By following a Simple Baker's Formula, you can easily make a delicious, crusty baguette, epi or round of bread by hand.
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Whole wheat flour is covered in the Wheat lesson. You cannot substitute 1:1 in this recipe. Usually, up to only about 50% of whole wheat flour should be substituted. We encourage you to develop your bread making skills by using all bread flour first before trying out another flour.
Okay, thanks. I had no idea that this couldn't be baked in a regular pan, so that helps. I will get a basket when I'm out and give it another try. It's coming along nicely, and as you say, you need to work with the dough (adding ever so little flour along the way) until it's not sticking. That way you won't add too much four, which I have done in past and it's often not fix-able. It definitely gets better and easier as I keep working on it.
Well it is 94 degrees here in Maryland today. My first time taking the bread course and decided to make a bread boule and an epi. Dough rising was really slow. But after reading your comments above I know I need more patience. Also I agree on the dough being extremely moist. I have done other bread recipes with not as moist dough. I will keep trying I love baking bread and I have had fantastic results with all the recipes I have tried here. happy baking all.
We don't use 'cups' to measure ingredients here in Europe. I've translated your recipe in the following:
1 cup of water is about 235grams or ml, and
2 cups of flour is together 260 grams.
My dough was really liquid! I've been additing flour until it's total weight became 600g to be able to form some kind of a ball.
How is this possible that in pizza dough recipe you use 300 ml of water (1 1/2 cup) and 500g flour and in bread it's almost 1:1?
I'm using Italian flour type 00 with 15% protein and it's quite cold and very dry in my kitchen. I know I should experiment and I'm going to bake everyday until I get it right. But the difference between these recipes is just zo huge!
Thank you for your response.
Don't worry too much about the measurements, as different types of flour will react differently with water, humidity, etc. It's hard to say without testing out the type of flour you are using. In our pizza recipe, we are using bread flour with a combination of semolina. This amount of water and flour work together to make a pliable dough.
When making bread dough it is always best to commit to the yeast water ratio and then add enough flour to form a pliable dough. This prevents you from having to depend on measuring the exact amount of flour needed. Concentrate more on feeling the dough and keeping it nice and soft.
Most importantly, how did the bread turn out? :)
Shaping the dough into rounds is hard to describe properly in text as it involves quite a bit of technique. This is something that we will cover further down the road. In the meantime, you could always check online as there are likely other videos out there that might provide some guidance. Cheers!
One way to get lovely round bread loaves is to purchase oven safe glass bowls with sloping sides. I was proofing a loaf of bread in the oven in one of these bowls and forgot it was in there and turned the oven on to preheat it. I baked it of course and went ahead and left it in and finished it. It was great and I have baked round bread this way ever since. It browns evenly and looks wonderful.
As I understand the altitude issue, adjustments are needed at around 3500 ft. I'm at 6500 feet and I have a few comments for you to consider.
- I first ask (Myself) where was this recipe written which brings into play altitude, humidity and maybe some cultural issues.
- proofing is slower, I like to heat my oven to 200f, turn it off and proof the dough in the draft free oven.
-Baking soda or powder I generally cut in half and go from there.
- Consider the dryness if you are in a low humidity area
-Baking time can be longer
-always heat your oven to temp for about 15/20 minutes before you bake. Use an oven thermometer. & turn the product.
There are some other considerations - see what the Rouxbe wizzards have to say.
( see Pie In the Sky by Purdy, she baked all around the USA and has plenty to share in the book.
This is a complex question for us to answer at this time as we are at sea level and, unfortunately, cannot test these things for ourselves. We are happy, however, that other students from around the world (thank you Ian) can jump in and share their experience and suggestions.
We also recommend reviewing books and other resources geared towards high altitude cooking and baking so you can become aware of some general rules and guidelines on how to make adjustments. Cheers!
I don't know if it's the flour I'm using or my elevation (3500 ft) but my first two attempts at making basic bread resulted in inedible "torpedoes". The dough was wet, sticky, very hard to work with and didn't rise very well. (I bought new yeast and flour so they weren't to blame)
After those failures, I decided to refer to "Ratio" by Michael Ruhlman and came up with the following ingredient measurements by weight:
400 grams flour
240 grams water
4 grams instant yeast (or 12 grams fresh yeast)
8 grams salt
Using 1 cup water, 1 tsp yeast and 1 tsp kosher salt got essentially the same weights above, but it took nearly 3 cups of flour to get 400 grams. I had no idea so much more flour was needed. Since this was my experiment using the weights method, I decided to use the exact weights for each of the ingredients and Voila! -- the bread turned out perfectly. The dough was no where near as sticky and was much easier to work with.
I did note that it took about twice as long for the dough to double during the fermentation and proofing stages, but that's probably due to my different elevation. In case it helps anyone, my kitchen temperature was 21°C and the relative humidity was 36%.
I love my digital scale!
Congratulations on your success in baking bread! Making bread is very fulfilling. More, then any other baked or cooked goods, at least for me.
Regarding slow rising at the bulk fermentation stage, it seams you were low on the yeast. In "Ratio" by M. Ruhlman, you were referring to, the percentage of the yeast (12 grams of fresh yeast) is 2% of the total flour weight and only 1% of the total flour weight if you were using instant yeast. If you were using instant yeast, 1% for of yeast for 400 grams of flour is low even though instant yeast is more potent then fresh yeast. Also your kitchen low temperature and humidity could have contributed to delayed bulking.
I am an amateur baker therefore any credible suggestions would be much appreciated.
My dough, even after kneading twice, couldn't produce a window. I've kneaded it a third time and have put it in the fridge to rise. (I would like the bread for tomorrow afternoon)
After each testing, the dough seemed smoother(?) but as I would need it would get sticky again and I would have to add more flour.
I'm wondering if I'm not using enough muscle in my kneading or perhaps, I'm not kneading enough. Any ideas on what I can try differently on my next load?
Jessica, the window test only works (well) if you are making a dough just using white flour, with whole wheat or any other combination it will not work.
also when you try to do the test you need to strech the ball of dough slowly otherwise it will tear no matter what.
And finally you do want to keep the dough somewhat sticky even it feels a bit strange, so I think it is for one or a combination of these 3 reasons that you cannot achieve the window test.
hope it helps.
There could be many things that contributed to the pale color.First, your oven temperature may be off. Make sure to check the internal temperature of your oven, as many ovens can be off by as much as 50 degrees. Also make sure that you preheated it very well.
The dough also may have been over-proofed or you had too much steam in the oven when you went to bake it. Monitor all of these things next time to try and improve your results. Practice makes perfect ;)
Not entirely clear about your question on epi-sode...if you are referring to what is an epi, there is a lesson on shaping bread this way. Cheers!