Yield: 1 Servings
|\N \N||See part 1|
|\N \N||240 F. ideal total|
|\N \N||-154 F. real total|
|\N \N||86 F. temperature to make the water|
Some doughs will involve 3 fermentation phases at different temperatures, instead of the usual two at the same temperature. However, your willingness to use the thermometer and the timer will make a great old-fashioned baker out of you, and produce mouth-watering, eye pleasing traditional breads.
FERMENT THE DOUGH: (2 hours) Shape the dough into a ball and let it rest on a lightly floured surface while you scrape, clean, and light butter the large bowl. Place the dough in the bowl and turn the dough to coat the top with butter. Take the dough's temperature: the ideal is 78 degrees F. Cover with a clean damp towel or plastic wrap and put in a moderately warm (74-80 degree F.) draft-free place until doubled in volume.
Note: If the dough temperature is higher than 78 degrees Fl. , put it in a cooler than 78 degree place like the refrigerator, until the dough cools to 78 degrees F. If it is lower than 78 degrees F., put it in a warmer than 78 degree F. place until the dough warms to 78 degrees F. The point is to try to keep the dough at 78 degrees F. during its fermentation. If you do have to move the dough, be gentle and don't jostle it, or the dough may deflate.
FERMENT THE DOUGH A SECOND TIME: (45 minutes) Deflate the dough by pulling up on the sides and pushing in the center. Re-form into a ball, return to the bowl, and cover again with damp towel or plastic wrap. Put in a moderately warm (74 to 80 degree F. draft free place until doubled in volume.
FERMENT THE DOUGH A THIRD TIME: (45 minutes) Deflate again, shape into a ball, return to bowl, and cover again. Put in a moderately warm (74-80 degree F.) place until doubled again.
DIVIDE AND SHAPE THE DOUGH INTO LOAVES; (10 minutes) Deflate the dough by pushing down in the center and pulling up on the sides. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead briefly. Cut the dough into 2 equal pieces. Flatten each with the heel of your hand using firm direct strokes. Shape each piece into a tight ball for round loaves.
PROOF THE LOAVES (1 hour) Place the loaves on a lightly floured board.
Cover with a clean, damp towel or plastic wrap and put in a moderately warm ( 74-80 degree F.) draft-free place until doubled in volume.
BAKE THE LOAVES: (45 minutes) Forty-five minutes to 1 hour before baking, preheat the oven and homemade hearth or baking stones on the center rack of the oven to 450 degrees F. The oven rack must be in the center of the oven.
If it is in the lower third of the oven, the bottoms of the bread may burn, and if it is in the upper third , the top crusts may burn. Using a very sharp, serrated knife or a single-edge razor blade, score the loaves by making quick shallow cuts ¼ to ½ inch deep along the surface. Using the peel, slide the loaves one at a time onto the hearth and quickly spray the inner walls and floor of the oven with cold water from a spritzer bottle.
If there's an electric light bulb in the oven, avoid spraying it directly - it may burst. Spray for several seconds until steam has filled the oven.
Quickly close the door to trap the steam and bake 3 minutes. Spray again in the same way, closing the door immediately so that steam doesn't escape.
Bake 12 minutes. Reduce heat to 400 degrees F. and bake until loaves are a rich caramel color and the crust is firm, another 15-20 minutes. To test the loaves for doneness, remove and hold the loaves upside down. Strike the bottoms firmly with your finger. If the sound is hollow, the breads are done. If it doesn't sound hollow, bake 5 minutes longer. Cool completely on wire racks. Posted to JEWISH-FOOD digest V97 #073 by swass@...
(Barbara & Steve Wasser) on Mar 5, 1997