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Bread on the Egg - pic heavy

CookinbobCookinbob Posts: 1,045
edited October 2013 in EggHead Forum

I decided to document a bread cook on the Egg.  Started with the dough last night.  32 oz flour, 24 oz water, 1-1/2 Tbsp yeast( 2 packets worth), 1-1/2 Tbsp kosher salt.  This recipe and general method comes from the book "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day".  I recommend it if you are interested in baking bread.

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Flour measured directly into dough bucket, 2 lbs 1/2 oz.  Kosher salt was added and whisked into flour.


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Here's the yeast all hydrated and ready to go to work.  Water is on the warm side - about 105 deg.   I dump the water/yeast mix directly into the bucket, and mix with a wooden spoon until it is fully incorporated.  It is a kind of shaggy looking dough, but that's OK

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Here is the dough all mixed and ready to rise.  I will give it about 2 hours. 


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The dough has fully risen now and will spend the night, and some of it the next week, in the fridge.  Plenty of beer in here keeping the temps constant.  This no knead dough is fairly wet, so is much easier to work with when it is cold.  In addition as the dough ages in the fridge, the yeasties continue fermentation of starches etc and develop much more flavor (or so I am told).  Dough can stay for 2 weeks.

Now it is time to bake.  At this point you are 1 hour and 15 minutes from taking your baked loaf from the egg or oven.

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I flour the surface of the dough with a dredge, flour my hand, and pull out a big hunk which I cut off with a serrated knife.  I work it with my hands, pulling the top around and folding into the bottom, turning and making it into a ball with a kind of a gluten "skin".  Then, shape into a loaf  or whatever (I prefer the football shaped loaf) and put it to rest on a sheet of parchment which I dust with corn meal.  I let it rest for about 45 minutes (after 45 it is ready to bake).  Immediately before baking I dust the top with flour and make some diagonal cuts which lets the dough expand when it cooks.
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Going back a step though, as soon as you have shaped the loaf, it is time to light the egg (which has already been prepped).  Plate setter, followed by the grid on top of which is a pan for water, then the baking stone raised above about 4" (I use flour pots as I do not have an AR).  It will take most of the 45 minutes to get everything up to 450 deg which is where you want to be with all purpose flour.
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When the temp is stabilized, carefully dump a cup of hot water in the steam pan (this can be tricky, I lift the stone with a gloved hand), slide the parchment/loaf onto the stone, close the lid, and set the timer for 30 minutes.  20 minutes in you can pull the parchment if you like, but it is not necessary.  Keep an eye on the temp.
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I have been told that if you can wait two hours to cut into a loaf, it is at it's best.  Good luck with that.  This one made it an hour while i put this post together.

The great thing about this recipe, is you mix it once which takes about 5 minutes, then leave it in the fridge until about 2 hours before you want fresh bread to eat.  Cook it in the oven or on the egg, but you can have fresh bread 3 or 4 times in a week with one dough batch.  It is however possible to get so used to making and eating fresh baked bread, that you eat a lot and gain weight.  Don't ask me how I know.
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Last comment, I experimented tonight and went without the plate setter, which you may notice in the pics.  Better to use it, by the end of the cook, the stone was over 500 and crust bottom was overdone to my taste.  PS always in the future.
XLBGE, Small BGE, Homebrew and Guitars
Rochester, NY
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