So, over the past three weeks I got a bit obsessive watching the past seasons of The Great British Bake Off. After the current season ended on PBS, I picked up all the rest on YouTube… plus the snippets…and the irritating Comic Relief ones… and the Master Classes… and pinned and saved a whole heap of Mary & Paul’s recipes… (I’ll get around to making them …eventually.)
I’d like to think I learned a thing or two… actually, I’d like to think I’ve become a master baker just by watching TV, but that’ll happen when I can get ripped abs just by polishing the Bowflex in the basement. But, all this bake viewing has done some very good things – it’s removed a lot of the mysticism, fear and stigma I’ve had about making bread – it’s taught me not to be so anal about the processes – and most importantly, to relax… even good bakers make crappy bread from time to time.
The Multi Multi Multi
I decided to play it kind of safe for my first uncharted bread. It’s based loosely on the milk bread recipe in the sense there’s a cooked roux. I’ve also added 5 different grains to the recipe (the 1st Multi) – Whole Grain Whole Wheat, Rye, Rolled Oats, Corn Flour (the fine-milled meal, not corn starch), and Standard Bread Flour. I’ve used a minimal amount of active dry yeast plus 1/2 cup of Whole Wheat Sourdough Starter (Multi #2), and finally, I’ve used 3 different techniques (Multi numero tres) to create the loaves.
Overkill? Yeah, a bit. But I’m the sort that brings a gun to a knife fight.
The Multi ~ Multi ~ Multi Bread
Stage 1 – 5 Days Before
- Use the STARTER Recipe using only Whole Wheat Flour
- 1/2 Cup Rolled Oats
- 1/2 Cup Buttermilk
- for the Roux
- 1/3 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
- 1 Cup Milk
- for the Bread
- 3 Cups Bread Flour
- 2 Tablespoons Corn Flour
- 3 Tablespoons Rye Flour
- All the Oat Mixture
- 1 Cup of the Starter
- 1 Teaspoon Dry Yeast
- 2 Teaspoons Salt
- 2 Tablespoons Lard
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 1 1/4 Cups +/- Water
- Extra Bread Flour for Working
Tools of the Trade:
- Stand Mixer with Hook
- Medium Sauce Pan
- Loaf Pan
- Bread Proofing Basket (or a wicker basket & tea towel)
- Parchment Paper
For Stage 1:
- Follow the link and make the starter.
- Mix the oats and buttermilk together in a small bowl. Cover with plastic and set in the fridge for 5 days.
For Stage 2:
- Make the Tangzhong Roux using the milk and whole wheat flour – set aside to cool a bit.
- Add 1/2 the water and all the rest of the ingredients to the mixing bowl
- Set the speed to 2 and the timer to 20 minutes
- Gradually add the remaining water until the dough pulls together completely and forms a lightly sticky dough (you may need a couple of tablespoons more or less – depending on the condition of your flour.)
- Leaving the dough in the mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap and cold proof in the fridge for 3 hours
- Divide the dough in half for 2 loaves
- Either using 2 loaf pans or rising baskets (I did one of each and the resulting loaves were identical in texture and rise)
- Dust each loaf liberally with flour and proof at room temperature until doubled in size (about 1.5 Hours)
- Make 3 to 4 slashes across the tops of the loaves
- Bake at 350 for 45 minutes – tent the loaves with tin foil the last 10 minutes if the tops darken too much
- Cool completely on racks before cutting or storing
Total prep time is actually 5 days in order to make the starter and soak the oats
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