Pain rustque (Country Bread) adapted from Poilâne

A member of a Facebook group showed her excellent scored bread and shared that she took reference of Apollonia Poilâne, who is the owner of a world-famous Paris bakery. She also runs online master course of bread baking. I don’t know how much does it charge. But I would like to know who she is and how attractive her bread is first. Her father is Lionel Poilâne. The grandfather Pierre started his bakery in 1932. The family bakery insists to use stone-grind flour, natural fermentation and wood fire oven for decades. It wins the heart of Parisians and bread lovers all over the world. After readings a few chapters of the book Le Pain par Poilâne, I decided to try the recipe of Pain rustque 鄉村麵包.

The recipe instructed to take 1/3 portion of the ingredients to start a pre-dough. I thought also 1/3 of the yeast. But actually, it should be the whole portion of yeast. The first fermentation should be 14 hours at temperature between 20°C and 23°C.  After 9 hours overnight fermentation, the dough has exploded significantly. So, I stopped the fermentation and went on to mix the rest of flour, water, salt and yeast.  The dough was kneaded by my kitchen machine. The first fermentation at room temperature took one hour. As I needed to go out, it was put to the fridge after 45 minutes of room temperature fermentation. The low temperature fermentation lasted for around 4.5 hours, then 2 hours of room temperature fermentation. The finished dough was baked at 220°C for 30 minutes. Some holes observed. And I like it. Next time, I will try follow the recipe exactly to see how it goes. But I can’t wait to share the experience.

I tried half portion of the recipe.  It says type 75 or 85 flour. I did not know what it is and opt to use T65 flour for the pre-dough and a mix of T65 and bread flour (170 and 180g) for the main dough.  

135g T65 bread flour
100g lukewarm water
0.4g yeast (dissolved in water)

Mix and knead the ingredients until smooth and a ball formed. Continue for some time and shape it for the 14-hour fermentation. But I went on further after 9-hour fermentation. When I lifted the dough, honey crumb texture observed.

Then I added the rest of the ingredients and kneaded for about 15 minutes.

350g flour (180g T65 and rest Japanese bread flour)
250g lukewarm water
12.5g salt
0.6g yeast (dissolved in water)

Mix the pre-dough with the above ingredients. Knead for 15 minutes and shape it to a round. Well, room temperature for 45 minutes. Then 4.5 hours further in the fridge. And lastly 2 hours at room temperature when having a 2-hour Zoom meeting at home.

I preheated the oven at 240°C. A tray filled with hot water was put underneath a wire rack (holding the bread dough). This is to create steam at the initial baking. After putting the dough into the oven, I lowered the temperature to 220°C. The baking lasted for 30 minutes. Let cool for 35 minutes. The moment of truth: crispy crust and some holes of the bread. I regarded it as successful and will try following the recipe next time.

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