Monday, February 20, 2017

Recycled Recipe Loaves

 For SuperBowl Sunday, I recycled a couple of recipes I had recently used and tweaked them a little bit. For the ciabatta, I switched from using KAF AP to Wheat Montana Natural White AP. In case readers aren't familiar with this flour, I found that it doesn't have the same behavior as KAF AP in that mixing it required a couple extra minutes and even then, it was somewhat slack pouring out of the mixer bowl. I also added some semolina, about 14 g, to add a little sweetness to the dough.

I followed the same procedures that I used in my 30 DEC 2016 post and figured that if the dough wasn't manageable, I could just divide it, put it in a pair of 9" cake pans, bake away, and proclaim the resulting bread to be focaccia. Fortunately, persistence paid off and the one 14" long loaf was a favorite at the supper table at our friends' house in Farley, MO.

The other loaf was a repeat of bread from my 7 JAN 2017 post. The difference for this loaf was in the baking procedure, not the ingredients. This time around, I preheated the oven to 450F and kept it there for a twenty minute period after I placed the aluminum foil roasting pan over the loaf rather than lowering the oven to 425F. When I removed the pan, the loaf had impressive oven spring. I then turned the loaf around and lowered the oven temp to 425F for another twenty two minutes. After the bake was done and the loaf was on the cooling rack, it appeared to be "breathing" at the top of the loaf. As a skeptical sort, I thought it might just be that the variable lens glasses I wear were distorting things.  This same phenomenon occurred on the next loaves I baked, a multigrain WWW sourdough and yesterday's loaf, a simple 3-2-1 WWW sourdough. One thing I can state with certainty is that all of these loaves sang their glutenous hearts out for me.
That was definitely cool.

While my family in New England has been getting slammed with cold and snowy weather and my uncle in Cupertino, CA has been witnessing  heavy rains, we've been having an unseasonably warm spell here on the Middle Coast. Daytime high temperatures  have been in the high 60s and today's high was around 73F, probably a record. These conditions are expected to last through Thursday. Seeing bees fly about in February isn't very common here in NE Kansas. There might even be some overnight thunderstorms.

Out in the yard, daffodils are starting to emerge in the flower beds next to the concrete driveway. The day lilies are starting to show some bright green underneath last year's leafs. I've pulled the straw off the garlic bed and there are about 45 shoots growing out. The straw will go back over the bed before the warm spell comes to a halt on Thursday but by then, the garlic will have grown at least another inch or two taller.

Visitors from Finland and Latvia found my obscure corner of the internet in the last week or so.

The next loaf on my "to do" is probably going to be one where I use some flat, warm lager beer as the liquid in the poolish. It won't be English beer but rather something from the Boulevard Brewing Co. in KC, MO called KC Pils. I'm not the guy who named a lager as a Pils so make your complaints or inquiries to the brewery or better yet, buy some if it's available in your local stores and see what you think. I think it's a wonderful beer for the weary soul who has finished mowing the lawn in the oftentimes brutal heat of a KC summer.

Comments, humor, and questions are welcome.

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