For some odd reason, I decided to return to baking on the first weekend of summer, which means here in the RV it was past 90. Actually, there’s a good reason for the delayed return in that I have been out of town or with guests for the past 4 weekends and since the current chapter includes yeast I don’t have the time or energy to start a project after work. And so, this weekend, the first in a while and the last in a while, I had some time to bake.
For pity’s sake, I’ll add this was my apartment’s temperature:
And yes, I do have air conditioning, but I have this Spartan side that wants to make it without the A/C — to see how long I can last into the triple digit summer and to keep the energy costs low (more for my budget than the environment, I’m afraid).
The bread was not very difficult, and really it required very little kneading but a lot of waiting and staring. I haven’t made a yeast bread in a very long time for various reasons (impatience, laziness…), so I wasn’t sure what to expect. But, I did my very best to follow the instructions, starting with measuring the water temperature and leveling off the flour.
As an FYI, the yeast packets I had required two to meet the ingredients rather than the 1.5 as suggested. The 1 to 2 hour rising period was on the shorter end of the spectrum, probably because my apartment was so warm. Everything seemed to go as planned except that I forgot to brush the triangular dough with olive oil just prior to the last rising. I can’t tell if it made a difference or not.
I’m not exactly sure what the point is for this bread. It looks like focaccia but doesn’t have the loveliness of the olive oil. Why not just go for basic french bread? Or perhaps the “basic french bread” requires more work? If I were to make this again, I’d likely season it up a bit more as Maglieri suggests with the olives or maybe some rosemary? I ended up with a lot of bread for just myself. While it did inspire me to make a big pot of black bean & pumpkin soup the next day, there was even too much for this carb lover to enjoy. I was at the beginning of researching panzanella for the leftovers but a co-workers said, “Oh! I love bread!” and I responded “Oh! I’d love to give you some.”