A Butterkuchen in its simplicity is one of the most enchanting cakes for me. It is only made with some flour, milk, butter, sugar and yeast and allows each ingredients to shine. And when the fridge is still rather empty after coming home after our vacation trip, it is the perfect cake because it only needs so few ingredients. And after a short search in the cupboard I even found some almond splices which I sprinkled over the cake for the more luxury variant.
And because the sweet starter had to be fed after being trapped in the fridge for two weeks anyway I decided that I would bake the cake with sweet starter instead of yeast. To ensure that the starter is strong enough after sleeping in the fridge for so long I fed it once in the evening, put it in the fridge after 3 hours at 30°C and then fed it again the next morning. Due to the fact that a sweet starter will not let a dough rise as fast as with commercial yeast it takes from 8 o’clock in the morning until half past three in the afternoon until we could try the still warm cake.
It may not be the fastest method to bake this cake but you will be rewarded with a soft, fluffy cake packed with a lot of tender but complex flavour notes. And while the cake it technically baked with a sourdough, there is not even a hind if acidity. I love my sweet starter!
We always have small leftovers of bread in our kitchen. I collect them on a small tray which I place on a heater. I let the bread dry completely and when a bigger amount has accumulated I can grind them to bread crumbs. I start with sorting the bread: Bread with whole grain flour for dark bread crumbs and white bread for white bread crumbs. Then I grind the bread (e.g with a food prozessor) to fine crumbs. The white crumbs I use mainly for cooking and the dark crumbs will add flavour to a new bread.
I like it best when the crumbs are added to a preferment, like I did with this famers bread. This bread has a deep, complex flavour and is made with old bread perfermet plus a mild sourdough which I rise in to steps. Its rustic character is enhanced by grounded caraway seeds and rye flour. The Crust is dark and aromatic, and the crust is elastic and soft, perfect for a hearty “Brotzeit”.
I love breads with a soft crumb and a crisp crust. And there are two possibilities to archive a thick, crunchy crust: You can either bake the bread with falling heat or you use the trick of “double baking”. For double baking you let the bread cool down after the first round of baking and then put it back into the oven. This yields a very aromatic, crisp crust.
For this wheat and spelt bread I used both methods. First I baked the loaves with falling heat, then I let them cool down over night. The next morning I put them back into the oven for about 15 min. That created a bread with a perfectly crisp crust!
When I was small I already loved to eat “Krusti”, crusty rolls with a rustic shape. And nowadays I enjoy baking them even more because now I can sit in front of the oven and observe how the rolls partly unfold giving each roll a individual shape and creates a lot of crust.
Like I did with these breakfast rolls I added some egg yolk as natural lecithin source. The lecithin enhances the volume of the bread and helps to create a soft crumb without influencing the flavour. And a rather short proofing ensures that the rolls has enough power for a good oven spring. For the good flavour I used some pâte fermentée and a spoonfull sourdough and a little bit butter and malt makes the aroma well balanced. A perfect breakfast roll!
I own milk kefir grains since some months. In such a kefir grain you can find a lot of different lactic acid bacteria and yeast and making homemade kefir is even more easy then making yoghurt. You just have to put the grains into milk and leave them for about 1 day. It is a fresh, slightly sparkling refreshment – especially during summer – and is good for health, too.
Like always I ended at some point whisking to put this milk product into a bread dough. And so I bake delicious kefir buns this weekend. I made a no-knead version, it just involves mixing the dough and let it rise over night. The next morning I rolled the dough into a long band, rolled it up into a long log and cut it into pieces. That is way faster then rolling each part up alone.
I baked them seamside up and they crack open very nicely along the seam during baking. They have a rather soft crust and moist crumb similar to my favourite Yoghurt rolls. Some Emmer flour gives the rolls a nutty flavour and the kefir adds a certain freshness to the buns.