Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Our Daily Bread
I don't bake my own bread as often as I should. To be honest, I hadn't found that one recipe that would satisfy my taste for artisan-style bread, while at the same time, be easy enough to make on a regular basis. That has now changed with Peter Reinhart's Pain a l' Ancienne recipe, which I tried for the first time this past weekend.
Initially, I was quite skeptical as the recipe is relatively straight forward (I'm used to 12 step recipes that call for a lot of feeding, kneading, resting, punching and repeating). For this bread, you knead the dough for 5 minutes, refrigerate it straight away, let it rise for 2-3 hours the next day and then bake.
The end result is absolutely phenomenal. I would describe it as a cross between a traditional french baguette and a ciabatta. This bread is nutty, crispy, chewy and bubbly - all of the things love in a rustic loaf of bread. It also freezes really well.
If you're interested in making this bread, you can find the recipe in Peter Reinhart's The Bread Baker's Apprentice. (It's online if you search hard enough.)