Monday, January 28, 2013

Dutch Oven Broth Bread

This bread started out as a query, as me wondering, “What if...?”  I had been planning and baking for my breads party/photoshoot for several days, and my mind was locked in bread mode.  I was thinking, living, breathing nothing but breads.

I wondered, “What would happen if I used some chicken broth instead of water in a bread?”  I started to ponder that thought for a while, then I went to that font of all knowledge and wisdom, the Internet.  Sadly, what I had originally believed was a fresh and unique idea was, in fact, pretty common.  I found a number of descriptions and recipes.

In the end, I went back through my own recipes and decided just to try to substitute it part for part.  But then, I thought about it, and realized that there would be salt in the broth, and some oil as well, so I lessened or eliminated those ingredients.   I wasn’t sure if the broth would be too heavy or too damp.  But I thought I’d give it a try!

I wasn’t sure what to call it.  I thought about “Chicken Bread”, but that sounded too corny.  My wife came to my rescue, and dubbed it “Broth Bread”!  Here it is:

Dutch Oven Broth Bread

12” Dutch Ovens
12-14 coals below
18-22 coals above

2 Cups poultry broth (110 degrees)
1 1/2 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp Yeast
1 tsp salt
4-5 Cups fresh bread flour

The broth was from our Christmas turkey, and was frozen in 2-cup baggies.  I put one in a measuring cup and turned on the tap, running hot water over it.  It took a while to melt, and then to come up to a nice warm 110° or so.  I wasn’t in a hurry.  Microwaving it might have gotten it there sooner, but...

Once it was ready, I mixed in the sugar and the yeast.  I set that aside for another ten minutes or so, and let it foam up.  I was a bit concerned about any salt in the broth reacting with the yeast, but it turned out OK.

Then I sifted in the flour and added the table salt.  Remember that I usually start with a little less flour. I stirred it all up, then dumped it out onto the liberally floured countertop.  From here on out, I treated it pretty much like any other bread.  I kneaded until it developed a good gluten windowpane, then stretched the surface into a tight ball, and set it aside to rise.

It rose for an hour or two, getting doubled, and then I lit up some coals.  While those were turning white, I kneaded just a little more (two or three pushes, at the most) and restretched and reshaped it into a boule (ball) again.  I put this into the proofing basket.

Soon, the coals were all lit, and so I oiled the inside of the dutch oven, and set it out on the proper amount of coals, both below and above.  I let that preheat for an additional 15 minutes, then I brought out the bread.  I tipped it into the Dutch oven, then sliced the top.  Unfortunately, my knife wasn’t very sharp (always use razor blades) so it ended up tearing more than slashing.  Quickly, I put the lid on and marked the time.

After 15-20 minutes, I knocked the ash off the coals, rotated the Dutch oven and the lid, and lifted the lid to check on the progress, and to insert the thermometer.

After another 10-15 minutes, I checked, and it was past 200°, ready to come in.  After cooling on a rack, I was able to cut into it and taste it.  I was pleasantly surprised.  The chicken flavor was there,  but not prominent.  Very subtle.  It tasted great as a sandwich bread, and then, later, at the bread party, in the cheese fondue dip!

Mark has discovered a love of Dutch Oven Cooking. Mark also has other sites and blogs, including and his MoBoy blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails