101 Cooking For Two - Everyday Recipes for Two: Stand Mixer Whole Wheat French Bread

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stand Mixer Whole Wheat French Bread

What good is a KitchenAid stand mixer if it doesn't do the work for you? Since awarding my Julia Child's Bread the #1 rating for 2010, I have though of repeating it but now I wanted minimal work with some whole wheat for a healthier outcome.

With minimal hand kneading (that you can probably skip if you're morally opposed to manual work) this is for the lazy out there. I used the Julia recipe as a guide. I sub in a cup of whole wheat flour and upped the water to make up for that.

I went through 3 rises but 2 would do. Timing: about 20 minutes prep, 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours rising (2 vs 3) and 25 minutes cooking. Make it 3 1/2 to 4 1/5 hours. But only 20 minutes direct attention plus baking.

Rating
Excellent taste and texture.

Notes: I ended up using my Williams-Sonoma Goldtouch™ Nonstick Perforated French Bread Pan. This dough is too "light" to stand up by itself. If you decrease the hydration some, you could bake it on a pizza stone. I used water on the surface and in the oven plus a high temperature for a crisper crust. You could bake this in a dutch oven or other pan also. Just be aware of the internal temperature.


Cold weather baking notes: I warmed the mixing bowl initially. I then heated an over to 170. As soon as it reached that temp. I turned off the oven and let the heat element cool off for about a minute  or two before using the oven as my "warm spot". 


What you will need.
Measure water and check temp with instant read thermometer. Add yeast and mix well. Spray dough hook with PAM and attach to mixer.
Mix flours and salt in stand mixer bowl. After yeast starts foaming (about 7 minutes), turn mixer on two and slowly add yeast mixture. After about 3 minutes you need to decide if the dough is just right, too dry or too wet. If just right, there will about 2-3 inches attached to the bottom of the pan. If too dry, the dough is not sticking to the pan. If too wet, then it will be attaching to the side of the pan. Add water or flour 1 tablespoon at a time to get to the right hydration. After the right hydration is achieved, continue to knead for another 6-7 minutes.
Move dough to a floured surface.

Hand knead the dough for about 30 seconds.

Spray inside of pan with PAM and place back in pan.

Cover with plastic wrap and place in warm spot.
Allow to rise until at least double in size (about 90 minutes).

Punch down dough and turn it on itself several times. Cover again and let rise until a least double in size again (about 1 hour). Preheat over to 450 degrees. Place a large pan with water on bottom rack.
Move dough to floured surface and divide into half and shape into loaves of about 10 inches long and 2 inch diameter. Spray pan with PAM and place loaves on pan. Cover with towel and place in warm spot until double in size.
Slash top of loaves with 5-6 release cuts to allow for over spring. Brush top with water and place in oven.
After 5-6 minutes, brush top of loaves with water again. Continue to bake until internal temp of about 200 degrees (about 23-25 minutes total).
Cool on rack for 20 minutes before cutting.





Stand Mixer Whole Wheat French Bread


With minimal hand kneading (that you can probably skip if you're morally opposed to manual work) this is for the lazy out there. I used the Julia recipe as a guide. I sub in a cup of whole wheat flour and upped the water to make up for that.
Ingredients
2 1/2 cups bread flour1 cup whole wheat flour1 1/2 cup plus 2 T water 105 to 110 degrees2 1/4 t instant yeast1/2 t salt
Instructions
1) Measure water and check temp with instant read thermometer. Add yeast and mix well. Spray dough hook with PAM and attach to mixer.2) Mix flours and salt in stand mixer bowl. After yeast starts foaming (about 7 minutes), turn mixer on two and slowly add yeast mixture.3) After about 3 minutes you need to decide if the dough is just right, too dry or too wet. If just right, there will about 2-3 inches attached to the bottom of the pan. If too dry, the dough is not sticking to the pan. If too wet, then it will be attaching to the side of the pan. Add water or flour 1 tablespoon at a time to get to the right hydration.4) After the right hydration is achieved, continue to knead for another 6-7 minutes.5) Move dough to a floured surface. Spray inside of pan with PAM. Hand knead the dough for about 30 seconds and place back in pan, cover with plastic wrap and place in warm spot.6) Allow to rise until at least double in size (about 90 minutes). Punch down dough and turn it on itself several times. Cover again and let rise until a least double in size again (about 1 hour). 7) Preheat over to 450 degrees. Place a large pan with water on bottom rack.8) Move dough to floured surface and divide into half and shape into loaves of about 10 inches long and 2 inch diameter. Spray pan with PAM and place loaves on pan. Cover with towel and place in warm spot until double in size.9) Slash top of loaves with 5-6 release cuts to allow for over spring. Brush top with water and place in oven.10) After 5-6 minutes, brush top of loaves with water again. Continue to bake until internal temp of about 200 degrees (about 23-25 minutes total).11) Cool on rack for 20 minutes before cutting.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 2 loafs

Updated

April 20, 2011

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5 Comments:

At January 26, 2011 at 11:29 AM , Blogger Jeffrey and Juli said...

Looks really great! Do you think it could be made without the special French bread pans? We just have the ordinary sort...or maybe the bread could be baked on a cookie sheet. Thoughts?

 
At January 26, 2011 at 12:21 PM , Blogger Dr Dan said...

I'm a "dough is dough" guy. Shape it or put it in any pan you want. Also the temp can be varied as long as you get it done so that is why I do internal temp.

If you put this in a large loaf pan and bake at say 375 it might take 45 minutes (just a guess) and the crust wouldn't be as crunchy. I don't feel this dough had enough strength to bake on a pizza stone(my initial plan) or on a cookie sheet.

 
At January 27, 2011 at 6:36 PM , Blogger Chris said...

That loaf sheet is the solution to the problem we hand when making french bread on a baking sheet. Thanks for the tip.

 
At June 24, 2011 at 8:03 PM , Blogger The Simple Gourmand said...

Just spent the day making this recipe and must have messed up somewhere along the way. I didn't have any problems with the dough, did the double rise just fine, but rather than rising the third time (after forming the loaves) it just expanded versus doubling in height. I decided to bake it anyway and I ended up with flat bread. Any suggestions? Like the other poster, I don't have the french loaf pan so I baked the bread on a cookie sheet.

 
At June 26, 2011 at 8:07 AM , Blogger Dr Dan said...

Sorry for the delay in getting back... A few days gone. As I said, I don't think the recipe as written can "hold up" by itself on a pizza stone or appearently on a cookie sheet. A few things to try. First I used AP flour. Bread flour expecially a good one has more protein ie gluten and would make a stronger dough. Second, decrease the water by 1-2 tablespoons would make a dry dough that would be more likely to hold up. But I think the real issue is the whole wheat flour that doesn't contibute to the structure much.

 

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