Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Which ONE Bread Cookbook to have


Aloha Steve
 Share

Recommended Posts

There is little point in weighing out accurate quantities of flour and water (yes, do weigh the water for accuracy), only to have the proportions upset by a variable amount of flour pickup during kneading (or stretching & folding). Maybe he now needs to consider water pickup! I prefer to use a bowl with a couple of spoonfuls of oil to grease my hands and tools.

The matter of required, but quantitatively undefined, pickup of extra flour during kneading is something I find particularly frustrating about his recipes/formulas in his Whole Grain Breads book - which does introduce a genuinely novel technique (his own 'epoxy' method).

My girlfriend watched - quite perplexed - as I weighted ingredients to the gram in the beginning, and then at the end said "well, the dough is a bit too wet", and dumped in a handful of flour to fix it.

I don't think the problem is so much the kneading for me (i knead almost entirely with the mixer), but rather in the choice of grains for the breads that are about 40% other-than-flour (for example multigrain struan or multigrain hearth bread). Different grain mixtures absorb different amounts of water. So the same recipe with a different grain mix yields different hydration bread.

Having said that, I really enjoy the book, and I bake from it all the time. But I would be very frustrated if this was my first bread book.

My favourite bread book is Daniel Leader's "Local Breads". Artisan breads from across Europe. My family thinks I was an artisan baker in a former life. The truth is, I just make the breads from the book :)

Edited by isomer (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is little point in weighing out accurate quantities of flour and water (yes, do weigh the water for accuracy), only to have the proportions upset by a variable amount of flour pickup during kneading (or stretching & folding). Maybe he now needs to consider water pickup! I prefer to use a bowl with a couple of spoonfuls of oil to grease my hands and tools.

The matter of required, but quantitatively undefined, pickup of extra flour during kneading is something I find particularly frustrating about his recipes/formulas in his Whole Grain Breads book - which does introduce a genuinely novel technique (his own 'epoxy' method).

My girlfriend watched - quite perplexed - as I weighted ingredients to the gram in the beginning, and then at the end said "well, the dough is a bit too wet", and dumped in a handful of flour to fix it.

I don't think the problem is so much the kneading for me (i knead almost entirely with the mixer), but rather in the choice of grains for the breads that are about 40% other-than-flour (for example multigrain struan or multigrain hearth bread). Different grain mixtures absorb different amounts of water. So the same recipe with a different grain mix yields different hydration bread.

Having said that, I really enjoy the book, and I bake from it all the time. But I would be very frustrated if this was my first bread book.

My favourite bread book is Daniel Leader's "Local Breads". Artisan breads from across Europe. My family thinks I was an artisan baker in a former life. The truth is, I just make the breads from the book :)

dougal: I've been using Crisco for my hands and the silicone mat for some breads and butter for others. So far, your idea is a stone cold WINNER. Hardly any sticking and the dough does not change anything near what it did when using flour. BTW, am using it for rolling out pastry dough too.

isomer: Funny story about to the gram measurements and then poof (pun intended) a bunch thrown in.

And you rascal, I just bought a copy after reading your reincarnation story :(

My wife's moratorium on no more cookbooks is not working out quite as she thought :rolleyes:

Edited by Aloha Steve (log)

edited for grammar & spelling. I do it 95% of my posts so I'll state it here. :)

"I have never developed indigestion from eating my words."-- Winston Churchill

Talk doesn't cook rice. ~ Chinese Proverb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I find it pretty rare that I can make a recipe directly from a book without any alterations. Usually the problem is that the dough is either too dry or too wet when I measure by the numbers. I think it's a combination of using the recipe as a jumping off point and then using experience and common sense to judge what is happening in your mixing bowl. Even when you figure out what works best for your conditions (humidity, type of flour, age of flour, etc.), it can still vary slightly from time to time.

Flickr: Link

Instagram: Link

Twitter: Link

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Baroness, it's the Oatmeal Bread with Cooked Oatmeal from Beard on Bread. Add the liquid slowly so the congealed oatmeal does not fly all over your kitchen. Beard liked it with sweet butter, but it's salted butter for me every time.

Got my Beard Book yesterday, Oatmeal Bread being made later today. If it comes out 1/2 decent (don't bet on it unless you don't need your $$) I will post pictures :>)

Thanks Ruth !

Ahhhh, a total bust today for bread. :sad:

My two loafs did not rise in the oven and came out the same hight as they went in. I could have used them for bricks.

I have absolutely no clue what I did wrong. The first rise went as expected the dough seemed correct.

I also struck out with my first attempt at Sour dough, same problem plus too mild a taste even though the starter had all the markers of being ready. The final rise, did not happen.

I made Tarte au Sucre w Brioche dough (I believe both dough and tart are recipes are Dorie Greenspan's) yesterday and while the form showed a first attempt the end result was delicious, I think I nailed it in terms of taste. :smile:

Edited by Aloha Steve (log)

edited for grammar & spelling. I do it 95% of my posts so I'll state it here. :)

"I have never developed indigestion from eating my words."-- Winston Churchill

Talk doesn't cook rice. ~ Chinese Proverb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My favourite bread book is Daniel Leader's "Local Breads". Artisan breads from across Europe. My family thinks I was an artisan baker in a former life. The truth is, I just make the breads from the book :)

My favorite as well.

I also struck out with my first attempt at Sour dough, same problem plus too mild a taste even though the starter had all the markers of being ready

Don't know what recipe you are using or if by mild you mean not sour, but most naturally leavened breads are not esepcially sour tasting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

will try to post correctly: to follow

Edited by Aloha Steve (log)

edited for grammar & spelling. I do it 95% of my posts so I'll state it here. :)

"I have never developed indigestion from eating my words."-- Winston Churchill

Talk doesn't cook rice. ~ Chinese Proverb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My favourite bread book is Daniel Leader's "Local Breads". Artisan breads from across Europe. My family thinks I was an artisan baker in a former life. The truth is, I just make the breads from the book :)

My favorite as well.

Steve says > Just got notice they shipped mine. :biggrin: Now I need the expertise to use it LOL

I also struck out with my first attempt at Sour dough, same problem plus too mild a taste even though the starter had all the markers of being ready

Don't know what recipe you are using or if by mild you mean not sour, but most naturally leavened breads are not esepcially sour tasting.

Very mild with not hint of what I think of as Sourdough. Like Boudain (sp?) bakery in SF.

I used these directions.

Edited by Aloha Steve (log)

edited for grammar & spelling. I do it 95% of my posts so I'll state it here. :)

"I have never developed indigestion from eating my words."-- Winston Churchill

Talk doesn't cook rice. ~ Chinese Proverb

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry about the Oatmeal Bread. I made it again, and mine didn't rise either. I can only think that I got the recipe from somewhere other than Beard on Bread, you know, the way some cooks's recipes are reprinted from book to newspaper to whatever. The perhaps it was reprinted incorrectly in this book. I made the recipe many, many times, but it's been a few years now.

Actually my small grandchildren loved the bread. I think they liked the fact that they could eat a full slice or two, and not have to settle for a piece.

I'll check this bread further, but it may be a few days before I get to it.

My apologies to those who tried this one.

Ruth Dondanville aka "ruthcooks"

“Are you making a statement, or are you making dinner?” Mario Batali

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...