Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Two for Two Blues Loaves, lots of pix too!

 I must have had a yeast friendly atmosphere in my kitchen over the past few days when prepping my entries for this year's bread competition at the Leavenworth County Fair. I also baked a third loaf for the house which I really couldn't justify entering even though it still looks good to me. This year's grand prize went to a young woman who entered a braided egg loaf that, as soon as I checked out the competition,  recognized as having the look of the winner. As in baseball, there's always next year.

This first loaf, whose formula originated in a post by Floyd M. over at TFL, looked like a baurnbrot to me so I decided it could be an Austrian baurnbrot and that was how I entered it. I tweaked the recipe down in size and can't remember what else I might have changed over the past couple of years but it's still a good loaf It uses a huge pate fermentee, 50% of the flour, and only 3/8 tsp of ADY in all.

220 g bread flour
118 g water at 85F
4 g kosher salt
1/8 tsp active dry yeast

126 g bread flour
32 g rye flour
43 g whole wheat flour
All of preferment
156 g water at 85F
4 g kosher salt
1/4 tsp ADY

This was loaf that I expected to take the big prize. It's a 90% bread flour/ 10% whole rye flour sourdough. Besides the ribbon, it was bought by one of the judges to take home. Entrants can chose to donate the unsampled portions of their loaves for  sale to support the Fair or take the loaves home.

120 g at 82% hydration,

75% AP/25% whole rye flour

Main Dough
324 g bread flour
36 g whole rye flour
235 g water at 85F
All of starter
8 g kosher salt

This third loaf is the one I chose to stay home. It's close to a French Country loaf in design, using fresh milled white whole wheat in the recipe. The chevron slashing shows that I'm adapting to the use of a small boning knife I found after cleaning out the old cabinets to get ready for the remodel project. I had to do something, the grapefruit knife with a curved blade tip is missing in action due to the same project. This is a successful bake with good oven spring and a moist, sweet tasting, open crumb.

120 g at 82% hydration
75% AP/25% whole rye flour

Main Dough
270 g bread flour
72 g white whole wheat flour
18 g whole rye flour
240 g water at 85F
All of starter
8 g kosher salt

It appears that the area is destined for another period of drought. The Midwest rainfall passes to the North, around Omaha and Des Moines, or to the South towards Wichita, Springfield, MO and Tulsa. While we have experienced some stifling heat, we've also had some very pleasant, no A/C required days. None of my acquaintances who garden have had better results than I have with their gardens. The insects are thriving as usual but vegetable production remains spotty. My experiment with letting some loose leaf lettuce go to seed hasn't brought in more birds but has resulted in some awkward and surreal looking plants. They're on their way out to make room for me to access some basil plants. Basil pesto pizza will soon be on the menu.

Comments, humor, and questions are welcome.

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