Second try at baguettes

I am posting my second try at baking baguettes eventhough I didn’t post my first try here. This was a more successful bake but I have identified a few things I would change next time I try these again. I followed loosely Anis Bouabsa’s recipe for these baguettes and I should have followed his recipe more closely as the changes I made worked against me I think. I didn’t use 100% all purpose flour subbing in 50% bread flour because I was worried about the dough having enough gluten having never made bread with
AP flour before. I also reduced the hydration from 75% to 70% worrying that the higher hydration might make the dough harder to shape since I don’t have much experience shaping baguettes yet.

My baguettes are shorter and fatter than I would have preferred, but I think the higher gluten and lower hydration made the dough less extensible than one needs for baguettes and thus I couldn’t elongate them as much as I would have liked.

Overall though for a second try I’m pretty happy with how they turned out.

I’m quite pleased with how these turned out. I would not bake them on such a low rack of my oven next time because the bottom of one was quite burned :cry: The crust is crisp and thin and the crumb was irregular and fairly open and had a great flavour of wheat.


Damn those are good. I wouldn’t want the crumb any more open. That’s perfect!

1 Like

Thank you Abe. I have a few things to do differently next time that I hope will improve them. I wouldn’t want the crumb more open either. I thought I was being too rough while shaping and that I’d cause the crumb to be too tight but I guess you need to be a bit rough with it.

I had the pleasure of baking baguettes with Alfonso who’s style is baguettes/batard (somewhere in-between). Firstly I don’t think baguettes are traditionally very high hydration. Handling shouldn’t be a challenge. Shaping was a rough batard preshape then a rest, after which you basically shape them again but a bit tighter and then gently roll out the ends. I’m no expert and of course he doesn’t do a full baguette but actually a cross between the two.

1 Like

Hi Abe, I think my baguettes were certainly too fat and need to be rolled out longer and thinner. I just need to get more extensibility and less elasticity. I think increasing the hydration a bit and going to all AP flour should get me there.

1 Like

Maybe a rest in the middle of the shaping could work too. I do that with pizza dough when it’s too elastic.

1 Like

Yes I knew that would work, but being a bit impatient I didn’t rest it at that point and I should have. Live and learn. Thanks Melissa.

Dude - you would have gotten a perfect score but for the Russian judge that only gave you a 9.9. Seriously, those are awesome with a crumb that defines what baguettes should look like.

1 Like

Thank you Kevin, darn those Russian judges, that is very nice of you to say.