100% Semola rimacinata Batards
A few days ago, @pul posted some lovely pics of creamy, yellow semola loaves that reminded me of the community bake of a year or so ago and my good results from that exploration. ...which got me ruminating and scheming on following @pul's lead.
So down the rabbit hole of @dmsnyder's, @Franko's and @dabrownman's meanderings on Pane Tipo Altamura I dropped, deciding eventually to follow @pul's lead with a few modifications.
- Planned for 1.5 kg of 73% hydration dough to build 2 batards
- Prepared 220 g of 56% hydration biga per @pul
- Prepared 300 g of semola poolish (because it's what i do)
- 1 hour fermentolyze(?) incorporating biga, poolish, 900 g flour and 400 g (to get to 95%) of water
- Added remaining water and increased salt to 1.7%
- 3 (more?) hours of bulk with 4 stretch and folds
- 18 hour retard at 37º F
- Preshape with 30 minute rest, then final shape and 1 hour bench rest
- Bake with convection/steam 20 minutes at 450º, then convection only 18 minutes at 425º
A few observations of note:
- This semola biga showed quite a bit more growth than I expected. The flour really liked liquid though the dough seemed quite easy to work with.
- 100% hydration semola poolish, on the other hand, grew but less vigorously than my usual AP poolishes. Suspect that the gluten was just holding on tighter.
- Machine mixing the flour went well until the very end. I had to really work on getting the last 100+/- grams incorporated. Once again, gluten seemed quite tight though, visually, an absence of the stringy fibrous gluten matrix you see with white flours.
- The dough, on the other hand was very silky and nice to handle. I would hesitate to call it highly extensible, though, in the end, it was cooperative enough on shaping.
- Loaves seemed smallish before loading, but they really took off, exposing beautiful ears. I keep relearning that I tend to get better ears on lower hydration loaves like these.
- Thicker and crunchier crust then I was expecting. Lovely cream(?) colored crumb. Distinctly different and pleasant flavor
In conclusion, I'm not seeing a lot of reason to handle this dough a whole lot differently than I would for standard sourdough loaves. I think next time around, I'll try getting to 80% hydration with a normal 100% hydration levain as I do for my 50% semola ciabatta.
Thanks to @pul for the inspiration and TFL community (alfanso!) for a million insights.