Author Topic: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique  (Read 3076 times)

Trudie

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1662
Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« on: December 23, 2015, 09:05:35 PM »
I just started using "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day" by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois and am very encouraged by the results of the basic recipe, but made my first batch of wheat bread and was disappointed.  It was better than other wheat loaves I've made in the past, but was nothing to write home about.

For others who've used this book, what whole grain recipes do you recommend?  Do you have tips?  What are your favorite recipes?

I like the philosophy and the technique.  It is very "doable" and I like the fact that I can make small loaves.

terran

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2021
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2015, 07:04:32 AM »
Little bump for you.

I've only made the basic (white flour) recipe that's freely available online and it came out really well -- perfect for entertaining. I'd be interested to know if anyone has had any luck with a whole wheat variation as well.

Jschange

  • Guest
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2015, 07:11:00 AM »
The brown bread in the basic book didn't work for me, and I had mixed results with the ones in the healthy book. Those ones all produced bread, but not as miraculous as the basic recipe.

Mixing my own ratios of flours and using the basic technique works well. I prefer extra salt, and either honey or herbs in my brown bread.

spokey doke

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 513
  • Escaped from the ivory tower basement
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2015, 10:00:03 AM »
Bread from whole grain flours is really a different beast, and more more difficult to get the same kind of loft and soft crumb compared to white flour (and really that is what we should expect, because the two are quite different).  Store-bought whole wheat bread uses a variety of strategies to make it more like white bread, including dough conditioners and other things you won't (or can't) really duplicate...except that you can approximate the more intensive mixing that whole wheat flour can benefit from, if you are going for high rising, soft crumb breads.

See this thread for more:

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/22831/sd-100-ww-sandwich-loaf-bulgur-cracked-wheat-my-sourdough-starter-declare-defeat

While it is talking about sourdough, the same principles apply.

The other technique that many find helpful is the Tangzhong method, as described here for getting light and fluffy whole wheat bread:

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/36646/100-whole-wheat-loaves-tangzhong-method

Again, the principles apply to the Artisan Bread in 5 min/day technique, although you may have to play around with the ingredient proportions a bit (esp. the yeast)

Happy Baking...

seattleite

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 98
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Kentucky
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #4 on: December 24, 2015, 10:41:56 AM »
I started baking bread a few years ago and what I learned was that at the beginning, for whatever reason, I wasn't succeeding. I also was trying slightly complex recipes. What I ended up succeeding with was Peter Reinhart recipe for Lean Bread from Artisan Breads Every Day. It's probably not to different from your recipe. I just ended up doing a loaf every few days until it I was happy. It didn't take more than a few loafs. Honestly I can't tell you what I was doing wrong. But now I can make an amazing loaf of rustic bread.

It's pretty amazing what you can do with: 1. Water, 2. Flour, 3. Yeast, and 4. Salt.

It was kind of a big eye-opener for me that there was nothing magical about the expensive loafs of bread I was buying at the bakery. I now feel like bread is one of those basic foods that we should all learn how to make early on in life. My kids certainly will.

StetsTerhune

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 451
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #5 on: December 24, 2015, 10:49:41 AM »
I used to use the book a ton. My eventual conclusion was that to me it's only worthwhile for flatbreads (naan, pita, pizza, etc.).  I could get the loaves of bread to be... fine, but it was enough worse than I could do with a yes-knead recipe that it wasn't worth the convenience to me.  The 5 minute technique dough is great for pizza -- a little harder to work with since it's a bit wetter than normal dough, but after a week or so on the fridge the mild sourdough flavor it gets is wonderful for pizza.

I'm not sure I ever used a whole grain recipe from the book, but my experience is that every bread recipe takes some tweaking for your specific circumstances (exact flour, humidity of storage, etc.). Always some degree of trial and error and developing a 'feel' for it.

slugsworth

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 274
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2015, 11:51:28 AM »
I don't own the book, but use the basic recipe pretty regularly. My standard batch replaces 1 cup or 1.5 cups of the white flour with WW flour. More than that and I've had less than awesome results. I've also added wheat germ (I can't say how much since I don't actually measure, maybe a cup or so) to help make it a bit heartier while still getting a good loaf.

Interested in hearing other responses.

Duchess of Stratosphear

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 326
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2015, 10:59:19 AM »
I've been baking bread almost everyday over the holiday break, and my best results are with about 1/3 white bread flour and the rest a combo of white whole wheat and stone ground whole wheat. I use the no knead method and let it sit overnight usually. I'm pretty happy with the results lately. I've been baking it in a silicon bread pan and baking at 450 for 20 or so minutes and then going down to 350 for another 15 or so--the initial high temp seems to give it a bounce and it rises up nicely. I just can't seem to get a decent rise with all WW flour. Is it even possible? I think even my local bakery puts some white flour in their WW breads.

Gerard

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1389
  • Location: eastern canada
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2015, 03:58:14 PM »
Is the artisan recipe that much better than the Jim Lahey recipe? I've been getting great results with Lahey's, even skipping the second floured-cloth rise, with all whole wheat. The longer rise (12-18 hours) and smaller amount of yeast (1/4 tsp) really seem to mellow and sweeten everything.

But if the artisan recipe is that much better, and I'm comparing my 100% whole-wheat loaves to white bread that's not all that good, then feel free to not listen to me at all, and to direct howls of derisive laughter in my general direction.

Axecleaver

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3370
  • Location: New York
Re: Questions for "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" technique
« Reply #9 on: December 30, 2015, 05:06:35 PM »
Quote
I just can't seem to get a decent rise with all WW flour. Is it even possible? I think even my local bakery puts some white flour in their WW breads.
It is not. But you can use some other adjuncts, like oatmeal.

My favorite loaf is 4c of whole wheat, 1c of white flour, and 1c of oatmeal. Add the warm water to the oatmeal, add the yeast to this. I use half the yeast for twice the time which gives a finer, more complex and lighter loaf. Got this from my Mom, I think she adapted it from a 50's era Fannie Farmer cookbook. She used honey in her loaves instead of sugar.