Bread #35: A collage of flavors
This was initially a remake of bread #33, but changed so considerably that really it was a completely different animal, as it were, and much better the second time. This time around it was a bare majority of whole grain flour.
I'm thinking of a third time because I'm curious to see what happens if
the bread is uncovered for the last ten to 15 minutes in the oven.
Maybe would improve the crust.
This dough is an adjusted recipe from Bread Making: A Home Course: Crafting the Perfect Loaf, From Crust to Crumb for the country wheat-flaked bread.
Basically, I just added stuff I thought would go well together and I got lucky. This dough boasted oat flour, a rye starter and flour, whole wheat flour and wheat bran, and white bread flour. Plus salt and water. I am also becoming a big fan of the autolyse, though the mixing of the dough definitely takes extra effort. Hydration percentage is 71 percent.
I know, I've just become a hydration percent person, on my way to expressing myself with baker's percentages. I am barely holding onto using a teaspoon - a volume measure - for salt.
61g rye starter
119g rye flour
Mix the starter and the water. Next add the rye flour. Cover with plastic. In mine the holes started to appear almost immediately. So excited. Let the sponge sit on the counter for five and half hours. It's difficult to tell with rye because it has the appearance of wet cement and it does not expand much or change shape appreciably. It does not bubble in a conventional way. One needs to notice the details.
200g bread flour
29g oat flour
76g whole wheat flour
7g wheat bran
1.5 tsp salt, about 10g
For the autolyse, mix the water and all of the dough flours. Let stand for 20 minutes and then add the sponge, the wheat bran and the salt. This dough could only be mixed with my hands. Even the Danish whisk would not do. It was like squeezing something into playdough or silly putty. When finally and thoroughly mixed, cover with plastic.
I did three stretch and folds: The first at 25 minutes, the second 20 minutes later, and the third 50 minutes after that.
I let the dough sit on the counter for two hours. Really, it was getting to bedtime and it had risen pretty nicely. I referred to Flour, Water, Salt, Yeast (FWSY), the book, and shaped the dough prior to storing it in the fridge. The many hours in the refrigerator replace the final rise on the counter.
I shaped, placed a well-floured kitchen towel in a small, round wicker basket, and put the dough, seam-side up, in the towel. I left this in the fridge (inside of a plastic bag) for 10 hours.
One hour prior to baking, preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Leave the shaped dough in the fridge until you are ready to bake. Taking the advice of the FWSY book, I took the dough out of the fridge - absolutely cold - and, when I was ready to bake, turned the dough onto the hot baking stone. Try to aim for the middle of the baking stone, which is difficult when confronted with the massively hot open oven.
I covered the dough with the also hot top of the la cloche. Immediately reduce the oven temperature to 470 degrees. Wait 15 minutes and reduce again, this time to 450 degrees. I did this because of good amount of rye, which needs heat, but less than an entirely wheat dough would require. I kept the dough covered with the la cloche the entire time, but I will change that next time.
The dough took 37 minutes. I let it sit for a couple of hours. The taste was really good. It was very rye, but with some pop from the other flavors. Really, there is not much better than a three-day weekend, some hot water or tea, butter, fresh bread, and time to read at the kitchen counter with nothing to rush off to.
Maybe I've had enough rye for now
This bread would go well with either rye or wheat starter because of the rye flour. I admit that although I love rye, it has a tendency to take over and dominate other flavors. Might stay away from rye for a little bit. Off to mix together another dough and think of a favorites list from the first 40 breads, a sort of top of the first 40. Almost there.
Also must start taking photographs again and writing down when they are taken and what they show. Really, this is a demanding, but delicious, hobby.