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  1. I got my current starter from a friend a month or two ago. When I was pregnant with my last baby I developed a weird aversion to my starter. I couldn’t even look at it or think about it without throwing up. Then I could never face the prospect of a freezer full of waffles to start my own from scratch again. But quarantine... so I jumped back on the horse, but started with a well-developed micro starter this time.
  2. Between about 76 and 78% on these, I think. I wet my hands a lot with mixing and folding, so with a smaller amount of dough it affects the hydration. And I agree about the waste. When I started my first starter about 6 or 7 years ago I just couldn’t throw anything away for the first month or two. It hurt too much. I think I probably had over 100 sourdough waffles and around 50 soft pretzels in my garage freezer at one point in time and then my family was like, “Stop, Mom, please. We can’t take any more.” This is so much more manageable. I’ve actually had to build up my discard on purpose to be able to make things with it.
  3. I’ve been feeding 3 times a day and keeping a very small starter, as recommended by @fullproofbaking on IG. She has a bunch of tutorials on YouTube and IG. My approximate and often flexible schedule: I feed 5g of starter 10g flour (bread/ww mix) and 10g water at 7:00 a.m. (1:2:2) 2:00 p.m. discard all but 5g and feed 10g flour mix, 10g water. (1:2:2) 9:00 p.m. feed 5g starter 25g flour mix, 25g water. (1:5:5) The morning I want to mix dough I feed 15g starter with 30g flour mix and 30g water and use that in the bread mix for a ~650g loaf about 5 hours later and have just enough left over for my mid-day feed. 6 years ago I kept a 67% stiffer starter and did 1 part starter, 2 parts water, 3 parts flour and fed twice a day. I liked that I had to knead to mix it—i could be sure everything was well incorporated, and it was more dramatic when it rose. But more recipes are written for a liquid starter and I got tired of doing the math 😂. But I’m really liking this micro starter. It’s very sweet and so much less waste. I just throw the spoonful of discard in the freezer and hold on to it until I have enough to make pancakes or waffles. These loaves were baked on that schedule with different amount of bulk fermentation (almost 5 hours, 6.5 hours, 8 hours). They all turned out pretty well.
  4. You may be right! One thing I’ve done with soft fillings is freeze the macs upright right after filling, then turn them on their sides for storage in the fridge after they’re frozen. Because, as you said, the shells draw moisture out of the filling, and I find that once I bring them out of the fridge they are nice and sturdy.
  5. Even a 1:1 ratio of white chocolate to cream seems like it would be veeeeery fluid and unlikely to set up to me. I’ve seen recipes go as high as 4:1 white chocolate to cream for macarons. As far as the dark recipe, a change from 68% to 70% shouldn’t make a huge difference. I’d give it a try and if you find it too firm, just add a smidge more cream the next time.
  6. I really like Solstice and Amano. They’re both US companies, out of Utah actually. Maison Marou out of Vietnam is really yummy too.
  7. The recipe I used was a bit of a disaster and I don’t want to throw anyone under the bus publicly. I’ll message you the recipe and my thoughts.
  8. Honestly, what haven’t been baking? Here’s about half of it. All the cakes: Chocolate cake, raspberry compote, hazelnut daquoise, praliné buttercream, dark chocolate buttercream, raspberry chocolate macarons, hazelnut dragées and brittle Devil’s Food cake, peanut butter buttercream, sponge toffee bits, homemade pb cups, chocolate ganache, chopped chocolate and peanuts Grapefruit cardamom chiffon cake, grapefruit glaze, candied zest and segments Salted Caramel and Chocolate Gateau St. Honoré And all the bread and pastry: Kouign-Amann No-knead bread Every conceivable braid style of challah Garlic Naan Asiago Bagels Croissants Cinnamon Crunch bagels My belly and freezer are full
  9. Thank you for all the input! Today’s attempt went better despite it being the batch I broke the butter on during the first turn. I did two book folds instead of 3 standard folds and I maintained a more consistent proofing temperature. I let them proof longer as well. Not perfect, and I can see the errors in the lamination, but I think I’m moving in the right direction. I appreciate all the help!
  10. So I finally tried croissants again (stuck in the house and all that ), and I used this recipe. They turned out okay, but aren’t as open inside as I’d like. A few issues I ran into along the way. 1. I did 3 simple turns. On the last turn, the dough tore in a few places and it was incredibly hard to roll despite putting it back in the fridge to rest twice during that last turn. 2. I struggled with creating a proper proofing environment. I used my cold oven with some cups of warm water. A few times while switching out the water the temp crept up over 27C. 3. I keep reading that croissants will wobble or jiggle when fully proved, but I can’t find a visual anywhere. There’s a video on my IG page. Does this look right? They rose for another 20 minutes or so after this point while the oven finished preheating. 4. The recipe I used had me laminate yesterday, then roll, shape, and bake today. The dough seemed really dry and seemed to crack when I rolled it. It was wrapped tightly in plastic wrap. Maybe that wasn’t enough? Maybe it dried out because of too much flour left on the dough from the bench? 5. I started a second batch today and I was distracted homeschooling and started when the butter was still too firm and it broke inside the dough in a few places. I let it sit for a bit and finished laminating. Is it worth baking them up or should I start over? 6. How do you like to shape your croissants? Notch or no notch at the wide end? Thank you in advance for any advice! I did up the temperature and underworked the dough as was suggested by a few people last time—I so appreciated the tips! The good news: they’re delicious. Seeing as these seem to take quite a bit of practice to master, that might also be the bad news.
  11. It’s a praliné made with graham cracker
  12. You can thin the pdf a bit more via any of the methods about—slightly lower temp, slightly less pectin, purée with a bit of something to loosen it. You can also just make sure that the ganache you pipe over it is nice and fluid. It will fill in any gaps left by the mounding of the pdf. A white or a milk ganache is going to be easier to pipe over a mound like marshmallow or pdf.
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