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Raamo

Baking with Myhrvold's "Modernist Bread: The Art and Science"

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HOST'S NOTE: This post and those that follow were split off from the pre-release discussion of Modernist Bread.

*****

 

Figured I don't need to dump all this into the contest thread - so I'll post here.  My journey to making my first MC loaf.

 

Her's the poolish after >12 hours:

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Not pictured - water with yeast in it below the bread flour and poolish

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That went into the mixer and not long later I had a shaggy mass:

 

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That rested for a while - then mixed until medium gluten formation - a window pane that was both opaque and translucent (no picture for that slightly messy part)

 

Folded and rested, folded and rested, I think this is 1/2 the mass now ready to rest one final time.

 

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Proofed it in the oven - I have a picture of that but it's just foggy window oven :)

 

Then it went into the oven, here it is at max temp - 450 with steam turned on.

 

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Completed loaf:

 

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And the crumb - this is awesome bread:

20171107_165557.thumb.jpg.58a47f56dc27ab6dc1c0517921cffd00.jpg

 

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 No series of pictures of the process but I am just astounded at the finished product. 

 

7E8C944F-524F-4C7A-815D-C1A99F4ECD22.thumb.jpeg.41e17f5837d62a73998b992b1155fccc.jpeg

 

Absolutely nothing went according to plan.  It spent many hours in the refrigerator after I had incorporated the poolish and the yeast and salt.  It got only two folds because I was afraid that I would be too tired to bake it if I waited any longer.  It had to be done in a Dutch oven despite the warnings.  It stuck somewhat to the banneton but I consider it a huge success. Will have to wait to look at the crumb for a while yet. 

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29683196-4CF9-4ADE-B79E-329E58BF0FD0.thumb.jpeg.cc0abd5518f50234a6ba973ca678d4ad.jpeg6D9F42DB-6004-46C0-8E94-7D1AA64771F4.thumb.jpeg.9a6f843f2858d7fdbd9306fc1655324c.jpeg

 

Was too tired last evening to cut into it but I am enjoying it for breakfast this morning.

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This morning I pulled the other ~550g of dough from the fridge, let it warm up for an hour, performed a 4 point fold and let it rest 30 more mins.  Proofed it in my steam oven for 30 mins, it passed the test and was increased in size.

 

This time I figured lets try program #26 - white bread - I switched the oven to kg and was able to enter a weight of .55kg.  It took 40 mins, though I'm pretty sure the temp at the end was not 450 so it might have had some cooling off time.  The internal temp was around 200F so not much different from my 1st attempt.  Even the coloring seems similar.

 

Here is the loaf just out of the oven:

20171108_101558.thumb.jpg.477b305361d2abcf7ddf6d602052ef6d.jpg

 

 

Here is a picture of the crumb, it still tasted excellent - makes me wonder how many days I could get out of a 2x batch (4-5 loafs) - baking one per day. :)

20171108_112328.thumb.jpg.bac380f4d77ade8b71a96910d7d8a0da.jpg

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8D64E078-7786-44F8-98BD-2AC55F5F162F.thumb.jpeg.d246f32205508ed78369c06c4a9acc55.jpeg6E9DE486-D715-488D-B379-FAE662E2D04C.thumb.jpeg.7987ed95af9944aabd26d24136e73727.jpeg

 

 I can say that the recipes seem to be sturdy and resilient and even I can’t seem to have an epic fail. I certainly thought I had one this morning.

 

This is the potato bread using the traditional recipe. I did not have the special SAF Gold yeast (osmotolerant)  which is recommended for breads that are sweetened. But a little research suggested that increasing the amount of standard instant yeast by 30% would also work.  I also didn’t have any of the recommended pans for this particular bread. One of the recommended ones was the 13 x 4 x 4 pullman pan. I had the 9 x 4 x 4 and with my limited math abilities determined that I would have to reduce the dough by 30%. I had no intentions of reducing the ingredients — that would surely lead to disaster. 

 

But the biggest challenge of all was that even though I carefully weighed all ingredients, after mixing for five minutes I had a batter not a dough.  I started to add flour and it required more than 6 additional tablespoons and even then I ended up tipping the mixing bowl contents onto the counter and doing some hand kneading. 

 

 I opted to use 680 g of the dough to make a loaf and formed the remaining dough into three buns. 

 

 My slashing skills continue to need improvement. 

 

I will examine the crumb once it has cooled down and post a photograph.

 

 One of the limitations I find of their kitchen manual is that it is so abbreviated us to be almost unusable At times. One needs to refer back to the books themselves or to other tables in the kitchen manual. The recipe in the kitchen manual gives the mixing time of from 12 to 17 minutes  but if you refer back to the appropriate page in Volume 4 there are much more precise instructions.  I find myself making many penciled notes in the kitchen manual. 

 

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So here are the crumb shots of the buns and the bread. 

 

CBC5544F-537D-4B37-96D3-11008F28A5E8.thumb.jpeg.b4e20921aced177399ae1c63e372be77.jpeg

 

 

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 It is a lovely bread and I had a sandwich for my dinner tonight using it. 

 

 I may have to stop baking for a few days as my freezer is full and I can only eat so much. :) 

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26 minutes ago, Anna N said:

So here are the crumb shots of the buns and the bread. 

 

CBC5544F-537D-4B37-96D3-11008F28A5E8.thumb.jpeg.b4e20921aced177399ae1c63e372be77.jpeg

 

 

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 It is a lovely bread and I had a sandwich for my dinner tonight using it. 

 

 I may have to stop baking for a few days as my freezer is full and I can only eat so much. :) 

8

Are those seeds of some sort in the white bread or do my eyes deceive me?

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1 minute ago, ElsieD said:

8

Are those seeds of some sort in the white bread or do my eyes deceive me?

 No seeds. 

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Well I talked to my cleaning angel today and she indicated she would be more than happy to take bread off my hands at any time. Wonderful. I couldn’t bring myself to make it and then toss it out.  So I attempted to bake another bread today.

 

This is the pain de mie.  Again I had no osmotolerant yeast so I used 30% more instant yeast than called for.  And again I did not have the large 13 x 4 x 4 pullman pan but only the 9 x 4 x 4 so I reduced the ingredients this time by 30%.

 

Somehow I managed to not get the lid on properly but it doesn’t seem to have suffered too much from that error. The pulling away of the crust, however, does warrant some troubleshooting. 

 

63E764C7-9CA9-4B8E-9164-DDD675BB8391.thumb.jpeg.b3af11d7d5b37d65f22771fc228c74eb.jpeg

 

1013537F-093F-4CB1-98A5-286F86F457FE.thumb.jpeg.e3e58358f16230e050569053def963c6.jpegimageproxy.php?img=&key=d2a459cbdaa822cc The bread is still quite edible just not very attractive.  


Edited by Anna N (log)
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I haven't gotten to reading about the recipes yet, but is there any specific reason they give for using osmotolerant yeast? The recipe didn't look particularly sugary or fatty to me.

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  Here’s a brief paraphrase of what they say. Osmosis occurs in any liquid medium and with any dissolved compound. Sugar will exert osmotic stress on the yeast.  To some extent this is mitigated by the glycerol that the yeast produces. As a result of these two stresses, doughs leavened by yeast may take longer to rise in the presence of salt and sugar. They actually say “a lot” of added salt or sugar but do not quantify it.  Discussion of osmotolerant yeasts stretch over 3  volumes so you may find more when you open the books and start reading. 


Edited by Anna N (log)
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4C2827F9-E9BE-4158-8AC0-EFF326EBCD49.thumb.jpeg.e4da767f87e91006e677eebdbf18ea20.jpeg

 

 Two small boules.  Country style bread using the direct method (just yeast, no preferment). Once again the dough was very challenging and I had to add flour in considerable quantities. I also thought I had everything properly organized to use the pizza stone and a lid. In my case it would’ve been a deep hotel pan. But when it came time to put the bread in the oven I realized that there was no room for the lid because of a shelf in there!  Duh!  Unwilling to risk life and/or limb to pull out a screaming hot oven shelf and find a place to stash it, I resorted to the non-Modernist trick and tossed a bunch of ice cubes on the floor of the oven to produce some steam.  Oven temperatures and times seem to me to be somewhat off which may just have to do with my own. I believe if I had followed the recommendation I would’ve ended up with two lumps of charcoal. YMMV. 

 

I think I will have to make many compromises with respect to the recommended cast-iron multi cooker.  It only works for one loaf at a time for a start unless one is willing to spring for two. But I also think it is going to be much too heavy for me to handle.  I will be looking around for a deeper and larger hotel pan I think.

 

 Anxious for everyone to get their books and start cooking. :)

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I’ve started. Poolish on the go. Doves organic strong white bread flour and Doves active yeast. Unfiltered cold tap water.

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Anna,  if you go with a cast iron combo cooker, as I have, definitely get some barbecue gloves -   here is one set, though not the ones I have  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01H0EE1L2/ref=sspa_dk_detail_3?psc=1

   Loading the combo is not that hard, but it helps to be able to put a hand on the handle, and well as the opposing hand hold, and the gloves really come in when taking off the top halfway through.   

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4 hours ago, Barrytm said:

Anna,  if you go with a cast iron combo cooker, as I have, definitely get some barbecue gloves -   here is one set, though not the ones I have  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01H0EE1L2/ref=sspa_dk_detail_3?psc=1

   Loading the combo is not that hard, but it helps to be able to put a hand on the handle, and well as the opposing hand hold, and the gloves really come in when taking off the top halfway through.   

 

'I have similar gloves - different brand and mine are steam-proof which some aren't - and they are fantastic for all manner of things. I find I get a much better grip on things than with normal oven mitts, and with arthritis in the hands and wrists getting the best grip possible is key.

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6 hours ago, Barrytm said:

Anna,  if you go with a cast iron combo cooker, as I have, definitely get some barbecue gloves -   here is one set, though not the ones I have  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01H0EE1L2/ref=sspa_dk_detail_3?psc=1

   Loading the combo is not that hard, but it helps to be able to put a hand on the handle, and well as the opposing hand hold, and the gloves really come in when taking off the top halfway through.   

 Thank you.  I am going to weigh my Dutch oven today. This is what I have been using for some of my breadmaking for many years and I can just handle it in terms of its weight. If it’s comparable to the combo cooker then I just might spring for it. I find Lodge cast-iron to be exceptionally heavy compared to that from other manufacturers. 

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1F174526-E3D9-42AA-9132-D6B4C5111B6A.thumb.jpeg.56e87c7d35f749db216e2531d366095c.jpeg

 

 Here is the crumb from the country style bread. I am quite pleased with it given all my missteps. 

 

 Almost out of bread flour now! More is on the way. If I’m going to do any baking today then it will have to be all purpose flour supplemented with vital wheat gluten.

 

 Edited to add:

Finally had a chance to taste this and I think it may become my new favourite bread. I like both the taste and the texture.  But it’s early in the game and it may well get overtaken by something I like even more.xD


Edited by Anna N (log)
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 Today I plan on really testing the robustness of the recipes. I am going to attempt the white sandwich bread but I have no whole milk, no osmotolerant yeast and not enough bread flour. But I do have shelfstable skim milk, 35% cream, all purpose flour with a protein content of 13.3% and I will make up for the lack osmotolerant using 30% more instant yeast. What can possibly go wrong?  xD

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Came out ok-ish. Crust a little dark but nice and crispy. Ran the oven at 245c no fan and a tray of ice in the bottom. Vented at 20 mins and baked for a further 15.

 

Left to cool and then enjoyed for dinner. Will try again tomorrow with machine mixing.

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514A664A-4E18-4AB8-8626-3F5F8DBC462E.thumb.jpeg.850d6380f23a470055bc86c2b12300db.jpeg

 

I was able to eke out just enough of my bread flour to make these.  Amazon arrived with more as I pulled them out of the oven!

 

 This time everything went according to plan. The liquid to dry ratios were bang on.   I would be patting myself on the back loudly if it were not for one small error… Damn! I forgot to score them.  But tomorrow I’m going to do it all over again. I will get this right if it kills me and it might. xD   But I’m having so much fun I will die happy. 

 

Hoping to see others joining in this cook off as books begin to arrive. 

 

 But you’ll find the books are only the beginning of the expense. You’ll be wanting more flour. You’ll be wanting more ingredients. You’ll be wanting bannetons and combi cookers and couches and......................

 

 

 


Edited by Anna N (log)
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I had a dream* this morning that the darker side of my CSO baked boule had a better crumb.  (Not that there was anything terribly wrong with the crumb I pictured.)  After waking up when I went to make my sandwich for taking into work I saw that it was so.

 

And the boule made a most fragrant lunch.

 

 

*really.

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6576D461-A519-49AA-9631-9FDBDADEF206.thumb.jpeg.9726c67874d3fe2a077c31c3f04ddad6.jpeg

 

The sandwich bread. Really nice. Made an onion sandwich for my dinner with it. 

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3-108 describes the technique of mixing by pulling a vacuum on the dough.  I would like to try it.  The procedure calls for sealing the bag.  But I don't see the point of this.  What is the benefit of sealing the bag?  Is it to keep the dough surface from drying?

 

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"There are distractions that can tug at you during every step of bread making.  Mistakes can happen anytime to anyone, including the common misstep of mixing up the weight of the flour and the water,* which results in more of a batter than a dough."

 

 

*I have done this.

 

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