Knowing yesterday that I didn't have any photos for today's post, I decided to take some of the bread I was baking. Interesting stuff, eh? ;)
Sourdough bread with sunflower seeds, shaped in baguette form. This photo is after its 2nd rising in the bowl
I've been putting my bread to rise in the oven, usually after a short warm up period, then shut off. I say "usually", but on Tuesday I was multi-tasking, making bread and vacuuming (I know, I am shocked about the vacuuming part, too!) and turned the oven on to take the chill out of it, set in the bread to rise, and totally forgot about it until I heard the "ding" of the oven hitting the desired temperature. Sigh.....yes, panic set in but it was too late to do anything about it except allow the loaf to bake. Surprisingly, it seemed to work out fine. It doubled its height and baked to a golden brown. It definitely had a heavier feeling to it though. I decided to just slice it thick, store it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator, and use it for garlic toast/bread. We had some of it last night and it was fine. I might make some croutons with it, too.
So, all that to say that I was careful yesterday to "slightly" warm the oven without the bread in it. I then set the baguette pan in the warm oven to let the bread rise its final time, bringing it out when I felt it had risen enough, and to pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees (and to take this photo, too).
The finished loaves.......they rose a bit more in the first few minutes of baking, too, so they are slightly bigger than when they went into the oven.
Having given both loaves to neighbors, I can only hope they were as tasty as they looked and smelled. I bake bread more often than I need to sometimes because I want to use up some of the sourdough starter that Claire and Sean gave me for my birthday last year. It has to be fed daily which causes it to grow in volume, leaving me 2 choices......use some for baking, or take some out and store it in the refrigerator. My preference is to use it fresh.....hopefully, my neighbors prefer that, too. ;)