What a neat Baking Partners challenge. I love baking bread and this one is from Valencia. Like 18th century Valencia or something along those lines. Pretty traditional to have it in the shape of a crescent moon. It looks like an anime kitty to me though. Can’t take me anywhere.
This bread has a soft crumb, a firm crust from steaming and a classic bakery loaf taste. Aka, pretty darn tasty. While the bread is soft the dough should not be too soft, it’s a bit rough to work with. Don’t worry, it will all turn out. If it is too difficult don’t worry about it and add a bit of water.
For the ferment
- 100 ml water
- 50 g 1/3 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tsp active dry yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 450 g 3 cups strong bread flour
- 200 ml tepid water
- 10 g 1 3/4 tsp fine sea salt
- all the ferment
- a little flour for dusting the work surface and the bread.
- Stir the yeast into the water in your mixing bowl, then add the flour and sugar and mix well. Cover with plastic film.
- Put into the fridge overnight or up to 48 hours.
- Keeping the ferment in its bowl, add the rest of the ingredients except the salt, and mix together with your scraper.
- When everything starts to come together into dough, turn it out onto your work surface (don’t flour it first).
- Start to work the dough for about 10 minutes, then add the salt and continue kneading until smooth and elastic. Let the dough raise in a warm place until doubled in size.
- Divide dough into 150 g pieces and then form the dough into small balls.
- Flatten with the palm of the hand, putting more pressure on the edges of the dough and make a slit at the top of the round (12 o'clock). Pull apart gently to form some ears or a cresent shape.
- Place them on a baking tray and cover them again with a kitchen cloth dusted with flour. Leave to rest until them double in size, for about 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 400º F
- Make two cuts on the bottom before baking. Sprinkle a little fine flour using a sieve or strainer.
- Bake with steam, 30 minutes, cool on a wire rack.
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