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Volume II
March 5, 2010

Artisan Bread in the Northeast

Wonderful video for making artisan bread but, I seemed to have a problem with the recipe. In using the recipe with the correct amount of water, etc; using 3 cups of white flour my "dough" was more like pancake batter.

In questioning my measurements I made a second batch and again more like batter than dough. I could not hold it in my hands to put into bowl with lid and rest for the 18 hours and after fermenting it was very runny. What can I do to correct this recipe to make it more like the demo? Would more flour be needed or would that ruin the bread?

Thank you for your time and help and of course for these fantastic newsletters,

Sharon Chesbro

Scott & Sharon,

Thank you for your interested in the Artisan Bread. I am wondering if where you live might make a difference? I think that you might just have to experiment by adding extra flour, or not using as much water. I wish I could be with you when you made it. As easy as this bread is to make I had to make it 5 or 6 times to get it just the way I wanted it.

Also, check your yeast. This can be done by putting 1/4 cup warm water,teaspoon sugar and tablespoon of yeast in a bowl and letting it sit for 5-10 minutes. If it bubbles and grows it means that it is active. Which just means that it hasn't gone bad.

Try again and please let me know what changes you made and how it turned out. Also, keep the dough away from windows or drafts.

Happy Baking,


Thank you Jeanne for your response,

Here is what I tried and what finally seemed to work:

First off let me tell you that I live in the northeast and we do have humidity here, but usually during our summers. During those days other bread recipes usually require only about 1-2 teaspoons less liquid. With this recipe I tried to reduce the water, to just 1 1/2 cups. Not it.

Then I used a combination of reduced water and more flour. Too much fiddling with the recipe.

Lastly, I wound up adding a total of one more cup of flour (I did not sift any of the flour during any of the recipes) to the 1 1/2 cups + 2 Tablespoons of water and it seemed to work. I now have a bread dough rather than a soupy mix. And it was a hit!!!!

Thanks again for your input it seems I finally got on the right track. Again, Jeanne, the video helped in showing how to make the bread and the recipe is truly so easy.

Sharon Chesbro

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