French bread

I balanced a bit our bread needs per week and I realized that with latest visits, we need more than what I was usually baking every weekend. It was the time then to make 2 breads in the same time and this one, with yeast, was one of them.
I also realized that in the last weeks I have produced more sourdough to be discarded than normal so I needed a recipe to through it in. That would not be the raising agent as yeast works much faster than sourdough but would add a bit of sour country flavor to the bread.
The next days I saw that the bread was getting dry much faster than I was used when I was baking only with sourdough. The taste of this bread is excellent, however it losts its moisture quite quickly comparing to the sourdough ones.

On the other side, again a dough that was a pleasure to work with and a pleasure to see it raising so fast.

  • 1000g bread flour (10% proteins)
  • 700g water (at room temperature)
  • 13g fresh yeast
  • 18g salt
  • 150g discarded sourdough (optional)

Directions and my schedule:
  1. 11:20 AM mix the flour with water and let it stand for minimum 20 minutes.
  2. 12:10 add salt and yeast and mix/knead for 15 minutes on the second speed of a stand mixer.
  3. 12:25 do the bulk fermentation for 3h at room temperature ~ 23ºC (it can be longer if the temperature in the room is lower). Do also 2 stretch and folds at 45 min interval. I did this at 13:15 and 14:40.
  4. 15:15 take the dough out of the bowl and shape 3 oblong loaves. Put the shaped dough in floured bannetons and cover them with a towel.
  5. 15:30 start the final fermentation for 1h.
  6. 15:50 turn on the oven at 260ºC to preheat the baking stone and a pan with lava stones under it. 
  7. 16:35 Slide loaves into the oven on the hot baking stone. Pour 150ml of water on the lava stones under to create steam.
  8. Bake for 15 minutes at 260ºC and then reduce at 230ºC and continue to bake for 30 minutes. The bread is ready at 17:20.

This recipe was adapted from Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes - Jeffrey Hamelman, page 276.


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