I’ve been up on that high hydration ledge for a long time and it is finally time to come down.  There is so much to learn about breads with hydration above 80%.  Handling techniques, shaping, and the surprise of watching a wet flat blob lift itself up off the hot stone and take shape. I definately recommend spending some time out on that ledge yourself.  

The recipe that talked me down was Shiao-Ping’s House Miche.  I really admire Shiao-Ping’s bread.  If you haven’t already, go have a look at her blog.  So many different kinds of bread.  She is fearless and very talented.  I am reproducing her formula here, so I can refer to it later, but if you want to make this please follow her well written directions.

  • 230 g starter at 60% hydration
  • 100 g whole wheat flour
  • 400 g white bread flour
  • 378 g water
  • 12 g salt

Total dough weight 1120 g; overall dough hydration 72%.

My kitchen is pretty cool this time of year and I under proofed a bit.  I think the crumb might have been more open, and the loaf wasn’t as beautifully symmetric as Shiao-Ping’s but the real test is in the taste, and this loaf was delightful.