Rustic Country Revisited

I am using up the bag of Rustic Country flour today. The first loaf did not make it as far as The Toast Test and was wiped out with the egg mayo and cress last night (delicious, since you are asking.)

Seedy
Seedy

Today’s loaf sees a few modifications:

  1. More care and better planning
  2. A little extra water to make a slacker dough and easier kneading
  3. Olive oil subs for butter
  4. I added the salt after the 5 minute resting period and kneaded it in, using the Bertinet method
  5. Kneaded for 5 minutes then rested for 5 minutes
  6. Kneaded for a further 5 minutes
  7. Rested for 10 minutes before shaping and leaving to rise for an hour
  8. Actually measured my dough shape against the profile of the loaf pan

Whatever happened to the Golden Rule of “change one variable at a time” ?

If I thought 8, above, was clever, I need to think again. My dough rose and spread, and ended up both far too long and far too wide for the pan. It crumpled and sagged as I attempted to squish it in. Verdict? I over-rose my bread and then panicked instead of just dealing with it. What I should have done was to knock it back and re-form it and then give it a short rise  before baking.

Crumpled
Crumpled

The result? An artistically crumpled loaf.

Rumpled
Rumpled

It’s a great crust, though – and tasty bread.

The learning curve with this baker seems to be steep. I liked the loaf that it made the other day. It was good to have sandwich-shaped sandwiches too. I would like to think that I will persevere but I fancy that it will become a white elephant in my kitchen and I shall return to free-form bread making. There’s not much wrong with a simple cob, is there?

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Bare Naked

Bare Naked

We are home again, after a month-long trip away. A trip during which I completely failed to get my laptop out. It was good to come home. We were driving along, close to Le Dorat at the time, when I felt that “aren’t we fortunate to live in such a lovely part of France” feeling washing over me. I had a sudden urge to invite all my friends to come and stay and to shareContinue readingBare Naked

A Month in France: Nothing is Lost

A Month in France: Nothing is Lost

I am lagging on the Month in the Country prompts, and lagging badly at that. I have a list of prompts t be caught up on and I shall be working my way through them here, or at Scattered Thoughts depending on where the post most naturally sits. I have elected to tackle the prompts not in date order necessarily but to seize upon prompts that offer me space in which to write down the things that I am feeling the need to say. Even if I need to crowbar it in. The thing is, I am going to continue to be short of time and space in which to write and so a two-for-one is useful and I hope to do as many of those as I can. Seems like a plan? … Continue readingA Month in France: Nothing is Lost

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3 Comments

  1. spinninggill
    March 1, 2013
    Reply

    I’ve always made free-form bread in the past. Three longish loaves on a baking sheet. They join up as they expand making a lovely soft-sided loaf.

    • March 1, 2013
      Reply

      I prefer a crusty loaf to a batch loaf. though sometimes I like to make batch rolls.

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