Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Vollkornbrot and Vollkornbrot with Flaxseeds

It's payback time. After two great breads, it couldn't last. Another rye. If you have been following this blog, you'll know I'm not enamored with rye breads and that hasn't changed.

Actually, I'd have to describe these two loaves a failures. While the blame may rest squarely on me, I simply didn't see enough in these two breads to make is work the effort to figure out what went wrong.

Rather than make two humongous loaves, I cut each recipe in half and baked the breads in the same pullman pan. The times and temperatures were the same, and there was very little difference between the loaves.

The dough was sticky and wet and difficult to work with. The results were heavy, stodgy; certainly not something that I would want to make again. Both loaves molded quickly and had to be discarded.

While I started out largely indifferent to rye breads, as this challenge go on, I'm liking them less and less. Two abysmal loaves!

Semolina Bread

This is one of four semolina breads in the book, the levain or sourdough version. It is somewhat unfortunate that we aren't making the others at the same time so we could compare them. However, some might have found that a bit overwhelming.

In general, I'm quite fond of semolina breads and this one didn't disappoint. I made the recipe twice. While the recipe specifies durham flour, the first time I used Bob's Red Mill Semolina Flour. The second time I used King Arthur's Durham Flour. According to Kastel's Artisan Breads the only real difference between the two flours is the grind; semolina has a coarser grind. While I could see a difference in the two flours, it wasn't that much of a difference. The second loaf is shown. I use the shaping technique described in The Bread Baker's Apprentice

Overall, this is a terrific loaf. I can't justify a preference between the two loaves, but slightly preferred the latter. A great loaf.

Pain Rustique

There really isn't a lot to say about this bread. It is very straightforward to make. Apart from a simple poolish that must be made the day before, it is relatively quick to make. It has a somewhat high hydration and is very similar to a ciabatta in many ways. The results are a light, airy rustic bread that is simply spectacular. It is an instant favorite!