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I getting the hang of this bread making....


CRUZMISL
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Man, that bread looks great!

Is the tile on your backsplash the same as your floor tile? I have been giving that some thought as both a practical and attractive way to handle the backsplashes in my soon to be redone for the third time kitchen.

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Easier and looks fine IMHO. The small tiles were 10 times the price and looked "busy" anyway.

Joe

We are thinking alike in this matter. :laugh:

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Wow! I'm impressed. Blovie just got me The Bread Bible for Chanukah, and I'm trying to decide whether I'm completely intimidated, or whether I'm ready to jump in to the project.

What are you using as your reference?

"Some people see a sheet of seaweed and want to be wrapped in it. I want to see it around a piece of fish."-- William Grimes

"People are bastard-coated bastards, with bastard filling." - Dr. Cox on Scrubs

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Well I've tried a bunch of different bread recipes but this one always turns out well. I'm still no expert by any stretch of the imagination. I have the most difficulty with sourdoughs and best luck with italian and french loaves for some reason. I have a 1" thick stone that I leave heat up for an hour before I begin. My advice to you is go ahead and try. If you make a mistake it's still usually pretty good and one of the cheapest things to make in the kitchen yet also the most rewarding.

Joe

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  • 3 weeks later...

Those are beauties! Congrats. Do you listen to the crackling of the crust after they've just come out of the oven. I actually get very excited when I hear that.

The fresh baking bread smell has got to be one of the best smells to fill a house, no?

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WOW! Can you add smell to your digital camera?

I am so impressed! It would go great with what I'm having for dinner.... :rolleyes:

I swore I would never do bread at work, but my Chef and I were talking, now that the holidays are over, about me fooling around a bit (with bread, silly, not him! :laugh: ). I really have enough to do with all the pastry work, but still... I am intrigued. I already do several full sheets of no-brainer foccacia every morning, which gets rave reviews (it is what we accompany all meals with). Whenever we need rolls, baguettes, pain de campagne, semolina, etc, we outsource from a great place. I'm not sure I want to go in that direction, but you make it look soooo easy............ Congrats!

I like to cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.

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It is really easy. Much easier than I thought. As long as you follow the rules and use good unbrominated flour, you're all set. I can reproduce these loaves at will now which is really a feat. I've had difficulty with bread for years.

Practice, practice, practice. Even my mediocre loaves were better than the best bakery in town.

Joe

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Sim,

Any hints on focaccia? I recently tried it at home subbing sourdough starter from Jackal's eGCI course for Dan Lepard's leaven and used his recipe.

THe result was fantast light loaf (that I wish I took a picture of). While it looked and tasted great, its not exactly what I would call Focaccia.

It was not as flat and I couldn't get it to shape the way I wanted so it was round.

Msk

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Whenever we need rolls, baguettes, pain de campagne, semolina, etc, we outsource from a great place. I'm not sure I want to go in that direction, but you make it look soooo easy

Some acquaintances of mine did this just for the sake of getitng the style and quality of breads they wanted in their restaurant. It took on a life of its own, outgrew the small space they had allocated for it and moved into its own storefront across the street. Rumor has it they're nowlooking to open a second bakery location (which may be conveniently close to where I now live!).

Pasta's Daily Bread

As much as I hate to use cliched and worn-out phrases.... this bread is to die for. Their stretch bread is the best bread I've ever eaten.

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Any hints on focaccia? 

Let's see... this is what I do every morning at 8 am. I will cut my measurements to make a bit more managable quantity for you: a full sheet pan (or 2 half sheets) You may reduce further as you wish... but if you eat most for dinner, you can wrap the rest for sandwiches for lunch next day, or even make the best croutons ever out of the leftover.

Put in bowl of mixer and let sit til starts to foam a bit (4-5 min):

24 oz warmish water, and sprinkle over

1.5 oz yeast (not cake-form, but granular)mixed with 3 t sugar

Then dump in

1 gallon (I use a big plastic pitcher!) filled with King Arthur bread flour,

18 oz more of warmish water

1 c ExtraVirgin olive oil (EVoo)

and lastly, 4 1/2 T Kosher salt (trying to not pour directly on yeast ooze -- salt kills yeast)

turn on the mixer (with dough hook) and let go on low speed for about 10 min or more, til smooth, elastic looking, and coming clean from bowl.

Form into nice ball (or 2 for 2 half sheets) and put into a big bowl that has approx half or 3/4 c EVoo (I never have measured, I just glug it in!). Flip ball, so all is coated with oil, cover with clean towel or napkin and put in warm place for an hour or so.

Then I get my sheet pan ready, drizzle even more EV oo on it, dump the ball of dough out of the bowl (with leftover EVoo) directly onto the sheetpan. I roll it out a bit in a general oval shape to flatten a bit. Then I pick up the edges with my hands to stretch the dough just so, to fit the pan perfectly. Dimple all over (stick clawed fingers in to create holes, but not all the way thru of course).

Rub a few tablespoons of minced garlic in all over top. Sprinkle heavily with fresh minced herbs (I use sage, rosemary and basil combo), and a bit more of kosher salt lightly sprinkled. Then, of course, what else? :laugh: a gentle few squirts more of EV oo over the top in an artistic fashion. Let rise again for another hour in warm place, until nice and puffed up about 1.5 -2 " above edge of sheet pan.

Bake in 400 degrees for exactly 15 min. When it comes out, should be golden brown, hollow sounding when tapped on top. and then what???????? (come on now, you all should get this by now!) Drizzle more EVoo all over the top when it is hot from oven. Eat asap, or later,as you wish. Of course, what do you serve it with??? (alltogether now:) "Extra Virgin Olive Oil!" :laugh:

Sometimes I cut back on the herbs, and add carmelized onions strewn all over, or place very thinly sliced Roma tomatoes on the top,before the second rise.

I get rave reviews on this focaccia each and every day at the restaurant. My son has been known to eat an entire half sheet pan himself when no one's looking. :wub:

Hope this helps. Try it!

I like to cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food.

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Joe, Can you post the recipe for the Italian bread. Also, where would I get access to the flour you said you use? Not being familiar with chef supply places in Houston, though can easily source them out) would any of the major stores carry it? I have tried bread flour from Sams club and it was not too bad but very high in gluten and HARD.

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