Sunday, July 22, 2012

Whole Wheat Boule

I'm back into playing Kitchen Alchemist again.  I love playing.  I love throwing ingredients in a bowl and seeing what happens.  I played around with a boule, like the no knead bread that's so famously floating around the internet.  I don't know how close mine is to the sort anyone else makes; but I took the theory of dough in a container and the idea of roasting bread in a closed container and this is what came out. 

There are two steps so on the easy scale it's a solid 10.  You have to think about this 24 hours in advance which is perpetually difficult for me so I'd rate the planning at a 5.  If you're a great planner, this is a piece of cake!  Or rather, a ridiculously delicious slice of bread! 

Tracy's Breakfast Whole Wheat Boule (my version) 

In a large plastic container with a lid combine: 

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp yeast
1 3/4 cups warm water 
1 Tablespoon honey (dissolved in the water)
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

Mix it with a big wooden spoon until it's just mixed.  Put lid on container.  Leave on counter for 24 hours. 

Next morning, Preheat oven to 500 degrees and put a cast iron roasting pan, with a lid (I used my Ikea cast iron/enamel oval) in the oven to preheat for at least 30 minutes. 

Pour/coax the dough from the container onto a lightly floured board.  With a very light touch, flip it and tuck in the sides, quickly and lightly, so it looks like a round.  I sprinkled a little oatmeal mixed with a little whole wheat flour on top for effect.

QUICKLY transfer the ball of dough into the SCREAMING hot pan.  Put the lid on and get it back into the 500 degree oven. 

Bake for 33 minutes. Remove promptly.  Wait a little bit for it to settle and relax, it's a very spongy texture inside and a crisp, slightly chewy crust.  It's dense and flavorful, considering it's virtually the same proportions as another bread I make, just a different system, the flavor and texture and taste are worlds apart from the other loaves.  I ABSOLUTELY love this bread.  

I cut it thickly and slather with butter and homemade strawberry jam.  It's crisp and chewy and crunchy and soft and spongy and buttery and sweet and wheaty, truly, it's a keeper and one of my better plans. 


Here's the play by play and beauty shots: 

My fabulous cast iron/enamel Ikea pan.  At the 24 hour mark, the dough had risen to 2 QT, not bad for a little blob of dough on my counter
The dough is bubbly and stretchy and smells beautifully of yeast.
Turned out onto a lightly floured board,  quick flip and a sprinkle of oats is all it needs.  I slashed it a couple of times to be chef-y and artsy fartsy and literally tossed it into the screaming hot pan.
Ok, the big reveal!  after 33 minutes in the oven... TADA!
Oh, my word.  Yes.
We left it to cool/settle for about 30 minutes. Connor was going quite mad waiting!
The bottom isn't pretty but it's good and crisp and makes a lovely hollow sound.
Slathered with butter and strawberry jam.
This loaf is most certainly on my short list and will be repeated...frequently and I don't actually think I'll change anything!  

Really, go now and make some dough, you'll thank me tomorrow ;)


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