Monday, 12 December 2011

Same Day 6-Fold French Bread

So nice, I made it twice.

This is one of those recipes that seems to defy logic and physics and all that Star Trek stuff.

A wet dough is just brought together, ignored for several hours, and then turned every half hour for 3 more hours. Then loosely shaped and baked quickly in a hot oven. Voila! One day baguette with the complexity of two day French bread. Amazing.

Also amazing is how the wet dough starts coming together on its own. Far out. Totally.

I made the recipe twice, once with baguette and once with smaller rolls for sandwiches. They both turned out great.

Try them yourself!

6-Fold French Bread
adapted from Bread, by Jeffrey Hamelman
for the Mellow Bakers

Stage One:
In your stand mixer - add:

1 kg bread flour
730 grams water
3½ tsp fine sea salt
1¼ tsp dry instant yeast

Mix with dough hook, just until all ingredients are evenly combined.

Remove hook, place bowl on the counter and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit for 3½ hours. Go have a nap, clean up the yard, or buy something shiny.

Stage Two

Take your bowl scraper, or a heavy duty rubber spatula, and turn the dough in the bowl 20 times. Bring the dough up from the bottom and fold on to the top. Keep rotating the bowl as you do this.

Set your timer for 30 minutes. You need to do this handy folding thing 6 times in total, every 30 minutes. 

When you are finished your turns and the last 30 minutes have elapsed - form into 4 baguettes. Loosely and delicately, as it is a delicate dough. Sort of like ciabatta.

Let your baguettes rest for 1½ hours, or longer if your kitchen is quite cool.

Preheat the oven to 460°F

Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden and lovely and baked through. Let cool on racks.

*Alternatively, shape into smaller rolls for sandwiches.

**I use a Chicago Metallic French bread form for final rise and baking. Lined with parchment, if the dough is quite wet.

***I scored my loaves, but I am not sure it was necessary.
This bread has been YeastSpotted!