I think my third try at Pain a l'Ancienne turned out pretty well. I did three things different this time:
- Slightly less hydration. I used slightly less water that it initially looked liked it needed. At the end of the mixing session however it was just right: the dough was clearing the sides of the bowl but sticking to the bottom.
- Slightly shorter rise time. I went for 3 hours instead of 3.5 as I did with the previous two batches. The hole structure wasn't quite as nice, but unnoticable unless you compared side-by side photos. I think 3.5 hours may have been pushing it a litle two far.
- Correct oven temperature. My oven control is off by about 25 degrees. If I want 475 I have to set it at 500. I forgot this on the previous attempt.
With the dough a little dryer my slashes turned out fine. I also noticed that the loaves rose better in the oven this time. Previously, with the dough so wet (like ciabatta) the stuff kinda just migrated down and I ended up with baguettes that were slightly flat. These are nicely shaped.