Many years ago, when I was working with and experimenting with Desem, I would bury the Desem dough ball in the bag of flour and then later dig it out and see that it had cracked open with the fermentation going on inside. I remember thinking about how nice the skin on the dough ball was. When it was buried in the flour,Continue reading
I was able to pick up some Teff flour on discount at the store. The flour is still fresh, so I think the store just wanted to discontinue it. Which means I’ll have to find it elsewhere when I need to purchase some more.
According to the internet, Teff is a seed not a grain and if that leaves you scratching your head, read here: Difference between Seeds and Grains. That is not the only article, just Google it for more information, it is quite fascinating actually.
I had a lot of fun coming up with this formula for 100% hydration 100% whole wheat sourdough bread. It was really easy actually. I used Bob’s Red Mill Organic Whole Wheat flour and made up a 100% hydration dough, enough to make two loaves. This was in response to a student in my class that asked for a whole wheat formula. Here is a video of the finished loaves:Continue reading
I had a lot of fun baking this bread and making this video. There’s an overnight sourdough bread formula in my book, but this one is different. The dough has whole wheat, rye and bread flour and is very sticky with a high hydration. You will see how to handle a very sticky dough.
This is a companion post to the post Fig-caccia! If you want to make Cheesy Topped Loaf, the formula is at: Fig-caccia!
I made the dough using the formula found on the linked page. I used half of the dough for the Fig-caccia! and half of the dough for the Cheesy Topped Loaf. The dough is 77% hydration and wet, but not too wet as I used a large amount of whole grain flour in the formula. Continue reading
Earlier I mentioned I wanted to try to bake in the woodstove in the basement where I am living. It looks like this: (Wouldn’t it inspire you to try baking in it?)
It has been cold here as of late, so I fired it up and ran it all night long. There were some nice coals in the morning.
My wonderful mom sent me some Quinoa. I am not sure why, except she knows I like to experiment with grains/flour/seeds etc. So I experimented with the Quinoa, which really isn’t a grain but a seed which can be ground into a flour. The smell and flavor was very good, so much so, that I made three batches so I could share it around.
I’ve been working with the Desem in new recipes and having absolutely fabulous results. Here is a Desem bread I call Light Wheat Desem and another that I am in the process of working with called Desem Milk ‘N Honey. Here are pictures of the Light Wheat Desem:
This is the overnight preferment:
This turned out to be a really great bread. The preferment had a malted cracked Rye berry in it. The taste was incredible. I am also working on a Medium Desem with a bit more of the whole grain flour in it. I will get back on that one. I might be putting the two recipes in the Special Recipe folder when I get them worked out.
I had several emails asking me how I do my Desem bread, technique, recipe etc. So here goes…
I have been keeping an 80% hydration Desem in a bowl in the refrigerator. It has been easier to feed, and easier to use.
80% hydration just means approximately twice the amount of flour to water ratio. Like a cup of flour and 1/2 cup of water etc. Or for every five ounces of flour/ four ounces of water. Anyway, I take out one and one half cups of active 80% Desem which was fed the day before and make a preferment the night before I am going to bake. Preferment:
Desem preferment after mixing:
Desem preferment the next morning:
Mix together the preferment ingredients, cover and let ferment overnight at room temperature. Next morning add the preferment mixture to your dough mixer and add:
Desem right after mixing:
After autolyse, add:
turn the mixer on low and let it knead the dough for about 7 minutes. If you notice the dough tearing as it kneads, turn off the mixer no matter how long it has been mixing.
Desem dough after autolyse and 7 minutes of mixing:
Let the dough proof 4 – 5 hours or when about doubled. Then stir down dough, pour it out and shape loaves.
I made two loaves a little over 2.5 lbs each. I then let the dough proof about 2 – 2.5 hours. When ready bake in a preheated oven at 425 degrees for about 30 minutes, slashing and steaming and turning loaf halfway, as usual.( I have been slashing, spraying my loaves once, and then covering the dough with a roasting lid for the first ten minutes, as it is easiest and seems to give great results).
First Desem loaf:
Second Desem loaf:
Here is the crumb from the first loaf:
So there you have it, recipe, technique and all ! Once you taste a loaf of Desem, you will go back to baking it over and over, it is that good, and addicting!