Grapplestein arrived by post all the way from The Lost World in Oregon in mid November. He arrived in his own special non machinable envelope together with a travelling companion who I haven’t got to know as yet. GS has been acclimatizing to the food and the weather and has had a little difficulty with jet lag too.
However this weekend (26/27th Nov) he announced he was ready for action and as there was no football to watch he thought he might as well have a crack at baking some sourdough.
GS has a lovely wheaty/fruity aroma while he is fermenting, and did an excellent job with this sourdough bread.
I also finally had a go at baking in a pot, Dutch Oven style. The good Doctor Fugawe and Gill the Painter are two people who I know both use this method with great success. My first attempt was not entirely successful as the parchment sort of got inside the dough a bit, but the crust was thin and fine and the ovenspring, particularly with this teetering-on-the-edge-of-being-overproved loaf, was more than satisfactory. In fact the crumb was beautiful!
As you can see in this last pic, there is no stopping him now, so I’m having another go with the bake in a pot method tomorrow with a larger ball of slightly lower hydration dough this time! Edit: You can see the resulting pic in one of the comments below…
This dough was made from :-
- 200 g of revived and cosseted Oregon starter (1:1 water to wheat flour)
- 325 g water at 20 C
- 500 g of flour: a mixture of 350 g of strong bread flour, and 50 g each of wholemeal spelt, dark rye and swiss dark
- 12 g fine seasalt
- 4 dessert spoons of runny yoghurt
- 1 tablespoon of barley malt
Made a soft loose dough.
First prove took about 3 hours, then shaped and into bannetons, and a second prove of about 4 hours. I find breads with spelt tend to prove quicker and the dough slackens more quickly towards the end of the second prove, so it is easy to go over with them. I think I just caught this one in time, though it is a bit mishapen. Tasted as good as it looked! Thanks Doc for sending him so far. At the moment he is definitely different from my own starter, whether time and the English diet will change him, we’ll have to wait and see…