Bread

JimK

TVWBB Olympian
Quite some time ago, I bought "Four, Water, Salt, Yeast" by Ken Forkish. I've been making 'same day' breads from that book and really enjoying them for a couple years. COVID has provided more time at home and thus more opportunities for some of the more extensive recipes. I made a sourdough starter (Levain) a little over a week ago and baked the first loaf from it this morning. Definitely the best bread I've ever made. If you're into making bread, or thinking about it, I highly recommend this book.

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Rich G

TVWBB Gold Member
That's a gorgeous loaf of bread, Jim! FWSY was the book that really got me going with both yeasted and sourdough breads, and my copy has been loaned out quite a bit during Covid! Glad your first go with your new sourdough starter went well (I've baked and seen a lot of frisbees for first attempts!)

Rich
 

JimZ

TVWBB Super Fan
Good book. I got back into sourdough this year as well. So much good info out there now. Ive been doing the overnight in the fridge slow ferment for flavor. I like it because it breaks up the time involved. I also just did a beet bread that turned out good killer red color! BTW Peter Reinhart crust and crumb is a good one too!
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CaseT

TVWBB Emerald Member
Nice loafs! I've been using Forkish's book for several years now. Its a good one and I recommend it to newbies as well as seasoned bakers.
 

Cliff Bartlett

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
That's a beautiful loaf Jim. Which one of Ken's recipes is this. Looks like possibly Pain De Campagne or Field Blend #1?? I worked solely out of this book for a couple of years, with moderate success. Speaking for me only, I think I should have started off more slowly with basic bread baking, focusing on folding and shaping. The pure levain doughs gave me a rough time. I don't know how many potential Overnight Country Blonde Loaves went in the trash before ever hitting the oven. Since that time Rich G. has given valuable assistance and helped me tremendously. I show Rich a couple of my better loaves and he pumps me up. Then he shows me one of his and crushes me. :D Anyway, keep up the good work.
 
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Rich Dahl

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
Very nice looking loaf Jim.
I also have Kens book and used it for a few years, it was hit or miss for me my sourdough starters would about 70% of the time go south on me. I think it's altitude sickness at 5500 ft. getting anything to rise using yeast is a challenge.
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Hall of Fame
Gee, I guess I need to get on this bread train! A couple of folks have mentioned that flour from “Bob’s Red Mill” does not have disastrous impact on blood sugar levels. I think it’s lmichaels who has voiced that for sure but, does anyone else see that?
Rich, that particular dilemma is not something I need to worry about but, I am a “Piker” as my father used to say when it comes to baking on your (and Barbs) level! I bake pretty basic “Cuisinart” white bread.
My mother was a good bread baker when she was less frail than in her later life but, she used to make a molasses dark bread (Anadama) that was incredible! What a grilled ham and cheese that made! Now I want that for dinner! Don’t have any of those components!
Phooey!
 
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JimK

TVWBB Olympian
Thanks all, for the kind words.


Which one of Ken's recipes is this. Looks like possibly Pain De Campagne or Field Blend #1??

Cliff, you nailed it: Pain De Campagne. My first attempt. I've had a few experiments over this last week or so, working with the discard - they were all failures. But I lived and learned and will hopefully do better on my next attempts. That reminds me, I've got to get some ground beef out of the freezer at some point so I can try @CaseT's burger bun recipe.
 

JimZ

TVWBB Super Fan
Jim do you bake your loafs in a cast iron pot? Ive found that helps the rise bigtime. Also have found two tablespoons per loaf of herbs de Provence or whatever its called adds a real nice flavor.
 

JimK

TVWBB Olympian
Jim do you bake your loafs in a cast iron pot? Ive found that helps the rise bigtime. Also have found two tablespoons per loaf of herbs de Provence or whatever its called adds a real nice flavor.

The Forkish book specifies cooking in dutch ovens. Times vary, but most recipes are most of the time with the lid on, and the rest lid off to enhance color. The covered time allows the loaf to steam itself as it releases moisture. I have other books that call for cooking on a stone with a broiler pan full of water underneath. That works pretty well too. Now that I've been making bread a little more regularly, I want to start experimenting as you mentioned with herbs, and also things like olives.
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Hall of Fame
I guess I need to get some MORE equipment! I don’t have a CI Dutch oven! I don’t know where in blazes I’m going to store one but, I’ll figure it out.
I’m thinking that you are using one of those “proofing” basket, bowl things too? More stuff to store! Hmmm
 
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Rich G

TVWBB Gold Member
I guess I need to get some MORE equipment! I don’t have a CI Dutch oven! I don’t know where in blazes I’m going to store one but, I’ll figure it out.
I’m thinking that you are using one of those “proofing” basket, bowl things too? More stuff to store! Hmmm
Timothy, you don't HAVE to have those things..... Do you have a pizza stone that fits in your oven? Use that. Do you have a roasting pan that will fit over the stone? You can use that to steam your bread just invert it over the loaf once you put it on the preheated stone. Don't have a proofing basket? Line a shallow bowl with a floured tea towel....instant proofing basket! One item that I highly recommend is a good blade to use to slash your proofed loaves before they go into the oven. All you need is a razor blade and a chopstick to make one of those (google DIY lame.)

Now, can you make your life easier with all of those goodies, sure. Just remember, people made great bread long before we had all the gizmos. :)

Happy to help anytime! :)

R
 

JimK

TVWBB Olympian
Agree with Rich completely. But: 1) don't need the blade, as the recipes in the Forkish book don't call for slashing the loaves. 2) The enameled CI dutch oven has so many uses that you'll wonder what you ever did without one - searing, roasting, braising, etc. 3) proofing baskets are dirt cheap and fit inside other kitchen gadgets like pots, bowls, etc. You'll hardly notice they're there. :D
 

Tony-Chicago

TVWBB Super Fan
What the bell! Picture worthy, my loaves sometimes rise to the level of edible.

Ps what size dutch oven is most useful, bread and pot roast. Emameled or regular?
 

Rich G

TVWBB Gold Member
What the bell! Picture worthy, my loaves sometimes rise to the level of edible.

Ps what size dutch oven is most useful, bread and pot roast. Emameled or regular?
I use 4qt Lodge dutch ovens when I do round loaves. A lot of people like the Lodge Combo Cooker as it's easier to load your dough into the shallow portion when it's hot (I'm a daredevil!) :) Regular cast iron is fine (as Jim said, seasoned) as is enamel. I also turn my dough out onto a parchment round before slashing (my preference) and loading in the dutch. When I remove the lid after 15-20 minutes, I also slide out the parchment. This will prevent over browning of the bottom of the loaf in the dutch.

But, what if I just decide I want that new equipment!?
Oh, and a lot of BUTTER!
Then by all means, spend away, Timothy! Cliff will attest to the fact that I can assist in depleting your bank account if you need help! :)

R
 

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