Category Archives: bread – yeasted & unyeasted

all kinds of bread and muffins – yeasted, unleavened, quick

Ring! Ring! Bread with Flaxseed Soaker and Prunes (BBB May 2015)

BBB: Let's Get Baking summary: spring at last; recipe for Flaxseed Soaker Bread with Prunes, based on a recipe at the San Francisco Bread Institute; following (or not) instructions; baking on time but posting late… oops; a Bread Baking Babes project; (click on images to see larger views and more photos)

Kitchen Window wp-image-2041 Bread Baking Babes (BBB) May 2015

It’s spring at last!! You’ll have to excuse my lateness in posting! I was so thrilled to be able to go outside without a jacket on, that instead of being on time, I went out for a lovely bike ride in search of farmers’ asparagus (alas, we didn’t find any; the farmers’ markets aren’t open until next weekend). Then today was another beautiful day and we found ourselves on the bikes again all afternoon….

A while back, I saw the most beautiful loaf that had been baked by one of the bakers in the Facebook group, “Artisan Bread Bakers”. I immediately made a mental note to make one just like it.

And when Cathy announced that we would be making bread with plums in it, I thought this might be the perfect opportunity to try this amazingly beautiful shape!

Flaxseed and plum bread is a ciabatta-style bread made with a soft dough that has a hydration of over 90%. The formula contains small amounts of whole wheat and dark rye flours, which contribute to the flavor and the rustic appearance. The preferment used in this formula is a poolish, which is mixed the day before and fermented overnight. A matured poolish almost triples in size and is slightly concave at the surface. Over the long fermentation time, poolish slowly builds up lactic acid which gives the bread more depth of flavor.
 
In [the] video clip, we demonstrate how to mix the dough by hand. In a small batch, soft dough like this can be quickly put together by hand and is also very easy to make at home.
 
-sfbi.com Flaxseed and Plum Bread Recipe

BBB Flaxseed Prune Bread wp-image-2039 Ciabatta style? Oh oh. What if that means croc? Continue reading

Cozonac – Romanian Easter Bread (BBB April 2015)

BBB: Let's Get Baking summary: recipe for Romanian Easter Bread, based on a recipe in The Festive Bread Book by Kathy Cutler; a Bread Baking Babes project; submission for YeastSpotting; (click on images to see larger views and more photos)

Bread Baking Babes (BBB) April 2015

The garden chives are up! The garden chives are up! Can it be true? Is it really spring at last?

BBB Romanian Easter Bread wp-image-2011 When Pat (Feeding My Enthusiasms) told us what she had chosen for the BBBabes to bake this month, I thought, ‘Ooooh, lovely! This looks like fun!’ And what a nice comfort it would be for us as we sat inside, wrapped up in blankets, wondering when spring would appear.

I really was beginning to believe that winter wouldn’t end….

Pat announced that our comfort food would be a Romanian Festive Bread:

Sweet bread (cozonac – the Romanian for panetone) is the Romanian traditional cake for all holidays: Easter or Christmas, wedding or christening. Every Romanian woman has a recipe from her mother. […] Cooking sweet bread is a magic ritual: it must be done in a warm room where the doors and windows stay close during the cooking time. Any thread of cold air could damage the dough. We have to begin early in the morning when the sun starts to fly its eyelashes over the skyline.
 
– Exploring Romania, Sweet bread recipe – the Romanian name being “cozonac”

I was going to make this in time for Orthodox Easter last Sunday. But… here’s a big surprise: I missed the deadline. Continue reading

more lame scoring

lame scoring summary: 2nd attempt at lame scoring; ongoing web server nightmares resolved at last. I hope…;

I can get upload images again! I can upload images again!!

homemade bread lameWhen we’re not admiring it hanging on the kitchen wall, we’ve been having fun playing with our lame. A few weeks ago (I was going to post about this MUCH earlier, but well, you know…), we decided to make three loaves of bread. Two of them were proofed free-form and the third shaped into a round and proofed in our brotform.

We’re still trying to get correct angles and depth with our scoring. Although we did achieve formidable oven spring with this batch, we were not quite as successful as we had hoped. But we felt very elegant with our silver handled lame, didn’t cut ourselves AND we did have some success. Look!!

lame scored bread
whoohoooo! an ear!

Continue reading

Yay! Good Brown Bread at last (BBB March 2015)

BBB: Let's Get Baking summary: recipe for Brown Bread, based on a recipe for Granary-style loaf from King Arthur Flour, with help from the inimitable Elizabeth David; finding malt extract and malted wheat; a Bread Baking Babes project; submission for YeastSpotting; (click on images to see larger views and more photos)

Bread Baking Babes (BBB) March 2015

This month we’re making brown bread!! I love brown bread!!

BBB Granary-style bread (flickr housed image) When I was growing up, it didn’t occur to me that everyone didn’t know what brown bread is. We always had brown bread in the house for sandwiches and toast. It wasn’t until I travelled a little in the USA that I learned I had to ask for “wheat toast” if I wanted toast made with brown bread.

Others have misunderstood “brown bread” too. When T was in India, he and his friends often got loaves of white bread from a bakery. But one of his Dutch friends was longing for brown bread and went to the bakery to ask if they couldn’t possibly make him a loaf. The baker assured him it would be no problem. The next day, the friend went to get his brown bread. He was presented with a mahogany coloured loaf. The friend exclaimed, “What’s this?! I asked for brown bread. But this is just bread that has been dyed brown.”

The baker replied proudly, “Yes, yes. This is brown bread. We can make yellow bread, red bread, blue bread, green bread. Whatever colour you would like, we can make.”

This month the BBBabes have foregone dye and made actual brown bread. Great brown bread! Continue reading

Exploring my Celtic roots with Kouign Amann (BBB February 2015)

BBB: Let's Get Baking summary: recipe for Kouign Amann baked in muffin tins; a Bread Baking Babes project for their 7th anniversary; submission for YeastSpotting; (click on images to see larger views and more photos)

Bread Baking Babes (BBB) February 2015 (7th anniversary)

Oh boy!! More snow! And it’s c-c-c-c-old! (15C in the kitchen and as low as -25C outside….

Kouign Amann (BBB) image housed at flickr.com/photos/etherwork2/ Last month, we puffed our bread into balloons. This month, we’re puffing our bread with butter. It’s the BBBabes’ 7th anniversary and Lien chose the perfect bread for us to celebrate: Kouign Amann.

What?! What on earth is Kouign Amann??

From googling, it turns out that the modern recipe is apparently based on one created in Douarnenez, Brittany around 1860. However, it seems not unlikely that this was simply the first time someone wrote it down….

The recipe [for Kouign Amann] originates from Brittany in France, where some Keltish clans moved to in the 4th and 6th century from England. It still has it’s own cultural heritage and is officially one of the Celtic nations.
 
-Lien, in message to BBB
 
Kouign Amann is a very old pastry originating from the Breton-region of France. The name has Celtic roots, which translates into “Butter Cake”.
 
-foodnetwork.ca, Top 5 Dessert Trends Happening Now, 28 July 2014
 
Kouign-amann […] are made of laminated dough—croissant dough—that’s about 50% butter and 50% yeasted dough. […] These salty, buttery pastries hail from the coastal region of Brittany, in the northwest corner of France, where Celtic tradition has prevailed since the Breton people migrated across the English Channel during the fifth and sixth centuries. It looks just like you might imagine a Celtic colony on the seacoast of France would: towering bluffs dropping straight into the sea; tiny stone houses dotting the emerald countryside; slate-colored steeples rising into the morning mist. The region is best-known for its vast salt flats where they harvest the coveted finishing salt, fleur de sel. Here, tucked into wandering village streets, bakeries hawk the much-lauded pastry treasure, whose name literally means “butter cake” in Breton.
 
We’re gonna be honest: They’re hard to make. They take a full day of investment, and you might not get it right on the first try. Your kitchen will be a mess. You may get stressed out.[…]
 
PBS Food, ChefSteps, Kouign-Amann Recipe

Lalalalalalalalala {not listening anymore; not listening anymore}

I’ll concentrate on “But when you do get it right (and you will), oh boy.”

I’m also not going to pay attention to, “We’re sorry, but this video is not available in your region due to right restrictions” on the pbs site. (DON’T get me started!)

Making Kouign Amann is much more interesting: Continue reading