Cinco de Baguette
Never one to be topical I'm cooking some French baguettes for Cinco de Mayo. Actually I didn't even really notice the day. Not drinking changes the holiday focus. We had Mexican food last night, some pork enchiladas I made that came out pretty good.
I've been obsessing over having my bread fall apart. Actually only one loaf really didn't work at all. The second one came out marginally OK. But as I have with baking since I first took it up, when I have a questionable outcome I fall back to the simplest bread, the one I learned on. When I first started out I'd use use a big wooden bowl and just plop the mound of flour in it, drop in the yeast and salt and make a little hole in the center. I'd dribble some water in the hole and start stirring with my finger adding a bit more as the first was incorporated and onward until it was a ball, then knead for five minutes or so. It is by far the best way to feel how gluten works. I'm old and lazy now and use my 60 year old Kitchenaid to do the work for me. But I've got the ball of dough. Flour and salt and yeast and water. Could not be any simpler. It is in for its first rise. It will take about 3 hours for that rise. Deflate, divide into baguettes and another couple of hours. Then bake and butter and gorge.