Let’s Invent Some Artisan Bread

posted by on 08/29/2012 | 605 comments (leave one of your own)

Baking is hard.  Baking at high altitude?  Damn near impossible (for me).

I kept coming across photographs of lovely loaves of bread on Pinterest and they were all mentioning the same book.  When I clicked through, I was taken to the authors’ site.  I immediately went and checked the book out from the library.

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Artisan Bread In Five Minutes A Day?  They had me at bread and five minutes.

The concept is you make a large batch of dough and you can store it in the fridge for up to two weeks, taking a bit of dough when you feel like making bread, that’s where the whole five minutes comes a day comes in.

Let me just start by saying when I gathered up all my supplies to make this I was thinking to myself, “YEAH RIGHT” and also rolling my eyes because doubts?  I had them.

Apparently you only need five ingredients to make artisan bread.

Flour, active yeast, salt, water, and a big container to mix everything in.  I happen to own the world’s largest cambro, that’s restaurant talk for a big ass container.

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I used the Master Recipe and which calls for 6 and a half cups of flour, 3 cups of water, 1 1/2 TB of salt, and 1 1/2 TB of yeast.

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I was worried that I would need a mixer with a dough hook, but I just used a wooden spoon

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After mixing everything up, I let the dough rise?  Rest?  Nap?  on our kitchen counter for two hours and then let it chill in the refrigerator for an hour.

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I then took a grapefruit sized amount of dough and formed it into a ball, making sure I formed a “gluten cloak”.  (Seriously, go get the book.  You need the book.)  At this point, I really became impressed with myself because LOOK WHAT I JUST DID.

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After letting the ball of dough rest for 20 minutes, I slashed the top a few times and popped that bad boy in a 450 degree preheated oven on a baking stone with a pan of water underneath for steam, baked it for 35 minutes, and this happened, ZOMG I BAKED BREAD.

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I did nothing different to the recipe for high altitude, I just mixed that dough up and hoped for the best.  The bread is delicious and perfect and we’ve already eaten two loaves.  When Troy was buttering his second piece of bread, he said, “I didn’t even know you knew how to invent bread!”

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Me neither, but we all win!  TEAM BREAD INVENTORS UNITE.

 

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