Monday, November 1, 2010

Not sourdough (gasp)

As a result of the busyness of late, my poor sourdough starter languishes on the bench. An upside of this is that it encourages me to seek out alternate bready things to bake that require other leavening agents.

Yesterday I got friendly with a new cookbook addition, Rose Levy Beranbaum's 'The Bread Bible'. Absolutely jam packed with recipes, techniques & tips; this is a book for the baker & not so much of a 'picture book' - I'm happy with that. I think I could happily work my way through this book & without a doubt come away with a better understanding of what it is to bake.

First up I got started on a hearth bread that promised a crunchy crust, chewy crumb & rustic appearance. Although a yeasted bread, the 'heart of wheat' wheatgerm bread utilises a 'sponge' pre-ferment & long proofing - like a good sourdough this sounds promising for improved flavour & texture. With two 'smalls' running about the 'leave & check' method of bread baking suits me well also!

So, the result? Lovely simple bread, with an as promised crunchy crust; a not so chewy crumb that is nevertheless delightful for a simple sandwich, with a slathering of butter & spoonful of 'Yay I found plum jam at the back of the cupboard' jam. Or as small number 2 decided, just fine straight from the toaster sans topping.

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