The French Are Coming
This time it is my parents arriving next Tuesday and staying for a month. We see them once or twice a year and it is always great to have them stay that long. I am not going to lie, the first couple of years were not picture perfect, we all had to find our marks but I believe we have the machine well oiled now and things go relatively smoothly. Well, except for one thing: I have no time for myself, there is always some translating to do, some store to hunt down for cousin so and so looking for a pair of pink converse, child size if you have them, thank you very much, need a pair of jeans that and that, Nintendo game blablabla, you get the picture.
Baking becomes a midnight affair when everybody has retired to their quarter and I can stir and knead in peace. There is however one ritual I have to get prepared for: having bread at every meal, and not sandwich white, non monsieur! As much as I love my grocery store people, I really hate to shell out 3 bucks for a loaf of artisan bread I can make at home. Hence, in preparation of any family member visiting from the continent I start a week ahead of their arrival by stocking my freezer with baguettes, epis, sourdough loaves, brioches, croissants and such.
Today was the first installment with 2 large brioches, 6 mini ones and 6 sourdough baguettes.
For the baguettes I always use the same recipe, the sourdough starter is still alive and well, I pretty much leave it alone in the fridge until I need it (sometimes it can be a couple of months) and then I feed it everyday I use it for bread.
I’ll post the recipe again:
Baguette Monge: ingredients for 3 baguettes
– 500 g. bread flour
– 100 g. starter
– 5 g. yeast
– 10 g. salt
– 27 cl. warm water
Put the yeast into a bowl, add 10 cl water and let bloom for 20 minutes. in another bowl, mix the flour and salt. Form a well with a spoon and add the yeast/water combo, add the rest of the water and the starter. Mix well with the dough hook and either knead by hand or still with the mixer for a few minutes (up to 12). Let rest in a covered bowl for 20 minutes. Divide the dough in 3 parts and shape into rounds, let rise another 40 minutes. Form into baguettes and put on a baking sheet, let rise 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat oven to 425. Sift some flour over the baguettes and cut slits on top with razor blade. Bake for 20 25 minutes.
This bread comes from the Kayser Bakery, located on Monge street in Paris.
Starter: from Eric Kayser, 100% Pain.
Day 1: mix 50g. warm water and 50g bread flour. Let stand at room temp.
day 2: add 100g warm water and 100g flour, add 20g sugar. Let stand at room temp.
Day 3 : add 200g water and 200g flour. Let stand 12 hours.
Remove quantities as needed for recipes, if not used within 8 days, refrigerate and add more water/flour if the starter seems to lose life.