The grandchildren loved it :)

Fruit loaf par deuxPPF - perfect pane francesa

Just back from a trip up north to visit daughter and grandchildren (not forgetting son-in-law as well) so just had to make some bread to take along.

First cab off the rank was another batch of the Earl Grey Tea and Fruit loaf.  Once again I incorporated the fruit through the series of stretch and fold steps.  Although there were a few escapees at each stage, the odds and sods were just gathered up and poked into an appropriate crevice.  By the time it got to shaping stage pretty much all had been well incorporated.  I divided the dough into two and shaped two smaller loaves just for the convenience of storage and handling.  After final shaping, the loaves went into the fridge for retarding overnight for about ten hours.

The result was a good distribution of the fruit and I think the rise and oven spring was better than last time although still a fairly dense loaf.  Anyhow, the grandchildren loved it (the adults as well) and I had to get in quick to get the crumb shot.

My other loaf was the (by now) standard Pane Francesa.  This time though I used only stretch and fold and carried the whole process through with no retardation.  After shaping the loaf, I put it into a barely warm oven for the proving stage as the room temperature was a little lower than in recent times at about 17C.

Well, if I do say so myself, this is about as good as it gets - excellent oven spring, virtually no tearing of the crust and very nice crumb structure.  This was baked on my ovens 'bread baking' setting (220C) with steam from a towel filled dish on the bottom shelf for the first 15 minutes.  After removing the steam generator the oven temp was progressively reduced to 210C and 200C over the balance of the baking time.  The grandchildren lined up for more of this one as well though the ones with straight hair did still insist on removing/leaving the crusts /;-{)}

All in all a most satisfying exercise and well worth the nine hour drive to see the children.

3 comments

 9 hours! That's a marathon. Thanks so much for the post farinam :)

Distance is about 750k.  The time includes meal breaks etc.

Great looking bread farinam!  I'm looking forward to making a couple of dozen hot cross buns tomorrow - your fruit loaf has just put me in the frame of mind!

K.