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Baluard: Artisan Bakery and Easy Bread Recipe

I never normally make bread at home because I think it’s going to be too difficult and time consuming. So I was  delighted to attend a bread making master class run by what I consider to be the best bakery in Barcelona, Baluard, organised by the Barcelona Women’s Network.

One of the reasons that I love Baluard is that I find that I don’t experience the same amount of bloating after eating their bread. I believe the secret behind this and other artisan breads is the long resting times for the dough. This enables fermentation of the flour which makes it digestible. Mass produced breads contain more additives and gluten to allow a faster turnaround time, but is not so kind on the belly.

Anna Bellsolà Baluard’s owner, master bread maker and author of the book “Pan en Casa: Del Horno al Corazón” is passionate about teaching the proper mixing, kneading, fermenting, shaping and baking techniques to make a wide variety of crispy, crusty breads from around the world.

I invite you to experience the simple pleasure of baking your own bread, using this simple recipe.

Start your dough the night before you want to bake the bread. It’s easy to make and doesn’t require much effort, but the dough is like a toddler that needs to rest lots.

Ingredients

500g strong bread making flour
325g cold water
5g fresh yeast (not powdered)
10g salt

Loving preparation

Mix – Mix all the ingredients in a food processor or mixing bowl until the dough starts coming away from the edges and you can form a ball.

Rest – Place the dough ball in a mixing bowl, brushed with olive oil and covered with cling film (plastic wrap) now let the dough rest overnight in the fridge. The dough should be doubled in size, with bubbles on the surface.

Knead and Rest – Turn the dough out of the mixing bowl onto a generously floured surface, can be wood or stone/marble. Sprinkle a little flour on the top of the dough. Then fold the dough once or twice upon itself. Cover it loosely with the plastic wrap and let it sit for 20 minutes. This relaxes the dough and makes it easier to work with, just like a toddler.

Shape and Rest – Place the dough on a floured surface, sprinkle more flour on the dough to stop it sticking and use your hands to shape the dough into rolls or a loaf. Let the dough rest again at room temperature for 15-20 minutes whilst you preheat the oven to 210°C (482°F).

Bake – Place the dough balls on a baking tray (or a pizza stone if you have one) on the low rack of the oven.

Tip: In commercial ovens they would now inject steam into the oven. Anna’s tip was to throw a couple of ice cubes into the base of eth oven to give a blast of steam.

The bread is ready when the crust is a deep brown colour and hard, if you tap the base it should sound hollow, about 15-20 minutes depending on your oven. Remove and cool completely on a rack.

Enjoy slathered in butter or drizzled with your favourite olive oil.

www.baluardbarceloneta.com

Anna Bellsolà

T. 932 211 208
c/ Baluard, 38 – 40 bajos
08003 Barcelona
info@baluardbarceloneta.com

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