Bread

This project is here to loosely document my journey in bread making.

Intro

I didn’t have an outsized desire to make bread, but someone in my apartment building put three high-quality bread-making books out by the front door with a “Free” sign, so I took this as a sign from the heavens to pick up a new hobby. Immediately, I was very excited to get started. I ordered a handful of items I needed (e.g. a quick-read thermometer) on Amazon, and as I waited for them to arrive I couldn’t stop reading about the process.

The three books are Flour Water Salt Yeast (FWSY) by Ken Forkish, Tartine Bread by Chad Robertson, and Bread Making at Home by Jane Mason. So far, I am working through FWSY and then, as I get more knowledge and experience, will try recipes from the other two.

2022

Feb. 10, 2022 – The beginning

My first bread. I followed the basic Saturday White Bread recipe and instructions from FWSY. The second load was proofed overnight in the fridge and baked the following morning.

Boule 1Boule 2
Feb. 10, 2022 loaf 1Feb. 10, 2022 loaf 2

The room was around 75 ºF, a bit warmer than the recommended 70 ºF, so I think the bulk fermentation was faster than expected. Both tasted great, though!

Feb. 14, 2022 – Saturday white bread

This was an over-night fermentation. It starts with less yeast so that there is more time for the microorganisms to produce more complex flavors. I didn’t taste a remarkable difference, but the texture and mouth feel was more buttery.

Pre-fermentationPost-fermentation (12 hr)Final boules
Feb. 14, 2022 pre-fermenationFeb. 14, 2022 post-fermentationFeb. 14, 2022 final breads

Feb. 26, 2022 – Biga pre-fermentation

This was my first biga pre-fermentation. This begins with a small amount of yeast in 800 g of flour and about 200 g of water. It triples in size overnight and the smell the next morning is delightful with far more complex aromas than a standard white bread.

From this batch, I produced a standard boule and a tomato, rosemary focaccia. The biga definitely made a large difference to the taste and I don’t think Ill ever do a standard Saturday white boule again (unless under a time restriction).

biga 0 hrbiga 13 hrBouleFocaccia
Feb. 25, 2022 beginning the biga pre-fermentationFeb. 26, 2022 biga after 13 hours of fermentationFeb. 26, 2022 bouleFeb. 26, 2022 focaccia

March 5, 2022 – Biga pre-fermentation

Another biga pre-fermentation to make a boule and focaccia. I left this focaccia plain so I could pay more attention to the texture and flavor of the final bread.

March 5, 2022 Boule and focaccia.
Graduate Student

My research interests include cancer genetics and evolution. I also learning about programming and computer science in general.