Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bread Baker's Apprentice #1-Anadama Bread


I recently got bitten by the bread baking bug, or BBB, and I can't stop. For it I actually have to thank for the zillionth time my mentor, pastry chef extraordinaire, DMG. Chef D. has worked for Nancy Silverton, of all people, and I have learned tons from him. Before working with DMG my attempts at bread were really pitiful, and I almost gave up, thinking that breads made at home will never come close to what professional bakers are able to create. Since working alongside chef D. I acquired not only knowledge, but three great bread baking books and have tried successfully many recipes at home.

My last crazy idea was to join the newly formed BBA group, started by Nicole, the creator of Pinch my salt (love the name BTW). We will bake our way through the book The Bread Baker's Apprentice, one recipe per week. It is a totally insane commitment, but I love Peter Reinhart, I love The Bread Baker's Apprentice, and without this challenge I wouldn't possibly bake all the recipes in it.

The first bread we baked was the Anadama bread. In Peter's words this bread takes its name from the words that a hungry husband muttered when he realized that his wife had not only left him but departed leaving behind only a pot of cornmeal mush and some molasses. He muttered the words "Anna, damn 'her", mixed the mush and the molasses with some flour and yeast and this great bread was born.


I didn't know what to expect, but loved this recipe. It behaved exactly how described, it was easy to make, the dough was super soft and pleasant to work with, and the bread was really tasty. The molasses gives the bread not only a beautiful color and flavor, but it makes for an incredible soft crumb. It is not a bread for butter and jam, but rather for butter and prosciutto, or mayo and tomatoes. Really tasty!

Now onto the next challenge.....

5 comments:

natalia said...

Ti è venuto bellissimo ! Belle anche le foto !

Arundathi said...

We liked the taste too - though mine didn't look half as good as your perfect bread. Love the crust!

susies1955 said...

Beautiful loaf.
It is great baking with you in the BBA Challenge. :)
Susie

Sweet Charity said...

Gorgeous!! I am baking mine this weekend, and hope it turns out as well as yours!

Lien said...

Ah you joined the BBAC! How brave of you. I almost did, but the 1-a-week thing was just too much for me. You're bread looks fantastic!
You have had the coolest teachers!!!

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