Friday, August 30, 2013

SFBI Bread Follow up-- Delicious

SFBI Type 70 Bread
I decided to make the bread recipe that I posted. It was a thousand times easier than the Poilâne miche and absolutely delicious. I highly recommend it.
Lovely Crust
One thing to note, first clear flour (at least the King Arthur version and the Great River version) smells funny. I always end up second guessing myself and tasting it to make sure it hasn't gone rancid. Usually, the strange smell goes away when it's baked into bread. This time, it lingered a little, in the bread (although it doesn't smell bad-- just a slight odd hint), but the bread tastes incredible.
Slightly Lopsided Blunt Batard
Here's my scaled down version of the recipe. My only modification was to feed my starter with first clear flour instead of feeding it with bread flour. This meant that my dough was a little drier than the SFBI version. It was delicious and had a nice crumb anyway, but I might add a little more water next time.

Makes 3 medium-large or 2 very large loaves
  • 1024g first clear / type 70 / high extraction flour (I used Great River organic unbleached bread flour)-- divided: 204 to feed the starter, 1000 for the bread mix
  • 1074g water (around 75 degrees F)-- divided: 204 to feed starter, 870 for bread mix. As a note, mine was a lot drier than the one in the video. You may add more water if you want a softer dough, or you may need to hold back water, depending upon the absorbancy of your flour.
  • 42 g whole wheat starter (or white-- whatever you have lying around)
  • 25 g salt
Day 1: *if you have 450g of young, ripe sourdough starter, you can skip this step*
  • Mix the starter with 204g flour and 204 g water until it is homogeneous
  • Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise until fully mature (should smell kind of like overripe fruit and a spoonful should float in water). This should take somewhere between 8-16 hours at room temperature, depending upon how fast your starter rises and how hot your room is. Mine took about 12 hours.
Day 2:
  • When the starter is ready, mix the flour and the salt in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the water and the starter to the dry ingredients. One of the cool things in the SFBI video was that the baker poured water into the starter to lift it up and make it easier to remove from it's container. I tried this and it worked well. I suggest it. I don't specify how much water because it is going to depend upon the size of your container.
  • Mix the ingredients together by hand until it forms a homogeneous mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl or tub with a plastic pastry scraper and make sure the dough has picked up all excess flour and water.
  • Let the mixture rest for five minutes to fully hydrate.
  • Using your hand as a shovel, cut gently through the bread to increase gluten strength. I'm not sure how to describe this properly. See SFBI video.
  • The dough will now begin the bulk fermentation. I bulk fermented my bread for 2h45 at 77 degrees F. The video calls for 1.5h at 81-82 degrees, but I think the starter is a faster-working starter than mine is. Calculate your time based on this formula: for every 17 degrees below desired temperature, double the time. Then guess based on the rapidity of your starter.
    • For the first 45 minutes, you will stretch-and-fold the dough once every fifteen minutes (for a total of three times). By the end of this, your dough should be able to pass the windowpane test. If not, do a fourth stretch-and-fold.
  • Take the dough out onto a and divide it into 2-3 loaves. Round the loaves so that you develop some surface tension (See SFBI video).
  • Let the dough bench rest for 30 minutes.  Make sure you cover it with something so that it does not form a skin. I bench rest my dough under large overturned bowls, but other things work. If you use plastic wrap, you should probably oil it to keep from sticking. If you're in a particularly forgiving, fairly humid climate, you can probably just use a dishtowel.
  • Then do a final shaping. The video suggests blunt batards. Fold the dough almost in half. Stretch out the two sides and fold them  across one another. Then roll the dough three times to complete the batard. Pinch any extra seams. I need some more practice with this shaping method, and my dough wasn't as pliable because it was drier, so my loaves came out a bit lopsided.
  • Place the dough seam-side up in proofing baskets or in a couche and cover with plastic wrap or similar for 2 h (in his case 1 hour. Basically until an indent in the dough sticks.) If you can't bake your loaves simultaneously, remember to put your extra loaves in the refrigerator for the last half an hour of proofing and during the entirity of the baking process of the other loaf or loaves. This will ensure that your bread doesn't overproof while you're waiting to bake it.
  • Preheat your oven half an hour before baking to 450 degrees F.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes under steam (I used an iron combo cooker and an overturned broth pot on a stone to create steam for my loaves). Then cook the last 10-15 minutes until the internal temperature reads 212 degrees F and the crust is lovely and brown.
  • Let the bread cool for at least 30 minute before slicing, but the best flavor will develop around 1-3 hours out of the oven.
Two of my 3 loaves (the third one was in the oven baking)
I highly highly suggest this formula. You'll have to play around with the times a bit given your environment and your particular sourdough starter, but this bread is delicious.

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