Tag Archives: Mellow Bakers

Mellow Bakers comes to the end of Bread

The final breads for Mellow Bakers from ‘Bread’ by Jeffrey Hamelman are:

  1. the Five Grain Levain (P 174)
  2. the Two Semolina breads (these use that very fine rimacinata or durum wheat flour that is quite hard to find in the UK)  (P 135 and P 137)
  3. The Roasted Garlic Levain on Page 183

and then the Mellow Bakers will have baked their way through the entire oeuvre. Well, some brilliant bakers have done it, I didn’t quite manage it, but so it goes. I’m going to have a serious crack at getting these done though as they all look like great recipes.

The pics at the top are nothing to do with these breads as I haven’t made them yet but what is a bread post without pictures?

So if you’re wondering what to bake this month, we’d love you to join in with this final set of breads, dig out some garlic from your stores and make roast garlic yumminess, you can use it in other dishes too,  and post about it on your blog, or tweet a photo, or send me a link or post about it here on the Mellow Bakers forum. It’s never too late to be Mellow about your baking.

Due to the old banner being a different size to the new one it has vanished from the Mellow Bakers Pages which is sad but here it is for those of you who haven’t seen it.

Jeffrey Hamelman’s Sunflower Seed Bread with Paté Fermentée

Hamelman's Sunflower Seed Bread with Paté Fermentée

I recently made the Sunflower Bread with Paté Fermentée from Jeffrey Hamelman’s book Bread as I have got a bit behind lately with Mellow Bakers, the group that is slowly but surely doing its best to bake all the recipes in the book. This is one of those breads that is full of grains, so if you are a seedy person then it’s another variation to try.

I am not quite sure why this one came out so flat in profile. When I sliced into it it was reasonably aerated and I don’t think it was overproved, but it didn’t do much in the way of rising at any point so I think it was the load of grains, soaked chopped rye, sunflower seeds and some linseed that I added as I was short on sunflower seeds.

Hamelman's Sunflower Seed Bread with Paté Fermentée Crumb shot

So far it’s been fine, but maybe this bread could have done with ten per cent very strong flour in the mix to give it a bit more lift. I was using Shipton No 1 for the flour in this one. Who knows? I’ll have to check out what the others made of this one when I post the link over on the Mellow Bakers forum.  It’s been a while since I made a seeded loaf and I think there are other recipes which are less faff than this one and give you a similar if not better result than this one.

I also bake these breads at a lower temperature than Hamelman gives, simply because I don’t like these grainy breads to have very hard crusts. Any grains that are in the crust area then get super hard and are not pleasant to eat unless you have the teeth of a rodent. More people crack teeth on hard grains in bread than anything else according to my dentist. The trademarked ‘Granary’ in the UK being the worst culprit for this or so she says, not my words, hers!

Hamelman's Sunflower Seed Bread with Paté Fermentée and bacon

I am not convinced that just soaking the chopped rye (which forms a hefty component of this dough)  in cold water for four hours softens them enough either. Another time I would use warm water or gently simmer them to make sure they soften up and maybe soak them overnight in some fruit juice or ale as Dan Lepard does to great effect in his grain breads in the Handmade Loaf.

All the same this made a moist and tasty seedy loaf that improved in flavour and texture on the second day and was lovely with a rasher of middle cut bacon.

The sun came out for this shot!

Just a footnote: I wrote a couple of posts about this book (which is my second most useful bread book)  a while back and I also came across this thread on the Fresh Loaf, which might also be of interest.  It seems to imply that the most recent edition has had all the errors corrected. However, the only way to be sure that you get the most recent edition is to check the printing number at the front, and if you are ordering from an online supplier, they may well have old stock.

Patée Fermentée – For some reason this bread made with five different grains came out gloriously – so have a peek at that one if you want to see seedy loveliness!