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Chris Hennes

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Everything posted by Chris Hennes

  1. Depends on how sticky the dough is. The ancient grain bread is quite sticky so I just sort of pull the outside around with my thumbs to pull it taught, rolling it a bit to get the shape right. I am proofing in bannetons, which also helps.
  2. Ancient Grain Bread (KM p. 102) The "ancient grain" section of the book contains, as usual, a "Master Recipe", a "Modernist Variation," and a dozen or so specific ingredient combination suggestions. It also contains a basic formula for developing your own. So for my first attempt I made the Master Recipe exactly as written. The basic idea is to blend 60% high-gluten wheat bread flour and add 40% of the "ancient grain" flour(s), plus standard wheat-based liquid levain. Their recipes mostly use blends of three different alternate grains: in this case, Kamut, Emmer and Spelt. As an inclusion the Master recipe has you add sprouted sorghum, and it uses pearl millet as a topping. First things first: it's fantastic. Definitely one of the best breads I've ever had. I found the millet topping a bit too crunchy, and I added too much of it, I think (it goes everywhere when you slice!). But the basic flavor of the bread is superb. I have not been on the ancient grain bandwagon up to this point (I guess the marketing rubs me the wrong way), but at least this particular combination is absolutely worth making. Using high gluten flour I had no trouble getting to a windowpane stage, and the crumb of the bread is every bit as good as my standard sourdough. I'm definitely looking forward to the next few months of baking... I have a lot of different grains to experiment with, and I know I've got at least one winner on my hands.
  3. Sounds like I need to start planning a field trip. Are you planning on being open Tuesday-Sunday? Or some other schedule?
  4. @Kerry Beal, to my reading of the instructions there is no boiling step (they say to follow the "baking" instructions, which are separate from the boiling instructions). Also, I think looking at the photo for the gluten-free bagel it doesn't appear to have been dipped in lye post-bake like their other bagels. So I'd probably try it that way first and see what you get.
  5. Pain de Méteil (p. 4•371) I've made this one before, but it's been a while. I was distracted while feeding my levains on Friday evening and fed my wheat without actually reserving any for baking! So I needed something leavened entirely with rye, and this fit the bill. I don't know why I don't make it more often, it's a really excellent bread. I also made a version with a pressure caramelized 7-grain blend, which was delicious.
  6. Chris Hennes

    Oat Milk

    Interesting — I made a batch with Quaker last night, but I haven’t used it yet.
  7. Chris Hennes

    Oat Milk

    How long do you blitz (or to what texture)? Are you looking for something smooth, or still sort of grainy?
  8. Yes, though I think my favorite is probably at two days. I haven't really experimented with increments less than a day, though, so it's a pretty coarse sample. And obviously how sour you like your bread is a personal preference.
  9. In my experience it's about four days (though there are a lot of factors at play).
  10. I have the same experience -- at 39°F I've found that at least 24h is needed. If I need it faster I take it out of the refrigerator a few hours early and let it proof at room temperature until it's ready. There's too much variability to really pin down an exact number, I think there's no substitute for checking for proof. Also remember that what properly proofed feels like will change depending on the dough's temperature. It's going to be firmer in the refrigerator, so spring back quite a bit more slowly.
  11. Chris Hennes

    Oat Milk

    My local coffee shop added oat milk to their menu a couple of months ago, which is the first I'd heard of it: clearly, I am behind on my food trend awareness. This morning's Washington Post has an article about making your own but obviously I'm going to trust advice from eG more than the Post (sorry, Post!). Does anyone make their own at home? Tips/tricks I should know about before trying it?
  12. Nice report, @underproofed. I still can't shape a baguette worth crap, I've switched to proofing in bannetons and only making boules and batards. I'm looking forward to seeing your continued progress -- you could make a neat time-series graphic with photos of your progression!
  13. Pistachio butter (page 37) At first glance this looks like a normal pistachio butter recipe, but delving deeper reveals a much more interesting beast. In addition to pistachios and salt, the recipe calls for a small amount of vinegar and olive oil. I wouldn't put it on a sandwich, but as a topping for roasted vegetables the vinegar in particular adds a terrific, if subtle, acidity. I was surprised when looking the recipe up on Eat Your Books a moment ago to note that this does not seem to be the consensus opinion... a couple people commented that they didn't like the vinegar addition, or that it required agrodolce. I couldn't disagree more.
  14. Man, that stuff would be good with just about anything.
  15. Half-steamed turnips with alla diavola butter (page 370) The recipe title basically says it all: the turnips are left a bit firm, and hit with a pretty large dose of the alla diavola butter (which is delicious). Hard to go wrong.
  16. Another option (the one I use) is that if you expect the area outside the refrigerator to be lower humidity than your target the majority of the time, a fan that just pulls air out of the fridge does the trick as well. Probably not suited to Florida, but it works great in Oklahoma. Of course, it involved drilling a hole in the fridge...
  17. Yeah, the book definitely says not to do what I am doing. I don't know over what time period they are concerned about the culture degrading, nor do I know what form that degradation will take, but feeding every day was just wasting too much flour for my comfort. Now that I have a reliable way to restart my levain I'm not that concerned about killing it.
  18. Your bacterial growth rate will be much lower at lower temperatures, so I think the danger is that you will have inadequate fermentation in the time it takes to achieve your desired weight loss. You might want to look into the various commercial solutions out there for controlling the temperature of a refrigerator to a higher setpoint than the refrigerator itself is designed for (or you can DIY, of course). And my experience was that over a large portion of the drying process the natural humidity in the chamber tends to be too high, not too low (though I had my curing fridge pretty full).
  19. I think you are probably right, with the caveat that that is directly correlated with feeding interval, so it's the combination of the two that you are looking to get right. I only bake once per week so I work on a highly-modified feeding schedule that involves refrigerating the levain, then taking it out of the fridge the morning before I want to use it, letting it get up to full expansion, and feeding it when it looks "hungry." The amount of time it takes to get to that point depends on room temperature, whether the undercounter lights are on, where it was in the fridge, etc. This is perfectly fine for a home baker, though of course for a professional operation the wild swings in feeding time would be wholly unacceptable.
  20. I'm not sure exactly what @jmolinari meant, but I suspect literally that your fat percent looks high, not in the recipe, but in the photograph. 20% fat is really not that much, and your photo seems to show quite a bit more. How well trimmed was your meat?
  21. Another data point along these lines, last night I made the MB recipe for Sangak, an Iranian flatbread with a 105% hydration dough -- I made a 500g batch and to get the KA 6-qt bowl lift dough hook to knead it effectively I had to turn the speed all the way up to 10.
  22. I make it exactly as per the recipe -- actually this time maybe even slightly higher hydration, I doubled the amount of espresso (but that's a pretty tiny quantity). It's a very sticky dough to work with, but one key for me is that I pretty much always proof in the refrigerator, and I proof in bannetons. The refrigerator temperature gives a firmer dough, and the banneton means I don't have to work with the dough after it's been proofed. Obviously there's also a very large amount of flour involved in prepping the banneton to keep the dough from sticking.
  23. No, that's a lower hydration dough, I mix it at low speed to medium gluten development, then add the salt and mix at medium for a couple minutes more (I do the same for the sandwich bread, which I make much more often than the French Lean).
  24. Chocolate Cherry Sourdough (KM p. 78) To prove I still know how to bake despite the previous travesty, here's the local fan favorite. I make this one a lot, and fortunately hedged my bets this past weekend. It's good to include some proven winners in your baking plans, particularly when your other loaves are... esoteric. This really is a terrific bread, particularly made with good chocolate chips (I use the E. Guittard 63%).
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