Sunday, May 15, 2011

A Year Later - I'm a Baker!

When I started this enterprise with real seriousness, a year ago, I was still working as an lecturer in Computer Graphics and Basic Animation. It seems like a hundred years ago... or a thousand. In that time, if you've been following, you will know that I studied in a baking course, finished the course and have left my work at the college. Finally, I believe I am ready to make the change to this new career I have chosen. I can proclaim with some amount of pride, really, that I have become a baker!! It's really quite exciting... and not a little nerve-wracking. But also lots of fun.

For instance, I have spent the last few weeks collecting and buying baking equipment, comparing prices and contacting suppliers. This Friday it all starts.. I will be trying to sell my bread (challahs, sweet potato and rosemary loaves, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic and dill) at a local farmer's market. So today, after buying all the materials and ingredients, I spent my time baking the loaves in various shapes and weights to be able to decide what exactly I will sell. The next few posts will therefore be the breads I am preparing for the market. This first one, in loaf form and as a round, is the sweet potato and rosemary bread.

It was absolutely delicious... now let's hope it sells.

Here's What You'll Need: (for 3 loaves)
for the starter
200g AP flour
200ml warm water
5g dry yeast

for the dough
1 1/2 cup (250ml) warm water
1 Tbs. dry yeast
about 800g AP flour (to make a full kilo or 1000g - 200g from the starter)
1 1/5 Tbs. salt
1/4 cup (60ml) good quality olive oil
2 medium sweet potatoes cut in cubes and roasted in olive oil
1 Tbs. chopped fresh rosemary
all of the starter

Here's What You'll Need to Do:
1. Mix the starter, then let it sit at room temperature, covered with plastic wrap for up to 3 hours. To intensify the wheaty flavor, you can place it in the refrigerator overnight. If you do, remove it an hour before you need it tomorrow so it comes back to room temperature.
2. Cut the sweet potatoes into largish cubes, coat with some oil, add some chopped rosemary then roast until soft, about 20 minutes. Afterwards, when it cools, mash them along with the rosemary.
3. Mix all the other ingredients together in a mixer to make a smooth fairly stiff dough. Knead the dough for 10 minutes on medium speed.
4. Finally, add the sweet potato-rosemary mixture and continue kneading until the dough is colored slightly orange. The dough will now be slightly sticky and the sweet potato will not be completely incorporated but will still appear in small pieces here and there.
5. Place in a slightly oiled bowl, turn to coat, then cover with plastic wrap. Let it rise until doubled. This will take about 2 hours.
6. Divide the dough into thirds, shape each into a loaf, then place each 'loaf' into an oiled loaf pan (4X9X2 in) or (10X23X5 cm). If you like, you can shape the dough into a round loaf, like I did.

7. Let the dough rest and rise again, this time until it rises about 2-3cm about the lip of the pan. This will take about an hour.

8. Preheat the oven to 180C (350F). If baking a round loaf, place a baking stone on the floor of the oven. About 5 minutes before baking spray water into the oven.
9. Place the round loaf on the baking stone (if on a tray then place it with the tray directly on the stone).
10. Bake the round loaf for about 30 minutes and the loaves in the pans for about 20 minutes. Yum!!!


  1. Just found your blog. Your bread looks awesome. Hope FRIDAY goes great for you. I'll be following,

  2. Welcome aboard!. I'm having a lot of fun baking bread, and giving it away(or at least some). The house smells great and who knows maybe I can make a living doing this? Glad you like the blog.

  3. I hope you 'do' make a living at it. I'll be following your progress. :)

  4. Mazal tov, bakerman! omg. That looks amazing. Good luck Friday! Where is the market? Can we go? ;)

  5. .מזל טוב, כל הכבוד ובהצלחה
    אם תואיל לגלות לנו איפה השוק הזה ומתי הוא פועל, אולי גם נגיע לקנות את לחמיך

    הלחמים שלך נהדרים וההסברים שלך טובים ונבונים
    מגיע לך להצליח

  6. תודה, תודה על המילים התומכות ובכלל על המסרים הרבים במשך השנה שחלפה. אני לקחתי שולחן בשוק האיכרים במרכז תרבות העמים ברח' עמק רפאים 12 ירושלים. השוק פתוח כל יום שישי משעה 9 עד 3. בהתחלה אני אמכור כמה לחמים 'פשוטים' יותר בתקווה להרחיב את המבחר עם הזמן

  7. I will be at the Farmer's Market on Emek Refa'im 12 this Friday. This market is open every Friday from 9 to 3. In the beginning I will have a few 'simpler' breads with the plan being to increase the selection over time.

  8. I actually enjoyed reading through this posting. Many thanks.
    Bakery Equipment

  9. Glad you enjoyed the post. My goal is to bring interesting and healthy recipes using everyday ingredients. I have succeeded, I think, for the most part. It's nice to hear how people enjoy it.