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Bread Baking Basics: Autolyse and Pre-Ferments

Bread Baking Basics: Autolyse and Pre-Ferments

I must admit that I’ve been fairly busy lately. It is my last week of leave before I go back to work, so we have been running around getting things done, as well as trying to enjoy our time as a family. We had a pretty grand time spending our tax return money. A new mattress, tires for Laura’s car, and the rest paid off what was left on my car loan.

That new mattress is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever slept on. It envelopes me and wraps me in fluffy clouds and lulls me to dreamland!

Jack, of course, has been keeping us busy as well. He’s been pretty fussy lately, so we took him to see the pediatrician because we suspected he had acid reflux problems. And he did. Hopefully his medication will start working soon.

So, it’s Friday already, and I realized that I haven’t posted anything significant. Not that I haven’t been cooking and taking pictures, or anything. I just haven’t had a chance to put anything into 1’s and 0’s.

Yep. That was a binary joke. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on February 17, 2012 in Baking, Bread, Food

 

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Bread Baking Basics: Baker’s Formulas

It’s time for a continuation of Bread Baking Basics!

So we got some of the fundamentals of bread baking down. The basic steps of bread baking have been gone over and we even baked a loaf using just those steps. In order to continue to improve our bread baking skills, we need to know how to formulate a bread recipe. Knowing how to do this introduces us to the main ingredients that go into bread and how they interact with each other, both as a dough and when in the oven.

Most like the Jeffrey Hamelman way of formulating recipes. In fact, I’ve met bakers who would wipe his butt if he asked. I have tremendous respect for his methods, but his baking style is far too scientific for me. I love the science of baking, as it helps bakers understand what is going on in the bread making process, however bread has been around for centuries without science. But hey, if you read his book and it works for you, then that’s great. The way I learned it doesn’t differ all that much from the way he does it, but there are some exceptions, especially when getting into advanced formulations (which we won’t at this time.) Hamelman’s way certainly beats Peter Reinharts, which completely eludes me. I love Reinharts books and the way he explains things, but I can’t use any of his recipes because they’re never done in weight, and I don’t understand his percentages. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 8, 2012 in Baking, Bread, Food

 

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