Thursday, June 2, 2011

Crusty Buns

This weekend we went to Chiang Mai, a lovely old city in the North of Thailand. It’s a four hours drive, but it’s worth it. We go there every few months and enjoy all the things we don’t have in our small and quiet village. We buy a lot of bags of all purpose flour and all the other flours I use more and more. Flours like; rye, roasted malt, whole wheat bran and this time we also bought corn meal. There are many shops with nuts, dried fruit, chocolate we like visit to taste their products . 
But, we also go to eat ice cream, go to a big mall with airco (we normally don’t like it, but here we love it). Every weekend there are great artisan street markets where artistic Thai people sell their mostly own designs of many things. At the nearby Temples you can eat delicious Thai food. And of course we go to the big plant market. So, there is enough to do during these days.
At some of the big shops you can buy good bread. We bought a few of crusty buns; they have hard and chewy crust and soft crumb. When we ate these Peter said; ‘Connie when you can bake buns that taste like these, you're the greatest’. You can imagine what I did when we came back home. Yes, I went to look for a good recipe for these crusty buns. And, no surprise when I found in my own archive I had baked them before. Only I didn’t bake them as buns, but as a loaf; French country Bread. I found the recipe at the site of Arden, now known as Levine.
We both agreed, these are deliciously crunchy buns; hard on the outside and soft on the inside. Great buns with cheese, hamburger, or anything you like. This evening we eat the last 4 buns with a fresh vegetable soup and home made boursin (soft creamy cheese (made from home made yogurt) with garlic and other herbs). 
This is what I use for 12 buns:

240 gr lukewarm water
2 gr dry yeast
200 gr all purpose flour
20 gr wheatbran
20 gr ryeflour


    the poolish
    200 gr lukewarm water
    2 gr dry yeast
    500 gram all purpose flour
    14 gr salt

      This is what I did:

      The evening before you make the poolish. Mix flour, yeast and water. Cover up and leave on room temperature for 8 – 16 hours. 

      Mix the flour, yeast, poolish and water in the bowl of the mixer. Use the dough hook and knead for 5 minutes. Add the salt and mix another 5 minutes. The dough is smooth and comes off the bowl.
      Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled container. Cover and ferment at room temperature for 1 hour. Fold after 30 minutes and leave the dough to rise for another 30 minutes.

      Turn the dough into a well-floured counter. Form the dough into a ball and leave for 10 minutes to rest. Form into a balls and proof for 45 minutes or till the size increased 50%.
      In the meantime pre-head the oven at 230 ºC with the baking stone. You need to steam, prepare for this. I use an old cake form with lava stones and hot water. 

      Transfer the balls to the parchment. Place the balls into the oven and pour hot water on the stones. Close the oven door quickly.

      Bake with steam for 20 minutes and 20 without steam.
      Cool completely on a wire rack. 

      I send these buns to Yeastspotting where so many bakers from all over the world come and have a look at all the lovely breads baked last week. 


      1. These are perfect and delicious! Homemade bread is always the best....

        1. I can't make them with the recipe you have. I am in AMERICA and I need oz.
          rather than gr.