Home Bread-Bakers v104.n028.2

Re: Lots of diastatic malt powder

Sun, 13 Jun 2004 09:16:14 EDT
 a message dated 6/13/04 2:16:59 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
bread-bakers-sender@lists.bread-bakers.com writes:

 > From: "Schmitt, Barbara E." <BSchmitt@goulstonstorrs.com>
 > Subject: When is a mistake not a mistake?
 > Date: Tue, 8 Jun 2004 11:01:11 -0400
 > This weekend, I decided to make the basic (not sourdough) pumpernickel
 > raisin bread recipe from Rose Levy Berenbaum's Bread Bible.  I made the
 > sponge, and sprinkled the flour mixture over it as directed.  As I was
 > putting away the ingredients, I realized that I had used 2T of diastatic
 > malt powder instead of 2T of gluten.
 > The "original recipe" bread was very good -- nice flavor, beautiful color,
 > great chewy texture.  But the "mistake" was even better -- in short, it was
 > fantastic.  It was sweeter than the original recipe, and the flavor is out
 > of this world.  It is even light enough in texture that I think I will try
 > adding a bit of first clear flour in place of some of the white flour next
 > time.

barbara, i am torn between regretting that i recently threw out all my 
diastatic malt and being skeptical that 2 tablespoons (yikes!) would not 
make the dough gummy as even far less did to the bagels. are you sure it 
was diastatic and not non-diastatic?

i fully agree with you that experimentation and "doing it your own way" is 
the joy of bread baking. i've been continuing my own experimentations and 
have found all sorts of things such as: 100% buttermilk in my potato bread 
vs. part water is not a good flavor or texture but that old sour dough 
starter added to bread dough is so wonderful i rarely make bread with it.

When I feed my starter, if I know i'm going to bake a hearth bread within 
the next 3 days, instead of throwing out the excess, without refreshing or 
feeding it I simply refrigerate up to 1/3 cup starter (about 2.75 ounces / 
75 grams) per loaf. (you can freeze it too for several months.) remove the 
starter to room temperature well before using it as cold starter doesn't 
integrate as easily into the dough.

Just before adding the salt to the dough, I tear the starter into about 8 
pieces and knead it into the dough. The starter dough adds extra depth of 
flavor and moisture, and also speeds the fermentation (rising) slightly 
even in a dough using the usual amount of instant yeast. (You should also 
add an extra 1/8 teaspoon plus 1/16th teaspoon of salt to balance this 
extra amount of dough--less if using less starter dough.) The starter dough 
serves as a "preferment" making it possible to use the quicker "direct" 
method of mixing the dough. Simply combine the flour and yeast from the 
sponge or biga in the recipe with the flour and yeast for the dough.

my best tip for those of you with a day job is that bread is even more 
delicious when you refrigerate the dough after the first rise and then bake 
it the next day or evening. let it sit at room temperature for one hour 
before shaping and final rise.

p.s. for the list: my new pbs series "baking magic with rose" will begin
airing around the country in july. check your local pbs affiliate!