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Desem…doing good.

My Desem starter is doing really good and performing reliably. I mixed up the preferment yesterday and baked one large loaf today. I had a three pound loaf come out of the batch. I have been having trouble with getting any good pictures inside. When I had some sun outside I did okay, but I guess I need better lighting. I did an experiment a couple of days ago with putting a roasting lid over my bread as it baked, to hold the steam closer to the dough. It was a very interesting experiment, kind of like baking in a pot, but not.

I also got pictures of those loaves but I am disappointed with the quality of the pictures, because you can’t really see what I am trying to show you. The loaves that came out from under the lid, were thin crispy crackly crusted loaves, the one that I didn’t put the lid over, came out looking nicer, but the crust wasn’t as nice. However the crispy crackly loaves, seemed to want to almost tear apart all over the crust and didn’t rise as high as the loaf not baked under the roasting lid. It was an interesting toss up.

Here is the Desem bread from today. It needed a little bit more proofing, but I had to go out and just couldn’t give it the time it needed:

Desem loaf

Desem crumb

As for the experimental loaves baked under the roasting pan lid. I will show you the loaf not baked under the roasting lid first:

experimental loaf

This was a variation of the Basic White Recipe with some Rye, Wheat and added cornmeal. The cornmeal slowed down the proof considerably so I had a five hour final proofing. Anyway, here is the loaf baked under the roasting lid:

under the lid loaf

Here is a closeup of the same loaf:

closeup

You can see the fissures and stretching of the crust. The pictures aren’t good but this happened all over the crust of both loaves baked in this way. Here is the other loaf, it was done as a boule:

boule loaf

This next picture is a bit closer but shows the great color and crispiness of the crust:

crispy crust

Here is the crumb of the regular baked loaf, it had a higher oven spring than the other two loaves:

crumb

Here is the crumb pic of the loaf baked under the roasting lid:

crumb# 2

I’ve got two Rosemary, Calamato Olive loaves to bake tomorrow.

They are setting in the fridge cooling down right now.

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