I used the Pain de Campagne(meaning country bread) recipe in the Bread Baker's Apprentice to give a go at shaping fougasse. According to BBA, this is the perfect dough for creative shaping. Before forming the fougasse, I had to first shape the dough into a batard, let it rise for about an hour, then flatten it into a leaf shape and cut the slits, just before baking.
It was a 'pain' to flatten the proofed batard, because I could see my rolling pin popping those precious big bubbles. At that moment I thought "this is going to turn out into a dense heavy boulder without any crumb to speak of". But since I had already started, I just 'soldiered' on. Surprise surprise! The fougasse still managed to rise in the oven, and look at the porous interior:
Though I'm a bit disappointed with my shaping (the slits closed up, guess I did not pull the slits apart enough), the chewy crumb paired with the crusty exterior makes this loaf just perfect in my opinion.