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  #11  
Old 05-29-2012, 12:28 PM
Faith In Virginia's Avatar
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Bill did you put any thermocouples in your oven? I finally figured out how to saturate my oven and not do the overheating. That can really mess with your timing.

I do the counter S&F myself. Big batches gives me room to stretch out. (pun intended)
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  #12  
Old 05-29-2012, 12:54 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

We used tubs at SFBI. I had not done so before. The tubs held 12 to maybe 20 pounds of dough which is a nice size. I use a smaller one at home that holds about six pounds. My small tub is actually a food storage tub with a seal tight lid. The SFBI tubs are commercial kitchen tubs SFBI sells for dough with a loose fitting lid. Also use tubs for my balled pizza dough rather than individual dough ball containers.

I like the tub because you end up with a rectangular blob of dough that is easier to cut and shape into loaves than a round blob. The S&Fs work well because the dough is thinner and the stretch has high impact. It also keeps the counter clean! When ready to shape you simply dump the dough and stretch and flatten it a bit to get it down to say three inches thick and slice strips off to weigh and parse into the dough pieces for loaf forming. The resulting rectangular dough pieces facilitate good loaf forming. (Not a BIG deal but nice when making big batches of dough.)

Bake On!
Jay
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  #13  
Old 05-29-2012, 05:03 PM
WJW WJW is offline
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Faith:

I did put three thermocouples in the masonry.

One is located below the hearth between the brick and insulation to tell me how hot the outer edge of my hearth is.

The second is also located between the insulation and brick, but it's in the roof arch in the front third of the oven. (About a foot back from the chimney transition.)

The third is also in the roof arch but it is in the rear third of the oven and is embedded in the brick about a half inch in from the hotface.

My IR temp gun accepts an input from a K type thermocouple so I have just been checking to see the saturation by plugging and unplugging the various thermocouples. The gun also came with software to load on a laptop and it has a USB cable to transfer data to the laptop as well. At some point I'll get all that stuff up and running but I probably ought to finish the outside of the oven before I do anything else.

On that note a friend of mine has a construction company and offered to have one of his laborers come by and stucco the oven over the course of a couple of days. I'm probably going to take him up on it. I was excited about learning how to law bricks, build an arch, etc. That's why I built the oven. Learning how to put stucco over concrete block doesn't sound as interesting to me. Besides that, we are coming into the time of year when I really want to use that oven, patio, and pool area for entertaining and I don't want a half-finished eyesore of an oven uglying things up till I get around to finishing it myself. My daughter's b-day party is in three weeks, we're using the oven, and I'm getting flack from my wife and daughter about having the oven look half-way presentable.

Jay:

Thanks for the info on the tubs. When you do the stretch portion where are you going with it. Are you stretching up and then folding onto itself...or is the tub big enough that you have room to stretch out? I'll look for a google video of someone doing it in a tub. Everything I've seen to this point was people doing it on a counter-top. (no pun intended).

Bill
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  #14  
Old 05-29-2012, 06:45 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

S&F in a tub is so simple in practice and so hard to describe... Let's see... My little tub is about 14 inches long and 10 inches wide and about 5 inches deep. My biggest tub is about 24 inches long, 16 inches wide and 6 inches deep. (Guessed - Without measuring)

One important detail...oil the tub with a tablespoon or two of olive oil or vegetable oil. A spray bottle can be useful for applying a uniform thin coating to help prevent sticking.

I put the tub long way sideways (facing me). Reach across and grab the dough near the corners and lift. I lift until the lifted dough is about the width of the tub and then pull forward to fold the dough back down, rotate 90 degrees and repeat, and again, and again, until all four sides have been stretched and folded. Usually that is all I do but sometimes if the dough is really slack I will do a second round. At that point the "bottom" side should be tight (somewhat tight perhaps for the first round) and smooth. The "top" will often be a bit uneven from the grabbing and pulling and such. Reach under and "flip" the dough so the smooth side is up. The weight of the dough will help squeeze the dough into a continuous uniform mass. When you dump it out for forming you will have - as I said before a rectangle that can be stretched and flattened to about 2 to 2 1/2 inches or so which is a convenient thickness for slicing with a dough knife into chunks for loaf formation.

Hope that helps!

I attached a couple more pics. The first is of my Pain aux Cereales and two different boules I make. The second is a crumb shot of my Pain aux Cereales.
Jay
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Sourdough success!-jack-3-4-.jpg   Sourdough success!-reccereale1008b.jpg  
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  #15  
Old 05-29-2012, 08:10 PM
WJW WJW is offline
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Jay:

Wow! That stuff looks like art.

I guess it is now that I think about it, but man o' man that stuff is something. It's perfect in symetry. Something to aspire to.
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  #16  
Old 05-30-2012, 03:08 AM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Okay Bill!

Now the confession! The cross section of the cereales is from my first batch. The roundness is a product (I think) of two factors - first the cereales (grains) absorb water and effectively dry the skin of the loaf a bit. Too shallow a slash led that loaf to not "rip" at the slash very much so the oven spring simply inflated the loaf to a round shape! The one in the grouped photo was from a later batch, was properly slashed, and was more oval!

It is really hard to get a really wet dough to make a round loaf! It always wants to sag some but a slightly dry skin can help!
Jay
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  #17  
Old 05-30-2012, 09:25 AM
WJW WJW is offline
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Gottcha. I thought you were trying for a round loaf.

Either way, wonderful crumb and the crusts in that grouped photo are fantastic.
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  #18  
Old 05-30-2012, 11:59 AM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Thanks...

A hint for you...when you see an artisanal loaf that has a broadly rounded edge that is lifted from the "table" (or bottom of the loaf) that is a strong indicator that the loaf "inflated" while baking and that suggests either a dry skin or a bad slash or low oven humidity. (Note: Low oven humidity will tend to be accompanied by a "grayish" tone to the crust as it will not gelatinize and caramelize properly. Sometimes a batard will look almost like a football with the ends lifted well above the table. That is a definite sign something is amiss!
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  #19  
Old 05-30-2012, 01:36 PM
WJW WJW is offline
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Roger. Some of my batards have been doing that. I think I'm slashing wrong. I'll work on that this weekend.
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  #20  
Old 06-01-2012, 09:38 AM
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Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Default Re: Sourdough success!

Wonderful loaves Bill! Congratulations on a really successful 1st attempt in your wfo.

How exactly did you put your loaves into the oven? I see them proofing in baskets with...parchment? And I see your peel on the long handle. Did you just flour the peel and slid them off or did you slide them in on parchment?

Also, you don't have a door yet do you? Maybe I missed it in your posts. What did you close up the oven with?

I've only baked 2 loaves at time in the wfo with ok success but your pics are great. Your pics (and Jays wonderful loaves) have me refreshing my starter all this week to go for new bake.

Good luck and thanks for posting your progress,
Dino
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