So apologies first off, when I started this blog I planned to post nearly every day. Essentially every time I baked, but sadly things have not always worked out. Recently I have had a number of failed bakes, coupled with a trip to the states, meaning there has been very little baking from my kitchen. But I am back, and I have a new toy to play with. A baguette baking tray. So I have been testing it out this morning.
The baking tray is a very simple thing much like this one. I bought it from The Cook Shop in Leamington Spa, one of those amazing shops where there isn’t enough room to turn around, it is a real Aladdin’s cave of cookery equipment.
To test out the new purchase I found a very basic baguette recipe on-line at allrecipes.co.uk.
- 225 ml Water
- 35g g White bread flour
- 1 tbsp Caster sugar
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 1/2 tsp Yeast
- To glaze – 1 Egg Yolk
I had to split tis bake over night, and there are a few things I would do differently next time, but I will start with what I did.
Using my bread maker I made a dough from the ingredients – Now I read the recipe wrong, and actually put the egg yolk in the dough, and compensated for it with a bit of extra flour, my bad.
I then knocked the dough back and left to rise over night, in the fridge, where it more than doubled in size. In the morning I knocked it back and split into two, then left to warm on the counter, where it again doubled in size.
I then shaped it into baguettes, my technique needs a lot of work, but I got the right shape at least. Again I left it, but this time in the baguette tray, whilst the oven finished heating. Then I brushed them with egg yolk and slashed them.
Finally I baked them for about 20-25 mins at 190°C, with lots of steam.
For my first proper attempt at baguettes I am really happy with these. They were instantly converted into a rather continental breakfast served with either jam or cheese (an English semi-hard goats from Country Bumpkins – Leamington Spa, whose name I have forgotten).
They were very soft, and I think the egg yolk glaze was unnecessary. I would also cut the recipe back a bit for the size baguette trays I have, as I would prefere them a little longer and a thinner, but thats just how the size fitted. Regarding crust I might try my sourdough technique of the first 10 mins at a hotter temperature, then dialling it down for the rest of the bake.
As I alluded to earlier, my technique is far from spot on, and my baguettes were lacking tension in the surface, making the expansion from the slashes a little bit extreme. In fact I got a much better ‘tear’ on the underside (not shown), ideas for next time.
Other than that I am really happy with them, and will be looking forward to trying them again, for lunches.
Given the success I may have to place another Shipton Mill order for some French bread flour, to see where that gets me. I will add it to the list of wants, which is steadily growing now that my baking stone is lying in three pieces.