Friday, September 30, 2011
I multiplied the original recipe to make 4 loaves.
4 c whole wheat flour *1 c if you want only one loaf or none if you want an all white bread
8 c unbleached white flour *2 c if you want only one loaf or 3 c if you are making all white
about 4t dried rosemary (it was all I had left - should have used 8t) *2t for one loaf
(original recipe calls for lemon zest. I didn't use it. for 4 loaves = 8t for or 2t for a single)
1 t yeast *1/4t for one loaf
mix these ingredients together in a 5 gallon bucket with a lid or other container depending on how many loaves you are making - enough to rise to double or more.
Add 6 1/2 c apx 120 degree water (this multiplication hurt my brain last night: 1 5/8 c x 4 = 4 20/8 = 4+2 4/8)
stir until blended, no dry flour left - around 1 minute
cover and leave on counter for 24 hours (at least 12 hours)
I was very skeptical today when I poured the dough onto the counter for the next step. It was about the thickness of pizza dough. My instinct was to add more flour. But I resisted.
I floured my surface with about 1/4c of whole wheat flour, folded it over on itself a few times. Then cut it into 4 chunks. Formed the chunks into balls then preheated my oven.
The original recipe calls for 2 hours to rise at this point. I didn't have time for it. Instead I thought I would try my first loaf right away.
I preheated my oven to 450 degrees with my empty dutch oven inside.
Once the oven reached temperature I set a timer for 10 minutes. Just to be sure my pan was hot enough.
I poured around 1T olive oil and 1/4t salt in the hot pan, gathered up my soggy dough (cold water on your hands helps prevent sticking.) Dropped it in. Put the cover on.
Bake 30 minutes with cover on. 15-30 minutes with cover off. I baked one loaf at a time. Between the first and second loaves I did not let the pan heat up enough, I did not get as much of the nice cracking on the top. The rest of the time, I allowed 10 minutes in the oven empty before putting the next loaf in.
Once the bread is done, let it cool on a rack. If you listen, the crust will crackle and pop as it cools if done properly.
Not nearly enough rosemary flavor with the amount of herb I had available. Two of my loaves ended up burnt on the bottom.