Miche, Pointe-à-Callière

It is the second time I do this bread and the first time I really hated it. It's problem is the very high hidration. My problem is that I cannot find here a high-extraction wheat flour as the recipe of Hamelman requires. I didn't want to replace either the white wheate flour with whole wheat so I gave it a try with normal bread flour. First time I added more flour because the dough was extremely running (like a cream), impossible to give it a shape. Another mistake I did last time was to bake it on the oven stone and the bread spread quickly in all directions. Of course, I didn't through away the bread then and as taste was an incredible bread.
Today I have decided to give it another try. Remembering the last experience I was cautious and add a bit more flour from the start. But the dough was again running in all directions. I tried dozens of stretch and folds but didn't work, so when shaping I had to add more flour just enough to be able to gather the dough together. Another improvement from last time was to bake the bread not on the stone but in a dutch oven to be sure that I don't have again an Olympic running bread. For the first 30 minutes I baked it with the lid on and when I opened the oven to remove the lid I was shocked to see my beautiful bread. And I let here the modesty behind and I recognize this bread as being the most good looking bread I've ever made. The photos are not really capturing the "personality" of this bread. It is imposing itself, is high and has made even its "wings". It is a big bread of almost 2 kg, and I have to say this, I am so proud of it.


Preferment (total 360g):

Final dough (total 1878g for one big bread):
  • 1000g bread flour (the original recipe asks for 800g)
  • 700g water
  • 18g salt
  • the above preferment (360g)

  1. Make the preferment 12 hours before. Let it sit at 21ºC.
  2. Mix all ingredients except salt and sourdough for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Autolyse for 60 minutes.
  4. Add salt and sourdough and mix 10 min, desired dough temperature 24ºC.
  5. Bulk fermentation 2h30" with stretching and folding twice after 50 minutes.
  6. Shape it in a big boule.
  7. Final fermentation in floured banneton 2h30" at 24ºC.
  8. Bake for 60" at 250ºC in a preheated dutch oven.

This recipe was adapted from Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes - Jeffrey Hamelman, page 164-165.


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