Sunday, November 27, 2016

Tips and Tricks from School - Lean Dough (Preferment)

The different between lean dough and enriched dough is lean dough only contains flour, water, yeast and salt (sometimes may have very little fat).  If the recipe has more ingredients than these 4, it's considered as enriched dough.  Breads made with lean dough have a hard that crunches when you bite into it.  It's also has chewy crumbs.  Unlike enriched dough bread, it's softer and less chewy crumbs.

The lean dough bread that we made for Baguette and Epi in ACI used 66% of hydration and 33% of preferment.  

To derive the amount of the ingredients to mix with preferment dough, below is an example: 
                                                                                             Amount of Ingredients for bread dough
Bread flour (100%) -> 4000g                                                              3340g (4000g - 660g)     
Water          (66%)   -> 2640g                                                              1980g (2640g-660g)
Salt              (2%)    ->  80g                                                                     80g  
Yeast           (1%)    ->   40g /3 =13g                                                     13g
Preferment   (33%) ->   1320g (break into 660g flour & 660g water)

To make baguette and epi, it requires very high temperature, e.g 270*C with steam-injected oven.  As most of the home ovens cannot reach to that high temperature and don't have the steam injection, I was told that the result of home baked baguette will not be able to achieve very crusty effect.   I am very curious about this and I will certainly experience at home one day.  

For this bread, our chef did all the mixing for the dough as the preferment was huge.  We only did the shaping, proofing and baking.  Hence, I could only vaguely remember the steps with the help of some of the videos I took.

Baguette/ Epi/ Dinner Rolls Recipe  
For us to make small portion at home, below is the amount of the ingredients.
Preferment:  100g bread flour, 100g water and pinch of yeast
Bread dough:  569g bread flour, 273g water, 16g salt (can cut down), 3g yeast

  1. Prepare the preferment by mixing flour,  water and a pinch of yeast together in a bowl. Cover and leave it to ferment for 16 hours.
  2. Prepare the bread dough by combining flour, salt and yeast in the mixing bowl and mix it till combined on low speed.  
  3. Add in ice cold water gradually on low speed, then the preferment and mix till desired dough (become a ball) is achieved. Increase to medium speed till windowpane is achieved (about 10-12 mins).  
  4. Remove the dough from mixing bowl, round to ball and then cover it with plastic wrap in a bowl.   
  5. Leave it to bulk ferment for 2 hours but after 1 hour, remove the dough from the bowl,  slightly punch to degas the excess carbon dioxide from the dough (Degas cannot be too hard), fold 2 slides to the center and then another 2 more slides. Round and ferment for another hour.  
  6. Dust table top with flour, use a metal scraper and portion each dough to desired weight (baguette 260g, epi 260g and dinner roll 120g). Always cover the doughs with a baker's couche to prevent hard skin)
  7. Take a dough, stretch a bit,  pull the top into the center and pressed on.  Pull the bottom to the center, pressed on  and round to a cylindrical shape, seam side up and cover it with couche.  Continue this till completing all the doughs and allow all to rest for 15 mins (Bench rest).
  8. Take out the dough to final shape.  Stretch into rectangular, take half of the top and bring it into the center and press it down with finger tips.   Pull a bit more dough from the top, repeat the same for 1-2 more times.   Pull to the bottom half all the way to cover the done side, press it down with finger tips again.  Press the seam side to ensure no gap and then roll to desired shape.  Please see below figures for clearer illustration.
  10. Place each dough between couche fold to prevent the dough from proofing into each other.    Dust with flour and covered with couche.   
  11. Leave it to proof for another 1 hour 30 mins before baking (final proofing).
  12. Once bake, leave it to cool before slicing.


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