If I’m at a gathering with many people I don’t know and the news that I’m a baker spreads, someone is sure to tell me that they bake bread at home. I love these stories; please don’t stop sharing them! But I’m writing today specifically about the questions people ask me. The questions are usually all over the place, and I don’t always have all the answers. It’s often hard to help when you don’t know all the specifics.
BUT! I’m here today to give all you dedicated (or occasional!) home bakers some tips.
Temperature, temperature, temperature! Learn what water temp you need to use to achieve the ideal dough temp. Learn to adjust to the weather (room temperature will affect your dough). This will help your bread be more consistent.
Play with the amount of water in your dough. This is the variable that can change the crumb and texture of your bread.
If you’re using a starter, feed it regularly. Here at the bakery, we feed ours every 12 hours. Every 24 hours will work too (this is probably more realistic). Keeping your starter in the fridge for a few weeks is okay too. Just take the starter out of the fridge a couple days before you want to bake and feed it a couple times before baking.
Come take a shaping class at Baker’s Field to perfect the look of your loaf! This may seem like shameless advertising, but most home bakers struggle to teach themselves how to shape bread. We can help!
Questions? Let me know! I’ll do my best to help. - Baker Hannah