Once you’ve baked for a bit and know what dough should look like at the various phases then it’s fairly easy to begin fudging here and there with ingredients, proofing times, and oven temperatures.
Today, I will be away from the house for more than a first rise. I’ve been away from the house almost all week, which is why I haven’t been blogging or baking, because I’m spending this week in first grade.
After the first day of school back in first grade I came straight home, flung off my boots, and took a two-hour nap. OH MY!
But we have no bread in the house and children are begging.
So, I’m mixing up some dough for rosemary rolls and here’s what I’ll do.
Reduce the amount of yeast in my mix, add some sourdough starter, use cold water (I always use cold, filtered water) and make sure the dough isn’t sitting in a sunny place. Mix it all up and let it rise, rise, rise.
When I come home, after about five hours of rising, the dough will have spent much of its energy. So… I’ll get the pots into the oven, heat it all up, and when the oven is close-ish to its 450 degrees I’ll shape the rolls and let them sit for about 10-15 minutes–maybe less–I’ll keep those eyes of mine wide open and decide then. If I let them have a long second rise then I’ll end up with flatbread. Not that I have anything against flatbread, but that’s not today’s mission!
I’ve done this before, and it works. A long first rise means a very short second one. A short first rise means a longer first one–or maybe even two additional rises. We shouldn’t be slaves to our recipes and it’s pretty fun experimenting with yeasties to see just how they can be manipulated and stretched so that we’re not anxious and fretting about being in the kitchen when we really should be sitting in a desk learning first grade goodness!
Two and a half more days to go and then I’m back to being a grown up. Cheer me on, would you?!