Searching for That Perfect Loaf

For over 35 years I have experimented with baking techniques in search of the perfect loaf of bread. The journey began with proofing yeast, mixing, rising, shaping and more rising. Starting in the morning, the bread would be ready for baking by 2 or 3pm.Then along came a book where the author added vitamin C to all the recipes which never seemed to make much difference to the finished product.

My next adventure was with sourdough, making a starter (a 3 day procedure) using it and replenishing it. This made really good bread with no added yeast (Tassajara Bread Book) and awesome sourdough pancakes as well.

Always on the look-out for ways to improve and make things easier, I stumbled upon a book entitled “Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day.”

The procedure was definitely easy-peasy.
Ingredients are mixed and after a 2-hour rise, placed in the fridge.
Then on baking day a hunk of dough gets cut-off, shaped, brought to room temperature (90 minutes) and baked.
Using only spelt flour, I must admit to having doubts about the outcome but the end-product was fabulous. Baked at a high temperature of 450 degrees C for 30 minutes produced an Artisan type loaf, very crispy on the outside yet soft and moist on the inside.
Hats-off to the authors(Jeff Herzberg & Zoe Francois) for coming up with an easy way to make such delicious bread. I look forward to trying some of the other recipes in their book.

It passed the taste test!

Photos courtesy of Ulla Jacobs.