Wulf's Webden

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Biga Bread

Typically I make my bread by mixing flour and water with little salt and yeast, all added together and then developed by moisture and yeast action over time into a dough ready for baking. Using a biga, or starter, is another technique where some of the water and flour are combined with the yeast in a fairly sloppy mixture and this is then combined with the rest of the ingredients later in the process.

Having recently been reading Suzanne Dunaway’s No Need to Knead, which caught my attention from the library shelves, I had another go at a biga-based bread yesterday. I was pleased with the results and there certainly was no kneading involved with the recipe. However, it did require several interventions, gently folding the bread and leaving for another half-hour of proving. I’ve made starter-based breads before but think I might experiment some more to see if I can get some of the attractive flavour and texture of the result but with even less handling of the dough.

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