May 28th, 2016

Witbrood

Witbrood (2)Björn posted a series of fluffy Netherland breads back in January. One of these Breads was the classical Witbrood. It looked temping soft and fluffy. I bake those breads rather seldom, but when we finally felt a longing for a fluffy bread, I decided to use Björns Bread as Inspiration. My Witbrood-Variant is made with a mild sourdough and 2% yeast. This is for me a rather high amount, but it helps to create a high risen bread in a considerably short time.

Due to the wheat sourdough it develops a fine flavour with lactic acid notes – like a good yoghurt. And so it is not clear to me, why this post sank down to the bottom of the “well of lost plots”. But I brought it back to the surface – and here it is, with just three month delay!

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May 21st, 2016

Bread on a Stick

Stockbrot (4)The weather on Pentecost was far away from being warm and sunny, but it was not rainy, either. And so my mum and I take my niece and nephew into the woods to collect hazelnut sticks for making bread on a stick. Before we left my – near to five years old niece – had already kneaded the dough (with some help from my mum). This girl really takes after this side of the family and can knead dough already like a pro.

In the woods we found some fir cones as well which we used then to start a fire when we were back in the garden. We let the fire burn down to glow, as this gives a much more regular heat and the bread on stick bakes regular without burning. Our fire place is a old metal baby bath tube and its rims has the perfect high for placing the sticks on it. You just have to turn them a bit once in a while to ensure that the bread bakes on all sides.

We had a lot of fun with our stick on bread, it is a  great pleasure for the whole family.

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May 18th, 2016

Ribiselkuchen

RibiselkuchenAm I the only one who has a secret stock of berries of the last season which has to be used urgently before the berries of this season are ripe?

Beside a small package of blackberries I saved a pound of red currant all winter long. And as the currant bushes in my parents garden already promise a rich harvest I had to make room in the freezer. And so I baked my favourite “Ribiselkuchen”. It is a simple cake with shortcrust tarte shell and a filling made of meringue, almonds, bread crumps and berries. The bread crumbs keep the berry juice from soaking the tart shell. And as I used roasted crumbs – which were meant for bread originally – the filling has a deeper flavour as the more traditional way with unroasted crumbs.

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May 15th, 2016

Light Rye Bread

LichtkornroggenbrotI like to bake “by order” as I can then bake bread I bake rather seldom. Pure Rye bread, for example, as I have a rather sensitive stomach who do not like the higher acidity of rye bread. And while I do not eat rye bread I still like to bake it. Its different consistency makes it a bit challenging and is a nice change in my wheat- and spelt-dough routine.

For this bread which I bake for a big birthday I choose so called “Lichtkornroggen”. This is a rye variety  containing light coloured rye seeds instead of the normal grey green coloured rye. It is a modern back breeding from ancient rye varieties and yields a lighter bread then normal whole rye flour. Its flavour is milder as well and so I build the sourdough in the classical german “three stages”: The so called “Anfrischsauer” (refreshed sourdough) to activate the yeasts is then followed by the low hydrated “Grundsauer” (basic sourdough) to generate a well balanced acidity and the last step called “Vollsauer” (complete sourdough) in which the warm and soft dough is perfect for yeast and homofermenting lactobacteria and in which the sourdough develops a lot of activity. Continue reading

May 10th, 2016

Onion Bread

Zwiebelbrot (5)Reader’s wishes are a good thing. They often give me new impulses or remind me of – sometime to obvious – breads. And when Julia wrote that a recipe for onion bread would be a fine idea, I was thinking: of course! And for the past long, sunny weekend I started to create a recipe.

A crucial part of onion bread is fried onions. And as I do not like the store bought ones very much I decided to go for homemade fried onions, too. For a better contrast I chose red onions for that. They are fried in oil until all of their water evaporates and are very crips. About 300g fresh onions yields 100g fried ones.

For the form I chose two different ones: the “classical” onion batard and round loaves with a half onion in the middle. These breads are a nice eye catcher for a buffet, but the batards are easier to cut.

 

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May 6th, 2016

Bread Crisps

Brotchips

Bread crumbs, Ofenschlupfer or Semmelknödel are the standard recipes I use when I have left over bread. Another good idea for using stale bread is making  bread crisps.

They are easy to make and a delicious snack. Preferably I use old rolls as a sliced roll has the perfect snacking size. And if the rolls was a sesame or poppy seed roll they are especially delicious, as the seeds add a delicious nutty flavour.

You can keep the bread crisps quit simple and only seasoned with some salt. Or you use a wild garlic salt or a bit of harrisa to flavour the oil.

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May 5th, 2016

Favourite Recipes

To prevent Micha from feeling alone with her DUBB – Event I have collected all my favourite recipes here. For some of them, like my beloved Wheat and Rye No. 2 or the christstollen, I tend to repeat myself as I repeatedly tell you how much I love them. Others are more quieted, but well loved as well. And how many favourites I have I just learned when started to make this little round up.

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May 1st, 2016

Honigreingerl

Honigreingerl (9)I met Honigreingerl some time ago and they trigger my “Have to bake” reflex of immediately.  They are small Austrian pastries which are filled with a honey and cinnamon mixture. In their crumb you can find many small openings filled with the flavour of honey and cinnamon.

Original the Honigreingerl are baked in a slightly higher form, but using a muffin tin and brioche forms work good as well. The dough is made with ten percent spelt flour like I used it in the Butterzopf recipe, as this makes rolling the dough easier. The other components of the dough are the “usual suspects”: Biga, some egg and butter – a guaranty for a fluffy crumb and good flavour. And so are my homemade Honigreingerl: a golden crust and a very fluffy crumb filled with the flavours of honey and cinnamon – a divine treat!

 

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April 30th, 2016

Bread Baking for Beginners: Spelt Buttermilk Loaf (with walnuts)

Dinkel-Buttermilchbrot mit WalnüssenSome weeks ago a reader asked me if I had an idea for a spelt variant of the Buttermilk loaf from the beginners course. Of course I had an idea and so I send her a recipe draft. The flour used for this bread had a higher ash content – just as she asked for. A soaker made from flour and buttermilk prevents the bread from getting to dry.

It took a while until I bake the bread by myself. A inflammation of my wrist kept me from hand kneading dough for a while. But since my wrist is fine again, I finally managed to knead it by hand without pain.  As I like the combination of spelt and walnuts, I decided to some, too. And I slightly increased the water amount in comparison to the recipe draft. The bread has a moist and fluffy crumb with a slight darker colour due to the higher ash content of the flour and due to the walnuts.

It is a mild tasting bread which pairs well with goat cheese or honey and as it made with a straight dough it is a good alternative for moments when you need a fresh loaf in a considerable short time.

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April 23rd, 2016

Kieler Semmel 2

Kieler Semmel mit Vorteig (4)The first version of the Kieler Semmel was already catapulted into the first ranks of my personal best of list of blog recipes. And I planed directly to make a second version with preferment. And took me a while to come back to this plan but finally I bake them. I choose a preferment which enhance the gluten structure, a sweet starter or its cousin, which is made with commercial yeast – a Biga. And I opted for diastatic malt as I wanted to make the crust very crisp. This makes the recipe unsuitable for a cold overnight proof – a reason why I always shied away from diastatic malt before – a mistake as I knew now! The crust gains a lot through the enzymatic processes due to the malt, it is crisp but easier to bite at the same time. I get a better volume and fluffiger crust then the last time, too.

Helga, a reader from Kiel, suggested some changes in the form and gave me some advices on the intensity of the cinnamon flavour. I decided to use cylon cinnamon, which has a more subtle and complex flavour then the warm, but more acerbic and blunt flavour of Cassia. I added one gramm to the butter which yields a slight cinnamon note.  If you prefer a stronger cinnamon taste I would double this amount.

At the end, I have not to emphasise that I’m in love with this rolls, have I? They are maybe the most perfect rolls I bake (until now)!

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