Bouabsa Batards – Against the tide

Bouabsa Batards – Against the tide

Submitted by alfanso on November 5, 2015 – 4:55am.

Reversing direction from my recent thang to make baguettes from boule/batard formulae.  I searched TFL and found minor but inconclusive evidence that anyone had published their results for creating batards from the Bouabsa baguette format.  So it was high time that some silly goose decided to do it.  I waddled into the tide with both webbed feet.

As I’d mentioned earlier when I made a batch of Bouabsa baguettes for the first time in a long time, this is the baguette that “put me on the board”, so to speak.  The simplest of them all, by the clock the quickest way to bulk fermentation fame and fortune, and the longest retard period.  Since I got on the levain bandwagon quite a ways back now, I hardly ever bake anything that is purely a commercial yeast product.  Neither political statement nor religious conviction nor an us vs. them confrontation.  It just happens that basically everything else I decide on baking contains either no or scant amounts of IDY.   Fine by me either way.

A roll in the sesame seeds for 2 of the boys because I love the look as well as the taste of them.  These should have been handled with a bit more kid gloves than I did, and I think that perhaps the lovely open crumb structure on these suffered due to that.

I should have paid attention to my own heed from that recent bake.  With no out-of-the-retarder warm up and proof, as I bake directly from the refrigerator, I neglected to give the bulk dough an additional 30 minutes of bench rest after the 3rd letter fold.  And of course, my old war cry of “I should have let them take on a half shade more color”, was forgotten.

Oh well, they are still nice.  Can’t hit a home run every time.

I was a bit too aggressive on shaping the center and right batards, particularly the “nude” batard.  Notice the tear in the skin on the lower left portion of this one.  That means trouble ahead.  Indeed!

And as evidenced by the final product, the tear in the skin did in fact affect the bloom and shape of the center batard.  The bloom and shape of the left batard was also affected by aggressive shaping, although less so.  The right batard is just dandy.  

The two seeded bookends.

The crumb suffered from the aggressive shaping.  This is the innards of the nudie.  The other two had destinations beyond my own kitchen and gullet.