October 12, 2016 - Radio Kitchen - Baking Bread
After spending a heat-stressed summer in Maryland I'm really in need of some restful, meditative therapy. And as luck would have it, Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Schola Cooking School has been practicing an ancient form of therapeutic baking.
Few things are as soothing as the aroma of baking bread filling your home, and Jerry enjoys it immensely. Here are some of his favorite recipes.
- 2 teaspoons dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 3 1/2 to 4 cups high gluten flour
- 1 tablespoon coarse salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Cornmeal, for dusting
- Fleur de Sel or other coarse salt
- In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a dough hook, proof the yeast by combining it with the warm water, olive oil and sugar.
- Allow the yeast to become active, approximately 5 to 10 minutes or until foam starts to develop. Combine the flour and salt.
- Turn mixer on low and slowly add the flour to the bowl.
- When the dough starts to come together, increase the speed to medium and allow the dough to knead for 10 minutes or until smooth and elastic.
- Add more flour as necessary to form the dough and prevent it from sticking to the sides of the bowl.
- Turn the dough out onto a work surface and fold over itself a few times.
- Form the dough into a round and place in an oiled bowl, turn to coat the entire ball with oil so it doesn't form a skin. Cover with plastic wrap or damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
- Sprinkle a copious amount of corn meal on a bread peel. Punch the bread dough down and turn in onto a floured work surface.
- Stretch or roll the dough out into a rectangular shape approximately ½ inch thick. Transfer to the peel and sift a light coating of flour over the top to help keep the dough moist.
- Allow the dough to rest for 15 minutes.
- Preheat an oven to 400°F fitted with a large pizza stone on the center rack.
- Dimple the bread with your fingertips and brush the surface with olive oil.
- Sprinkle a generous amount of Fleur de Sel on the bread and transfer from the peel to the pizza stone.
- Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Use the peel to remove the baked bread from the oven and cool on a wire rack.
Whole Grain Bread
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- ¾ Tablespoon dry yeast or 1 packet
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 1 Tablespoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon flax seed
- 2 cups Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
- 1 ¾ cups High-gluten Flour
- 1 cup Stone Cut Irish Oatmeal
- 2 Tablespoons toasted sunflower seeds
- 2 Tablespoons toasted Pine nuts
- Combine all of the ingredients except the sunflower seeds and pine nuts in the bowl of a stand mixer fit with the dough hook and mix starts to form.
- Knead the dough in the machine for an additional ten minutes adding additional flour to keep the dough from sticking to the sides of the bowl if needed.
- Lift the dough out and lightly grease the bowl with nonstick spray or olive oil. Cover and let rise for 2 hours at room temperature or until double in size.
- Punch down the dough and transfer to a floured work surface. Knead the sunflower seeds and pine nuts into the dough until evenly distributed.
- Form into a loaf-like shape and place in a greased loaf pan. Sift a light coating of flour over the top to help keep the dough moist. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 45-60 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Using a sharp knife, make a ¼ inch split, lengthwise through the risen bread and bake in the oven for approximately 25 minutes or until golden brown.
- Remove the bread from the oven and immediately remove from pan. Carefully transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Parker House Rolls
- 1 ½ cups milk
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for brushing
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 package active dry yeast
- ½ cup warm water
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 6 cups all-purpose flour
- Place milk in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer.
- Remove from the heat, stir in the butter and sugar and let cool.
- Dissolve yeast in warm water and let sit until foamy.
- Combine milk mixture, eggs, yeast, salt, and 1/2 of the flour in a mixer with the dough attachment and mix until smooth.
- Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, and stir until a smooth ball forms.
- Remove from the bowl and knead by hand on a floured surface for about 5 minutes.
- Place in greased bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 60 to 70 minutes. On a floured surface, punch down the dough and shape into desired shapes.
- Place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Cover again and let rise until doubled, about 30 to 40 minutes.
- Preheat the oven 350 degrees F.
- Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and brush with melted butter before serving.