All grains contain peptides that mimic morphine or endogenous opioid substances. This is where I deal with my latest loaf craving. Get your bread-based exorphin fix here.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Lahey #11 - Carrot Loaf revisited

Lahey's Carrot Loaf Revisited

On a lark, I decided to revisit Lahey's Carrot Loaf.  I still had a bit of carrot juice, and as I was digging it out of the bottom shelf, I realized that I also had a cup of coffee in here, from the last pot that we made last week and didn't finish.  I decided to use some of it in this loaf.  So this is made with 1 cup of carrot juice and half a cup of cold coffee.

Another change I made: instead of using 400 g of bread flour, I used 300 g of bread flour plus one cup of my whole wheat sourdough discard.  I used the 1/4 tsp of yeast as the recipe called for in addition to this spent starter, as the recipe called for.  This changed the hydration of the whole thing in ways I couldn't predict though.

I didn't measure the currants or the walnuts -- I just tossed in some.  There won't be nearly as many as Lahey uses.  I only had a small amount of currants anyway.

The dough was pretty gooey, so I decided to incorporate some more flour; I used the multigrain bread flour, and ended up kneading in almost a full cup, I'd say.  Then the dough had a bit of firmness to it.  I wrapped it up in the couche that I lined with wheat germ, raw granulated sugar, and cumin.

After 2 hours, I had the Dutch oven preheated on a barbecue that I was able to keep at about 500 degrees F.  I stuck it in the pot and then made my worst mistake: since the loaf was somewhat larger than the pot, I kind of squished it down to make it fit.  I should have just left it.

But it seemed to bake up pretty nicely.  After 25 minutes cover on, I took the cover off for 20 minutes.  I fiddled with the burner on the right hand side (where the pot was sitting), turning it off for the most part, only lighting it when the temperature dropped to 450 degrees.  This seemed to work pretty good.

But it didn't entirely stop the loaf from burning a bit on the bottom.  It was difficult to remove from the Dutch oven, too.

Notes to Myself:
  • The trick to heating the Dutch oven in the barbecue, I think, is to use only one burner as much as possible.
  • Would it help to oil the bottom of the Dutch oven?  Try consulting a Dutch oven recipe book for more information on how to use this iron pot.
  • This amount of coffee (1/2 c) is lost in this recipe, you could have used still more I think.  The amounts of currants and walnuts (a handful of each) is however a much better amount to use, as in this bread they are just the right amount

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