How to start baking bread? I remember that I started with searching for a recipe and just simple following the instruction. I can’t tell you anymore which recipe it was (it was before I started blogging) but I knew that it was far away from being perfect. But I already cached the bread baking virus.
Every now and then readers and friends asked me which of my recipes they should use for their first bread. I send Friends and colleagues, which I can provide with sourdough, directly to my favourite wheat and rye bread, which has an easy to handle dough. But giving sourdough to readers is not as easy and so I developed another recipe.
It is made with Pâte Fermentée as preferment. It is a preferment which did not need a lot of care. You mix it, you put it in the fridge, you wait for at least twelve hours. No fussing about the right temperature or the need of using it while on its peak.
The dough is easy to handle and instead of scoring the loaf, you can press it down with the handle of a wooden spoon, which creates the niece pattern on the loaf on top of the pile. But it is a bread which is great for experienced bakers as well. I used it with great success for making loaves decorated with roses for the 90. birthday of my boyfriends grandmother.
And at the end it tastes great, as well. It has a soft, fluffy crumb under a crisp crust. It has a mild aroma with complex flavour profile due to the preferment.
Farmers Bread for Beginner
yields 2 loaves of 720g each
- 250g flour Type 550
- 175g Water
- 5g Salt
- 5g fresh yeast
- Pâte fermentée
- 200g Roggenvollkornmehl
- 550g flour Type 550
- 480g Water
- 20g honey
- 20g Butter
- 15g Salt
- 10g fresh yeast
Mix all ingredients for the Pâte fermentée and proof it for 1 hour at room temperature. Then put the dough into the fridge for at least 12 hours.
The next morning mix all ingredients and let the dough rest for 30min (autolysis). Now knead the dough with hands for about 10 – 15 min to middle gluten development. The dough should be soft but not sticky.
Let the dough rise for 30 min. Then fold it from the sides of the bowl to the middle. Let rise for 30 min again, fold again and repeat this circle another time. Let rise again for 30 min.
Now divide the dough into halves and form loose balls. Let them relax for 10 min.
Then start forming the loaves. Flatten the balls a little bit and start to fold the dough in the middle. Repeat until a springy ball has formed. Turn it upside down on the seam and roll between your hands to smoothen the seam and to create more tension on the sureface.
Lay it seam side up in a proofing basket or in a bowl lined with a well floured kitchen towl.
Let rise for 1 hour.
In the meantime preheat the baking stone at 250°C in the oven. If you have no baking stone, use a baking tray instead.
Prior to baking transfer the bread from the basket on a peel or a thin chopping board. Use the handle of a wooden spoon to create a star pattern or slash the bread cross wise.
Put the bread in the oven, throw a handful of ice cubes on the bottom of the oven and bake for 10 min on 250°C. Then turn the temperature on 200°C and bake for another 30 min. 10 min before the end of baking, open the door shortly to release the steam.
I sent this entry to Yeastspotting, Susans weekly showcase of yeast baked good.