Thursday, October 25, 2007

sourdough semolina saffron bread




I have been experimenting with sourdough more and more, and have been amazed by the variety of things that it can make! Just recently, I made sourdough biscuits, which I had never before even considered as a possibility - but boy were they good with chili! One of the more intriguing recipes I've come across has been this recipe for semolina sourdough bread. I had had a bag of semolina flour sitting around forever, and this bread looked like a beautiful way to use it. Baking the bread as indicated (replacing the honey called for with agave nectar), yielded a wonderful bread, with the best flavor and texture of any bread I've baked before! Encouraged, I decided to switch things up a tiny bit, and came up with the idea for a semolina sourdough loaf infused with saffron. Here are some illustrations from the process. It's a rather long process (almost 24 hours all together), but most of that time is not hands-on, and the end results are worth it. There is nothing as comforting and yet somehow empowering as spending a day baking bread!



Top to bottom: sourdough starter formed into a "starter dough", the mixture of semolina and all-purpose flour, saffron soaking in warm water, mixed dough with flecks of saffron, and risen dough (look how yellow!) ready to be shaped into loaves. To infuse the bread with saffron, I added a mixture of 1 tsp saffron (ground) that had soaked in 2 TB of hot water for a few minutes in the first stage of mixing (before the first rise).



The result was an aromatic and strongly flavored bread. I realize now that I could tinker with this recipe some more, perhaps increase the sweetener a bit to offset the saffron flavor.



But it's an awesome bread to for sweet (drizzled with tahini and agave nectar), or savory uses, like this sandwich with Melody's tester tofu feta and radish greens:



I'm submitting this post to Sunita's World blog, for her monthly spice event, "Think Spice!" This month's spice, obviously, is saffron, a flavor near and dear my heart as it plays a huge role in Iranian cuisine.
  • If you like saffron, here's another post from last year with saffron playing a starring role.
  • To catch up with my sourdough spree, check out my sourdough post



If you scroll down all the way to the bottom of this blog, you'll see that I've joined the Foodie BlogRoll, a huge compendium of other foodie blogs. I get inspired daily by foodie blogs, and am thrilled to be joining their ranks (and representing vegan cuisine to boot!)


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25 comments:

Emmie said...

What an awesome bread bazu, you had me at the saffron picture. I love saffron so much. I already know what I'm going to be posting about on the 13th of December, a lovely sweet saffron bun that we eat as part of the xmas season celebrations. mmm, saffron buns! Send me a loaf of your saffron bread this way, k?

VeggieGirl said...

wow, the "process" photos of your sourdough-semolina-saffron bread are fantastic!! I'm thoroughly enjoying your posts about your "sourdough spree"!! :0)


congratulations and welcome to the Foodie Blogroll!! I'm on there too, so it's AWESOME to see a fellow vegan blogger on there now - yay!!

sunita said...

The bread looks amazing...thanks a lot for sending it over.

Rachael said...

oh yum. i love semolina. I so very much wish wheat was not one of the (apparently) many things I'm sensitive to. There's this bakery in Cambridge, MA, called Hi-Rise, thjavascript:void(0)
Publish Your Commentat makes the very best semolina bread ever and I miss it muchly...

Vegan_Noodle said...

What patience you have!! But it looks like the reward made it plenty worth it....

Ashasarala said...

That bread looks fantastic.

I've been trying to prepare myself to make some sourdough starter. I've never in my life done it before, nor have I seen it done, and I'm a little worried. I just know I'll botch it up somehow! haha

Any tips on keeping it alive?

urban vegan said...

Everyone knows Bazu is the Queen of Sourdough. Looks lovely--what a pretty reddish tint. Adding saffron to bread is a great idea.

Jackie said...

Thanks for the useful post as we can now get sourdough flour here so I need to give it a bash as I have never tasted sourdough bread.

dreamy said...

I like these "process" photos. It's cool! And I love bread :d, makes it even better :)

Monika K said...

I'm a bit behind in reading your blog, but I just caught up and read about your existential crisis. I wanted to reiterate what some of the other bloggers have said - in that, I think you should continue to write about anything and everything you want. Your posts are always enjoyable to read (and informative) and a change in direction won't keep me from being a faithful reader. So there we are - crisis averted!

Village Vegan said...

Wow. That bread is beautiful! It had such a pretty color, and it looks like it tasted fantastic. Now if only I had some sourdough starter...

scottishvegan said...

Gorgeous colour! I've never thought to have saffron in bread!

Peggy the Veggie said...

That looks sooo good- I love the brilliant colour from the saffron!

theONLYtania said...

Mmm you are encouraging me to try making bread again :-P The sandwich looks delicious.
I don't have sourdough. Or saffron. But I can sure make something!

Pink Theory said...

Oh my goodnes, your breads look absolutely perfect...like it was made in a bakery. Just catching up on your last few posts. Congrats on the 200th blog post! I also enjoyed reading the commentary on the Ripping Slate a new one posts. I agree that it is also important for us vegans to know our facts and I always want to add more information to my vegan facts arsenal

the pleasantly plump vegan said...

beautiful

a-k said...

that bread looks totally amazing. saffron is one of the greatest spices ever (we use it a lot in swedish baking). thanks for the tummy grumbling!

Johanna3 said...

this looks so good!!

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