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couche - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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couche

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  • couche

    hello everybody!

    In baking the baguette, do I use the couche just for rising the dough or is this cloth also transferred into the oven also?

    Thanks.

    Kulas

  • #2
    Re: couche

    The bread is usually transfered onto a peel, docked (sliced with a razor) and baked directly on the hearth (without the cloth).

    Drake
    My Oven Thread:
    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: couche

      drake,
      thanks. it must have sounded like a silly question.
      Kulas

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: couche

        There are no silly questions!
        My Oven Thread:
        http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: couche

          You need to have a board as long as the baguette, actually a little longer to transfer the dough to the peal. At first a stiff piece of cardboard will work ( but doesnt last long). It also helps if you are making them traditional length to have a longer peel. Putting them at an angle on a smaller peel makes the transition to the hearth very difficult and you will quickly get frustrated as well as have crooked sticks. Be sure to add plenty of cornmeal to the peel prior to transferring since the loaf is longer you need to have it nice and loose and pull back in one smooth motion...this will take practice. The worse that will happen on your first few is that the loaf will be longer than it started out to be..no biggie. Don't be afraid to make the series of slashes, this too will deform the loaves till you get the hang of it. The proper slash should be as if you are skinning the dough slightly above the surface not a down ward slash..this also takes some practice but is essential to keeping the stick uniform. good luck post some pics...
          http://www.palmisanoconcrete.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: couche

            thanks everybody! I was not able to post some pics because when I made the bread I got into stomach problems after eating it. whew, It looked good, tasted just okay, really bad for my stomach. I threw it out right away. I'll use filtered water next time. But I made progress with that last try because it was the best oven spring I have achieved yet. sorry for no pics. next time I will definitely post.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: pics

              okay! here are the pics! finally, something that looks like a baguette!

              I did, however, did not have much luck with the couche method. I had great trouble transferring the baguettes to the peel and into the oven. The baguettes I did today were made with perforated sheet pans. Tastes good, though not an authentic french bread recipe. I put 5 % butter to make it more tender.

              Baked at 500F for 12 to 12.5 mins. with steam for the first 6 mins - 8 mins.
              Attached Files

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: couche

                Kulas
                You should check out TMB baking website...they have something called a flipping board that will help with the transfer
                Dutch
                P.S. GREAT job on the baguettes!
                Last edited by Dutchoven; 03-19-2008, 07:22 PM. Reason: forgot
                "Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that's creativity. " Charles Mingus
                "Build at least two brick ovens...one to make all the mistakes on and the other to be just like you dreamed of!" Dutch

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                • #9
                  Re: couche

                  Kulas,

                  Nice looking bags, congratulations. A few things about a couche that may help:

                  1. Flour the fabric well and rub it into the weave with a flat palm. It will perform best after a few uses.

                  2. Try to find a long (10 inch blade), thin (1 1/2 inch wide), flexible spatula, sometimes called an icing spatula to slide under the loaves and then transfer to the board or peel. Just stick it in a bag of flour each time you use it to coat the blade a bit. I find it helps.

                  Jim
                  Last edited by CanuckJim; 03-20-2008, 06:23 AM. Reason: typoo/?=s
                  "Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: couche

                    Hey Jim,
                    DO you ever wash your material used for making a couche? (I forget what the thing is called). I occasionally spray my loaves with oil, and the material gets a bit yucky a few weeks later. I tried washing mine that I got from King Arthur Flour, but it came apart a bit in the washer.
                    GJBingham
                    -----------------------------------
                    Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                    -

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: couche

                      I don't know about couches, but I've been using the same pastry cloth since I was a teenager, and pie crust is 1/4 grease. I just give it a scrape and a shake when it gets too crusty.
                      My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: couche

                        George,

                        Yes, I occasionally wash it, but only in warm water and only in the dryer for about ten minutes to fluff. Usually, I just shake it outside. I only wash it if it begins to smell at all off; rather not, but there you are if the flour goes rancid. The fabric is called baker's linen: thick, heavy, large weave but dense. The selvages were fine, but Wendy hemmed the ends for me to prevent unravelling. Don't know about KA; got mine from TMB Baking in San Fran.

                        Jim
                        "Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: couche

                          Thanks Jim, Dutch.

                          I'm searching the TM website now.

                          I failed to take pics the first time I used the couche. The problem was not actually the couche. I'd put flour onto the peel from the couche, and put the baguette. When I slide it in the oven sideways it sticks! The peel does not seem to take some flour, they just slide off. I ended up with baguettes that were c shaped, some were L shaped. That was the first time though, so I guess it may also be due to my lack of practice. The peel has a very fine grained wood. i'm not sure what wood it is. can this also be part of the problem?

                          I eat sandwich now! thanks everybody.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: couche

                            Thanks David and Jim. Much as I figured. I didn't think it would stand up to the washer with ragged sides, but it looked too funky to use. When I took it out of the dryer, it looked like a ball of yarn - all tangles. Scissors fixed the immediate problem, but I think I shortened its half-life.
                            GJBingham
                            -----------------------------------
                            Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                            -

                            Comment

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