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Archive for the ‘Baking tips’ Category

Sometimes I do feel a bit jealous to the people working with pastry products, like cakes and such – there seems to be an endless amount of decoration possibilities and shapes to choose from. Well, finally I found something super cute for bread baking, too. A new bread pan!

Let’s call it an early birthday present, though it was surprisingly affordable. Actually the package contained three different shapes, so there’s something to show off later, too. And luckily they seem to work. First I was worried, ’cause the ends of the pan (it’s like a tube) are so loose, but now I think it’s good that there’s a way for the dough to expand properly.

Might be posting some more close-up pictures of the actual pan/pans later on, too. I’m really happy with them!

I also printed out a ticket to Finland today! In just one and a half weeks I ought to be there. Hope all the snow melts by then, since I’m already so used to having flowers everywhere..

And sourdough is building well, will be baking baguettes with it next week.

Marika~

 

Wikipedia: seeing definition: inasmuch as —often used with ”’as”’ or ”’that”’.

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I have a thing for making fancy cakes at the moment, and so here’s what I created for Valentine’s Day:

It’s a banana monster! And ’cause I’m a huge fan of foam and gelatine, I made banana mousse filling for this one. The foam tastes a lot like banana yoghurt, but no wonder since it’s made out of banana, quark and whipped cream. And so the taste is ok. Banana is not my favorite-favorite thing on Earth, so I think that once this cake is out of the fridge, I won’t need more bananas for a while.

Made a cookie bottom our of chocolate cookies and for the topping… Well, this cake just needed something red ’cause it was for Valentine’s Day, so I made some kind of glazing from cherry juice and raspberry jam.

It’s interesting to bake here in Germany. Especially when I’m creating my own recipes and then I know exactly what products I’d buy for it in Finland, but here… it’s a bit different. But I must say that all in all the baking selection is very good (though sometimes quite dominated by Dr. Oetker).

And then I made edge for the cake. That was fun, ’cause I tried this new tactic described in some German baking book (I’ve borrowed many from library in order to learn German baking vocabulary). It’s a bit like making a marble cake since one needs both white and chocolate dough. Then you pipe them on an oven tray one after the other. It would look quite pretty as a rolled cake too, a bit like a tiger. Anyway, difficult to explain the process without drawing, but here you can see part of the edge. It looks like that all around the cake, also quite pretty in my opinion (the edge, not the glazing).

Made some bread with bubbles, too. Can’t believe it was the first time during my stay here!

Oh yeah, and happy Valentine’s Day to you, too!

Marika~

 

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I remember when I was dying out to find the best way to bake my breads. I wanted a nice crust, and kept spraying water or having a bowl of water in the oven. I do remember evetually getting so good results that I already wanted to learn to bake bread without a crust again. Well, nowadays I believe the quality of the crust depends on many things – it’s a combination of the right kind of dough, oven temperature, moisture..

I got a baking stone as a present, and I do enjoy it – it does give your bread a nice extra crustiness, but to say – you can make quite a good crust with just the basic oven tray. The thing is with both that you need to put them to heat up at the same time with the oven. That way they won’t cool the oven down, like usually when placing the tray there same time with the bread.

Instead of having a stone, have a spatula. That is quite a handy tool, when placing your bread into the oven. Just cover it well with semolina, especially the part where you wish to place your bread. If you are unsure, whether you have enough semolina, put some more. It’s mean if your bread is stuck to the spatula. After placing the bread on top, swipe of the extra semolina. Then with a nice tuck place it on top of the tray (no need for baking paper).

Having no baking spatula, you can use baking paper. Then just quickly place the paper and the bread on top of the hot tray – either by taking the tray out of the oven for a moment or with the help of another tray. Have lovely results!

Marika~

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I don’t know whether I went and promised you people, that I’d make Sourdough bread this weekend. Well, even if I didn’t go promising that I had a very strong intension to bake no-commercial-yeast-bread – and actually I also did, though everything didn’t go as planned. Oh well, but this was the first time I made all-sourdough Sourdough bread after Italy – mistakes make master.

Bread baking is a lot about patience and well – I guess I ran out of it. I just rushed into baking without reading my recipe beforehand and ended up baking something I wasn’t supposed to make. Here is the story;

So, my recipe for Sourdough bread requires 56,3% hydration leaven – meaning that you have 56,3g water always to match 100g flour. Well, I went and used 100% hydration one (water equals the amount of flour). This caused my dough to be too wet for kneading or anything. As a result I ended up adding some flour to it and had to mix everything well together again and well.. Nothing went quite as planned, but I still got yummy bread out of my oven that tastes like sourdough bread, just the structure is not quite the same. It remained so sticky ’till the end that it got even stuck into my oven spatula, which is why it has so funny drop-like shape.

But so that you won’t repeat my mistakes, here is a chart of how you should feed your leaven to turn it from 100% hydration into 56,3% one. 

You should start this feeding process couple days before the baking-day, and let it rest at least 3 hours between each feeding.

And before starting remember to save some of your 100% hydration leaven in another can!

Marika~

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