Tartine Bread

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San Francisco’s Tartine Bakery’s famous breads come out of the oven six days a week at 5pm.  It is normally all gone by 6pm.

In Tartine Bread, Chad Robertson teaches you how to make this wonderful bread at home. Tartine’s bread differs from the standard San Francisco sourdough by using a young levain (wild starter).  By using the starter when it is still young in the cycle, it doesn’t have as much of the distinct sour taste of the traditional San Francisco sourdough breads.In making this bread, I created a wild starter that I fed everyday for a little over a week.  This was to get the starter in a consistent life cycle so when it came time for baking, you’d be able to use the levain at the right part of its life cycle.

The other great thing in this book is that Chad found an ingenious solution to the problem most home bakers face when baking hearth style breads.  Most home ovens are not sealed to the extent commercial baking ovens are.  To create a sealed environment, he uses a cast iron combo cooker (Like this one from Lodge).  This creates a small sealed environment, where the moisture in the dough creates the steam necessary for a good oven spring.  The resulting bread has wonderful crumb with large gas pockets.  Unfortunately the bread was so tasty, I forgot to take a picture of what it looked like on the inside (or maybe not so unfortunately since it was so good).

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