When it comes to bread making, how slack is too slack?? I have just spent over half an hour cleaning up bits of dough from 3 bowls, pots and pans, every aspect of the food processor, the kneading board, rubber scraper… (need I go on? I think you get the picture).
I decided yesterday that I wanted to make Pan Bigio. I put together the biga last night and early this morning mixed the dough together. After letting it autolyse for 30 minutes or so, I
placed poured the dough onto the kneading board. There it lay shuddering like porridge.
I started kneading it and then thought, “Why not use the food processor? This isn’t too heavy for it!” I was a little nervous, considering our recent expensive loaf of bread but decided it was foolish to worry. Using the dough scraper, I somehow maneuvred the sludge into the food processor (hmmm, I wonder if that’s too full??) and started pulsing. Well maybe that was too much dough… with difficulty, I spooned about half into yet another bowl. More pulsing. Then I ran the processor on slow. Now I had very smooth porridge. Clearly this wasn’t making much difference. I poured the food processor contents back onto the kneading board (who was the ninny who left the dough scraper on the board?!) and using the rubber scraper, added the contents of the bowl to that on the board. And I hand-kneaded for 15 minutes. That sludge was puddled into the rising bowl.
And then the cleanup began. Dough everywhere!! Who writes those ads that say what a breeze it is to clean food processors? I need to have a serious chat with them. As I was rinsing and scraping and muddling even more sludgy dough from various surfaces (including my forehead!!) I suddenly wondered if I had put in 3 or 4 cups of allpurpose flour to make up for the fact that I had only put in 1 cup of wholewheat instead of 2. RATS!! I scattered a cup of flour on the now clean kneading board and poured over it the sludge out of the rising bowl. I kneaded it all in, muddled the dough into the rising bowl, covered it and left it in the oven (light on) to rise to triple.
I’m just going to shape the risen dough now. Wish me luck.