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Basic Hearth Bread with All Purpose Flour
Posted: 29 September 2009 08:13 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Many of us in Latin America have problems finding other flour than all-purpose,
be it unbleached or bleached.
I have baked the soft Sandwich Bread with all purpose, bleached flour (Gold Medal,
11% protein), and the result was nice and tasty.
Now, I tried Rose?s Basic Hearth Bread (which I used to bake with a bread flour that
isn?t sold anymore), using all purpose, unbleached, 13% protein “Nacarina” flour.
The crumb was softer, and the crust a lot thinner, but also crisp and golden.  The bread
kept for a week, well wrapped, in the fridge, and tasted great, with a crispy crust, after
toasting.
The only problem were the bubbles int he dough:enormous, BIG, blisterlike air bubbles,
that made shaping very difficult; The dough also deflated a lot when I burst some of the bubbles
while slashing it.  You can see that the boule isn?t very tall, and one burst “blister” on
the crust.
In spite of this, for the first time i can consider myself satisfied with the slashing!  And my
family loved the taste.  We ate the whole boule with lunch.

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Posted: 29 September 2009 08:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Silvia - your boule is picture perfect!

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Posted: 29 September 2009 09:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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You’ re so kind!

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Posted: 29 September 2009 09:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Silvia - 30 September 2009 12:01 AM

You’ re so kind!

You’re so talented wink

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Posted: 29 September 2009 09:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Am I???  wink

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Posted: 29 September 2009 11:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Silvia - 30 September 2009 12:10 AM

Am I???  wink

The photo doesn’t lie!

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Posted: 30 September 2009 08:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Silvia, nice boule!  Remember, large holes are a desireable hallmark of many types of artisan bread.  Were the holes more or less evenly distributed, or were they mostly near the top? 

If they were evenly distrubuted, Rose’s shaping techniques can help give the bread a firmer “skin” and attractive shape, while still maintaining those lovely holes.  Review her bread video for tips. 

If you want to decrease the size of your holes, you could try increasing gluten structure, either through a higher protein flour or through more kneading.  This will also give the bread a more chewy texture.

If the holes were mostly at the top, check that you are not overproofing- an indent made with an oiled fingertip should fill in slowly.  Also check that you are developing gluten adequately.

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Posted: 30 September 2009 12:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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The holes were anything but lovely, because the bubbles were enormous.
They were everywhere, and that made shaping very difficult.  It was like
trying to force a playful being into a specific posture (position? I am not
sure of the word). Do I make mayself clear? The dough was like a bubbly,
restless child, that won’t keep quit for a photograph.

Perhaps the all-purpose flour needs less yeast and more kneading (still
I don’t know when enough kneading is really enough).  tThe crumb was soft;
it resembled sandwich bread a bit, but less substantial and chewy.
Of course, I prefer to use bread flour, but you seldom find it here.  That means
I have to keep on with my experiments!

Julie - 30 September 2009 11:54 AM

Silvia, nice boule!  Remember, large holes are a desireable hallmark of many types of artisan bread.  Were the holes more or less evenly distributed, or were they mostly near the top? 

If they were evenly distrubuted, Rose’s shaping techniques can help give the bread a firmer “skin” and attractive shape, while still maintaining those lovely holes.  Review her bread video for tips. 

If you want to decrease the size of your holes, you could try increasing gluten structure, either through a higher protein flour or through more kneading.  This will also give the bread a more chewy texture.

If the holes were mostly at the top, check that you are not overproofing- an indent made with an oiled fingertip should fill in slowly.  Also check that you are developing gluten adequately.

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Posted: 01 October 2009 11:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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The dough was like a bubbly, restless child, that won?t keep quit for a photograph

That made me laugh- yes, indeed, I can picture both the child and the dough! 

From your description of the soft crumb and large holes, I would imagine that more kneading might help.  Also, make sure to carefully, but thoroughly, deflate the dough before the final shaping (you want to reduce the size of the bubbles, but not totally annihilate them).  Good luck!

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Posted: 01 October 2009 08:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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I agree that more kneading could make my dough forget its unruly, bubbly,
volcano-like,ways,
but still, the size of the blisters is amazing.  Never before have I seen
something like these.
Julie, I also need to learn when the dough has had enough kneading.
Even when I used Bread flour, I didn?t know when to stop; I just used
the time suggested by Rose.

Julie - 01 October 2009 02:59 PM

The dough was like a bubbly, restless child, that won?t keep quit for a photograph

That made me laugh- yes, indeed, I can picture both the child and the dough! 

From your description of the soft crumb and large holes, I would imagine that more kneading might help.  Also, make sure to carefully, but thoroughly, deflate the dough before the final shaping (you want to reduce the size of the bubbles, but not totally annihilate them).  Good luck!

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Posted: 02 October 2009 11:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I’m not as experienced as others on this site, perhaps someone else can chime in?

I make a number of my favorite breads from Rose’s Bread Bible repeatedly (pizza, focaccia, durum torpedo, pugliese and brioche), but they are all so different I have learned to judge kneading for each just by the feel of the dough- how much resistance there is to stretching- and also by how wet the dough is.  Yes, I also follow Rose’s time suggestions as a starting point, but sometimes I find I need to alter those a bit based on a new flour or on how the bread turned out last time I made it.  I guess I don’t really have a consistent, foolproof method for determining when the bread is kneaded correctly.  Rose describes the windowpane method in the begining section of the book, perhaps that would be useful?  It doesn’t apply to most of the breads I make, so I’ve never tried it.

On the bright side, bread rarely fails to the point of not being able to enjoy it (unlike cakes…), so perhaps make it a few times in a row until you get the new flour issues worked through?

Good luck!

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Posted: 02 October 2009 01:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Silvia, I don’t have that recipe, so it’s hard to comment in a specific way. But generally, having lots and lots of bubbles like that after the first rise can sometimes be the result of having too much yeast by mis-measuring or through not converting correctly when using fresh in place of dry yeast or vice versa. Another possibility: if it’s a recipe that uses a fair amount of yeast, it’s important not to let the first rise go on too long. I have one recipe that only needs 20 to 30 minutes in the first rise. Any more and I’ve got an unruly child on my hands.  grin

Degas your breads gently after the first rise. I was taught to do a pre-shape. That is, divide the dough and shape each piece round. Then let it rest covered for about 5 minutes so the gluten can relax. Do the final shape and let rise until nearly double. If there are big bubbles on top of your loaves at that point, use a pin to prick them. Something like a straight pin used in sewing.

When scoring, place one hand on the loaf gently to keep it stable while you score it with the blade held in your opposite hand. That helps prevent the dough being pulled too much and deflating more than necessary.

About kneading, it’s pretty hard to knead too long by hand - 8 to 10 minutes is usually good. More is fine. As Julie says, you get to know when the bread feels right. If you’re using a machine, follow the recipe instructions. The windowpane test is a good double-check with most breads—not so useful with sweet yeasted products.

I agree with everyone that your boule look beautiful!! But I understand the quest to produce something even better next time.

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Posted: 02 October 2009 03:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Sylvia, to know if your bread is sufficiently kneaded, in addition to the windowpane test (mentioned by Carolita above) it should feel ‘as smooth as a baby’s bottom’.  That is if it’s white bread with no seeds of course.  It will be lovely and silky and slightly shiny.

Annie

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Posted: 02 October 2009 06:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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I hesitate to say this, but I rarely get oven spring in most of my breads. Admittedly, I’m usually not following specific recipes at this point - I often just go by feel, or I weigh various flours, but do my own combinations and then adjust the liquid as I go. With challah I do follow a recipe, and I do get oven spring. But with the hearth breads, even with slashing, not much happens. they always taste great, so I’ve given up caring too much…. Well, I’m rambling. Back to work.

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Posted: 03 October 2009 02:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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KNIT 1 BAKE 1:
    Good morning to you Beth. Beth, if you feel certain that your yeasted lean bread recipes have enough yeast & hydration then “MOST LIKELY” the culrit is “OVER~PROOFING the dough, that is the one good reason for failing not getting oven~spring. Beth try this next time after doing the fermentation & proofing, then form your bread/rolls, just give it a 1/2 to 3/4 proof covered nicely…Now is the time to Slash & Bake, wink  To get oven spring the yeast must still have power & not to be totaly spent. Let us know if it worked out for you.

  Enjoy the rest of the day young lady.

  ~FRESHKID. rolleyes

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Posted: 12 October 2009 04:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Excuse me for my delayed answers.
The las two weekends I continued with my (forced) experiments with AP Flour.
Both times I have been forced to refrigerate the dough for very long periods,
and at least, for two times.  When (finally!!) baking time approaches, the
shaped dough won?t rise; in the oven, however, it does, as a matter of fact,
very *explosively*.  Yesterday, the slashes burst and vomited a knot of
dough.  Sounds gross, but actually, it looked interesting.  “Like a Clay
sculpture”, my mother observed.  The bread had a beautiful golden brown
color; the crust was delicious, thin and crisp, as it always is.  The crumb was a bit too
dense, not chewy and with a good flavour. We enjoy the bread with “european-style”
butter or just a drizzle of olive oil.
After a careful dissection of a piece of the last boule, I have a couple of hypothesis
about my breads behaviour.
It seems to me, that perhaps I fold the dough in an inappropiate way, because
some of the voids or knots remind me of the folded dough.  Also, during the last
(almost failed) rise, the dough doesn?t loose its folded appearance.  Am I making
myself clear?

About kneading the dough:
I patted the dough and tried to remember the feel of my daughter’s
butt, but failed. The dough resembled more a cellulite-ridden thigh, with all the bubbles
and dimples. Anyway, I did knead it longer, and I managed to get a windowpane, even if it was
a cobwebby one.  I even had to call my daughter and show it to her, though she seemed
uninterested.

I wish I could buy bread flour again; I want to have my “normal” hearth bread again, even
if I know now that you can get a great crust and good flavour with AP flour.

 

AnnieMacD - 02 October 2009 06:02 PM

Sylvia, to know if your bread is sufficiently kneaded, in addition to the windowpane test (mentioned by Carolita above) it should feel ‘as smooth as a baby’s bottom’.  That is if it’s white bread with no seeds of course.  It will be lovely and silky and slightly shiny.

Annie

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