to rest at room temperature for 1 hour. Or leave your dough until evening.

2. PAN & OVEN
You can use a (ovenproof) cooking pan or springform (about 20 cm in diameter). Given an ill equipped kitchen, I used a skillet with lid.

Fold a long piece of parchment paper lengthwise and place it in the pan, so the ends hang over the rim of the pot.
Preheat the oven to 105ºC/225ºF and place a rack in the lowest position in your oven.  I might try one notch up from the lowest position to see if it would reduce toughness on the bottom of the rolls OR I wonder if lining the bottom of the pan with bread would influence that.

I mixed my dough early in the morning and didn’t shape it until 6 in the evening.

3. SHAPING

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Divide the dough in 6 more or less equal pieces, shape them into a ball and leave to rest 10 minutes before the stretching begins. I divided the dough into 6 pieces and rolled three that size. But the last 3 pieces I divided in half which gave me 6 smaller jachnun.  I liked the smaller size best.  Next time I will divide the dough to make 12 rolls.
To shape these rolls you have to stretch them using butter, oil or margarine.  Butter, flavor … I used butter.
Grease your work surface, place one piece of dough on it, grease the top and start working to make it the thinnest possible, while greasing it constantly. It is best to do this by hand, other methods (rolling pin) do not give the thinness.
When the dough is very thin (preferably like fillo or strudel dough) fold 1/3 of one side over onto the dough, repeat with the other side (like a business letter). You now have a long strip, keep buttering/greasing the top, while you roll – starting at the narrow edge- the dough in a tight cylinder.

This video will show you how: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oygxy4i3u30

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When I shaped the first roll, the video rolled in my head and I found myself patting the dough flat and lifting around the edges, stretching it out.  I didn’t get the nearly perfect rectangle that she did in the video but the defects pretty much didn’t bother the final outcome.

4. Prepare for the oven
I placed my rolls in a single layer which allowed them all to color evenly and dark golden brown.  NOTE: Would a layer of bread on the bottom of the pan prevent the hardness on the bottom of the rolls?  Would just moving the oven rack from the very bottom rack up one would solve that issue?
Traditionally eggs are cooked in the pan with the rolls, I skipped that part but I did have one of the rolls warmed with a poached egg the second morning.  It’s perfect breakfast.
Take a double layer of aluminum foil, cover the pot, securing the edges of the pan. Use a lid or a sheet pan to place on top of the foil. (or use a lid if available to keep it tight).
Place it on the rack in the oven and bake for 12 hours.

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5. You should understand you have to plan the timing of this… or get up in the middle of the night.
Mixing the dough in the early morning, leaving it out on the counter during the day, shaping the rolls and putting them into the oven at about the same hour in the evening that you want to take them out in the morning worked beautifully for me.  A twelve hour bake at 225 F worked perfectly.

The next morning you take out the pan, place the jachnuns on a plate and serve it with eggs around them. Serve with grated tomato and Zhug (a spicy and hot dipping sauce) for breakfast.  Reheat well.

I’ve marked this a laminated bread because of all the butter plastered on the dough and stretching it thin and folding and rolling AND because the aroma when I took this warm from the oven reminded me of croissants.

The book “Breaking breads” has a slightly different recipe for Jachnun.  It calls for all purpose flour.  My feeling is you’ll get better gluten development and crumb using bread flour but I did not try all purpose.  Experience/intuition tells we this would traditionally have been bake using whole wheat flour and butter.   I might try this with all white whole wheat just to see what it does, it would be better for me health wise but I wouldn’t want to lose the gluten the bread flour seems to add.

Cafe Liz has  interesting points on Jachnun and is worth checking out as well.

And Zhug … don’t miss it. WOW glorious. Too strong for you, reduce the hot stuff and/or miss in a little goat cheese.
Lien I will forever be grateful for this “bread”.

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You can see the crumb here is very bread like … no yeast can be bread?  Now go dip that in a poached egg will you?  Well, it’s my idea of a little roll of heaven and it’s bread.  So, yeast does not define BREAD.  What defines bread as BREAD?  I’ll keep baking…

Bake with us … help define BREAD … be a Bread Baking Buddy.   It is an adventure bake. Wanna give it a go, be Brave and become our Bread Baking Buddy. Shape, bake, sleep, taste, take a picture, tell us about it and sent it to the Kitchen of the month (that’s me this time: notitievanlien(at)gmail(dot)com) subject: BBBread february. And I’ll send you the Bread Baking Buddy Badge in return, to add to your post if you like ánd I’ll add you to the BBB Round-up, which will be on around March first. Deadline 29th of this month. Have fun baking!

By the way, this is Gorn’s latest love.

 

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9 Comments

BBB ~ Fouace Nantaise

How can baking bread continue to fascinate, intrigue and surprise?  How can there be so few and so simple ingredients and continue to be new?  How can I continue to fool my self starting a recipe with “I can’t imagine I’ll like this?  I really don’t want to make much effort to find orange blossom water.” and end with “This is brilliant.  I do like orange.”  I tried the grocery stores for orange blossom water, even a little heath food store in town.  It’s a small place.  Rose water but no orange blossom water.  Only because Gorn makes such an effort to see that I have ingredients did we make the trek into San Luis Obispo to … Whole Foods!  Wow and I found all kinds of sprouted flours!

I have avoided using orange with chocolate forever and I think that may never change.  But this bread … gorgeous.

I had trouble with this rising.  Seemed to give several of us trouble.  Some of the issues I believe I understand and can easily change.  Karen used SAF yeast and she’s right it works better with these heavily enriched doughs.  I just didn’t have any here.  I would use a full teaspoon next time.  And I would use the sugar which I forgot in this bake.  I think I will search out some orange blossom honey for baking this again.

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I tend to have a heavy hand with flavor and didn’t actually measure the orange blossom water.  I thought about Elizabeth saying the orange was not pronounced when she baked this.  Now I realize it doesn’t make sense, me saying I don’t like baking with orange and then telling you I doubled the orange blossom water … but for whatever reason that is what I did and that was why I also did not omit the orange zest.  I think I must have gotten the idea from Elizabeth, this bread was suppose to be about orange.

Orange.  Orange juice.  Orange sunshine.  Brilliant Orange January Sunshine.  I think that is as it should be.

Jamie ~ Life’s a Feast ~ will paint you a brilliant word picture of Nantes and this bread.  This recipe will not appear in her book coming out this fall but I’m sure it is representative of her glorious writing and attention to creative recipe development.

Elizabeth ~ Blog from OUR Kitchen ~ our brilliant Kitchen of the Month.  Always creates a wild cacophony when we gather round her kitchen table … heck, there’s always glorious chaos when she’s in the kitchen.  And always something wonderful comes to the table from that chaos.  Wonderful like Fouace Nantaise.  Elizabeth talks about this being a flower, I think it’s more like January sunshine.

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BBB ~ Fouace Nantaise

Elizabeth ~ Kitchen of the Month

50 grams (3+1/2 Tbsp) unsalted butter
60 grams (60ml) milk
3 grams (3/4 tsp) active dry yeast
7 grams (~1+1/2tsp) orange blossom water
45 grams Rum
2 eggs, body temperature, lightly beaten
250 grams flours divided
» 50g (6 Tbsp) sprouted spelt
» 185g (1+1/2 c) unbleached all-purpose
15 grams wheat germ
zest of one orange, optional
25 g (2 Tbsp) sugar
4 g (~1/2 tsp fine) sea salt
milk or cream, for wash on shaped loaf

1. MIXING: Melt butter.

2. Whisk milk, eggs, orange blossom water, rum and orange zest with melted butter.

Why did I opt for rum?  The only thing I’ve ever made/cooked/baked that Gorn said he did not like was a Grand Marnier Souffle.

3. Elizabeth’s directions:  Pour milk into a largish mixing bowl. Add the melted butter to the milk to raise the temperature to body temperature (check with a thermometer OR by placing a drop on the inside of your wrist – if the milk feels cool, it’s too cold; if it feels hot, it’s too hot; if it feels like nothing, it’s ju-u-u-st right). Add yeast and whisk in until it has dissolved.
Adding them one at a time, whisk in eggs, then pour in orange liqueur and orange blossom water. Place flours, sugar, salt, and orange zest (if using) on top. Using a wooden spoon, stir until the flour has been absorbed. (Traditionally, the bread is made with rum rather than orange liqueur. The first time I made this, I did use rum, but I really wished that the flavour was more orangey so decided to use orange liqueur instead.)

4. Whisk together the yeast, salt and flours.
Pour liquid ingredients into dry and mix.

5. KNEADING: Using one hand to turn the bowl and the other to dig down to the bottom to lift the dough up to the top, turn, fold, turn, fold, etc. the dough until it is smooth and elastic. As you knead, resist the temptation to add more flour or water.

6. Once the dough is kneaded, cover the bowl with a plate and allow the dough to rise, until almost completely doubled, on the counter in a non-drafty area.

7. SHAPEING: When the dough has doubled, it’s time to shape. (To check to see if it’s ready, poke a hole in the top of the dough. If the hole fills up, it hasn’t risen enough. If there is a whoosh of air and the dough deflates a little, it has risen too much. If the hole stays in exactly the same configuration and the dough remains otherwise intact, it is ju-u-st right.) Turn the risen dough out onto a very lightly floured board (just the smallest dusting will be enough). Divide the dough evenly into 7 pieces.
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8. Shape each piece into a ball. Place one ball in the center of a parchment-lined cookie tray. Arrange the other six balls of dough loosely around the center ball – to form a flower. Cover with a damp (clean) tea towel followed by plastic grocery bags and leave to rise until almost doubled. (To test, using a floured finger, gently press against the side of the shaped bread. If the indentation immediately jumps back, it’s not ready; if it stays indented, it has over-risen; if it gradually fills in, it’s ready to go.

9. I pulled off a large ball and made that the center.  Divided the remaining dough into 8 balls for the flower petals.

10. BAKING: Preheat the oven to 350F. Gently brush the top of the risen bread with milk (or cream). Put the tray onto the top shelf of the oven (to prevent the bread from burning on the bottom) and bake for about 30 minutes until the bread is a “deep golden brown”. Jamie also writes that the outer “petals” of the flower “will have just started to pull away from the center ball”.

Are you in need of January Sunshine?  Here it is.  Bake this loaf!  It’s brilliant and you can be too.  Elizabeth will have all the details of how to be a Bread Baking Buddy before the end of the day.
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We all need sunshine in January.  Bake.  Make sunshine.

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8 Comments

BBB ~ Sourdough Red Beet Braid

Wild hairs … they aren’t called that for nothing are they.  That’s why we have brushes.  Right well, who knows why but I started thinking I didn’t like the sound of sweet in this beet bread.  I first considered that I had over a quart of liquid pickled beet juice that I would love to have used.  I guess I thought about that too long and just couldn’t get my head around it.  Then I searched out some other flavoring to tone down the earthy aroma of my beets because my beets were earthy.  Beets pair well with cloves, ginger, allspice, apples and walnuts.  That sounded really good.  Sounded like Christmas, festive.  I really liked the walnut idea.  My walnuts were rancid.  Apples, if I used apples, that would be a perfect sweetener … adding too much liquid.  In the end, I brushed all that aside (perhaps for another time) and went with Cathy’s sugar and vanilla and honestly it was just perfect.

Cathy from Bread Experience is our hostess this month and I really did enjoy her kitchen table.  Cathy I thank you deeply for all your testing/experimentation.  Raw beets  will now be my go to red!

I do love adding sprouted wheat as it gives a heady wheat aroma to any bread and it seemed to work well here.

I’ve done lots of Bread Braids.  Most have come out looking fabulous.  This one … not so much.  Still this bread braid has much going for it.  I’ve learned how beets work in dough and how red you can go with bread.  It has a wonderful crumb and is delightfully moist and soft.  A bread well worth baking and learning from … and definitely worth eating.  That’s why we bake after all.

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Sourdough Red Beet Braid

Cathy (breadexperience)

Yield: 2 to 3 loaves

Ingredients:

Overnight Levain:

25-30 grams sourdough starter (or 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast)

100 grams bread flour (or all-purpose)

40 grams water

Final Dough:

700 grams bread flour or all-purpose flour (divided 450, 200, 50), 250 grams of the 700 was sprouted wheat the remaining was AP)

2 tablespoons sugar, I used brown sugar

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

2 tablespoons oil

1 large eggs, lightly beaten

3 egg yolks, lightly beaten

40 grams water

338 grams raw beets cut into small chunks, blend until smooth

1 teaspoon vanilla, optional

Chia seeds, optional

Egg Wash:

Leftover eggs whites mixed with a little water

Directions:

1. Puree the beets in a blender, adding the water gradually. Puree until the mixture is completely smooth.  This will take a little while unless you have a high-powered blender.  Weigh the beet puree mixture, if it weighs more or less than 380 grams, you’ll either need to add more or less flour.

The beet I had weighted 438 grams. I added 40 grams water.  I used 400 grams of the beet and water blended mix.

2. Mix the flour (reserving 100 grams), sugar and salt together in a large bowl.  In a separate bowl, mix the pureed beets, beaten eggs and egg whites, oil and vanilla, if using.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir slightly.  Add the sourdough on top and mix thoroughly.  My mixer remains packed in a box somewhere.  I mixed by hand with no issues.  I did add additional flour.

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Mix until all of the ingredients are incorporated and there are no bits of dry flour.  Let it rest for 30 minutes. 

3. Remove the mixture to a floured surface or you can continue doing this part in the mixing bowl.  Gradually add 75 – 100 grams of flour while kneading the dough.  It should become very supple and workable.  Resist the urge to add too much flour.  Unless you change the hydration, you shouldn’t need too much more flour.  I think since I added the extra beet blend, I needed about an additional 1/2 flour.

4. Clean out the bowl, or scrape it down really well. Shape the dough into a ball and place it back in the bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel.  Let it proof for 4 to 5 hours.  Perform a fold after the 1st hour, place back in the bowl. Repeat at the 2nd hour.  Let rest for 2 to 3 more hours.  Perform an additional fold if necessary.

Ah, I only did one fold.

5. After the bulk fermentation, divide the dough for braiding. I divided the dough in half and made two loaves with double braids.

Roll out the ropes for the braids, shape the braids and tuck the ends under. 

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6. Place the braided loaves on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush with egg wash.  Let them proof 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until they have grown to about 1 1/2 times their original size.

7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. (or 325 degrees F. for the double braid) and place the oven rack on the middle shelf.

Brush the loaf again with egg wash and sprinkle the top with poppy seeds.  No poppy seeds here, I used chia seeds.

Bake the loaf for 20 minutes, rotate the pan for even baking, then bake an additional 20 to 35 minutes depending on the size of the loaf. It should register 190 degrees in the center.

Transfer the loaf to a wire rack and let it cool for 1 hour before slicing.

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Can you believe how RED!  Red is my color.

Beets and goat cheese are a natural and it is a spectacular combo with this … oh yes and a glass of red is alright as well.  Serve with goat cheese, red wine and a good friend. 

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Cutting it loses its red intensity but I very happy with the color and the good eating!

I just know you want to bake red and bake with us!

Cathy of Bread Experience is the host kitchen for December and your challenge is to make beet bread. You can use any color beets and make any shape loaf you like, however, I think the braid makes a spectacular presentation.

Just bake some beet bread and post about it on your blog and on the Bread Baking Babes FB page by the 30th of this month.  If you don’t have a blog, please post a photo of your bread on the BBB FB page.

Send an email to breadexperience at gmail dotcom with BBB December Beet Bread in the subject and I’ll send you the Buddy Badge to display on your blog.

All the Babes look forward to seeing  your beet bread.

Baking makes us ALL happy!

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5 Comments

Pain Bouillie or Porridge Bread

The Village Baker introduces this bread in the following way:

“Whenever you see a French recipe that begins with the instructions “Faire une boiullie…” you know you have come across a very old recipe because it starts off with a mush made by pouring boiling water over flour.  The mush, which will ferment slightly overnight, is used the next day mixed into a bread.  The most fascinating recipe I have heard of for pain bouillie is one from the Alpine region of France around the town of Villar-d’Aréne.  The bouillie is made with dark rye flour and set aside to rest for seven hours.  The porridge is then mixed into a dough, without any yeast, and allowed to rest for another seven hours.  When the dough is finally made into loaves, they are placed in an oven that has already been used for bread and so the temperature is only about 200ºF.  The loaves bake for seven hours and the process produces a moist, dense, completely sourdough bread that last well over six months – or so the story goes.  The bread is traditionally made in November and it keeps best when stored in wine cellars and hay lofts.”

Now that is the kind of bread I really do love to wrap my brain around and then even my schedule … BUT (ah yes there is that proverbial but) I am just way beyond incredibly grateful to Kelly (A Messy Kitchen) for searching out such a wonderfully accessible alternative.  And I’m incredibly grateful to Joe Ortiz in The Villiage Baker for putting this one together. I do enjoy that book.  Perhaps one day I can bake the above Faire one boiullie but right now my life is too far out of control to do that.

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This bread got me back to baking with my Babes and put butter back on good bread!

I can’t remember when I ever weighted a loaf of bread I bake but I think I need to start.  When I looked at this recipe yield of 2 loaves 14 oz each, it gave me considerable pause. 

The contrast between weight and volume can be dramatic.  Think about those plastic wrapped White Wonder loaves, maybe 90% air and the rest library paste.  This does not bake a brick but it does not have that Wonder loaf volume either.

I loved the caraway!  And the raisin paste while unique, does add just the right subtle sweetness to this.  The original recipe called for measuring the raisins in a tablespoon … that just seems wrong to me.  How do you put raisins in a tablespoon to measure them?  So I didn’t.  But, I did weigh the small handful I put in so that I would know what I used the next time.  Starting this in a cold oven requires less anticipatory planning and so worked really well for my totally scatter brain of the moment.

Pain Bouillie or Porridge Bread

Recipe By: Kelly (Hobby Baker) A Messy Kitchen via The Village Baker

Yield: 2  14 oz loaves

Ingredients:

The Bouillie (Porridge)

10 grams (10 ml) honey

1¾ cups (414 ml) boiling water

140 grams organic rye flour , I used dark stone ground

1 cup rye chops from KAF, barley flakes or rye chops

The dough:

1 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast

45 grams warm water

All of the bouillie from the previous step

2 teaspoons fine sea salt 

2 teaspoons caraway seeds, heaping

30 grams raisins – yellow

140 grams organic white whole wheat, original total (250 g) unbleached white or all purpose

140  grams organic AP flour

Directions:

1. To make the porridge starter (bouillie):  Mix the honey into the boiling water until dissolved.  Pour it over the rye flour and grain in a bowl.  Let it soak for a few minutes, then give it a stir to make sure all the flour is moistened.  Cover the bowl and set aside overnight in a warm area.

2. For the dough:  You’ll note that the original recipe calls to desolve yeast in a little water … I poured the water over the bouillie and whisk the yeast into the flour.  Put all of the porridge (bouillie) into a madium bowl or stand mixer and mix in the salt.  Crush the caraway seeds with a mortan and pestle until fragrant and broken.  Add the raisins and grind into a paste.  Stir the last 1 tbsp water into the caraway/raisin paste.  Add 2 tsp of the resulting caraway flavoring into the porridge.  Slowly add 1½ cups flour, mixing in on low speed or with a plastic dough scraper.  Mix in the yeast.  Continue adding the remaining flour slowly until the dough is a medium firm consistency.  Knead for 5-8 minutes, adding a little more white flour if necessary.  The dough will be sticky but should be firm.  I used all the flour and then probably used another half cup in kneading.

3. Put the dough in the bowl, cover with a moist towel, and let rise in an unlit oven (or warm place) for 1½ – 2 hours.

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4. When the dough has doubled, cut into two pieces.  Shape into flat loaves that are 5″ square and 2″ high by flattening and then folding the edges toward the middle and sealing the edges with the heel of the hand.  Grease a 9×5½” bread pan and oil one side of each loaf.  Place them together in the pan with the oiled sides touching.

5. Cover again with a moist towel and let rise for 30-45 minutes in a cold oven until the dough has crested the edge of the pan by ½-inch.

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Funny as it may look, this is a great way to use this pan when a recipe doesn’t fill the pan.

6. Slash the top of each loaf with a little 2″ cut, and brush tops with oil.

7. Set the oven to 450ºF and immediately place the loaves in to bake.  Bake in the heating oven for 25 minutes.  Reduce heat to 400ºF and bake for 45 minutes longer.  They will be quite dark.  (My oven runs hot and I pulled mine at 40 minutes.)

8. Cool on a wire rack and slice thinly when bread is completely cooled.

Notes:

There are two things wrong with this bread:

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The little chips are the a thin layer of the top crust sliced off. Makes it much easier to slice thin slices of the bread.

1. The crust is really thick, so as I worked my way through the loaf I would cut off just about an inch of the top crust.  That allowed me to slice beautifully thin slices.

2. It’s gone in a flash.  So fast in fact, I found my self baking it again two days later … there was only two of us eating it.

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As dark as this looks, there was no burnt flavor or order found here but the crust is thick.

Half my loaf weighted 428 grams

Don’t miss this bread.  It is a delightful rye and really very simple to put together.  We enjoyed it with poached eggs, smoked salmon and I’m trying to get the ingredients for a Rubin before this last loaf is gone.

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We would love you to bake this great loaf with us and become our Bread Baking Buddy. Here’s how: (I copied this from Lien who copied it from Kelly)  Just bake your version of this bread by November 30th and send her a note with your results and a picture or link to your post at eleyana(AT)aol(DOT)com with Buddy Bread in the subject line and she will include you in our buddy round up at the beginning of next month and send you a badge to keep and/or add to your post.  You don’t have to have a blog to participate, a picture is fine!

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See you next month!  Baking my heart out.

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6 Comments

BBB ~ Bialys

I first saw Bialys in London.  I don’t know why but Bialys have never really called my name.  Bagels I always found interesting; because they have an involved process that makes them a challenge perhaps.  I haven’t really avoided Bialys but for whatever reason, I’ve never burned to bake them either.  Now that I’ve baked them, I know I’ll be baking them again.  The are really simple to bake and every time Gorn puts one in his mouth it’s “These are really good.”

Our host kitchen this month is Judy of Judy’s Gross Eats.  Thank you for getting me to finally bake Bialys!

This recipe made 15 for me.  We’ve had them plain, Gorn put jam one one, I put cream cheese and jalepeno jelly on one, we put hamburgers on two, toasted two and topped them poached eggs and finally peanut butter.  They are just good.  I have to bake them again to try the bagel traditional lox on them!

Bialys
Recipe By: Judy(Gross Eats) inspired by The Hot Bread Kitchen: Artisanal Baking from Around the World.
Yield: 16
Recipe #1 from Elizabeth Faulkner
Filling
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon poppy seeds
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 onion minced, per bialy
Dough
17 ounces bread flour
9 1/2 ounces all-purpose flour (white whole wheat)
30 grams flax meal
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons sugar, omitted
4 ounces starter or poolish*
1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
2 ounces warm water
14 1/2 ounces cold water

Directions:

1. I fear I played really loose with this recipe.  No starter for me …
I simply combined all dough ingredients together except the salt.
Mixed.
Knead for 6 minutes.
Add salt and knead for another 2 minutes or until dispersed.

2. Set aside to rise for 2 hours.
Ah, I put it in the fridge overnight …

3. Roll into a log on a flour dusted surface. Scale out dough at 3 ounces a ball (about 16 bialys total) Mine were more like 3.5 ounces.
Press each out to shape without overworking and leaving 1″ lip around edge.
Proof dough balls (allow to rise again) in warm spot covered with a clean dish towel for an hour or until soft and airy.

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4. Sauté onions in 1 tablespoon olive oil until light caramel in color but at higher heat.

Without a stove top, I caramelized my onions in a crock pot.  Works like a charm.

5. Make center depression in each one and fill with the filling.  I used a scant teaspoon of onion.

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Sprinkle bialys lightly with poppy seeds and salt.  I looked high and low but no poppy seeds here.
Bake at 450 degree oven, preferably on a pizza stone, for about 12-15 minutes.  Mine took 17 minutes.

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Bake’m Be a Buddy.  Make some bialys and share your experience and photos by emailing Judy a link to your blog or, if you don’t have a blog, email Judy a photo and a brief description.  Send to jahunt22 [at] gmail [dot] com by July 29.  Once you have posted, Judy will send you a Buddy Badge for baking along with us.  Expect a roundup of all of the BBBuddies posts a few days after the close of submissions.

BBB logo June 2016


7 Comments

Lien’s Bran Bread ~ BBB

BBB Bran Bread ~ 100% Whole Wheat

Recipe From Lien: from the sisters Margherita and Valeria Simili

Yield: 2 loaves or 1 pullman

While this is a tricky bread to explain; it is an easy bread to enjoy.  Lien’s goal with this bread, I think, was a super healthy bread that tasted really good.  I think she succeeded exceedingly well.  There is a lot of bran in this bread and you really never really think “bran” while you’re eating it.
I believe I did a number of very small things wrong that together left me feeling this loaf missed something, missed a spark and yet we both of us kept going for another slice.  The loaf was gone in three days.  This loaf had great texture and very good crust.  I short changed on raisins and nuts, use more next time.  I very often cut down and often eliminate sugar, I think perhaps this was the spark that I missed; use some sweetening next time.

Would I make this again … I’ve got my ingredients ready to mix a starter tonight.

STARTER FOR SLOW RISE
250 grams whole wheat flour
450 grams water
75 grams wheat bran
2 pinches active dry yeast
DOUGH
110 grams whole wheat flour
150 grams whole sprouted wheat flour
20 grams rye flour
160 grams water, used water raisins soaked in

30 grams honey (omited first baking** must add next baking)
2 grams active dry yeast
30 grams butter
9 grams salt
50 grams instant skim milk powder
1 tablespoon diastatic malt flour
75 grams walnuts (next time make at least 100 grams)
75 grams raisins (next time make at least 100 grams)

Directions:

1. STARTER:  Mix white whole wheat, wheat bran and yeast with water.  Cover and let sit over night.  (Elizabeth used crushed malted rye berries also; I wish I’d had some.Next time: try some rye flour, rye flakes or malted something.)

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Starter after the overnight rise.

2. NEXT MORNING: Soak dried fruit in water.  My initial call was to use cranberries but Gorn wanted raisins (98% of the time).  I should have used at least 100 grams of either.  Another time I might use apricots.

Mix starter and all dough ingredients – holding back walnuts and dried fruit.  I used the water I soaked the raisins in – why throw away flavor?

3. KNEAD not really.  I mixed and let it sit about 20 minutes.  I added a little more flour and it still didn’t really knead.  I wasn’t willing to add more flour, in retrospect I probably should have because it never reached kneading consistency.

4. Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and press or roll it out flat in a big oval. Add nuts and/or raisins over the dough, fold the dough in two, press or roll out again and sprinkle on the remaining nuts/raisins. Roll the dough (jelly roll style).

5. Heavily butter pullman pan and sprinkle liberally with walnut crumbs.

6. I rolled the dough roll into my pullman pan.  Sprayed the top with water and put the pan cover on sliding it closed short of half an inch.

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7. 45 minutes later I had a really nice rise.

8. Preheat your oven to 200ºC (400ºF).
9. Make slashes in the dough (maybe if I’d added more flour).  Check the temperature of the bread (95ºC/200ºF) to be sure it is cooked.
Baked uncovered 50 minutes.  Internal temp at 201 when taken out of oven.
Take the loaves out and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

There is no bitterness in this bread so often associated with all whole wheat breads.  I never felt like I was being made to eat this bread because it was good for me; this is easy eating bread.

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GOOD EATING.
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Do you see the big smily face upper right?  He’s telling you to get into the kitchen and Bake!
It would be great if you could join this challenge, how much bran can you add to still make good edible bread?  Get your bag of bran, knead, post and let us know how it went. And join us as a Bread Baking Buddy, send your results and what you thought of this to the Kitchen of the Month (that’s Lien this time!) type BBB Brab Bread as subject to notitievanlien(at)gmail(dot) com and you’ll be sent a Bread Baking Buddy Badge that you can add to your blogpost if you like. Deadline the 29th of June. Take on the challenge and let’s bake!
BBB logo May 2016


19 Comments

BBB ~ Thin Crispy Spring Focaccia

My ideal for Focaccia comes from walking on the Portofino docks.  In fact, Portofino is my ideal for two things, Focaccia and the idyllic port I’d most like to sail into in a small sail boat.  On the occasion of my most heavenly Focaccia, we didn’t sail in, we drove the winding roads darkening into a rainy evening.  We stopped when we came to two hotels, one was closed for the season, we were the only guests at the other.  Our room was on the water, we slept with the doors open to the sound of waves and rain.  The next morning we discovered we hadn’t made it to Portofino.  We’d stopped just short of Portofino.  To get to town we either had to get back in the car and drive a couple miles around the corner OR walk about a mile over the gentle hill across the road and through olive groves where they were netting olives.  Which way did we go?  The day was brilliant and we covered the town and the hills around.  We were walking the docks in early afternoon.  We bought a slab of warm from the oven Rosemary garlic focaccia from a bakery and sat down at a dockside wine place and watched the boats sailing.  That has always been how I define focaccia, thick and billowy with deep pockets of fruity olive oil and rosemary with the perfect touch of salt.
Now this Focaccia, Cathy’s Focaccia, this is not how I define Focaccia.  Cathy’s Focaccia (because you know by now Cathy of BreadExperience is our KOM) is NOT my Portofino Focaccia BUT let me tell you it now defines Glorious Spring Crispy Focaccia for me even if the temp was only 33° when I made this.  The babes kept showing this baked with lemons and were raving about a cookbook “The Flavor Bible” and I’m thinking “Nope no more cookbooks until I have a real oven and slice a fresh lemon and put it on bread to bake, and then I’m supposed to eat.”  NOT going to happen.

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You’ll want to double down on lemon slices, put them close together.

Thanks, but no I won’t be eating my hat, perhaps my words.  I will be baking another Thin Crispy Lemon and Asparagus Focaccia, Thank You very much Cathy.

Thin Crispy Spring Focaccia

Recipe By: Cathy (breadexperience)
Yield: Four ~400-gram Focaccias

Poolish:
40 grams (100 %) Bread Flour
44 grams (125%) water, room temperature
1/8 teaspoon/ 4 grams (10%) instant yeast
Final Dough
668 grams (80%) Bread Flour, I used 600 grams
167 grams (20%) Sprouted Spelt Flour (or whole wheat or bread flour), I used 235 grams sprouted wheat
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
625 grams (75%) – 725 grams (87%) water *
84 grams (All) Poolish
17 grams Olive Oil
25 grams water (3%), to mix with the salt
17 grams Coarse Sea Salt
Topping Suggestions:
Olive Oil
Coarse Sea Salt, for sprinkling if desired
Fennel Seeds, to taste
Dried Thyme, to taste
Lemon slices, thinly sliced
Spring Mix Greens, or other greens as desired
Alfalfa Sprouts

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I shaved the ends of the asparagus and cut each stalk in half.  Slice the lemons as thin as possible.  I only used one.  I’ll not hesitate to use part of another next time.

1. *The bread flour I used is closer to a light whole wheat and I also used some sprouted wheat which absorbs more liquid. If using regular white bread flour, the hydration should be closer to 77% – 80%.

2. Poolish:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the bread flour and yeast. Pour in the room temperature water and combine using a wooden spoon. Scrape down the sides of the bowl using a spatula or dough scraper. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rest on the counter at room temperature (75 degrees F. /25 degrees C.) for 12 to 14 hours.

3. Final Dough:
The next day, or when ready to mix the final dough, whisk together the flours and yeast in a large bowl.  Pour the water and oil over the poolish and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon or Danish dough whisk to break up the poolish. Add the water gradually, reserving the 25 grams to mix with the salt.  I started with about 650 grams (78%), then gradually added more water until the dough reached the consistency I was looking for 725 grams (87%).  Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a dough scraper, cover and let it rest (autolyze) for 20 minutes.

4. Uncover and sprinkle the salt over the top of the dough. Pour the remaining 25 grams of water over the salt to dissolve it.  Using wet hands, thoroughly incorporate the salt into the dough. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and let it rest for 20 minutes.

5. Sprinkle water on a work surface. Uncover the dough and transfer it to the wet surface. Using wet hands, fold the dough from all sides.  Then gently tuck the seams under and place the dough back in the bowl.  Using water on the counter and your hands, alleviates the need to oil the bowl or the work surface. Cover the bowl again with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and set the dough aside for the third time to ferment for 20 minutes.

6. Sprinkle water on the work surface again and fold the dough one last time. Tuck the seams under and place it back in the bowl. Cover and set it aside to ferment for 2 hours.

7. An hour before you plan to bake the focaccia, place a baking stone or tiles in the oven and preheat it to 500 degrees F. (260 degrees C.) If you plan to use a pan for steam, place it in the oven at this time.

8. Sprinkle your work surface with water. Transfer the dough to the work surface and divide it into four equal pieces. Depending on the type of flour you use and the hydration, each piece will be approximately 400 grams.  Mine were about 410 grams each.

Shape each piece into a round and cover with plastic. Let them bench rest for 15 minutes.

At this point, wrap the dough balls you won’t be baking in oiled plastic, placed them in a plastic bag and put them in the refrigerator to use another day.  I froze two.  Feel free to make them all at once if you prefer.

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9. Lightly oil two half sheets of parchment paper. Place one dough ball on each sheet. Gently press on the dough to degas it and then shape each piece into a flattish round.  Cover the rounds with plastic wrap and let them proof for 45 minutes.

Uncover the dough, drizzle olive oil over the top and gently stretch each piece into an oval disk the length of the parchment paper, or to the desired size.  I sprinkled the top with sea salt (optional), pepper and place thinly sliced lemons, then laid my asparagus.

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I suppose it’s simple caramelization of the lemons but even very thinly sliced they take on the texture of jam and hint of lemon curd in a flavor extravaganza! It is marvelous.

10. Using a baker’s peel or unrimmed baking sheet, transfer the focaccia (on the parchment) to the preheated baking stone.  My little Breville oven only goes to 450 but it does have a baking stone (my steel is too large but works on the outside grill).

Bake the focaccia for 10 minutes, or until the loaves are golden brown and crisp around the edges.  Remove the parchment paper partway through baking to allow the bottom to firm up.  Mine took 25 minutes at 450°.  The hotter 500° would have eliminated the center softer crust I’m sure and would have baked much faster which I know produces much better crust.

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Repeat with the remaining focaccias.

This focaccia makes a great appetizer or the main meal. For Cathy the flavors of the fennel seed, thyme and lemon paired really well.  She and her taste testers  really enjoyed the hint of tanginess you get when you bite into a piece with a lemon slice. However, feel free to use the toppings and flavors of your choice.

Cathy (BreadExperience) is our flavor star Kitchen of the Month. Bake this Spring Focaccia recipe above and post it on your blog before the 30th of this month. Please make sure you mention BBB May 2016 in the subject line and link to Cathy’s BBB post in your own blog post. If you don’t have a blog do not hesitate to bake and email Cathy with your name  (breadexperience at gmail dot com), a 500px wide image of your bread. Cathy will then send you a BBB badge for this bread that you can then add to your post on your blog. The round up can be expected around the 3nd of June.
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You’ll want to double down on lemon slices, put them close together. Trust me you REALLY want to bake this one.

I’ll be baking my 2nd dough ball of Cathy’s Spring Focaccia today, slightly warmer more spring like today in the 60’s.  Trust me, try at least one with lemon.  I know I’ll be putting many lemons on this again.
And, yes, alright I did buy the book.  And No, I still only have the little Breville convection toaster oven.