Tuesday, April 8, 2014

My Favorite Wet Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

This is a formula from Richard Miscovich's new book which I have adapted by using whole wheat flour to make a crispy pizza curst that is both light and full of fiber. This dough combines the one-two punch of a poolish, coupled with a long fermentation time. I even baked this bread into a pretty solid looking and tasting batard. 

As is typical, the poolish is 100% hydrated and contains 25% of the bread's total flour. I prepared the poolish with white flour, because I find that when whole wheat is used in a dough like this, the lightness is a bit more difficult to achieve. I would much prefer using the whole wheat in the final dough rather than in the preferment. This is just a personal preference. 

The dough is autolysed for 40 minutes prior to kneading, and all of the ingredients are included except for the salt. The shaggy dough is then turned out into a large metal bowl and is kneaded in a folding style until the dough is smooth and elastic. This took about 5-6 minutes. Since this bread has a very long proofing time and many folds, a long mix is not necessary. The dough is then allowed to ferment for 3.5 hours with folds every 45 minutes. Because I wanted to bake a loaf out of this dough, I took about 1/3 of the dough and allowed it to undergo three folds before I pre-shaped it and then shaped it into a tight batard. I actually over-shaped this bread. Unfortunately, it absorbed too much flour during the shaping and also lost quite a bit of carbon dioxide. None-the-less, a pretty darn good bread was born. In my mind, this is the perfect pizza dough! It's full of flavor and made the most wonderful crust that has ever come out of my oven. Putting this baby on a piping hot stone will give you the best results! I really enjoy 73% hydrated for a half whole wheat Pizza dough! 

I am now experimenting with 55% whole grain and increasing it slowly to see how far I can push this dough! 

Stay tuned for my next bread. 75% whole grain levain with oats and molasses 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Pain au Levain with Increased Whole Wheat; 81% Hydrated

This is another exciting Pain au Levain this one is also prepared with Jack Straw, my whole white wheat 100% hydrated sourdough starter. This bread also features a retarded proof meaning, that after bulk fermentation it was allowed to proof in the cooler, this one went for 18 hours. It went into the oven super relaxed. Actually it spread out so much partially due to the high hydration that I had the guide the loaf into a less wide and taller profile. I will show a picture of the bottom of the loaf to show you what I mean. I also shaped this loaf with Robertson approach of shaping a high hydration bread, since this loaf was 81% hydrated. 

This sourdough for this bread is hydrated at 125% and thus is only given 7-8 hours to build at room temperature. I actually increased the hydration to speed up the fermentation. I chose to retard this bread since I had some serious time restraints. I made another bread very big loaf, this one for a Saint Patricks Day Hoolie, thrown by the new friends John and Betty, two wonderful people who are in their prime of life. John is an Irish Soda Baker and I am excited to be sharing this large loaf with him. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term Hoolie, as I was. It is an Irish get together, party in a small place; usually a residence. So I made this loaf on the big side again for everybody, and once again it barely fit inside my 3 Qt combo cooker. I baked this bread at 500 degrees mainly because I forgot to turn the oven down after preheating the cooker. It baked for about 60-70 minutes. About 45 minutes I realized I did not turn the oven down, so it finished at 425 for the last 20-25 minutes of the bake. Oddly the bread did not split open as my previous one did, but according to Doug Rae, a local baker in Maryland, this is because the dough was so nice and relaxed. I'll take that over the bread over-proofing. After about an hour the top of the combo cooker is removed and the bread is finished on the bread stone. This is a Mickey Mouse sort of thing, you can easily just keep it in the bottom of the combo cooker too, I am just a funny baker that way. 

So two hours after the levain, the autolyse is started. All of the flour and water are combined and allowed to mingle for about five hours. When the autolyse is complete the levain is added and the salt, and then the dough is kneaded by hand for about ten minutes. This dough is a hot mess at first, but give it three minutes of kneading and it really starts to come together. I think it would help the kneading process if the hydration of the starter was lower and the water in the autolyse was higher, this is due to the absorption of the whole wheat flour. Once the dough is kneaded it is gathered into a sort of ball and allowed to bulk ferment for three hours with 6 folds at 25 minute intervals. Since the dough is not divided a pre-shape is basically not necessary. Once again I shaped these loaves with the chad robertson method . YOu basically just keep folding the loaf into the 'seam' and then you pinch it to hold it together. It actually worked really well. Its a cool method for shaping a wet and tacky dough. The loaves were then retarded in my innovative cooled proofer for 18 hours. Then it is warmed at room temp for 45 minutes, which was most likely futile; and then baked as described above. 

The bread had good oven lift, and great coloration, just a bit weird that no splits developed, but I can not complain it allowed for a pretty cool clover stencil!

Have a great St Patricks Day from your Jewish baker at Hearth Baked Tunes

Bake on,

-DW, The Rye King 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Molasses Eight Grain Levain

This bread is another healthy whole grain invention. 75% of the flour comes from whole grains, not to mention a significant sized soaker. Needless to say this is a case study in fiber. 

I decided to try feeding my sourdough build with freshly ground whole oat groats. I also spontaneously decided to use Liza Mae, my rye starter in order to add one more grain to the mix in this multi-grain bread. Typically, in a bread like this, I would use honey, but I went with molasses which gave the soaker a wonderful deep brown color. The soaker contained, Cracked Spelt, cracked oats, sunflower seeds, cracked white wheat, millet and cracked kamut. Since this bread is made without yeast, it is given a relatively long fermentation time. Three hours on the bench with two solid folds, and then two hours in proofing baskets, seam side up. This long fermentation greatly helps flavor production and this bread's flavor will change as it rests. It will be a little on the sweeter side from the molasses, but still on the earthy and wholesome side. I also used some whole spelt in the dough. I substituted 50% of the whole wheat flour with freshly ground spelt flour, which has such a delightfully brown, earthy color. The one thing this bread will benefit from is raisins which is just enough to give it a chewy bit of sweetness. 

This bread then baked in a 450 degree oven for 45 minutes. The loaf that I had the most success with was the one baked in the combo cooker covered for 35 minutes and uncovered for 10 minutes. The other loaves did not achieve the same deep color. I later realized that I forgot to steam the whole oven after setting up the loaf in the combo cooker. It was late and I was ready for bed. Oh well!

I also totally forgot to get some pictures. Hopefully, one of my buyers will take a photo or two for me!! 

I am loving this combo cooker thing! It is great! I can not wait to get another one, and a dutch oven and ......... This whole bread hobby thing is really taking up quite a bit of space in my place! 

-DW, The Rye King

Friday, March 14, 2014

75% Hydrated Pain au Levain, with Rye Flour

A 3.2 lb; 1.5 Kg Rye Levain Monster
This is a funny little (poetic justice used) bread that I came up with on the fly. I wanted to make another 75% hydrated pain au levain, but I wanted some Rye in it. This bread is 50% whole grain with 25% of total flour coming from white whole wheat flour and 25% of total flour coming from whole rye flour. 

The starter for this loaf was fed with bread flour, and I used Jack Straw, my white whole wheat starter, which provides a nice medium sourness. It adds a little more "tang" than bread flour but a bit less so than my previous red wheat starter. I placed the starter on my water heater for about 7 hours and then I let it sit at room temperature (55 degrees) for another 2 hours. 

Some elegant but strong brotform lines

The autolyse for this bread is quite simple. It contains all of the wheat flour and rye flour and bread flour and water. The levain build and salt are added thirty minutes later. Generally speaking, the mix was very easy and uncomplicated. I mixed for three minutes on first speed and then three minutes on second speed. It did get a little complicated when my Kitchen-Aid mixer decided to bite the dust, fly the coop, crapped-out. (you get the picture). Hearthbakedtunes bids a fond farewell to our 6 quart friend. My Kitchen Aid has been an important part of my life, but life goes on.  So for now, I am beginning a new "movement": hand kneaded bread. This requires some strength and a lot of force, but I am excited about it. Now that my Kitchen-Aid is out of the commission, the biggest challenge is that i can no longer mill.  So now I am thinking that I will be getting a mill and making my breads by hand. It will be fun and it will get me closer to the process, which is great! Plus, both Forkish's and Robertson's books require mixing and kneading breads by hand. Bring on the challenge. 

I gave this bread four solid folds. If rye had not been included, only three would have been kneaded. Since I did the kneading by hand, I decided that an additional fold was warranted.

I did one other unusual thing with this bread. Instead of baking two loaves, I decided to bake only one. It was a risk worth taking. After baking, I had myself a rye monster, that weighed in at 3.2 lbs. WOW! 

Dabbling with my coined term 'the unscore' letting it burst where it must

I was very pleased with how the combo cooker performed! It really makes a nice bread! And such great brotform rings! 

Another winning hearthbakedtunes formula! It will definitely go in my book down the road.

Bake On!
-DW, The Rye King

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Power of the Pumpernickel

Baking this bread was an absolutely spiritual expereince! I love making this bread as I feel its the link of science, art and history!!

If you want to learn about the mystery of the universe, and then be able to eat it, then this is the right bread for you! Years and years of German bread tradition are wrapped up into this pullman pan and baked in a receding oven for 12-16 hours. I have only done this bread two times before, and I have had very pleasing results. But this is the first time that I have had confidence in my dough. The last two times I baked this bread, I did not have an appropriate heavy bread for the bread soaker. But this time I had a 68% whole rye with fennel which I baked last week. I toasted it up in the oven for about 35 minutes at 350 degrees to suck all of the water out of it and to caramelize all of the natural sugars in the dough and used that in the bread soaker. 

The bread soaker is only one component in the preparation of this bread, I will describe them in order here.

Two nights before you plan on baking this bread, a Rye berry soaker is made. About a cup of rye berries are soaked in warm water overnight. This softens the berries and allows them to swell to about 125% of their original size. This makes the boiling process go faster and also allows the berries to absorb more water during their cooking period. You can place the berries in a hotel pan and bake them in the oven. Since I was not using the oven at the time, I opted to cook them on the stove. I brought the water and berries to a boil, then reduced the stove to a simmer: then covered them and let them cook away for 60-80 minutes. 

The next step is the Rye sourdough build. I have to admit that Liza Mae, my starter was sluggish. She has not been fed in over a month and I should have either used my whole wheat levain, Jack Straw, or should have waited until tomorrow to make this bread. However, I was excited and eager to go, so I used Liza Mae. I was a bit disappointed because the sourdough build did not rise considerably over night. 

At 3:30 in the morning I woke up to start the soaker. I boiled water in my electric kettle and poured it over the severely toasted bread. I also checked on the sourdough build in the boiler room and saw that it was not moving. I turned the oven on 170 degrees for five minutes, shut the oven off and placed the build in the oven and went back to bed. 

At 7:30 AM the preparation and scaling process began. The first thing that had to be done was to completely drain the bread soaker. Important: Do NOT discard the water. I squeezed the bread and removed as much water as I could and placed the bread little by the little into the bottom of the mixing bowl. When you do this, you will notice that the water takes on a light brown color. This is normal. This is from simple diffusion that takes place as the water passes through a permeable membrane (the bread). The water is rich in flavor and if necessary (as it was for me), it is added little by little during the mixing phase. Next the rye chops, bread flour, salt, yeast and black strap mollasses are added to the mixing bowl.

At 7:45 I began the long, slow mix!  The bread is first mixed on first speed for ten minutes. It is necessary to scrape the bowl down as you go. I did this about 5 or six times. Turn the mixer off and really reform the dough into a ball. If the dough is dry add a little of the reserved soaker water. Be sure to add it slowly. I think I added about 1/3 of a cup of water total. The amount of water that you add will largely depend on your cooked berries, the kind of bread that you soaked, and the temperature of the water that you used in your soaker. As aforementioned, I used very hot water in mine. 

This dough then bulk ferments for 20-30 minutes. A pullman pan is oiled well and then floured. Be sure to also oil and flour the lid of your pan. This is done in the same way that one would oil a bundt pan for making a cake. The oil is sprayed on the pan and then a large amount of flour in poured into the pan and the pan is shaken and turned every which way to ensure that there is a coating of flour on the entire pan. This will keep the bread from sticking and will also insulate the bread during the long bake. The bread is then shaped in to a log, about the length of the pan. I literally put the bread next to the pan and shape until it is about 2 cm shorter than the pan. I then quickly and carefully placed the log into the pan; covered it; and then let it rise on top of the oven for about an hour.

Then the baking process begins. I started the baking process in my apartment at 10:06 am. I want to note that increasing your oven's thermal mass will help you to maintain strong heat retention, so I placed a full pizza stone, a 3 quart combo cooker, a 14" cast iron skillet, and half of a bread stone in my oven. I used half of the bread stone because once the bread has been on the stone for an hour I remove the stone and place it on top of the pizza stone, this way the bottom of the bread does not get too thick and carbonized. 

Here is the Breads time line:

350 degrees for 1 hour
275 degrees for 4 hours
250 degrees for 1 hour
225 degrees for 45 minutes
200 degrees for 1 hour
170 degrees for 45 minutes
Oven off for two hours
170 degrees for 10 minutes
Finally, oven off until 12-13 hours from when the bread first went into the oven.

This will closely mimic a receding bread oven and will give you great results! 
Finally, remember to increase the thermal mass in your oven for best results. 

And the moment of truth!!

Bake on!

-DW, The Rye King and proud of it!!!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Rugbrod Take One

Rugbrod! I have to be honest with you, I am not pleased with the way this bread came out and I know deep in my bakers soul that it has nothing to do with Misky's formula! I think it needed to be baked longer. I wanted more color and more crust. Its good, nice light fennel flavor but considering this is a heavy rye bread I had higher expectations. I will bake it again soon.

I make it sound like it was a total failure; it was not! I am pleased with the crumb the flavor and hydration are perfect, just the crust needs a bit more love!

More to come this week. I am thinking of a hearth rye bread to try out my new combo cooker!


Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sourdough Whole Wheat with Dark Chocolate, Cranberries and Pistachios

I am proud to say that this is a hearthbakedtunes original, and what a bread it is. I got this idea from these little dark chocolate morsels they have been carrying in the cafeteria at work, and I must say I put them to might good use in this creation. The richness of the dark chocolate the salty-nuttiness of pistachios and the sweet-tartness of cranberries. A moist but tight crumb, a subtle tart flavor. This is a going to be going in my future bread book. The only thing it needs is a touch of Rye, as that is my focus!

This bread is 73% hydrated and contains a poolish like levain build which contains white whole wheat flour. Any whole wheat flour will do. The build is meant to go 10-12 hours but I fudged this up, my sister and her boyfriend Darren were in town for a surprise visit, and I forget to prepare the build at 6 am, I had everything all weighed out and ready to go, and still i bumbled it up. And of course I did not realize this until 11 am at the hospital. I picked up my cell and gave Kelly a call! "Quick, bread emergency,take the flour and water on the counter mix it with 1.5 ounces of levain and stir it up with a pinch of yeast and throw that on the water heater." Had I not forgot, I think the bread would have been a touch more sour, but it all worked out in the end. I will be making this bread again soon. A bread associate of mine recommended a honey, flax, dark chocolate and candied orange which would also be great, the future hold countless crust and crumb potential.

The bread is quite simple. autolyse all of the flour without the levain for 25 minutes, and then the levain build is added with the salt ( I added a pinch of yeast because of my thoughtlessness, but assuming you are not a bumbling tired hooligan you don't knead it.) The bread then mixes on first speed for three minutes and two to three minutes on second speed. The dough has a two and a half hour bulk fermentation with two folds and 50 minute intervals. The bread is then scaled and pre-shaped into rounds. It rests for twenty minutes and then is shaped into 16 oz batards. Which are dusted with flour and then proofed in brotforms or couches seam side up for 60-90 minutes. The bread is then slashed four times and baked with normal steam for about 40-45 minutes. Watch closely because the chocolate and cranberries and some serious browning potential. 

The bread is a winner, I mean its GOOD! Great crust! I also want to share that I have fixed my steam predicament. My oven has a steam vent in one of the burners. So now I place my kitchen-aid mixing bowl upside down over the burner and steam stays in the oven. My last to crusts have been wonderful. Staying crisp and it is improving the shelf life of my breads. Still sliceable after five days. I also like this small loaf size. I can fit three on the stone and its more manageable to eat with just two people.

Stay tuned for more exciting original loaves!

Bake On
-DW, The Rye King

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Five Grain Honey Levain

A proud moment! Great oven spring, wonderful coloration from the honey and a brilliant imprint from the brotform
This is my adaptation of Richard Miscovich's Seven Grain Bread. There were 2 major differences in my adaptation. First, I used a five grain soaker which included: rye chops, pressed barley, flax, cracked wheat and oats. My second change was the use of white whole wheat flour rather than red or winter whole wheat. I will walk you through the complete process as this bread has a soaker, a levain, and a long fermentation time. 

Lets start with the soaker: the soaker combines two of my favorite things: fresh cracked grains and honey! The soaker is 114% hydrated and contains 30% honey by weight, which is a considerable addition. The soaker is mixed uising room temperature water at the same time that the sourdough build is prepared. It is allowed to sit at room temperature. In summer months or in very hot climates it is possible to add salt to the soaker but since this soaker is in the autolyse, I would try to hold off on adding salt to this soaker. I did cheat and take a taste of this soaker prior to the autolyse and it is sweet and nutty and absolutely delicious! It tasted so sweet and good that it has motivated me to make some Muesli for breakfast tomorrow

The levain Build: The sourdough build contains 25% of the flour in the final dough and is 100% hydrated and contains 50% of the bread's bread flour. It is left at room temp for about 8 hours, but I left mine for ten because Kelly and I were working out in a planned exercise session. Ever since I started feeding Jack Straw with white whole wheat, I am enjoying the taste of my breads a little more. You should see the growth it gets in only 6 hours time; it is incredible. 

Jack straw is my liquid levain which is fed with home ground white whole wheat flour
Autolyse: All of the flour, the soaker and the water are combined in the autolyse. I poured the measured water into the levain to loosen it, and then added the mixture into the mixing bowl with the flour. Then I added the soaker. I then mixed this for about 45 seconds just until a shaggy mass was formed. Then it is allowed to rest at room temp covered for about 35 minutes. 

Soaker: 80g Rye chops, 15g golden flax, 25g pressed barley, 20 g rolled oats, 20g cracked wheat

The mix for this bread is actually quite simple. After the autolyse, the salt is sprinkled on the dough mass and the dough is then mixed on first speed for 3 minutes and then second speed for 3 minutes. The dough is bulk-fermented for 2.5 hours with 1-2 folds. I used only one fold.

Right before the mix!
The bread is then pre-shaped into rounds and then shaped into batards/boules. It then proofs for two hours. The bread is then scored in a simple square pattern if boules are used or the bread is give 5-7 diagonal slashes. It is important to slash through the shoulder of the loaf to get great openings. This bread is baked in a 450 oven for 45 minutes, but can also be made in a combo cooker with great results. 

The boule came out just as beautiful!
I pulled these out of the oven and I can honestly say that I have never ever made a more stunning loaf of bread! This bread had a long ferment, a good mix and a healthy soaker. I am ecstatic. This bread came out amazing. I think that it is the most beautiful bread that I have made to date. This is a loaf to remember and it's definitely going into the Rye King's Hall of Fame.

Bake On!
-DW, The Rye King

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Four Hour Pizza Dough

Roasted Mushroom and arugula pizza with mozzarella and Fontina Cheese with this great pizza dough

This is a very cool pizza dough, which is once again coming from Richard Miscovich's new book Cooking with Fire. The main cool thing about this dough is that it is a straight dough, meaning that it requires no preferments. The next awesome thing about this particular formula is that there are no folds. Typically with pizza dough I fold at least once time after an hour, but with this dough there is no need to. The other interesting thing about this dough is right after the mixing is complete the dough is divided in to ten balls and allowed to ferment in this way. I not have quite enough room to do this so I bulk fermented the dough for four hours. Quickly divided the dough into 250gram pieces, placed them in ziploc sandwich bags and and placed all but two portions into the freezer. These two pieces were going to be used for dinner. 

Lately, Kelly and I have been eating our pizza with onions and pre-seared button mushrooms. As much as I love the flavor of caramelized onions for pizza I really enjoy the crunch that an uncooked onion can provide. The ten minutes the pie is in the oven is plenty of time to soften up the onion enough. That being said it is very important that you cook the mushrooms, if not they will release quite a bit of water and will tend to over moisturize your pizza. The vegetables that I find can do okay with out pre cooking are onions, peppers, thinly sliced roma tomatoes. Other ingredients should probably be cooked prior to loading the pizza into the oven. 

My pizza sauce is very simply, one large spanish onion two-four pounds of chopped roma tomatoes, 5 cloves of garlic sliced thin, two tablespoons of chili oil and kosher salt and freshly course ground black pepper. A little basil can also be added, but add this towards the end of cooking! It is also possible to place coursly ripped basil leaves under the cheese layer of your pizza. 

As most of the breads in Miscovich's book this bread has an autolyse, which is particuallry important as there is no pre-ferment. Miscovich does have a much more labor intensive Pizza dough recipe which I will be making next time I need dough which requires a preferment 4 fold and an autolyse. After the autlyse has autolized for about 30 minutes the yeast and salt are added and the dough is mixed and the fermented in rounds for four hours. THat is all the labor that this dough requires. Now I am going to include an excerpt from Miscoviches book which is taken word for word. As you can tell a lot of thought went into this book so please get yourself a copy!
The production schedule of this dough is flexible-- there are several different ways to have dough ready for a pizza party. Need it this evening? Fine. Would you like to mix the dough today and chill it until tomorrow. Also no problem. The stability of this straight dough means you can use it for several pizza sessions over the course of two to three days. Here's how that can work. Mix a batch of dough around lunchtime. Take half of the dough and place it in a container that has a light coat of pan spray and is big enough to accommodate a volume increase in the dough of about two-thirds. Give than an hour or so at room temperature and then place it in the fridge. This will be the last piece you use. The remaining dough can be divided, shaped and placed in a shallow, covered that have a light coating of pan spray. After another hour, place one of the tubs with divided dough into the fridge. This will be your pizza dough for tomorrow's lunch. The remaining first half of the dough will stay at room temperature until it's time to have a couple of pizzas for dinner than night."  Miscovich R. From the wood-fired oven: new and traditional techniques for cooking and baking with fire.; 2013.
This dough handled well, I am a registered dietitian so I would prefer a dough with at least a third of its flour weight coming from whole grains, but the dough is wonderful and it crisps up perfectly. which is something I am going to sacrifice when adding whole grains to this bread. But I prefer thin crust pizza anyways. In the coming year I will try this bread again but with whole wheat flour. And will publish my changes

Friday, January 24, 2014

Kelly's Awesome Adorable Cookies

Check out these cookies that Kelly made.......... Chocolate and Vanilla Sugar Cookies with Vanilla frosting!

Bake On
-DW + KF