SFBI Artisan Baking I Day 4
Oh boy, did we bake today! 5 batches of dough were prepared by each group of 4 students. Baking included egg bread (challah-like bread made with butter), pan loaves, whole wheat bread (40% whole wheat), rye bread and a multigrain bread with a seed soaker. All the loaves were mixed and shaped before lunch. After lunch, we baked and baked and baked. We then scaled up three dough mixes for tomorrow’s return to baguettes. We also mixed a poolish, sponge and preferment, one for each batch of baguettes to be baked tomorrow. It was a busy day, but I did manage to get some pictures of our beautiful breads.
The rye breads were actually scored before the final proof because of their delicacy due to low gluten.
The pan loaves were problematic because the bread pans had been washed with soap and had lost some of their ‘seasoning’. The breads stuck in the pans even though we sprayed oil and coated the pans. At home I don’t rely on this technique but instead, spread a layer of shortening or butter into the pan and then dust with flour to ensure my breads will release successfully from the pans. The egg breads were most impressive with their braids and shiny egg wash. We shaped rye bread loaves into square shapes, something new and different. We also got to experiment with various scorings. The wheat bread had good volume and a soft crumb, very nice. My favorite, however, was the multigrain bread with a seed soaker. The seeds had been toasted in the oven before soaking. A mix of flax, sunflower, and sesame seeds was used – very tasty! The final loaf dough also contained whole wheat and rye in addition to bread flour. The dough was pretty high hydration at 72%. I and others had some trouble shaping the loaves adequately to get a good oven spring.
After all the bakes, each team mixed poolish, sponge and preferments and scaled baguette final doughs for the three bakes.
We completed the day with Miyuki reviewing our bakes. I need to work on my shaping of batards to ensure a firm product and, of course, my scoring of the batards suffered due to the shaping issues. My egg breads, pan loaves, whole wheat and ryes came out well. Everyones whole wheat loaves had great oven spring.
Loaves, left to right, are whole wheat, rye, multigrain seeded, pan loaves and in front, egg bread. All in all, it was a successful baking day. I can’t believe tomorrow is our last day of class. It has gone by quickly, and I’ve never baked so much in my life. I am very happy with what I have learned and experienced. More baguettes tomorrow – I am going to focus on shaping and scoring in hopes of generating a better looking product. Onward-