Home Bread-Bakers v006.n084.13

Re: bread-bakers-digest V6 #82

rbparker@henning.cfa.org (Ron Parker)
Mon, 18 Mar 1996 18:02:00 -0600
Al Sroka asked:

>French Bread/Baguettes as baked in New Orleans have an airy pile seldom
>equalled.  Vacuoles one inch in diameter are common, giving the baguette
>unusual lightness.If any list member has information how this result is
>achieved I would appreciate the recipe, particularly details such as:
>1.-Is it made by straight dough or sponge&dough method?
> 2.-Flour specification and  any protein (Vital Gluten) addition
> 3.- Yeast, type as % of flour
>4.-Yeast food if used as  % of flour
>5.- Dough conditioner, type as % of flour
>6.-Any special notes on dough development and  baking process
>Since I  live in the San Francisco area  any comments on suppliers will be

I make a pretty good baguette (non commercial).  I live in Minnesota where
I have bread flour that is high gluten and all that stuff readily
available.  That is a problem, not a solution.  For a classic baguette the
flour should be low gluten.  I use about a third or even a half Softasilk
(tm) cake flour to balance off the high gluten of the hard spring wheat
flours here.  I also use the long rise, starting with 1 half tsp max of dry
yeast, and let the dough rise for anyway 3-6 hours.

I do the mixing and rising in a DAK BM, then form the loaves and put them
in a lightly greased and cornmealed blue steel baguette pan to rise a bit
more.  Slash and put in a 400 oven with lots of steam from a pan of water
plus spray with more every 5 minutes or so.

May your vacuoles be splendid.  Nothing fancy, plain dry yeast, no odd
additives - a basic flour, water, yeast, dash of salt mix.  The soft, cake
flour is the New Orleans secret (maybe).