Monday, February 23, 2009

One Step At A Time

French Baguettes (My Second Try)

My second time making French Baguettes based on this recipe. My twist this time was some black sesame seeds sprinkled on top.

The bread tasted much better than the last time, because I had enough time to leaven the dough. But I couldn't slash the top deep enough and I was not satisfied with the way the bread looked. OK. Deeper slashing next time. ;)
(I ate half of the loaf today. The rest was sliced, wrapped and put in the freezer.)



K and S said...

looks delicious!

Anonymous said...

mmm that looks really good :)

Anonymous said...

Nice one, Obachan..


obachan said...

K & S
Yeah, I'm getting better.

Liliai Anoel
Thank you. :)


Implosion said...

I can almost hear the crust breaking and the yeasty smell of bread. The photos really do justice to the bread.

obachan said...

Thanks, implosion.
Tell you the truth, this photo was the only one that turned out OK. I really need to learn how to take care of the "white-out" problem when I take food photos near the window in the afternoon...

Anonymous said...

I swear, I must channel you sometimes! I was craving a baguette last weekend, but only just found your entry now! I've still got a hankering, so I'm going to try this recipe today, but without the bread machine. There's an Italian loaf recipe I make from time to time that really turns out well, but is a bit too dense for what I want.

...My next issue to tackle is why on Earth I can't get simple chocolate chip cookies to bake here in Japan, using a time tested, famous recipe! >_< Is butter different in Japan, or something? They always end up melted flat instead of rising nicely, and I always follow the recipe perfectly!...Not sure what could be wrong there. >_<

Inspiring entry as always, Obachan! Keep up the great posts! ^_^

Anonymous said...

Ok - not to be a geek, but I just finished trying the recipe you linked to!...It came out nice and toasty on the top, though the crust was soft and the inside even softer, and a bit more dense than what I'd expect in a baguette, and no holes. It actually feels more like a plain white bread (which isn't too bad! It tastes great!). I put sesame seeds on top.

I'm kind of wondering if it didn't rise properly because it was just too cool in the kitchen. We don't have the best heating in this place, so the kitchen was unheated all except for our little oven we had on to try to make it warm enough to rise.

I thought it was nice for a basic white bread, the way mine turned out, but what I wouldn't give for a crusty loaf of sourdough! ^_^ Thanks for trying this recipe out for us!

obachan said...

Dateline Osaka
I really admire your enthusiasm.

About the cookies: When I use American recipes, my cookies usually don't turn out exactly the way they're supposed to be. I guess everything is slightly different -- flour, butter, sugar, baking powder and even the oven. You live in Osaka, right? (I guess I know what part of Osaka you're located. I've been there twice before.) And what you use for baking is the oven-cum-microwave popular here in Japan, right? Anyway, all these things can contribute to the difference in the result, I guess, and it's hard to tell exactly which one.

About the bread... Some photos posted there on the allrecipes site for that recipe don't show many holes, either, so maybe what you got is the way it is supposed to be?

Perhaps the french bread recipes popular here in Japan now is closer to your kind of french bread?? Looks like something like this or this is "the ideal french baguetts" here now -- you know, with very big holes and widely opened cuts. I'm going to try one of these recipes sometime soon.

BTW, my kitchen is not air conditioned and freezing cold in winter, so I use my oven to leaven the dough.

obachan said...

Additional Info.

To make french bread with big air holes, they say that using "malt powder" or "malt syrup" helps. I think you can find them easily in Osaka, and if not, you can buy them online. (But some say that using sugar can be just as good.)

To make really crusty french bread :
Here most bakers seem to preheat oven to 240℃ or 250℃, with the baking sheet inside, and bake at that temperature briefly first, then turn it down to bake at 200℃ or 220℃ till the bread is done. They say it's important to preheat the baking sheet, too.

Hope this helps.