Friday, November 16, 2012

Starting to look like Tartine

The weekend is here. I was waiting for the weekend to come to try out the dutch oven method advocated in Chad Robertson's book. I took out the sourdough culture from the fridge to feed it on Thursday. On Friday evening, I fed it one more time. As I will be using 200g of the 100% hydration starter, I fed the culture in that proportion.

By Saturday morning, it had nicely more than doubled. The recipe called for 900g of White flour and 100g of Wholewheat flour. Chad's baker's percentage uses the European method. This has created a bit of controversy in The Fresh Loaf forum with people criticizing him for making such a fundamental 'mistake'.

The US method of baker's percentages is based strictly on the TOTAL amount of flour that will be used in the dough, including the starter. The European method computes the starter as a separate ingredient, the amount of which is stated as a percentage of the flour used in the main dough. It is simply a matter of definition and the difference is purely cultural.

After the 3 hour Stretch and Fold thing, the dough was doubled and bubbly. Since my cast iron pot is oval in shape, I shaped the loaf as a batard. The other was shaped as a boule and baked free-form. I got much better results today. My only regret was in over-flouring the cloth. The loaf from the pot had volume and a nice ear. The boule turned out not too badly also.

When I cut the bread, I was quite happy with the crumb. I buttered a small piece for my wife to try and she remarked that it had excellent flavor. What more can I ask for.

No comments: