007 - Basic White #5

Basic White Bread
January 21, 2011

Fifth white loaf. Used 500:365:5:10 ratio - Flour:Water:Yeast:Salt. Mixed together with hands and kneaded for about 10 minutes. Dough remained quite sticky even after kneading. Left to ferment for two and a half hours, and knocked back to fold into a stubby cylinder. Dough was still slightly sticky and hard to manage at this point, ended up being much longer than usual. Left to prove on the counter with a plastic bag covering it - expanded about twice the size in 30 minutes, baked after spraying with water and steaming over for another 25 minutes.

May have been undercooked <?> Crust was hard to the touch when taking it out, but after cooling the crust went soft. Bottom of bread was slightly less-hard but crusty to touch and sound. Bottom of loaf cracked open while the slashes didn't quite open up very well - wondering if I didn't fold tightly enough. Inside texture was better than the last - consistently sized medium bubbles and it was light and airy. Crust was quite thin, which convinces me that I should have left it a bit longer. Though the bread was quite well cooked - crust was pretty brown as the photo reveals. Confused about my crusts.