Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Bee Keeper's Pain de Mie #BBB

June is Pollinator month, and what better bread to bake than one infused with honey and delicately scented with a subtle floral tea? 

Bumblebee on lupine
Bumblebee on lupine

Plants for pollinators
Catmint, columbine, English and French lavender

No worries on this bread tasting like flowers, the very subtle floral notes just add a little je ne sais quoi that is completely delightful.  There are a number of options for this loaf, either a straight dough method with no pre-ferment, or a longer method with even more flavor and keeping quality.  I did choose the straight method from King Arthur this time, but absolutely had to incorporate the floral tea from the original method that was left out of the KA version.  For my floral tea, I brewed a mug with one bag of Tazo chamomile tea with rose, and an infuser with ½ tbsp of dried lavender buds for 5 minutes, then measured out the amount of that water that I needed.  My youngest kiddo happily drank the rest, she loves teas, and tried it as her very first milk tea.  The dough smelled beautiful, the bread smelled beautiful, and when toasted the next day, the whole kitchen smelled amazing!  Such a wonderful bread, we will definitely make it again.

This is a fantastic bread to try out, not very difficult, and you can make it as a regular loaf if you don't have a pullman pan with a lid.  It is also possible to stick a baking sheet with a heavy cast iron pan on other oven safe heavy item on top of a regular loaf pan to try for the square loaf shape.  I have been wanting a pullman pan for years, so I picked one up!  I highly recommend giving the loaf a try, we'd love for you to join us this month but it's so good, bookmark it for later anyway!  No blog is necessary to participate, a picture will do. Just send a picture or your post of your finished loaf to our host kitchen by the 30th of this month.  You will receive a Bread Baking Buddy graphic to keep or add to your post, and be included in our Buddy round up at the end of the month.  New recipes are posted every month on the 16th. Check out our Facebook group to see the participants' baking results during that time.

Bee Keeper’s Pain de Mie
makes one 13x5-inch loaf or two 9x4-inch

Option #1: Adapted from the Bee Keeper’s Pain de Mie on the KAF site

Makes: one 13X5 pullman-size loaf and utilizes the straight dough method (meaning it doesn’t have an overnight preferment)

Ingredients: (Tanna’s adaptation)
200 g white whole wheat flour (I used sprouted spelt, freshly milled)
500 g All-Purpose Flour
25 g wheat bran (I used the bran sifted from the spelt, milled a little more finely)
2½ teaspoons salt
1½ teaspoons instant yeast
227 g (227ml) lukewarm water
½ cup (113g) milk, at room temperature
3 tbsp (64g) honey
7 tbsp (99g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Directions: Follow the instructions found on the KAF web page.

I followed the basic directions on the KAF site, substituting the brewed tea for the water.  A half batch is just barely enough for the 9x4-inch pullman.  It did take some time for the dough to rise enough to fill where it was supposed to go.  A little more dough would probably have resulted in a tighter crumb, but we are totally not complaining, this was still wonderful bread.  I might make a full batch and use a little more in the pan and have an extra little loaf next time.  (Yes, Aparna scaled back by only a third and ended up with a perfect loaf for the 9x4 pan!)

Option #2: Adapted from Breaking Bread: A Baker’s Journey Home in 75 Recipes by Martin Philip

Makes: two 9X5 pullman loaves (divide in half for one smaller pullman loaf) or make one 13×5 pullman loaf and one very small loaf)

410 g durum flour
410 g AP flour
352 g water
172 g wildflower tea (lavender)
17 g salt, fine
16 g yeast
123 g butter

410 g AP flour
246 g water
pinch yeast

170 g milk
35 g honey
4 g lavender
2 g chamomile flowers

172 grams wildflower tea
656 grams Biga (all above)
106 grams water
35 grams Honey
410 grams Durum flour or Bread flour
123 grams butter
17 grams salt, fine
16 grams instant dried yeast


Combine the flour and yeast in a large mixing bowl.
Add tepid water (75-80°F). Mix briefly, then knead until a smooth dough forms.
Cover and set at room temperature for 12 to 16 hours. Depending on the temperature in your kitchen, it may only take 8-10 hours.

Combine milk, honey in a small pot.
Over low heat, warm the mixture so the honey mixes into the milk.
When there are small bubbles around the edges add the chamomile and lavender if using.
Turn off the heat.
Cover and allow to set at room temperature 12 to 16 hours.
Strain before using.
Warm the tea to 80° when ready to use.

Ending desired dough temperature: 80°.
Combine strained Tea, all the BIGA and the water (I added the milk and honey here).
Mix until the biga is broken up.
Add very soft butter, flour, salt and yeast.
Stir until the dough forms a shaggy mass.
Resist the urge to add more flour.

Cover and allow to rise for about 90 minutes.

Fold after 30 and 60 minutes; then leave untouched until divide.

Divide the dough into 2 pieces which will weight approximately 750 grams each. If you are making the larger (13×5-inch) pullman-size loaf, you will need approximately 1150 grams of dough. You will have about 350 grams left over for a smaller loaf.
Preshape as tubes. Cover and rest 15 minutes.

Grease two loaf pans, two 9×5 inch pullman pans or one 13×5 inch pullman pan and a smaller loaf pan.
Shape as pan loaves.
With the long side facing you, fold the bottom third of the dough up to the center and the top third over (like a business letter). Fold the dough in half lengthwise, and seal the edges with the heel of your hand.
Place in pans seam side down. Press dough into pans to evenly fill to all corners.

For loaf pans: Cover and proof until dough is about 1 to 1.5 inches above top of pan: about 60 – 90 minutes.
For pullman pans: Place the dough seam-down into the pan, and press it evenly into the corners. Put the lid on the pan and close all but an inch or so in order to monitor the loaf as it rises.
Allow the dough to rise until it’s just below the lip of the pan, 60 to 90 minutes. Depending on the temperature in your kitchen, it may take less than 90 minutes for this proof. It only took my loaf about 45 minutes.
Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 425°F.

Close the lid of the pan completely, and put the pan in the oven.
Bake the bread for 20 then remove the lid and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes. The loaf should be a deep golden brown on all sides. Adjust the baking time if you are making the extra small loaf.
Remove the loaf from the oven and, after 5 minutes, turn it out onto a rack to cool completely. Do not allow to cool in the pan as that will result in a soggy crust.

The rest of the Bread Baking Babes

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Iowa Blueberry "Corn" Pancakes #BreadBakers

It's time for our Bread Bakers challenge and this month's theme is corn!  Our host, Food Lust People Love, let us know the theme was open to yeast breads or quick breads, any pan or shape, and both sweet and savory options.  It did need to contain corn as a major element.  Either actual corn (fresh, frozen or freeze-dried; any color), or cornmeal or polenta would work. Or a combination!  My particular challenge is that my girls and I are corn sensitive, which kind of sucks.  My youngest especially loves corn, but too much and we pay the consequences.  So my recipe will offer a corn free alternative that gives almost indistinguishable results.  This was a recipe  I grew up with.  I remember having these all the time as a kid and I just love the mealy texture of these pancakes.  Depending on the coarseness of your grind, they can have a little crunch to them if you like.  Way back then we made them with corn meal, but nowadays I use millet meal.  It's a brilliant substitute for corn meal, making fantastic polenta and corn bread that anyone will think is the real thing.  I made corn muffins one Thanksgiving and my brother said he would not have known it was not corn if I hadn't said anything.  It just had a slightly more delicate flavor according to him.

The first time my kids tried these, they weren't sure about this new texture in a pancake, but they quickly decided they were very good!  Now the blueberries are optional, but both corn and millet go beautifully with blueberries.  The millet can be ground in a food processor or coffee grinder.  Millet is usually easy enough to find in the bulk section of many grocery stores, millet flour in the gluten free section, but millet meal, you pretty much have to make yourself.  I used to use a coffee grinder, now I use my Mockmill set fairly coarse.  I love these with real maple syrup, but I can also attest that ginger syrup is phenomenal on them as well. 

Iowa Blueberry "Corn" Pancakes
makes 20-24 4-inch pancakes

1½ cups all purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
Fresh ground millet meal
1 tsp soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup millet meal (ground to a polenta or grits consistency, original corn recipe calls for ½ cup corn meal and polenta or grits works well) 

2 eggs
2 cups buttermilk (I use homemade kefir, nice and thick for thicker cakes)
2 tbsp melted butter, bacon fat, or oil

1½ cups blueberries (optional)

Stir together the flour, sugar, soda, salt and millet or corn grits.

Beat together the buttermilk or kefir, with the egg and melted butter in a glass measure.  Pour over dry ingredients.  Whisk until just blended.  Ladle a scant ¼ cup batter onto preheated griddle on medium (~355ºF).  Quickly place a few blueberries on top of each pancake.  (A little kitchen helper is a great advantage here!)

Turn when bubbles appear and edges are brown.

Cook about 1 minute longer.  Serve with butter and real maple syrup, some extra berries, or honey.

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page.

We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.

Be sure to check out our corny collaboration!