Rising to the Challenge (January 2018 BBBuddies)

summary: January 2018 Bread Baking Buddies; BBB Tartine Polenta Bread gallery; about the BBBabes

Tartine Polenta Bread is January’s BBB project challenge.

BBBuddies Badge January 2018Bread Baking Buddies (BBB): Tartine Polenta Bread

This January, the BBBabes made Tartine Polenta Bread, based on a recipe in Chad Robertson’s book “Tartine Bread”. (Here is the recipe I used.)

Not all of us had difficulties with this bread…. But. Here are some of the comments that were flying around as we baked this month (ha! can’t you just read volumes between the lines?) :lalala:

I think this is one of the first BBB challenge breads that has proven especially difficult for me! – Kelly (A Messy Kitchen)
Following Robertson’s instructions (or lack thereof), the resulting dough was more like soup – me, (blog from OUR kitchen)
I expected a more open crumb – Karen (Bake My Day)
Because polenta (corn grits) can absorb and then release a lot of water into the dough, this bread can be quite a challenge. – KarenK (Karen’s Kitchen Stories)
From the first moment I read the recipe, I had numerous red flags waving in my face. – Judy (Judy’s Gross Eats)
That looks even more challenging than the imfamous Croc bread! – Mary, aka BreadChick (The Sourdough)
Not an easy bread for sure, but a delicious one. – Pat, aka Elle (Feeding My Enthusiasms)
This was a challenge, but definitely worth it. – Cathy (Bread Experience)
[B]uckle up and find your courage and make this bread – Lien (Notitie van Lien)
This was truly a challenge in every way – Aparna (My Diverse Kitchen)
[A]ren’t we supposed to start the New Year with a challenge? – Katie (Thyme For Cooking)

Just like last January, this January has been another rollercoaster with wild weather fluctuations and the craziest news (and “fake news” too) reports south of the border. Just two BBBuddies joined us this time around. Perhaps it’s a sign of the times – fewer and fewer bloggers and fewer and fewer BBBuddies joining in each month. Or perhaps all the others got scared off by having to use wild yeast. Or perhaps it was the fear of possibly creating something like the croc on steroids?

This time, the January 2018 BBBuddies came from not so far away:

At first I thought that there would be zero BBBuddies daring to make this wonderful bread. But I was wrong. Here are the intrepid two:

Bonnie S (FB group Bread Baking Babes and Friends), Colorado

BonnieS' Tartine Polenta Bread Bonnie “panicked at the last minute and added some yeast”. But then she got distracted and reported she had overproofed it. I don’t know. Maybe a little bit overproofed, but it looks pretty darn good to me! In spite of the so-called overproofing, she said “it still tastes really good! This bread DOES taste good, doesn’t it?
» Bonnie S, Bread Baking Babes and Friends
Shirley (EverOpenSauce – formerly Flourishen Test Kitchen), New York
Shirley's Tartine Polenta Bread Shirley made a stunningly beautiful blue corn polenta bread. She wrote, The real challenge in bread making is to be on point every step of the way, pushing the limit at times, showing restraint at others and always mindful and adaptable. And have fun, too.” Yes! I guess she’s right. This challenge WAS fun, wasn’t it? (It was certainly fun eating the bread…) Because she used blue corn, the crumb has the most wonderful colour.Shirley wrote the she Love[s] the twirls of the blue corn on the white bread like a painter’s strokes on a canvas.” So do I. So do I. She also reported that “The crust is shatteringly light and crunchy. The tender custardy texture of the bread is fantastic.” Yes indeed. That is one spectacular looking loaf!

I also really like Shirley’s instruction to soak the cornmeal and drain it if it’s too liquid. I’m wondering if it wouldn’t be a good idea to soak the cornmeal while the starter is being refreshed and then use that water to make the actual dough.

Do be sure to visit her site to see the gorgeous crumb and read more about Shirley’s bread.

» Shirley, EverOpenSauce: Tartine Blue Corn Polenta Bread


Thank you, Bread Baking Buddies: January 2018BBBuddies, you really are the BBBest!!

If I missed posting about anyone’s BBB Tartine Polenta Bread, please do let me know.

  • email me
    » Remember to include your name and a link to your post
    » Please type “BBB January 2018 bread” in the subject heading

And of course, if you haven’t made Tartine Polenta Bread yet, just because the deadline is past, I hope that won’t stop you from making it. Because it’s delicious. Especially used to make Mock Bennies, or toasted and slathered with avocado….

Thank you to all who embraced the challenge to bake Tartine Polenta Bread.

Bread Baking Babes’ January 2018 Bread

Here are the BBBabes’ Tartine Polenta Breads:

Bread Baking Babes

Please take a look at the other BBBabes’ January 2018 bread:

BBB Tartine Polenta Bread Gallery: BBB Tartine Polenta Bread Gallery
top row: Elizabeth (blog from OUR kitchen), Judy (Judy’s Gross Eats)
2nd row: KarenK (Karen’s Kitchen Stories), Aparna (My Diverse Kitchen), Cathy (Bread Experience)
3rd row: Karen (Bake My Day), Elle/Pat (Feeding My Enthusiasms), Lien (Notitie van Lien)
bottom row: Kelly (A Messy Kitchen), BBB January 2018 Badge


This entry was posted in baking, BBBabes, bread - yeasted & unyeasted, food & drink, sourdough and wild yeast on by .

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5 responses to “Rising to the Challenge (January 2018 BBBuddies)

  1. Elle Lachman

    Intrepid Buddies indeed…and rewarded with a delicious bread. Thanks for the great round-up Elizabeth and for choosing this recipe. Not sure if I’ll make it again, but glad that I tried it.

    1. Elizabeth

      Thank you! I’m really glad so many BBBs tried it too, Elle. And I know what you mean about “not sure if I’ll make it again”. I may make it from time to time but it’s really a “just some occasions” kind of bread. I will, however, remember about the toasted pepitas! What a revelation that was.

  2. shirley@everopensauce

    You rose to the challenge by choosing this bread. I thought I have baked every recipe in the book. Somehow I missed this one. Thanks again for hosting this month.

    1. Elizabeth

      I was surprised to see it in the book too. I hadn’t noticed it when I first got Tartine Bread some years ago – maybe it’s because it’s tucked at the end of Robertson’s several-page basic bread recipe.

      I’m really glad you joined us, Shirley. Many thanks again.


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