I’ve picked up a new skill:
Regular reader and fellow GroovyGreen contributor Beo recommended the book “Bread Alone” in the comments section of my sustainable library post, and I picked it up a few weeks back. This is my first attempt at making bread of any sort, let alone from scratch. It’s the Country Hearth Loaf recipe from page 64.
I learned a fair bit while making the loaf:
- I didn’t put enough flour in the dough before trying to knead it and ended up with a sticky mess until I wised up and added more flour.
- I also figured out that for scoring the loaves, a regular kitchen knife just doesn’t do the trick. I’ll have to save one of my razor blades after it’s become too dull to shave with anymore and try that.
- My oven has some hot spots, and the crust got a bit dark in certain spots. Next time I’ll bake it for less time before inspecting it and rotate the loaves more often.
- Finally, I tried to move the loaves into the oven without the benefit of a peel, and thus excessive manhandling resulted in my nice round loaves turning into the deformed blobs you now see. I’ll look at either the silicone baking mats or perhaps getting an actual peel.
All in all, it was a great experience. The crust, as I mentioned before, got a little overdone, but the bread itself was nice and chewy with a great wheat/nut flavor. We had my wife’s parents over for a dinner of home-made turkey noodle soup and bread, and they loved both of them.
Thanks again, Beo!