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Wild Yeast

NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
For close to a year and a half I've been working with sourdough. At first my loaves were consistent failures. Disappointingly they wouldn't rise in bulk fermentation nor would I see any oven spring. My starter seemed plenty active and well fed but, something in my recipe formula or process was killing my chances of a decent loaf. Another challenge is working with high hydration doughs. 
Nowadays I rarely have a failed loaf. As my starter gets older it has become robust and the flavor more pronounced. I've baked loaves in CI cookware and on a stone. I find it more challenging on the stone. I bake in the LG & MM and even in the oven when the BGE isn't a feasible option when I'm in a time crunch. I definitely prefer baking in the egg for several reasons.  Note: I don't have a dedicated baking egg.  Nor do I do clean burns and personally see no real purpose, based on my cooking regime, to do so. That being said I wouldn't advise smoking a brisket and then immediately baking bread in it for obvious reasons. :tongue:
I've posted a few loaves on here. 
So, how many here toy with sourdough and other bread types in their eggs?  Do you change your approach when using the egg comparatively to a conventional or convection oven. Even though the egg is moisture rich it's conducive to add moisture or steam the first 15-20 minutes to get maximum oven spring. I have my ways. How are you adding moisture for steam?
LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
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Comments

  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,225
    I have been playing with sourdough breads for a while now.  I haven't used my egg to cook any bread.  I use the oven in my kitchen.  I add moisture by using the steam generator built into my oven - "Bread Setting" on the dial.  

    One trick to try for getting a good oven spring is to put the loaf in a cold oven. Adjust the timing to allow for the time it takes your oven to preheat.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • SGHSGH Posts: 25,172
    edited June 2017
    How are you adding moisture for steam?
    I use a cheap spray bottle from the Dollar store. 

    I simply spray the hot stone with a little water. 

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    Arsenal-Just a small wore out and broken down Weber kettle. No other means to cook at all.
    Virtus Junxit Mors Non Separabit
    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 
  • 20stone20stone Posts: 1,657
    There are a couple yeastheads on this forum, as I got my first starters from a couple of them.

    While I have been baking a bit, aside from pizza, its all been in the oven.  While I now use the dutch oven approach for the moisture element, I previously ised a baking dish w water in it below the baking stone. It gave me mixed results w a pretty consistently underdone bottom (steam cooling the stone). I suspect that would be a similar effect to a water pan under a pizza stone on the BGE.

    I'd love to see some of your egg bakes, as that'll be my next leap. 
    Joule SV
    GE induction stove
    Gasser by the community pool
    Scale (which one of my friends refuses to use)
    Friends with BGEs and myriad other fired devices
    Charcuterie and sourdough enthusiast
    Prosciuttos in an undisclosed location

    Austin, TX
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 3,725
    I have been working with sourdough since January. As you said there is a definite learning curve. For me the challenge was learning to handle the wet dough. When I cook in the house I use a pizza stone and a cloche for the first 20 minutes of the bake. I use the pizza stone and cloche in the egg also. In my limited use of the new wood oven I just launch the dough and let it go. I also really prefer to retard the dough in the refrigerator for 12 hours or better after the bulk rise. 
    I've been using a 75% hydration dough for bread and 65% for pizzas. 
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven.
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • bigbadbenbigbadben Posts: 397
    Have you tried one of forkish 3 kg loaves?  I would imagine a loaf that large with higher hydration would bring its own steam to the party. 
  • DoubleEggerDoubleEgger Posts: 13,518
    Beautiful loaves Blake. This is going to be the next thing I get into. 
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 3,725
    Those are really nice. You are more skilled than I am if you manage dough up to 95% hydration. 
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven.
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    edited June 2017
    SciAggie said:
    Those are really nice. You are more skilled than I am if you manage dough up to 95% hydration. 
    Thanks buddy. Talented? Naw. Just get your ass handed to you a few times and you learn little tricks. I find a scraper comes in handy for splitting after bulk ferment and it works splendidly for high hydration dough shaping. Slap folds with damp fingertips or dusty fingertips works also if you're not into slapping wet sticky dough. I find after bulk ferment by working the dough about every 30-45 minutes it builds strength and then cold proof after shaping gives some killer flavor.  
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • girbimgirbim Posts: 25
    I just started got started with sourdough.  It took about 4 tries for me.  I had the dough that would ferment but not rise.  I think that happens when the lactobacillus bacteria is active, but the yeast is not.  Finally, the last batch worked.  I also started working with higher hydration dough and have had mixed results.   

    I haven't made bread on the grill yet.  Here are two of my better looking loaves.   The slash pattern on the second is a little ugly:




    Large BGE

    Minneapolis, MN
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    @bigbadben 3kilo loaf would be yuge!  Any higher hydration brings more spring but, extra steam gives spring and allows for better crust development and gives a more open crumb. Nobody enjoys a heavy or dense blob of a loaf. 

    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • DoubleEggerDoubleEgger Posts: 13,518
    I would kill both of those @girbim
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    @girbim Looks good!  I've been working on more artistic scoring. It has proven more difficult on wetter dough. I have 2 loaves cold proofing now that I'll try some more artistic scoring on. We shall see how it works out. 
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • girbimgirbim Posts: 25
    I need to work on my scoring.  I think those were done with a carving knife.  I now have a bread lame, but sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.  If the tension is just right, the cuts are pretty easy.  I never have put a nice fern leaf pattern on them or anything like that.

    I still fight with the higher hydration doughs.   It was much easier with lower hydration regular yeast dough.  Timing and results were predictable.

    NPHusker, your loaves look good too.  They weren't posted yest when I started my last message.
    Large BGE

    Minneapolis, MN
  • gdenbygdenby Posts: 6,083
    I was baking sourdough a few years ago. Maybe 3 of the first twelve tries were vaguely edible. Had one that was such a brick even the birds and squirrels didn't bother with it.  Finally got a really exact recipe and method down (which I wrote out, and now can't find) and was making a loaf a week.

    Took me quite awhile to figure I was over proofing, and the dough was not quite hydrated enough. Was using a 40-60 blend of semolina and Pillsbury better for bread. I suppose the semolina needed a bit more water. Got pretty good at handling wet dough. Made ciabatta a couple of times.

    I did several on the Egg. Worked well enough. Liked the mild smoke flavor. Eventually I bought a ceramic cloche, which made the bread self steamed. Used the kitchen oven preheated w. a large pizza stone in it.

    But when my last kid moved out, between my wife and I a single loaf would last 2 weeks, and I was mostly just feeding the starter, not using it. So I stopped. when I couldn't find the recipe, oh well...
  • blind99blind99 Posts: 4,345
    Wow those are some incredible loaves!
    Chicago, IL - Large and Small BGE - Weber Gasser and Kettle
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,225
    ...

    @jtcBoynton I've done your method in my oven twice but, the spring isn't quite as pronounced. Pretty loaf nonetheless. I'd like the steam generator setting...although you'll usually only find that an option on commercial ovens.
    ...

    The only home oven I have seen it on is a KitchenAid.  They offered it for a couple of years a while back. I think it is discontinued.  It really works.  Haven't done any of the tricks like spray bottles of ice cubes since getting the stove.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 3,725
    @NPHuskerFL Those are really nice. I can't do that yet. 
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven.
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • texaswigtexaswig Posts: 2,242
    Those are looking good. I've had my egg for close to 4 years and have yet to bake bread on it. I need to change this. 
    Scott
    Greenville ,Tx

    Xl bge with woo2 and ajustable rack
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    @SciAggie But, with practice and failures comes experience. You'll get it soon enough. 

    @texaswig For sure man. 
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,225
    Nice
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 11,768
    I've been dabbling in sourdough for a few months now, and am now having more hits than misses :) That's a great loaf! That crumb looks perfect.

    A couple of recent ones that I baked for friends. 


    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • 20stone20stone Posts: 1,657
    The bread game is string with this group. It has me motivated to pop up off my backside and bang some out. 
    Joule SV
    GE induction stove
    Gasser by the community pool
    Scale (which one of my friends refuses to use)
    Friends with BGEs and myriad other fired devices
    Charcuterie and sourdough enthusiast
    Prosciuttos in an undisclosed location

    Austin, TX
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    @caliking Very nice loaves :plus_one:
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 3,725
    @SciAggie But, with practice and failures comes experience. You'll get it soon enough. 
    I really should have taken a picture of some bread I tried Friday in the wfo. I usually retard the dough in the refrigerator for about 12+ hours. Friday (since I was home all day) i mixed the dough early, did the bulk rise as usual, then just proofed it outside. It was a nice 85 degrees and the bread rose after shaping in a couple of hours.  When I went to pour them out of the banneton on the peal - they did POUR. They had no strength and just sucked. They tasted fine but looked horrible. This was at 75% hydration with KA bread flour. 
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven.
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 3,725
    @caliking Nice loaves!
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven.
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 11,768
    Thanks @SciAggie and @NPHuskerFL. Much encouragement and tips have been gleaned from fellow breadheads here :)

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • johnmitchelljohnmitchell Posts: 4,693
    Interesting post as always... I am always amazed at how great your bread looks.. Awesome post Blake..
    Greensboro North Carolina
    When in doubt Accelerate....
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    Interesting post as always... I am always amazed at how great your bread looks.. Awesome post Blake..
    Thanks John :hang_loose:
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
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