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After one loaf of 50% sprouted and whole grain bread she went back to a white bread this week.  Yeah, she picked one that we don’t do very often at 83% hydration, it had some whole grain in it that was semi-related to durum semolina, we needed something to put pork inside with cheese and then into the panini press and at least it was SD.

 it was perfect after the last set of folds.  Should have put it in a basket right them and there:-)

I think she was swayed by Abe talking about doing a ciabatta and Able giving her some history on the bread straight from Italy via Mexico that said the hydration shouldn’t be more than 80% and why I think she picked one more a few percent more than that:-)

Rather that do a big ciabatta, she picked to do individual ones that would fit perfectly in the panini press and be the right size to split in half for a sandwich.  But Lucy didn’t want to follow the rules about ciabatta either but I forced her to at least try a little bit. 

Green Chili Stuffed Pork Carnitas Enchilada with Crema, Pico and Guacamole

Most ciabatta is made with commercial yeast but she wanted sourdough with a bran levain.  Most ciabatta is made with a mixer for good reason but, she wasn’t having any of it. The 21 % pre-fermented flour mostly La Famea AP, bran levain was retarded for 48 hours also not a norm of any kind.   We made it using a 30 minute autolyse, slap and folds and stretch and folds, 2 each on 30 minute intervals.

I tried to mooch down this Irish Swiss cheese, caramelized onion, Poblano peppers, mushroom,bacon burger with lettuce, avocado and make it mouth size but no luck.

After letting the dough rest for half an hour, we divided it into roughly 100 g pieces and let them proof for an hour and half before firing up the oven to 450 F.  Right before they went into the oven I refused to flip them over ,as they are traditionally done, and then Lucy pulled put her Mom’s blade and threatened to cut me up good if it didn’t do a flip.

So I did, right onto parchment on a baking sheet.  But I did spritz the heck out of them and also put 2 C of water on the Mega Steam Lava rocks before closing the door and steaming them for 10 minutes.  We then too the MS out of the oven and continues to nae them at 425 F convection until they browned up well.

These came out like a Joe Va SD sandwich thin which we make all the time.  Since we just proofed them on the counter with a little bit of flour, when we picked them up and flipped them onto parchment they instantly deflated to little puddles.

They made a fine toasted one face sandwich with butter, apple cider jam, Swiss cheese, sausage and bacon.

We didn't have time to let them proof again but we hoped that they might really spring in the heat of the oven.  Spring they did but not nearly enough to compensate!  They taste great and will be great in the panini press  but they don't look like a ciabatta on the inside at all.  Maybe next time.

Miso Teriyaki Grilled Pork dinner and Lucy says nit to forget the salad to go with...any dinner or lunch.

dabrownman's picture

Lucy was feeling pretty good this week and spent some time coming up with this bread.  She got back to her roots with a 50% whole grain bread where half the whole grains were sprouted. The 6 grains she used were red and white wheat, Kamut, spelt, rye and oat.


She started sprouting the grains on Monday dried them on Tuesday night and started the sourdough bran levain on Wednesday night.  She took the bran from the sprouted and non-sprouted grains and used that for the only build using 12 g of NMNF rye starter as the base.  A few hours of a cold retard followed to bring out the tang instead of just the sour.

The entire levain was 10% pre-fermented bran and flour at 100% hydration and the process took 8 hours for the levain to double.  Then into the fridge it went for a 24 hour retard.  While the levain was on the counter, Lucy dug around her secret pantry to find some figs and walnuts -10% each.

We did a 30 minute autolyse for the non-sprouted high extraction flour only with 2% Pink Himalayan sea salt sprinkled on top.  Sprouted, high extraction flour just needs to get hydrated since it is pre-auotlysed during the sprouting process. 

Overall hydration was 72% because we used the lower protein Lafama AP for the dough flour and the re-hydrated figs would bring some extra moisture to the party.   A relative 75% would be about right for this kind of bread.  Once everything hit the mix we did 100 slap and folds to get everything incorporated and the gluten forming started.

The left-over fig soaking juice, with some of the re-hydrated figs, were used to feed the Fig YW … nothing at all went to waste.  After a 3 minute rest, we did 3 sets of stretch and folds from the compass points also on 30 minute intervals.

Grilled Tuna is a must have meal around here...It was Mom's request for Mother's day.

Can't have Mother's Day without flowers either.

The walnuts and figs went in on the first set of stretch and folds.  We then let the dough rest for a half an hour before shaping the dough into a squat boulot and plopping it in the rice floured oval basket.  Straight away, as the English would say, it went into the fridge for and overnight proof, sort of self a reflection of the way the world is …..depending on what is, is of course….and is never was most of the time.

Whatever is was, it wasn’t quite proofed, so we let it warm up a bit, about and hour, before starting the heat of the Underworld itself contained by the magic of General Electric - at 450 F in Lucy’s kitchen.Yes, the Combo Cooker was used this time instead of Mega Steam and we brushed the loaf with water before it went into the Gaping Maw of Big Ole Betsy II for 18 minutes of steam.

Once the lid came off, we baked it for another 12 minutes at 425 F convection to finish it off and get to 208 F on the inside.  It browned, blistered, bloomed and sprang nicely but we will have to wait on the crumb, just like always because we are creatures of habit around here.

OK, Lucy is just a plain creature …. so be it - we still have to wait for this loaf to cool and for Lucy to decide when she wants a piece to taste.  The crumb came out chock full of goodness.  It was fully proofed so there wasn't big bloom but it is soft and moist with tons of flavor.  All around this is a pretty good fig and nut bread with 50% whole grains - half of them sprouted.  You won't find one that tastes better or even one to buy for that matter - all the reason to make one yourself even better than this one.

She reminds us to always have a great salad with dinner


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She's got a gray face now but she is still pretty spry for her age!

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A year ago, I found some smoked pastrami hanging out in the freezer so Lucy came up with a modern twist for an old classic, Jewish Deli Rye, to compliment the smoked meat in a slightly non traditional style of bread.


This week I found so smoke brisket in the very same freezer so Lucy, true to her nature, came up with another slightly non-traditional JDR that is much closer to the traditional one than last year.  Dan Baggs really let us have it trying pass that one off as a Jewish Deli Rye when he grew up in New York Surrounded by the real thing.

So, this time we are calling it New Age Nearly Jewish Deli Rye hoping Don Baggs doesn’t put a Dough Contract out on us with his Miami Bread Baking Mob – The MBBM!  This one really is pretty close to the real thing -n a new age way.

First off JDR breads have a higher amount of pre-fermented flour in the levain so we doubled it to 20% about twice our usual for this time of year when it’s 104 F outside.  But, Lucy bought some rolled oats to make a porridge, or gruel, bread as she likes to call it and that meant 50g of ground rolled oats ended up in the levain – 10% or half the flour in the levin mix.

It also had 5% high gluten flour and 5% rye bran in the 100% hydration 3 stage levain as well.  Now Jewish Deli rye doesn’t have oats in it but Lucy could care less about these technical things or anything for that matter – pretty much just like me.

The dough had 25% high extraction rye, the left over from the bran sifting, making for a bread that has 30% total whole grain rye – very much the JDR standard amount.  The rest of the dough flour was had 55% high gluten flour making for 60% HGF overall.

It pays to have a good breakfast on bake day!

With so much rye and oat in the mix, high gluten seemed like a reasonable remainder even though it too isn’t really a JDR flour.  We chucked in 2% Pink Himalayan sea salt and enough water to bring it up to 71% hydration – pretty low for one of Lucy’s fake JDR breads.  She had planned ahead for once though.

We love noodles for lunch. Especially with an apple galette chaser

She planned on adding a soaker of 5% dehydrated onions and 3% caraway seeds to the mix on the first set pf stretch and folds and that would bring some extra liquid, at least 5% to the overall hydration.  Both of these add ins are traditional for a JDR bread so she was back to being normal.

It was still 90 F when I sliced into it.  Was a little dense toward the bottom.

Once everything except the add ins were brought together we did 100 slap and folds to get it all mixed and the gluten working.  30 minutes later we did 10 slap and folds and 10 minutes later we did the first of 3 stretch and folds to get the onions and caraway evenly distributed.  All the stretch and folds were on 30 minute intervals.

After the last set of S&F’s we let the dough rest for 10 minutes before shaping it into a tight batard and plopping it into a very large, rice floured, batard basket that was way too big for this bread.  We immediately bagged it and placed it into the fridge for a 12 hour retard.

Some BBQ sauce poking through this sandwixh.

The next morning we noticed that the batard didn’t do too much in the fridge overnight so we let it worm up and finish proofing on the counter for 2.5 hours before firing up the oven to 450 F with the Mega Steam Lava Pan under the bottom stone.

We unmolded the batard onto parchment on a peel, brushed it with water, a very traditional thing indeed, sliced it twice lengthwise, a non-traditional score, and slid it onto the bottom stone.  Right before the oven door was closed we put 2 cups of water on the lava rocks for 18 minutes of Mega Steam. 

A free loaf of Sourdough my wife got at the Farmers Market that she received in gratitude for donating to the baker's emergency oven fund to replace his oven that went Kaput a few weeks before.  Remember the 3 G's of character attributes so hard to master for success in all things - graciousness, gratitude and generosity.

Killer Red Pork Enchiladas for Cinco De Mayo.

Once the steam came out we lowered the oven to 425 F, convection this time, and baked it for another 12 minutes until it reached 205 F on the inside.  It sprang bloomed and browned nicely.  The smell was outrageous.  We brushed it with water again as it came out of the oven.

A slice of that apple gallete.

We will wait for our lunch brisket sandwich to see what the crumb looks like – can’t wait.  This bread is just plain delicious.  The caraway and onion really come through.  The crust is crispy but the crumb issoft and moist.  This bread is what JRB bread is all about.

Lucy says to have that salad every night with dinner

and that Apple Galette!

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We know how much Lucy loves her Mexican food so she went all in to make a bread that would hold up to our planned Red Pork Enchiladas.  I have to admit she relay came up with a Duesy this time.  It is way different than her normal bran levain, some portion whole sprouted fare.


This one has no whole grains at all but that doesn’t mean that it lacks flavor.  The 12% re-fermented flour levain was begun with 10g of our NMNF rye starter but it was a 2 stage affair.  The first stage was equal parts semolina and Lafama AP flour at 66.66% hydration.  This was left out overnight to ripen and double.

Now that is some kind of folding.

The next morning we added an equal portion of Smart and Final high gluten flour, to make 4% for each flour and added enough water to get it up to 81% hydration.  There was no autolyse this time either.  The dough flour was also a strange combination - 22% Lafama AP, 11% Masa Harina, 11% corn meal and 44% S&F high gluten.

We added 1.5% Pink Himalayan sea salt, 2.5% powdered chicken soup base that has salt in it and enough water to get the whole shebang, with the levain, up to 73% hydration.  We weren’t going for holes since this was going to be a pan bread with a lot of add ins.

The add ins went in at 3 different stages.  We did 100 slap and folds to get everything mixed initially and let the dough rest for 1.5 hours.  We did 10 more slap and folds and let the dough rest for 10 minutes.  Then we added 20% hot pepper jack cheese for the first set of folds.  On the 2nd set of folds we added 2 chopped scallions and some chopped cilantro.

Grilled Salmon and Black Rice Salad

Before the 3rd set of add ins and folds, we browned 1 thick strip of peppered bacon and then sautéed some white onions until they started to caramelize before adding 1 seeded jalapeno and half a cob of fresh corn kernels to the sauté and finished caramelizing the onion.  We chopped up the crispy bacon and added it before deglazing the pan with a bit of water to get every last bit of goodness out of the pan.

That is a shatter crisp crust even after sitting in the fridge overnight wrapped in plastic.

All of the folding was done on 30 minute intervals and we let the dough rest for half an hour before shaping and putting it into ta pan sprayed, tall oriental Pullman pan for final proofing.  After about 3.5 hours of proofing the dough had risen 1” above the rim in the center of the pan and it was ready for the 25 minutes of Lava Rock Mega Steam at 425 F.

Then we baked the bread for 20 minutes at 425 F convection with the steam removed.  Then we took the bread out of the pan and baked it right on the oven rack for 5 minutes until it hit 207 F on the inside.  This bread smelled awful good as it baked,  it just has to be yummy but we will wait till tomorrow.

Yes it is tall and the direct sun really brings out the yellow tinged crumb. 

This bread is delicious!  Not too much heat from the jalapenos, cheesy, with a hint of bacon, cilantro and onion in the background with the surprise of corn.  The crumb is soft and really moist!  This will go great with the pork and cheese enchiladas on Saturday.  We have changed it to a 7 dried pepper red sauce.  With the bacon, fresh veggies and cheese in this one we decided to refrigerate it. 

Lucy says have a salad with that sunset

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We have sausages and hamburger burning a hole in our freezer but we needed buns for both. This recipe makes the best buns especially if you make it like Lucy does.


She starts with Floyd’s recipe that you can find by searching Hokkaido Milk Bread on The Fresh Loaf.  Her changes are few but important.  First, she cuts the recipe in half because we don’t need buns for an army.

Second where ever you see water or milk in the recipe we substituted Half and Half.  The 2 T of butter was increased to 3 T.  we had to put in quite a bit more AP flour, 25% more (100 g), because the dough was just way, way too liquid.  Floyd said his was too dry using the original water and milk.

This was the guy that drew this picture 40 years ago in Drawing 2 class as a 2nd semester freshman

  We changed the process.  We made a 100% hydration poolish with H&H, 75 g of AP flour and pinch of instant yeast and let it percolate on the 85 F degree counter for 4 hours.  We also held back the butter, egg and sugar until the rest of the ingredients were mixed for 10 minutes on KA 4 using the dough hook.

We want the gluten to be at least partially developed and the flour hydrated well before adding fats and sugars to an enriched dough.  Once the egg, sugar and butter went in we beat the heck out of for another 5 minutes and noticed it was way too wet.

We added the extra flour and continued beating it for another 10 minutes – 25 minutes total before it pulled a nice windowpane.  Highly enriched breads are the only ones I ever make sure can pull a windowpane.

Tall, Taller, Tallest  bread

ever!The final changes were that we divided the dough by eye into 3 parts for final proofing in my favorite pan - the tall Oriental Pullman.  Last time we proofed it lid on Pan De Mie style so this time we proofed it lid off to see how much it really would rise and spring.  We did brush it with H&H before going in and coming out of the oven.

Jalapeno double thick double apple wood smoked bacon. 1 year aged hard Swiss cheese, caramelized onions, crimini and shiitake mushrooms, lettuce and tomato hamburger on an onion bun. 

When it had cooled we noticed when we took it out of the pan that the part touching the pan was damp.  As luck would have it the oven was still 200 F because of the 2 stones so we out the loaf back in on the rack between the stones to dry it off.  It worked great

The last change was that we baked the bread for nearly 1 hour at 350 F with steam for the first 30 minutes.  It took longer to bake this bread to 196 F – the perfect temperature for a bread like this one.  It rose sprang and browned beautifully but one has to ask…… what happened to the buns you needed?

This bread is shredably soft, moist sweet and delicious.  It toasts perfectly.  Yummmmm....

I went to the grocery store today and low and behold they had bakery 8 count, Hot Dog and Onion Hamburger buns on sale for 99 cents each – day old.  Lucy can barely make them for that!  We had hamburgers tonight on onion buns and we have some great sandwich bread that is half Chinese, half Japanese with a little French in there somewhere.

Can’t wait to see the inside.

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Abe and others this past week have been posting about doing a bread that can take many hours on the counter with little baker help so that you can go off to work or play and not worry about the bread.  Trailrunner also did a series on her No Touch bread which this one relies on.  Lucy wanted to make one so that she could play and sleep all day and all night.

The key is getting the temperature and the size of the levain correct to allow 12-18 hours on the counter.  We chose to do the bulk ferment outside where it was in the high 50’s and low 60’s last night and to do the final proof in the kitchen where it was in the mid 70’s.  We picked 4% for the pre-fermented flour where 5 g of NMNF rye starter was used to inoculate 20 gr of bran and high extraction 6 grain flour.

This was a 100% hydration bran levain that took 8 hours to ripen.  We also decided that since we are retired and lazy that we would do as little as possible to make this bread so we chose it do an autolyse and use a no knead method.  In order to mix the dough; levain, salt, flour and water we started out doing 40 slap and folds.

That was it.  We oiled a SS bowl, rounded the dough ad plopped it inside, covered in plastic and put it on the patio table for 12 hours overnight.  It looked like it rose about 30% while we were sleeping.  We did 4 folds from the compass points to shape it and placed it in a rice floured basket inside a plastic grocery bag where it final proofed on the kitchen counter for 6 hours.

Grilled Salmon is almost as nice as Shu Mai and Pot Stickers

We slashed it T-Rex style after un-molding it on parchment on a peel and then baking it in a 425 F DO with the lid on for 25 minutes. of steam.  We felt bad about slashing it.  If we had put it in the basket seam side down we wouldn’t even have had to do any work to slash it either.  Being retired, keeping all work as far from Lucy and I as possible is the main theme and unofficial goal of every day. 

OK, we had to mill the 11% whole 6 grains and sift out the bran but we wanted a bread that tasted as good as it looked, at least tasting as good as an 11% whole 6 grain bread made with a bran levain.  The 6 grains were our usual, oat, red and white wheat, rye, spelt and  Kamut.

 Once the lid came off we baked in at 425 F convection this time for another 16 more minutes until it was 210 F on the inside.  This bread took a long time but it was hassle free, nearly no work at all and it sprang, bloomed and browned nicely.  It also smells great.  We will have to wait till tomorrow to see what is under this lovely crust though.  For sure you can do almost nothing making this bread and fit it into anything you are doing without having to worry one iota.

Here is what it look like out of the sun and sliced farther from the middle

It came out fairly open for being about and hour under-proofed even after 6 hours of proofing.  The crumb was very soft moist and sour and tangy.  Amazing how sour this bread came out.  Long proof and bulk really brought out the best in this bread.

Salad and Sunset go together


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It has been a while since dough.doc posted the Larraburu process for making their famous San Francisco SD bread from the late 60’s and early 70’s.  It really was great bread made by the thousands of loaves.  There were a couple, three things that hit me as being strange after reading the process.


First off, the hydration was in the 64 - 66% range and secondly the final proofing was as over 90 F.  I suppose I can understand both by saying the hydration depends on the flour used and if baskets were used for proofing.

The holes of the Larraburu bread were not like the gaping ones of Forkish that depend on high hydration and higher gluten flour – the crumb was open but moderate so ow hydration would be possible.  Low hydration would make sense if the flour was lower protein than what we use today and low hydration would be required if baskets were not used and the dough proofed free form.  I have a hard time seeing the stacks of thousands of baskets required otherwise - but who knows.

It was the high proofing temperatures that set me back.  Over 90 F, until I realized that high temps for final proofing, or all bench work, results in LAB making acid like crazy and the Larraburu bread of old was sour, much more sour the SFSD breads of today.

Another version of Grilled Chicken and Veggie Matzoh Ball soup

The 3rd thing that I thought was odd was that the baking temperature was only 425 F.  If I had to bake multiple loads of bread to get thousands out the door every day ,I would want the baking time to be less and 475 F would make that happen pretty easily.

Those in the know know you can't have Matzoh Balls without Pineapple Upside Down Cake

As much as I like the old SFSD breads I can hardly remember, there are things I would do different today to make it even better and fit my tastes.  I would bake it to look and taste better by doing a bolder, darker bake and having plenty of blisters on the crust.  I would want to keep the sour but want more tang.

That would mean using a NMNF starter, making a whole multi-grain levain, retarding it and then retarding the dough overnight.  Finally, I would want a bit more of an open crumb with a higher but not crazy high hydration so the holes have a better mix of larger irregular holes but not huge ones wither.  Plus, no mixing machines allowed. 

This bread gets it done for me today.  It is the closest thing to a SFSD bread of old that I like but better in the ways I want.  It tastes fantastic – wonderful really!  Plus, it only costs a dollar to make including the electricity to bake it at 425 F.  I know I could sell it all day long for 4 times as much and never have enough to go around. 

It has a 6 grain 11% pre-fermented flour, 100% hydration, single stage levain and all the whole grains are in the levain.  10g of NMNF rye starter was the base and the levain was retarded for 24 hours after it doubled.  The 6 grains were rye, spelt, red and white wheat, Kamut and oat.  Just enough whole grains to get the levain  sour but not too much to be noticed in the crumb.

We only did a 40 minute autolyse with the Pink Himalayan sea salt since the dough flour was half LaFama AP and half Smart and Final High Gluten.  You could sub any bread flour or even KA AP if you wanted.  Overall hydration was 73%.  We did 3 sets of slap and folds of 40, 10 and 4 slaps and 1 set of stretch and folds from the compass points to shape the dough - all on 40 min.   It was 88 F in the kitchen for all counter work for the levain and dough – nice and high.

It went into a rice floured basket, put in a plastic shopping bag and retarded shaped for 8 hours.  The next morning, we let it sit on the counter 3 hours of final proof before firing up the oven to 450 F.  We unmolded it onto parchment on a peel and slashed it hopscotch style.  As soon as the DO went into the oven, we turned it down to 425 F for 25 minutes of steam.

Once the lid came off we baked it for 8 minutes lid off at 425 F convection before finish baking, off the iron entirely, for 8 minutes on the stone.  It read 210 F when we took it to the cooling rack.  It sprang, blistered, bloomed and browned very well and the crumb was nicely open.  Best of all, it tastes terrific, wonderfully sour, moist and soft with a still crispy crust.  It will make some grand bruschetta for dinner.

We could have sprouted the whole grains and made an even better bread perhaps but we know SF bakers didn’t sprout their grains back in the day.


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Well, the main reason is that my daughter took half the last loaf for bruschetta, along with Parm, Basil and cherry tomatoes from the back yard when a Chi O and fellow PA from college came to town for a weeding they were both going to.  Then my wife went over there and helped them finish off the bread and the bruschetta sans Dad.....Ingrates abound I say!


So, we were out of bread and Lucy was getting the heebie Jeebies just thinking about the next recipe.  I was pretty much wiped out after making Green Chili Matzoh Ball soup for lunch and sliders for dinner.  So Lucy took it easy on me and made our normal 24% sprouted 6 grain bread,that we can do in our sleep, into one with 20% pepetias and sunflower seeds.

She calls this one PepFlower Sprouted 6 Grain Sourdough.  I call it SunPep Sprouted Sourdough with Bran levain.  Either way it was made the same, looks the same and tastes the same even though we haven’t even sliced it yet.  It sure smelled great too!  The seeds were folded in before the last set of slap and folds

The 6 sprouted grains were the same as the 7 grain one on Friday but minus the Einkorn.  OK we out 2 g of it in the mix but we are not counting it ....or even mentioning it for that matter.  The 10% pre-fermented bran levain was made in 10 hours overnight.  We did a 30 minute autolyse with the 2% PH sea salt sprinkled on top. Overall hydration was 75%.

For gluten formation, we did 3 sets of slap and folds on 45 minute intervals of 40, 10 and 4 slaps.  Then we did one set of stretch and folds from the major compass points to shape it into a boule and get it plopped into a rice floured basket for a 30 minute rest before bagging in a plastic grocery shopping bag and retarding in the fridge for 4 hours.

Everyone has had Matzoh Ball Soup but how many have had Green Chili Pork Matzoh Ball Soup?

We warmed it up on the counter, it was 95 F today, for an hour before firing up Big Betsy to 450 F.  It won’t be long before we are baking in the Mini Oven outside on the patio for the rest of the summer.  We un-molded it and slashed T-Rex style and slid it into the Combo Cooker without spritzing even though it was right there begging to be spritzed.

The bread didn’t know one spritz worth of difference as we suspected.  It bloomed and sprang well after 24 minutes of lid on steam and then baked to brown at 208 F with 16 minutes of dry baking.  We took the bread off the bottom of the CC after 8 minutes of dry baking.  It was perfectly baked on the bottom as a result.

Can’t wait to give this one a slice and toast for tomorrows breakfast.  If you aren’t having SD pancakes on bake day then shame on you!


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