Thursday, May 31, 2012

Pain de Campagne (french heath sourdough bread)

Right. Let's put that baby to work!

Day 1. 8am. The first stage is exactly the same routine as making the starter. Water and dough slurry using the starter, add flour, stash in the airing cupboard. The gluten is very well developed, and the dough sticky.

3pm It has doubled. But only just. Still a big concerned that the starter doesn't have enough strength. Perhaps I let it rest too long? It smells tangy, but not unpleasant. Routine as 8am. Pre-warmed the bowl this time.

10pm. More of the same. The smell has reduced. Still concerned that it isn't rising sufficiently.

Day 2 9.30am. As 10pm yesterday. My four year old enjoyed helping to make a slurry with the dough and water. As a result, it took over an hour to mix!
8pm. The dough is rising very slowly now. It should have doubled at least after two to three hours. It has been nine hours now, and I'm being generous to say it has doubled.
8.30pm A Google search gave me lots of helpful, and not so helpful, advice. I'm quite sure now that the starter was left too long in between feeds, and won't be sufficient to rise the sourdough. The dough is quite heavy, so I added some extra warm water, and stashed it back in the airing cupboard until morning.

Day3. 7am. It's not looking good. Definitely not managed to double its bulk this time. As there is almost 3kg of bread dough at stake here, I decide it needs a helping hand and make a biga.

4.45pm.The biga is looking like a happy girl! Nice and bubbly, and growing well. I mix it into the sour dough, feeling both guilty and apprehensive, then pile the dough into two large bread tins.
 8pm. Still not doubled, but I can't leave it until tomorrow, so in the oven they go.
10pm. Surprise! The amount of rise in the oven was great! More than I was expecting. Typically, I forgot to take a photo of the end result! Maybe I should have waited a little while longer before baking the loaves? After cooling slightly, hubby and I decided the proof would be in the eating.....not the worst sour dough I've eaten. But not the best, either. At least it is edible, and I have a pot of starter in the counter to feed every twelve hours until I feel brave enough to make another batch.

No comments:

Post a Comment