A traditional baguette commonly weighs
To make baguettes, follow the instructions for mixing the white semi-sourdough, until you can create a window. Use a blunt knife or divider to divide the dough into seven even-sized portions, each weighing
Working with one ball of dough at a time, flatten it out with the palm of your hand. Fold the flattened piece of dough into itself in thirds, pressing down evenly. Turn the dough so that the folded seam is facing you and start crimping the dough on the side furthest away from you. To crimp the dough, use your fingertips to pull the dough over towards you, pushing it down and inwards in one movement (see pictures). Repeat this process another three times to create more tension. Use the ball of your hand to push down along the seam and repeat the crimping until you have almost made a cylinder. Seal the seam using the ball of your hand to press along the dough seam — you will hear popping sounds when the seam is totally closed. When you turn the cylinder over, the seam should be in a straight line. Now it is time to roll out to a baguette.
Start with the palms of your hands together, lightly resting on the middle of the cylinder of dough. Push down and roll out with your hands to elongate the cylinder — make sure there are no divots, which may happen if one hand, usually your dominant hand, is pressing too firmly into the dough. Turn the baguette so it is seam side down. Repeat the process of rolling and checking the baguette until it is about
To make the pointy ends, press the ends firmly with your hands, squeezing the dough into thin points. Repeat with the remaining dough to make seven baguettes in total.
To check that the baguettes are ready to cook, press one gently with your finger — it should bounce back. Gently roll each baguette out of the tea towel so the seam side is facing down. Transfer the baguette onto a baking tray lined with baking paper, seam side down.
To slash a baguette you need a very sharp knife. Pinch the baguette gently with your hand, then with your knife in the other hand, make five or six
Place the baguettes in the oven and spray the oven with water.
To make semi-sourdough rolls you can make baguettes, let them rest and then slice each baguette on an angle into five pieces, creating diamond-shaped rolls.
If you want a round roll, you need to divide the dough into
If you want tiny little baguettes you can pre-shape the dough into balls of your desired weight and let them rest for 20 minutes. Follow the directions on how to shape a baguette. Place them directly onto trays lined with baking paper.
© 2009 All rights reserved. Published by Murdoch Books.