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BBA Challenge #26: Poolish Baguettes

I realized after these were finished that I had made a mistake. The recipe calls for 7 ounces of poolish; the recipe for poolish in the beginning makes 23 ounces. Rather than have extra poolish lying around, I only made a third of the poolish recipe: 106 grams of bread flour, 153 grams of water, and 1 gram of yeast. I was a little worried about such a small amount of yeast, but it seemed to turn out all right. However, a third of the recipe was still a little more than 7 ounces, but I forgot to measure out the poolish, and instead threw it all into the baguettes. That said, I still think the recipe turned out fine, somehow.

Poolish

The main difference between these baguettes and the ones we’ve done in the past was using sifted whole wheat flour in the recipe. I used (of course) King Arthur Flour’s Whole Wheat flour.

King Arthur Flour Whole Wheat

I sifted it with my fine-mesh strainer and ended up with a fair amount of wheat bran.

Wheat Bran

I just threw the bran away instead of saving it for the future, though.

I made this bread last week, and one of the sad, sad things about posting so late after baking is that I have forgotten some of the details of process. I don’t remember this bread giving me any trouble, though.

Kneaded

Ready to Rise

Unlike the Portuguese Sweet Bread, which I made a few days ago, I didn’t have any problem getting it to rise.

Risen

Shaped

I think I am getting a little better at shaping baguettes, but clearly I still have a long way to go. Several of these kind of unfurled after baking, as you will see.

After the Second Rise

Slashes

I did have a breakthrough of sorts with slashing. I realized that I was holding the lame facing in the wrong direction. Once I turned it the right way, my slashes were instantly easier and looked a lot better. Unfortunately I have now forgotten what the right way is. Help me out, readers. Should it curve like a “C” when you hold it, or the other way around? Like this: ( or like this: ) ?

Loaves

Look at these loaves. I think I have to take back what I said above about progressing in regards to shaping. I think I need Remedial Shaping 101. Lucky for them they still tasted good.

Crumb

This bread was yummy, and I liked the whole wheat flavor. It didn’t bowl me over with its awesomeness, like the bagels, or focaccia, or pain de campagne, but I thought it was a very good recipe for a whole wheat baguette and if I wanted a whole wheat baguette, this is where I would start. So I’m giving it 4 stars.

Meanwhile, I made the Portuguese Sweet Bread two days ago, and the Potato Rosemary bread is cooling on the rack while I am typing this. So I need two things: time to post about these two before I move even further ahead, and people to take these breads of my hands. I still have a loaf of Pane Siciliano in my freezer, for goodness sake.

3 thoughts on “BBA Challenge #26: Poolish Baguettes

  1. Your baguettes look great! I’m not sure about the lame position….I just discovered using a tomato knife is working really well for me. Probably depends on if you’re left or right-handed.
    Whole wheat baguettes sound like a healthy alternative ~ I’m looking forward to making these.
    For a family of 2 here, I’ve been giving some of my breads away to some grateful friends and neighbors. I’m sure you can find someone to take the Pane Siciliano off your hands!

  2. Wish I could take that Pane Siciliano off your hands! It was so good. I don’t think the baguettes look that bad at all. They’re merely rustic! Beautiful pictures overall. Love the light.

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