Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Third Attempt

I started to do a little more research, read more and watched a bunch of videos on bread making.  I stumbled upon one that seemed to remove the mystique from the bread making process.  The emphasis on exact measuring and kneading was dismissed as "not needed" and, since his results were (obviously) good, I was very much encouraged and decided to give this one a shot (with a little tweaking).

I had read that french baguettes went stale very quickly because of the zero fat content.  So, I decided to continue to add olive oil (1 tablespoon) to this batch.  In addition, because I was looking for the darker color, I also added a tablespoon of honey.

All in all, because I staged everything prior to the actual mixing, it all went pretty smoothly.  Unfortunately, when I scored the boule after proofing, I thought I scored it too deeply and the dough seemed to droop...  it appeared to spread out rather than up, so I punched it back down and started over again.   Once again, after the fact, I felt that I should have left it to rise just a little longer.  The other "mistake" I think I made was not leaving it in long enough and taking it out after just 30 minutes.   I went with yet another "recipe" which said to bake it for 30 minutes at 450F and reduce to 375F for 15 to 30 minutes "until golden brown".   I guess I panicked because the bread was coloring so quickly and took it out a little early.   (I also needed to work on what rack to place the bread on in my oven).  Still, I was encouraged by the results and thought that I was finally on the right track.  I really felt that #4 would be much better.  Here's what #3 looked like:

I really can't complain about the end result.  I made a couple of great sandwiches on toasted slices of this and some incredible french toast dusted with powdered sugar and drizzled with maple syrup :) 


Bargegirl said...

OMG, that French toast is to die for! I'd forgotten about FT, will have to try it here.

Joe Gee said...

Me too! I hadn't had FT in years! I got the idea after watching someone make savory french toast on the Food Channel.

For this, I used egg and milk (although it should probably be half n half or cream) with a teaspoon or so of vanilla extract. I topped it off with powdered sugar and some awesome maple syrup from Vermont. Fantastic!

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