Posts Tagged ‘Bread’

Beet Bread

beet bread

On Sunday I decided that I would make a beet bread.  Don’t ask why this craving hit me but I wanted bread that looked like and tasted like a beet.  My result was a modification of The Knead for Bread’s recipe.  Also, I have converted the recipe into metric measurements and baker’s percents.  Enjoy. 


1/4 tsp yeast
1 cup Bread Flour
1 cup water

Allow poolish to sit out overnight.  The small amount of yeast will create a great flavor for tomorrow’s recipe.

Beet Puree:

about 1/2 pound beets
1/2 cup water

Roast beets for 1-1.5 hours at 350F.  Roast beets in a small baking dish and cover with aluminum foil.  Beets should be tender to fork touch.  Cut roasted beets into cubes, I left the skins on mine, and blend with the remaining water in your pan. 

Final dough:

All of poolish
1 cup beet puree
2 3/4 Bread Flour
1/2 cup Whole Wheat flour
1/2 cup water
3/4 tsp yeast
1 3/4 tsp salt
2 tsp thyme
1 tsp ground black pepper

Mix all ingredients and allow for 15 min autolyse.  Knead for 4 minutes or until dough passes windowpane test.  Let double in a lightly oiled bowl.  Once doubled take out and shape.  I shaped mine into boules but you could use this in a loaf pan.  I would have liked to place this in my banneton but I was afraid it would leave residual pink that would stain future doughs.  Let your dough proof until doubled.  Score the top and bake.

Bake at 400F for 30-35 min. 

My dough had enormous oven-spring that I wasn’t prepared for.  Next time I will allow it to proof for a little longer.  I got anxious to put my boules in the oven.   

Beet bread

Metric measurements and baker’s percents


209g water
209g Bread Flour (I used King Arthur)
0.7g DIY

Final Dough:

All of poolish
234g Beet puree
475g Bread Flour
80g Whole Wheat flour
100g water
3.5g DIY
10g salt

100% Flour
40% Water
0.5% Yeast
1.3% Salt
31% Beet Puree

It seems that this dough would be underhydrated but you need to remember that there is water retained in the beets.  This percentage does not take into account the 1/2 cup that was added to the beets while they were roasting.  1/2 cup is around 50 grams and would raise the percentage to 46%.  This dough worked for me but  you may need to adjust the hydration level according to the flour that you are using and how “juicy” your beets are.

beet bread

Beet bread sandwich: fried egg, smoked gouda, raw spinach


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Sun-dried parmesan bread

Sun-dried parmesan bread

This was my kitchen sink recipe.  I accidentally made too much baguette dough so I decided to throw some of it in my banneton with a few added extras.  I had sun-dried tomatoes around and I had recently ground up some parmesan.  So, I thought, why not mix it into my extra dough.  Before putting it into the oven I spritzed it with water and gave it a sprinkling of cracked pepper.  Out of all the breads I have made this one actually made my mouth water when it was baking.  The smell was incredible.  Here is how I made it. 

Follow my poolish recipe for the dough.  I made 900 grams of dough for this recipe.

After the second rise lightly flatten out the dough into a square that is roughly 12″x12″.  On one half of it sprinkle 1/4 cup ground parmesan cheese and then, on top of that, gently press in 1 cup of chopped sun-dried tomtatoes.  Leave 1/2 inch of dough around the edges so that you can seal it back up again.  Fold the empty side over the top of the tomatoes and press down on the edges to seal.  Flatten the dough slightly and business fold it into thirds (like you are mailing a business letter).  Let your dough rest for 5 min and business fold again.  I folded mine three times. 

At this point you should have a few layers of tomato and you will want to shape your dough into a boule.  You don’t need a banneton for this because all of the folding and shaping has made your dough fairly tough and it will stand on its own.  However, let your boule rise for an hour, until doubled, before baking. 

Pre-heat the oven to 500F while your dough is rising.

Right before baking spritz your boule with water and top with pepper.  You need the pepper.  Trust me. 

Spray the walls of your oven with water and bake for 2 minutes.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Turn the heat down to 425

Bake again for 30 min at 425. 

Check the temp of your bread after 30 min.  If the internal temperature isn’t over 195 it isn’t done.  The optimal temp is between 195 and 205. 

sun-dried parmesan bread

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Pumpkin Challah

Pumpkin Challah
This bread works for just about any occasion. It has a great pumpkin flavor but it isn’t overpowering. The extra pieces, if there are any, make great croutons.

Yield=two large loaves.

8 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp yeast
1/2 tsp allspice
(I used ground allspice berries)
1/2 tsp ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup warm water
(100 degrees)
3/4 cup egg yolks (between 10-12 eggs)
2 Tbl canola oil
1/2 cup honey
15 oz. pumpkin puree
(if using canned pumpkin 15 oz. is a full can)
1 Tbl salt
1/4 tsp Ascorbic Acid (this will help your bread stay mold free–it is optional but it works)

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and wisk together
Combine all wet ingredients in a bowl and wisk together

Mix dry and wet ingredients and let sit for 15 minutes. This allows for autolyse (the flour to hydrate).

Kneed for 5-8 minutes by hand or 3 minutes with a stand mixer. Your dough should pass the windowpane test.

Place dough into a covered oiled bowl and let double, about an hour.

Scale and cut dough into two pieces. Put one piece back into your covered bowl. You will now be braiding your challah. This is the best part, because challah dough is incredibly easy to work with, all those egg yolks. Braiding dough is the same as braiding hair. The diagram on this page explains two different ways to braid and it gives instruction on how to do a 6-strand loaf.  Challah is very forgiving when it comes to handling so don’t fret about getting it right the first time.

Proof for 1 hour, aka let sit out, or refridgerate overnight in a plastic bag. Before placing challah in the oven glaze with an egg wash. Egg wash=1 egg plus 1 Tbl water mixed together.

Bake at 350F for 50 minutes. Let cool for 1 hour before cutting.

I sprinkled mine with poppy seeds

Pumpkin Challah

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My New Year’s resolution was to eat more whole grains. Peter Reinhart will be my guide this year with his book Whole Grain Baking. (I don’t plan on doing a year in the life of a book, but I do plan to utilize the colon cleansing power of the whole grain.) I know that if you are a bread baker and have looked on the internet for recipes or formulas you have stumbled across that name before. He is the man. If you have never read one of his books before I suggest Artisan Breads Everyday or Bread Bakers Apprentice. These are good books get started and most library systems have them.

Anyways. Following my resolution I made Reinhart’s Broom Bread on the 2nd. Looking at the formula for this it seemed that it would be dense and painful to chew; however, it was the lightest whole grain bread I have ever had. The secret? A soaker. Soaking whole grains in water overnight allows hard grains to soften and hydrate. Also, it utilizes a biga. The recipes in Whole Grain Baking are all basically the same with minor variations. The reason for this is because it is not a recipe book. It is a book to explain whole grain baking and many secrets for success. So, what’s the point of this blog? I love Peter Reinhart and so should you if you are serious about becoming a better baker. He explains baking in a way that makes it accessible. Because of Crust and Crumb I am able to create my own recipes using only a scale, a pen, and paper. Check him out and enjoy the results.

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 Welcome to 2010. I haven’t been on here for a while because I almost gave up. No comments made it seem that no one was reading and what is the point of writing this if no one is reading. However, I am going to stick with this. Also, I will try to add more recipes that involve the dreaded Volumetric measure system. Ick. But I’ll do it for you.
Pretzels. Hard crumbly pretzels are made using a lye bath. Have you ever seen Fight Club? I don’t want to mess with lye in my kitchen. This recipe is for glorious soft pretzels. These are perfect for dipping in sauce or just eating plain as a snack. They can be covered in cinnamon and sugar for a breakfast treat or slathered in marinara and cheese to make an afternoon pizza-y snack. This recipe makes 6 75-80 gram pretzels.
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees F.




3/4 cup warm water
1/2 Tbl yeast
2 Tbl brown sugar
1 1/2 cup flour
(1 Tbl gluten–optional)
These do not need salt in the dough.
Kneed until dough forms a smooth ball: 5-7 minutes.


Let rest for 20 minutes or store dough in refridgerator overnight for even better flavor.


Scale dough into 75-80 gram balls, or six pieces.


Roll each into a thin rope, approx 1 1/2 feet in length, and shape into your desired pretzel shape.


Boil each pretzel in water that contains 2 Tbl baking soda and 2 Tbl mild molasses. (Baking soda gives it a darker color and molasses gives it shine–this doesn’t seem correct but it is) Boil each pretzel for 30 sec total.


Give each pretzel an egg wash and sprinkle with coarse salt or other topping of your choosing.


Bake at 450 for 10-12 minutes. Let the pretzels get a little dark but you don’t want to over cook them.


These can be enjoyed right out of the oven.



Bakers Percents: 

100% Flour
64% Water
10% Brown sugar
2% Yeast
2% Gluten


with a poolish–this gives them a more complex flavor




100% Flour
178% Water
0.01% Yeast
(with a 200 gram flour poolish I generally add 1/8 tsp for an overnight ferement, but the amount of yeast will depend on how long you intend to let your poolish ferment: shorter ferement=more yeast)


100% Flour
20% Poolish
52% Water
10% Brown sugar
1% Yeast
2% Gluten


10 80gram pretzels:


430g Flour (I used 50/50 with AP and whole wheat flour)
86g Poolish
224g Water
43g Brown sugar
4g Yeast
8g Gluten



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Rising in a linen lined basket

I enjoy using biga, poolish, and pate fermentee whenever possible. These easy methods give bread a great flavor without having to use up fridge space with a long overnight/two day proofing. You can do a long proof or ferment and get even better results, but most people won’t notice much of a difference. Below is a poolish bread recipe that I have made a few times with great results. I have used this recipe for baguettes and boules.  Both turned out great.  For a different boule texture substitute 40% of the flour with Semolina. 

Start with a poolish. (Poolish is a very wet pre-ferment)

100% flour
178% water
0.5-1% yeast (the amount of yeast you use will depend on how much time you ferment)

I generally allow a poolish to ferment on the counter for 4-8 hours. It works to put your poolish in the fridge over night so that you can use it the following day. Retarding in the fridge allows you to relax and not worry that your yeast is eating too quickly.

Total dough percentages

100% flour
54% water
20% poolish
1% yeast
2% salt

This dough recipe will produce a dough with a hydration level of 66-68%


For a 900 gram dough:

508 g Flour
274 g Water
102 g Poolish
5 g Yeast
10 g Salt

Exactly 102 grams of poolish, I would suggest making more because you always lose some when transferring:

36 g Flour
66 g Water
0.5 g Yeast

Mix all of your ingredients and allow for autolyse. This will make sure that your flour is fully hydrated and you won’t ruin too much of the work that your poolish has already done.

In a stand mixer mix for 3-5 minutes. Your dough should be around 80 degrees and it should pass the windowpane test.

Place dough in a lightly oiled container and allow to double in volume. This should take an hour or so. At this point you have a choice. You can either shape into a boule and allow to proof for an hour and then bake or you can do a second ferment and allow your dough to retard in the refridgerator overnight. Allowing bread a second ferment will produce rich buttery flavors. However, skipping a second ferment will still produce a great bread.

After your bread has been shaped into a boule allow it to proof for an hour or until a thumbprint on the side won’t bounce back. Cut the top of your bread, traditionally in an X shape.

Allow an hour for your oven to heat to 475.

Put your boule into the oven, directly onto a baking stone if you have one, and steam for 2 minutes at 475. (You can create steam by heating an iron skillet in your oven and then throwing ice onto it right before you are going to shut the door. You can also mist water onto the walls of your oven. Be careful not to get cold water on your hot baking stone. I use both methods.) Spray water onto your boule and walls and bake for 2 more minutes. Steam one last time and bake for 30 minutes at 425 degrees. After 30 minutes check the internal temperature of your bread. It should read 190-205 degrees. (The thump test works but it isn’t that accurate.)

Yield 1 large boule or 2 smaller boules/3 medium batards

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cinnamon raisin bread

Ahhh. My favorite smelling bread. I should preface my recipes by saying that I scale everything and I rarely use imperial measurements. If you do not use a scale for baking I strongly suggest it. It makes baking more consistent and much more pleasant. Also, with bread recipes I will try to include baker’s percentages. If you are unfamiliar with baker’s percents I suggest checking out
Dough 305 grams Pate Fermentee    

 305 grams All-purpose flour
3 grams wheat gluten
185 grams water
6 grams yeast
6 grams salt
45 grams butter
15 grams dry milk
12 grams agave nectar    


2 medium sized apples
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 Tbl ground cinnamon
1/4-1/2 cup raisins

Mix all of the dough ingredients except for the pate fermentee. Mix until the dough comes together. Add in pate fermentee in small pieces. At this point the dough should become easily workable. (I use a Kitchen Aid stand mixer for this whole process.) Knead for 5-7 minutes or until dough passes the windowpane test. Place dough ball into a lightly oiled container and let double. This will take around an hour.    

In a food processor mix filling ingredients until well blended. (Apple sauce could be substituted for apples in filling recipe.)  

Once dough has doubled, lightly flatten. Lightly press raisins into dough. Spread a thin layer of filling onto dough, leaving a quarter of an inch untouched around the edges.    

Gently roll dough and tuck in the ends. Place in oiled bread loaf pan. Let dough proof in a loaf pan for 30-45 min. Your loaf should start to have a nice crown on it. Slash top from end to end using a sharp knife, razor blade, or lame. Bake at 375 degrees for 50 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting.    

Yield: 1 loaf


Baker’s Percent:

100% Pate Fermentee
100% flour
62% water
2% yeast
2% salt
15% butter
5% dry milk
4% agave or honey    

cinnamon raisin bread

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