Sunday, January 08, 2017

White Whole Wheat with Poolish

This not quite little loaf was part of an experiment. I had been reading that if I were to use a disposable aluminum foil pan to cover a freshly loaded loaf on a baking stone, I could get results somewhat similar to using a dutch oven. The operative word was similar but it didn't come that close at all. When I removed the pan about twenty minutes into the bake, the crust wasn't caramelized as usual without a pan and the loaf was softer than the usual loaf. Oven spring was good but there wasn't much of an ear. No harm was done so no foul was committed.

55 g KAF AP
55 g water at room temperature
1/8 tsp IDY
The poolish took about 12 hours to mature due to the usual coolish wintertime temperatures here in Casa de PG.

Main Dough
264 g DM bread flour
66 g WM Prairie Gold WWW flour
220 water at 87F
8 g kosher salt
1/2 tsp IDY

For this loaf, I used my small mixer so I could aerate the poolish with the water and IDY of the main dough using the whisk attachment. That led to a reasonable time of about two hours for the bulk ferment. My cellar came into play when the ambient temperature of 60-62F slowed the proofing down. That gave Mrs PG and I an opportunity to eat dinner without my rushing from table to oven and back. After dinner, I retrieved the loaf and started baking at 450F about 1 1/4 hrs later. As mentioned earlier, the covered bake lasted twenty minutes and the uncovered bake was another twenty minutes at 425F.

Besides using a foil pan for experimentation, I also finally got around to using the oven light trick to speed up proofing on a couple loaves. Going from a room temperature of around 68-70F to close to 80F made a difference. with the 720 g sourdough loaves. Using some IDY, about 1/4 tsp, also helps but has a slight loss in flavor when compared to an entirely, natural leavened loaf. Production convenience can have a cost.

The two inches of snow that fell from Wednesday night to Thursday morning is still on the ground due to below freezing temperatures since then.The usual suspects have all shown up including the red winged blackbirds, mourning doves, and a surprising number of goldfinches.

Comments, humor, and questions are welcome.

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