Thursday, August 20, 2009

Maggie Glezer's Essential's Columbia

It’s become tradition here in the dorms to host a break fast after the twenty five hour long fast of the ninth of Av. This fast is the culmination of the three weeks, the day we commemorate the destruction of the Temples and mourn all of the things that have happened in Jewish history. So a few weeks ago, that's just what we did. Dinner is usually something light and dairy, following the bread course. That of course, is my domain and the bread is usually highly anticipated by all my friends. For last year's break fast I made Maggie Glezer's Rosemary Bread Slabs, so for this years break fast I opted to turn to the same source and settled on Essential's Columbia, a bread that would make use of my sourdough starter. These loaves turned out so well that they disappeared in record time. No time for crumb shots. It was mildy but nicely acidic with a delicious crust. There's not much to say except for that we loved it. Isnt that all that matters anyway?

Essential's Columbia
from Artisan Baking Across America

30 grams fermented firm sourdough starter
95 grams water
150 grams bread flour

300 grams bread flour
300 grams all purpose flour
55 grams whole wheat flour
20 grams barley malt
450 grams water
16 grams salt

The night before baking, combine the levain ingredients. Knead until a stiff dough is formed. Allow to ferment 8-12 hours. Here is the fermented levain. The next day, combine all the flours in a bowl, and whisk to combine. Add the water and the malt to the flour mixture.

Mix with a wooden spoon just until combined. Allow to autolyse for 20-30 minutes. Add the levain and salt. Knead the dough until it is very smooth, about ten minutes. Place the dough in a bowl and allow to ferment for one hour. Turn the dough once and then let it ferment for 3-5 hours more until light and airy.This is what my dough looked like. The heat helped it rise nicely. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface.Divide the dough into two (roughly) equal portions.Round the loaves and allow them to rest for for 10-15 minutes.Shape the rounds into batards, or something that resembles batards. Allow to proof for 3 1/2-4 1/2 hours. Forty five minutes before the time is up, preheat the oven with a baking stone and prepare for steam. Slash the loaves and bake for 35-40 minutes until a thermometer registers at least 190 degrees. Remove to a rack to cool.


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