Roasted Garlic Levain

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Dough Yield: About

    23

    loaves at 1.5 lb each

Appears in

Bread

By Jeffrey Hamelman

Published 2004

  • About

Roasting the Garlic Softens the Flavor and provides a mellow smoothness that pervades this loaf. Pre-fermenting 20 percent of the flour adds another flavor dimension, one that complements rather than competes with the garlic. To prepare the garlic, slice ½ inch off the top of the bulbs, place in a baking pan, sprinkle a bit of olive oil over the exposed cloves to keep them moist, cover with aluminum foil, and roast in the oven (at 350° to 400°F) until the cloves are very soft, about 40 minutes. Once cooled and removed from their skins, a quick mashing is all that is necessary. In the mixer they will merge with the dough. If a bit of a clove stays intact even after the rigors of the mix, it will not in any way impair the eating quality. The bread is a special treat when brushed with olive oil and grilled, or simply toasted and buttered. Rolled thin, brushed with olive oil, sprinkled lightly with coarse salt, and baked hot and quick, it makes an exceptional fougasse.

Pre-Fermented Flour: 20%

Ingredients

Overall Formula

U.S. Metric Home Baker’s %
Bread Flour 18 lb 9 kg 1 lb, 12.8 oz 90 %
Whole-Wheat Flour 2 lb 1 kg 3.2 oz 10 %
Water 13 lb 6.5 kg 1 lb, 4.8 oz 65 %
Olive Oil 1 lb .5 kg 1.6 oz 5 %
Salt .4 lb .2 kg .6 oz 2 %
Yeast .2 lb, fresh .1 kg, fresh .1 oz, instant dry 1 %
Garlic, Roasted .7 lb .35 kg 1.1 oz 3.5 %
Total Yield 35.3 lb 17.65 kg 3 lb, 8.2 oz 176.5 %

Stiff-Levain Build

Bread Flour 4 lb 2 kg 6.4 oz ( cups) 100 %
Water 2.4 lb 1.2 kg 3.8 oz (½ cup) 60 %
Mature Culture (Stiff) .8 lb .4 kg 1.3 oz (2 T + 1 tsp) 20 %
Total 7.2 lb 3.6 kg 11.5 oz

Final Dough

Bread Flour 14 lb 7 kg 1 lb, 6.4 oz (5⅛ cups)
Whole-Wheat Flour 2 lb 1 kg 3.2 oz (¾ cup)
Water 10.6 lb 5.3 kg 1 lb, 1 oz (2⅛ cups)
Olive Oil 1 lb .5 kg 1.6 oz (¼ cup)
Salt .4 lb .2 kg .6 oz (1 T)
Yeast .2 lb, fresh .1 kg, fresh .1 oz, instant dry (1 tsp)
Levain 6.4 lb 3.2 kg 10.2 oz (all less 2 T + 1 tsp)
Garlic, Roasted (See HeadNote) .7 lb .35 kg 1.1 oz (½ bulb)
Total 35.3 lb 17.65 kg 3 lb, 8.2 oz

Method

  1. Stiff Levain: Make the final build approximately 12 hours before the final mix and let stand in a covered container at about 70°F. During hot weather, or if the levain will ripen for longer than 12 hours, the flour in the levain build can be salted at 1.8 percent to slow its activity.
  2. Mixing: Add all the ingredients to the mixing bowl, including the garlic. In a spiral mixer, mix on first speed for 3 minutes, adjusting the hydration as necessary to achieve a dough of medium consistency. Mix on second speed for approximately 3 minutes more, to a moderate gluten development. Desired dough temperature: 76°F.
  3. Bulk Fermentation: 1 to 2 hours.
  4. Folding: If the bulk fermentation lasts 2 hours, fold after 1 hour. No folds are needed if the dough ferments only 1 hour.
  5. Dividing and Shaping: Divide the dough into 1.5-pound pieces; shape round or oblong. Tasty rolls can be made as well.
  6. Final Fermentation: 1 to 1½ hours at 76°F.
  7. Baking: With normal steam, 460°F for 40 to 45 minutes.