Wild Rice and Thyme Bread

3 03 2010
Wild Rice and Thyme Bread

Wild Rice and Thyme Bread

I’ve been wanting to make a wild rice bread for a while now, and finally got around to it. I used both whole grain wild rice and wild rice (with a bit of another rice medley) flour. There was a slight… issue with this bread. I wanted to do what I normally do with whole grains, soak them in water overnight so they soften up enough to go into the bread okay. Well, I spaced out and forgot to start the rice soaking the night beforehand. So I tried in the morning a couple of changes of boiling water (I didn’t want cooked rice, just softened some). That turned out to be nowhere near enough, and the rice in the final loaves was extremely crunchy. It wasn’t as bad as trying to eat uncooked rice, but it was MUCH crunchier than anything one would expect to find in a bread. So with that in mind I have to suggest a much longer soaking period, or if that doesn’t work, just cooking the stuff. Other than that, they turned out pretty well. The rice flour mix and thyme added a really nice flavor, and the smell while it was baking was surprisingly thymey, and almost had a hint of fruit wood smoke (like cherry, apple, peach, etc.)!

Read the rest of this entry »





Pane alla Caprese

17 02 2010
Pane alla Caprese

Pane alla Caprese

Since I first tried it, I’ve always really liked caprese salad and variations on it. The simple combination of basil, tomatoes, and mozzarella just can’t be beat. A salad doesn’t make a very good sandwich, or nice rolls though. So, with that in mind, I set about making an expression of caprese in bread form. Fresh grape tomatoes, fresh basil, fresh perle mozzarella, olive oil and just a little bit of black pepper (if you like pepper in it). I was a bit concerned about the fresh mozzarella, as it tends to put out a fair amount of water when melting, but it turned out just fine. The mozzarella does leave rather interesting holes in the bread as it melts though! I wasn’t worried about the tomatoes adding water to the bread because they went in whole, and were only partially roasted in the finished bread. This bread was really good for oven toasted sandwiches, very fragrant and flavorful. I think in the future I’m going to make smaller loaves, about 2 times the size of regular dinner rolls. Would be perfect hot out of the oven at that size.

Read the rest of this entry »





Multigrain Pain au Levain

20 01 2010
Multigrain Pain au Levain

Multigrain Pain au Levain

Funny story with this loaf… It was intended to be a loaf made of almost completely spelt flour. This was a great intention, until I went to the flour freezer and noticed the bag was mostly empty. Well, that wasn’t going to work. So I switched tracks and decided to throw in a whole bunch of flour types! I didn’t have much direction in exactly how much of any flour I added, I just went by feel … and how much was left in the bag! So even though it was a rather random assortment of flours, it turned out really yummy. Some sweetness, and a lot of nuttiness in the flavor profile.

Read the rest of this entry »





Almond and Satsuma Bread

6 01 2010
Satsuma and Almond Bread

Almond and Satsuma Bread

In my continuing quest to stick any fruit I can into a loaf of bread, I wanted to try adding some type of citrus to a loaf of bread. Pears, strawberries, and bananas worked, so why not right? I figured that if I left individual sections whole and was very gentle when handling the dough, they wouldn’t add too much excess moisture. That meant I needed to use a rather small citrus, and since I happened to have satsumas around they got the nod. I made from zest from them to put in the dough too, and used an orange olive oil so the bread itself would also carry a bit of the citrus flavor. Almonds seem to pair the best with citrus to me, so I used some slices almonds in the loaves. In the future I don’t think I’ll use sliced almonds, they don’t distribute quite as evenly in the dough, live and learn!
Read the rest of this entry »





Sandwich on Pear and Walnut Bread

6 01 2010
Turkey, Cheddar, and Caramelized Pear Sandwich

Tasty Sandwich!

I used some of my pear and walnut bread to make a really tasty sandwich the other night. Some toasted slices of the bread with roasted turkey breast, Beecher’s Flagship cheese, and caramelized pears. (recipe here)

Really yummy combination! And then I followed it up with some caramelized pears by themselves as dessert…

Caramelized Pear

Caramelized Pears





Pane alla Gianduja (Chocolate and Hazelnut Bread)

30 12 2009
Pane alla Gianduja (Chocolate Hazelnut Sourdough)

Pane alla Gianduja

Although it may not have been readily apparent from this website, I am a chocolate fiend. If it is made from or with chocolate there is a good chance you can get me to try it. I like making chocolates truffles, filled chocolates, and chocolate desserts. I really prefer the term chocovore, to chocoholic… It isn’t that I’m addicted, it is more just that is what I was born to eat! Now, in addition to chocolate, I love hazelnuts. Coming to the natural conclusion here, I love gianduja, if you’ve never had it you should really do your best to find some and try it. Gianduja is a combination of finely ground hazelnuts and chocolate. I may or may not have a shrine to chocolate and hazelnuts in my closet.
Read the rest of this entry »





Three Ways With Rustic Sourdough

23 12 2009

Rustic Sourdough with Spelt

Rustic Sourdough With Spelt


So, it’s the holiday season and everyone is busy, with work, shopping, making holiday goodies, etc. Not much time for making some normal everyday bread, right? Wrong! This dough is a bit tricky to work with if you’re not used to wet doughs, or if you really want to get your hands into it. But leave it alone, just giving it the minimum handling and it is easy as pie. It is also pretty easy to make some minor changes to the recipe and give a whole different feel to the bread.
Read the rest of this entry »





Strawberry Banana Macadamia Nut Sourdough

16 12 2009
Strawberry Banana Macadamia Nut Sourdough

Strawberry Banana Macadamia Nut Sourdough

After the pear bread worked so well, I got it into my head to try some other fresh fruits in breads. I really like strawberries so they were the fruit that immediately came to mind, even if this isn’t the best season for them (ones that are only a bit ripe actually work better for bread due to their crispness). Then when I thought of strawberries, bananas came to mind too, they make such a wonderful pair. So, banana puree providing hydration, and strawberry chunks in the dough. But it could really use a nut in it too, so I chose macadamias, the only nut that really felt to me like it went with the two fruits. I also took that inspiration a step further and added macadamia oil and butter to the dough. This bread is quite moist, and a bit heavy, though not in the stone in the stomach manner!
Read the rest of this entry »





Holiday Bread, In Search of a Name

10 12 2009
Sourdough Holiday Bread

Nameless Holiday Bread

With the call for holiday breads from YeastSpotting last week, I set out to come up with a recipe of my own. I was looking for something that wasn’t just an enriched bread with dried fruits and nuts, as so many holiday breads seem to be. But, racking my brain, nothing lacking the fruits and nuts seemed holidayish enough! So, back to the drawing board. I decided to mull the dried fruit I used in a brandy and orange juice mixture with plenty of spices. The fruits absorbed a lot of the liquid, and most of the rest cooked off. What little was left I used to do a quick sort of glaze on the walnuts included in the dough. I also tried to come up with sort of a Christmas tree shape for the loaf… that didn’t work so well! Read the rest of this entry »





Walnut Pear Sourdough

2 12 2009
Walnut Pear Sourdough

Walnut Pear Sourdough

Last week a friend brought us a box of Korean Pears (delicious, by the way) and seeing and tasting them, I thought they might make for a really yummy bread. I’ve never been a big fan of pears, don’t like the texture, but I hadn’t had asian pears before. The crisper texture, and not quite as sweet flavor was so much better than the pears I’d had previously. The crisper texture also seemed to lend itself better to inclusion in bread, not as likely to get lost. Then it came time for something else to add to the bread, and walnuts seemed like the natural choice. In the future I think I’ll consider adding some chunks of blue cheese into the mix as well, but I didn’t think some of the intended consumers of the bread would be happy with that.

I also decided to experiment with stenciling a bit with this bread, which was partially foiled by the flour from the couche, but by the time I was baking the third of the three loaves I’d manged to get it working a bit better. These loaves were also a testing ground for what differences using a cloche made. I played around with the slashing on them a bit too, somewhat successfully. The loaves that were baked in the cloche definitely had slashes that opened a bit wider, and somewhat crisper crust. The loaf volume appeared to be very similar, that is likely because they were verging on overproofed from being a little too warm when they went into the fridge overnight as shaped loaves.

I was very happy with how they turned out overall, though. The crust has a nice bite to it, while the crumb is creamy and very moist. The flavor has a lot of depth as well, just the slightest bit sour with some nuttiness and graininess from the rye and white whole wheat flours, yet exploding with bursts of fruity sweetness from the pears and nutty richness from the walnuts. Read the rest of this entry »








Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.