Sesame Semolina Sourdough Baguettes Set No. 2

Back at the same sesame semolina sourdough baguettes but with some changes to try to improve the crumb. So I made some changes in the hopes of achieving a more open crumb. The first significant change I made was to delete the commercial yeast altogether, this change was made by accident and wasn’t planned as removing the commercial yeast wasn’t something that I thought would improve the crumb.  In fact, I thought that the addition of commercial yeast was part of what was giving my an open crumb.

I increased the hydration from 67 to 71% and I also reduced bulk fermentation rise in the aliquot jar from 25 to 20%. My thinking there was increasing hydration is often one route to open crumb as long as you handle the dough well. The reduction in bulk rise was done to make dough handling easier. You see, when I had to transfer the shaped dough to a tray with a wet towel and roll it, then transfer it to the tray with the sesame seeds and roll it, I found that the dough felt like it was getting degassed and stretched out too long. So reducing bulk made the dough much easier to handle this much and once seeded and in the couche the dough was 16” long, the max for my baking steel. Finally to compensate for the reduced fermentation I added a 30 mins bench rest in the couche followed by my usual 30 minute chill in the fridge. The fridge time is intended to firm the dough up to make it easier to score.
I think my changes were very successful and I’m quite happy with the improvement in the crumb compared to my first set. Leaving out the commercial yeast didn’t have the negative effect that I expected in making the crust thicker nor did leaving it out make the crumb less open.

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