Make Bread Not War

In my spare time (ha!) I've been baking bread. I had been looking for a slow rise bread that would work with the rhythms of our household. Something that was flexible enough to mix and set aside for a few hours or even a few days.

I came across a recipe from Homebaking by Alford and Duguid for a simple loaf that starts with a biga, a yeast, flour, water mixture that ferments from 12 hours up to several days. As the yeast grows and ferments slowly, the mixture develops a rich yeasty flavour.

I've experimented with the addition of various amounts of whole wheat flour and rising times and the loaves turn out with crisp crusts, soft springy texture and great yeast flavour.

Best of all, it doesn't take much time out of my day to mix the different stages, rise and bake. It's all a good learning experience for Junior too (math, science, using the 5 senses...).