Sunday, September 03, 2006

Climbing the Ladder

Fougasse is a flatbread traditionally associated with Provence in southeastern France. Also known as the french version of the italian foccacia, fougasse is usually sculpted to form a leaf- or ladder-shaped loaf, making it easy to pull apart for a quick bite.


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.

5 comments:

gattina said...

Angie,
but still good trying! I'm sure next round you must get the shape right!

Rene said...

Looks wonderful to me. Well, guess you have to take a "larger" step on the ladder next time, but it is always good to start with baby steps, eh? (^.^)

Angie said...

Gattina, thanks for the encouragement! :)

Rene, you are so right, start with baby steps first :)

Little Corner of Mine said...

Looks good! Did you dip it in olive oil?

Angie said...

Ching, you bet I did! Plus balsamic vinegar too ;p