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Old 12-17-2008, 01:49 AM
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Default Ciabatta and Boule

Wooohooo!! Look at what happened to my Ciabatta yesterday!

Its Hamelman's recipe and I did it exactly the same as last time except the house was a bit warmer (still below 20 C though) and I did that funny folding thing twice during bulk fermentation.

What a difference, the dough felt completely different this time and the loaves rose up like little balloons in the oven! This is sooo cool!
You started a thread on this James, with one lot folded and the other not, did you notice a big difference? Does the folding really change that much or is it maybe some other factor I haven't taken into account?

The boules had 30% sourdough starter, an overnight shaped and basketed rest (NOT rise) in the fridge and then another 8 hours doing not very much on the counter at around 19 C - at which point I got fed up and flung them in the oven anyway. And hey, they're not too bad. A little bit dense maybe and the slashing could be more symetrical, but good enough.
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Ciabatta and Boule-snowbake-003.jpg   Ciabatta and Boule-snowbake-004.jpg   Ciabatta and Boule-snowbake-008.jpg  
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Last edited by Frances; 12-17-2008 at 01:54 AM.
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Old 12-17-2008, 01:53 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

And this is the really cool bit: The oven was covered with snow when I fired it up yesterday. I gave it a good long hot firing - and the snow is still there on top of the oven today!

Is that good insulation or what?
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Old 12-17-2008, 07:09 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Oooh Frances, way to go on the ciabatta! The boules look really lovely, even with the dense inside. The key is, how do they taste??? My last whole wheat boules were quite dense too- and I am finding the sourdough a bit finicky about wanting to rise to my timing... sometimes it rises pretty fast, sometimes it's sloooow. My house is on a programmed thermostat, so it really shouldn't be the ambient temperature. I'm still spiking with a little IDY, since my starter's still a bit young, and it's still finicky. Just goes to show every loaf's a live thing until you cook it....
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Old 12-20-2008, 02:37 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frances View Post
The boules had 30% sourdough starter, an overnight shaped and basketed rest (NOT rise) in the fridge and then another 8 hours doing not very much on the counter at around 19 C - at which point I got fed up and flung them in the oven anyway.
We had one of the boules for breakfast this morning... and it turns out it is one of the best loaves I have ever made. Very very tasty, the whole family loved it.

... now all I have to do is try to recreate it

You're right about sourdough being more of a challenge Elizabeth. I find the sourdough reacts differently from bake to bake, even when I think I've done everything the same.

But I must say this whole bread baking thing is fascinating. All my homemade bread used to taste about the same, and now I have several distinct flavour and texture differences. I'm only changing are the hydration and proofing schedules, the ingredients are basically the same. Fascinating!
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Old 12-20-2008, 09:46 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Now that is some good looking bread. Wahooo!

Frances, are you folding the bread during bulk fermentation (twice) and then again as part of the loaf shaping before your final proofing? I think folding during bulk fermentation is one of the most important things you can do -- it seems to give the gluten the structure (and lines up the strands) so that it can hold the air bubbles and really puff up. Your bread is excellent.

On the Boule, maybe the key is time. Lots of time for the enzymes and yeast to slowly work on the flour to give you flavor and texture and available sugar for color. Captain, we need more time....

I like your ingredients idea. Natural starter bread has flour, water and salt. That's it! :-)

The rest is technique and proportions -- the skill of the baker.

The kids are off school and we're on vacation schedule. Happy Holidays all.
James
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Old 12-20-2008, 10:50 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Frances
I concur...good looking! I don't think those loaves to look dense...consider that average "kiddie" or "bambi" bread as someone called it...that is dense...if your formula had any whole flours in it(and it appears to be so)that would be what I describe as normal...good oven spring, nice color and crust...top job IMHO
On the docking side...for our transitional whole grain which is about 50% whole grain(about as high a percentage as we like to do in the WFO)...we usually make a cross or + on the top and then little slashes in between the ends...usally give us nice "ears"
you can probably get a pretty good idea from the pictures
It really is amazing that we use the same basic ingredients and can manipulate them with atmospere and time and achieve rather sublime results
Best Dutch
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Old 12-20-2008, 01:11 PM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

I like the cross slash with the little slit. I'll do that today.
James
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Old 12-22-2008, 06:19 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Thank you both very much for your kind comments.

I must say, back when I started building my oven, I never dreamt how may new things I'd be learning! Cool...
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Old 01-09-2009, 06:15 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Quote:
Originally Posted by james View Post
I think folding during bulk fermentation is one of the most important things you can do -- it seems to give the gluten the structure (and lines up the strands) so that it can hold the air bubbles and really puff up.
After several bakes I am still amazed at what a difference the folding makes. Its as if you were handling an entirely different dough. Actually it feels sort of voodoo: "I wave my hands over the dough like this and utter these words, the I give it a quick fold and hey presto..."

This picture is of the latest lot of Ciabatta - made with only sourdough starter. No commercial yeast at all. I thought that as the starter bubbles up so well, it should work for Ciabatta, too. And it did - man was I surprised!
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Old 01-09-2009, 07:11 AM
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Default Re: Ciabatta and Boule

Can someone point me to the instructions for this "folding" process?

Thanks - Chuck
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