Tagged: gf

Gluten-free Sourdough, lacto-fermented zucchini loaf (savory) #2

If the last one was thrown together, this was more of an insouciant blending. I ballsed up the ‘slurry’ again – I decided to mix it in dry but neglected to whisk the flours for a good blend, so I got some clumping. I switched up the starter and made it more of a 100% hydration (typically I have used about 65% hydration).

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour mix #2 (with tweaks per prior posts) -
  • 3/4 cup 5/6 day fermented grated zucchini – chilled, so why I am bothering to add this since it should have no active fermentation, I don’t know
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • about a 1/4 cup sugar – I am not sure why I increased this
  • 3/4 cup active (ie just went through a rise & fall cycle) starter
  • 10g / 10g flax / chia ground and added as dry
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger

Method:

I mixed everything together at once, as before, and let it rise 12 hours. There was some, not particularly appreciable activity, and so I baked an hour at 180. Disappointing.

Gluten-free Sourdough, lacto-fermented zucchini loaf (savory) #1

I wanted to try using lacto-fermented zucchini in a dough, to see if its process aided the bread’s rise. To be honest, after my first attempt, I’d be inclined to say it didn’t – but I threw another one together just now to rise overnight, and we’ll see. I also put another jar of zucchini up on the top shelf, salted for fermentation, and we can try again in a few days. I’m not inclined to call this a failure yet, but it sure as shit wasn’t a success.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour mix #2 (with tweaks per prior posts) – I planned to weigh this but my helper reset the scale at a non-optimum moment
  • 1 cup 5/6 day fermented grated zucchini
  • 1 tsp salt
  • about a 1/8 cup sugar
  • 4 oz (104g) active (ie just went through a rise & fall cycle) starter
  • 10g / 10g flax / chia slurry (w/ 40g hot water, whisked)

Method:

This being a first pass, I just pretty much threw these ingredients together, put ‘em in a lined bread pan, and let them rise for 8 hours. They seemed to have a good volume, and the day was drawing on, so at that point I baked them in a pre-heated, ‘steamed’ (a cup of boiling water in a heated dutch oven lid) oven. 1 hour, the first 10 minutes at 220 and then the rest at 180.

The results provoked a shrug from both me and my partner. Yet another cake-y, vaguely palatable loaf, that shrug said. Slightly better texture, but only due maybe a half point. Flavour, not great, not bad. Crust, such as it had one? Uniform, at least.

Yet I remained intrigued. Could a decent bread rise from these damp, tepid ashes?

New Flour Mix #2

As usual when you don’t have immediate access to unusual grains (when you live in the countryside and it’s a 25 minute drive to the nearest town with a health food store) necessity rears up with alarming frequency. Out of the appropriate polenta, I mixed up a half batch of the following (ie each measure is a half cup, due to shortage of buckwheat)

  • 3 buckwheat
  • 1 chickpea / garbanzo
  • 2 brown rice
  • 2 whole oat flour
  • 1 fine grained cornmeal

Since my focus is on trying to use local (or locally growable) ingredients, this is actually pretty solid. I’m not sure at all if soy would grow here, although I think it would. The rest is all locally growable – the rice is grown in catalunya, which is not within 100 miles or indeed within fewer than 8 hours driving – but baby steps.

Second Rise & Shaping

Part of the problem is that the process for making gluten bread requires the gluten to develop. Not so for gluten-free. If the starter is mature enough then it will generate air, and we hope to capture that air with flax / etc. Oven spring is caused by the air bubbles expanding rapidly.

So, then: we want to allow the rising process to be constrained by the starter’s progress through the available material. Yesterday we saw that a quick knead led to more activity, which makes sense. Perhaps the idea is to understand firstly how long it takes the dough to ‘stop’ rising. At about 65% of that time, split and shape. It would be good to be able to stretch & fold à la Tartine, but I’m not sure how fragile the flax strands are. Preheat the oven and pan: cross fingers and hope. 

GF Sourdough #2; Focus on Crumb

I’d like to be less impatient, and not change multiple factors – do a solid design of experiment. But I am impatient, so I made more than one change. I added in a flax and chia slurry in place of the xanthan gum etc; I used more water; and I used a stand mixer to beat the wetter dough. Oh, and more butter.

Flour Mix:

  • 3x Buckwheat
  • 1x Soy
  • 2x White Rice
  • 1x Fine Cornmeal
  • 2x Coarse Cornmeal

Starter:

I used the same starter I had previously, now matured well and to the point where it will double after feeding in about 2 hours (at about 75 F)

Bread Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour mix
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 5.5 oz starter
  • 2 oz butter
  • 1.5 cup water (85 F)
  • 15 g chia seeds, 15 g flax seeds, ground and mixed w/ 60 g boiling water and left to cool

Method:

Mix dry ingredients. Rub in butter. Add starter to 1 cup of water and stir to disperse. Add along with flax slurry to dry ingredients and mix for 2.5 minutes in a KitchenAid at second speed. Add enough additional water to make a stiff batter. Set aside to rise in a covered bowl – I used a plastic gastronorm this time in order to have more visibility to the dough during the rise, and placed an elastic band around in order to see the volume shift.

This rose spectacularly – close to doubled in 2-3 hours. However, I left it. After about 6 hours I divided it, managing it with a little flour, and let it rest, whereupon it continued to rise. I heated the dutch oven and carefully transferred the dough for 20 minutes w/ lid on and 20 w/ it off …

Results:

I made big bread-tasting biscuits / cookies! Pictures to follow, but in essence no outer crust formed, and no oven spring occurred. The texture was a loose sponge.

Plus side – flavour was solid, and the ‘crust’ had good colour and flavour. Flax slurry didn’t affect the good taste at all. Starter is mature.

Thoughts: too much water / fat in butter not helping / too long a bulk rise?

Actions: back to 1 cup & a splash, form loaves when at 160% (don’t wait for 200%), remove butter. Yes, multivariate adjustment.

  • Crumb: 1/10 (on cooling, more like a crumbly cake, quite moist, pleasant. Not bready.
  • Flavour: 9/10
  • Crust: 0/10 (no crust!!)

 

 

GF Sourdough, Ginger Bug, Butter ‘n All

It occurred to me to try and follow ‘normal’ recipes as much as possible to start with, in order to have a base. The following was loosely based on one in Bread: A Baker’s Book of Techniques and Recipes (Hamelman) for plain levain-based sourdough.

Flour Mix:

  • 3x Buckwheat
  • 1x Soy
  • 2x White Rice
  • 1x Fine Cornmeal
  • 2x Coarse Cornmeal

Starter:

  • Ginger bug – 1/4 cup water + 2 chunks ginger + 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour mix
  • 1/4 cup coarse cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup water

Mix to a very stiff consistency. Let sit for 2 days at room temperature. Feed after 2 days with 1/4 cup flour mix + water from ginger bug. Let sit for 18 hours. Should double in size after about 12 hours and be starting to ‘collapse’ at that point.

Bread Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour mix
  • 1 tsp xantham gum
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 5.5 oz starter
  • c. 1oz butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup water + a splash (room temp)

Method:

Mix dry ingredients. Rub in butter. Add starter to water and stir to disperse. Add to dry ingredients and knead briefly. Set aside to rise in a covered bowl.

After 18 hours, shape with care (this could be done ahead of time) and bake as follows:

Heat dutch oven at full (450 For close to it) for 40 minutes (at least). Place dough in lid and body over the top. 20 mins at full and then 20 without the lid.

Results:

  • Flavour: excellent (8/10)
  • Crust: superb (9/10)
  • Crumb: awful (0/10)

Basically, no rise or spring at all. Plan is to try and use flax / chia to get a good risen loaf, then adjust for flavour.