April 2, 2022 - 3:39am
Ciril Hitz - Baking Artisan Bread: 10 Expert Formulas for Baking Better Bread at Home
I really like the book suggestion feature of the fresh loaf club. Today I was enticed to pull the trigger on a new (to me) bread book! While the actual advertisement was for a newer Hitz book. I was led to this gem.
The Ten commandments of bread baking
I will be personally embarking on a journey to master all ten of these Hitz formulas. I was thinking, maybe some of you would like to join in? Above and beyond that, if there is enough interest, maybe we can have a more structured group project?
The photo of the Falzon Filone is strictly for attention.
I just ordered the book, but I may be watching from the sidelines.
The concepts covered in this book are not overly complicated. That being said, for me anyway, I am thinking, going back to the beginning and really learning a methodical method of bread baking will be very helpful. I already follow step # 1. I find it very helpful. Understanding all the steps and having all the ingredients and components at the ready.
Sorry Will, I was just kidding. Should have put a smiley face or something in my post. I actually ordered the book this AM before I saw your post. I was just looking around Amazon and thought it would be something I'd like.
I agree with focusing on fundamentals an process and am looking forward to seeing the book.
Thanks for the heads up for another book to add to the list. I read and used Baking Artisan Bread when I first started to get into baking and found it pretty easy to produce good bread. Is there anything in the new book that stands out to you as being particularly interesting?
I don't have the newer book, so I can not compare. I liked this book for practice going through all of the necessary steps. I have been baking for quite a while now, but due to everyday obligations, 90% of the time I feel rushed and can easily slip up, or leave out an important rest period or other steps. Practicing a methodical procedure over and over through all ten doughs and multiple loaves of bread for each will hopefully help to make the basics second nature for me. Then I can let my creative juices flow! Smile...
When I read your post I thought you had bought the new book. Turns out the link is to the original book. I think your idea of going over the basics and getting practice is a good one. I read a few books and used some of Ciril's recipies when I first started. Then when I started getting more serious I picked up more books and absolutely fell in love with The Bread Baker's Apprentice by Peter Reihnart.
I did the same thing you plan to do but did it with BBA. There is such a huge variety of breads in the book and even some I had never heard of before that were amazing. I just decided every week to try a new bread and practice those skills. Honestly, that was a lot of fun and there are for sure recipes I return to a few times a year. It also includes a good variety of both commercial yeast breads as well as a section on natural leaven (sourdough). If I could only have one baking book this is the one I would keep. Thankfully that is not a dilemma I have to face.
Best of luck on your baking journey. Please do share your progress and experiences with us.
BBA was one of the first bread baking books I owned. Sadly, I was recently looking for my copy and realized that after a major window replacement in my apartment, I can not locate a box of books I stored away! If you do a web search, you will find that, a good few years ago, more than a few Bloggers banded together and did a (Bake though) featuring BBA. Alas, as is the story of my life I was one day late and a $1.00 short. Smile... I actually already tried this "bake though" idea once before. I was able to recruit a few good bakers over at Stan Ginsbergs FB page to do a group/community bake of his book "The Rye Baker." I dropped the ball on that one and never did get to the end of the book. Thanks for the encouragement, I will share my experiences as I go!
From the Rye baker. I think I quit after three loaves of bread?
If you come back to the Rye Baker at some point, I expect I’ll still be working through it. Although my last loaf (Latvian coarse rye from the rye baker website) was an absolute and unqualified failure…
Wow, this was four years ago! I had quite a few peps baking along!
I think it's fun to bake with friends!
I love BBA and especially the Multigrain Extra! I am just a strict toy home bread baker and have only been baking for a few years. Read a lot of books and seen many videos but only recently, after learning pasta and making pasta dough, have things begun to click. Have seen Chef Hits videos before and liked them but never read his books. I referred to read about it here. Oh! Lastly, I have followed this site for some time and found a lot of good advise, very little bad.
Bummed that (according to the Amazon comments) there are no sourdough recipes/formulas/wisdom :(
But, that being said, I think your idea for a group baking project sounds like fun.
That being said, I guess I will be embarking on the 10 week + journey "Alone again". Smile, I am so witty I even amaze myself! He, hehe, he!
Hello, friends in bread.
I finally pulled the trigger on this 30X18 thick slap of maple! I love it! What a huge improvement! One less thing to worry about. The upcycled wine crate cover served me well and will continue to serve. That being said, Woo Whoo!
Back on topic, I am rethinking which book I will endeavor to bake from cover to cover. After seeing the comments I think I may get bored?
Now, the question becomes if you (the reader) would endeavor such a project, which book would you choose? Not BBA, anything but that. Only because it has already been done. I am thinking of Hamelmans "Bread". That would be fitting as Mr. Hamelman wrote the forward to the Hitz book! Thanks for reading! Today's easy/quick project is,
Mise en place
The Bulk ferment (First rise)
Shaping stage #1 This is going to be so great for shaping baguettes! It takes so little to make me happy!
Shaping stage #2
Gli occhi di Santa Lucia
That is a good size piece of maple you have here. I have been using a piece of thick wood of 24"x17"x1.5" which does not seem very friendly with my dough work, so I went and bought a piece of quartz 25"x18"x0.75" last week and can't wait to put it to test this weekend.
It was less than $80.00! So worth it! Alas, it is treated with polyurethane. Rats. So far it is not overly slippery. If it becomes an issue, I will have to strip it.
That sounds pretty reasonable for that size of wood, Will. I paid over $100 for my broad and I think it is made of teak wood. I paid $250 for a slab of custom cut quartz that weighs around 30 lb with a really slick surface, a real pretty piece of stone, I don't think my dough will like to stick to it which is what I want as I get sick of cleaning up the sticky mess off my pretty wood board. Thanks.
I rub a very small amount of flour into the wood grain even the free wine crate cover becomes a perfect surface for dough handling! Not sticky with just the right amount of bite!
Good tips. I find that a dough does not like to stick to a cold surface like a steel (stainless) or a stone, the reason I bought a stone which feels cold to the touch with my house around 72 F right now.
Will, I assume that these gorgeous scroll breads you baked are called Gli occhi di Santa Lucia? Anyhow they are stunning, well done.
The name is given for the shape by Siciliano bakers, "Gli occhi di Santa Lucia"/ The Eyes of Saint Lucy" Smile... I learned of this bread here. The post was by an Italian, baker that has been around these parts for a long time. Sadly his name escapes me at the momant.
Today's sandwich on today's fresh bread.
Thinly sliced "T" bone steak with mayonnaise and jalapenos.
Perfect sandwich bread slightly soft with just a bit of resistance crust with a pillow-soft crumb.
There's a woodworking company near me that I found at a farmers' market. I didn't buy anything, but their stuff looks great. http://www.dickinsonwoodworking.com/
I also see a lot of cutting boards and wooden work surfaces for sale at Tuesday Morning.
That looks like a good "custom" wood shop, Dave, thanks for the link.
"Now, the question becomes if you (the reader) would endeavor such a project, which book would you choose?"
The obvious suggestion, for you, would be "The Italian Baker" by Carol Field.
The first edition, hardcover, is going for $6 used, on 'Zon.
The second edition is $10 in Kindle format.
I have the digital copy of the Italian baker. Not sure offhand of the edition. I will look through it and add the title to the list of candidates. Additionally, thanks for the woodworking shop link too.