Tartine Country Bread with Butter and Poppy Seeds

August 17 2019, Tags: Butter, Sourdough, Bread, Tartine country bread, Poppy seeds

I recently spent time in Denmark, and Danish bakers make amazing white bread, often with poppy seeds. I love that stuff - it's extremely light and fluffy, has a papery thin crust, which tastes of nicely toasted poppy seeds. I really want to have a bread like this in my reportoire, and I want to make it from my sourdough. This is my first attempt.

Please note that I am truly an amateur and have no idea what I'm doing, I'm just trying a few tricks I've picked up from books.

The idea is to add a little butter - 7.5% - to make the crumb more tender, and tighter, like the breads I'm hoping to mimick. I'm also adding 5% milk powder, to aid in evening out the crumb structure.


Autolyse sat in room temperature overnight, then (for practical reasons) traveled by car for 90 minutes in the trunk at about 16C...


Starter is active and on a twice-a-day feeding schedule. I built the levain at 08:30 this morning:


The dough was mixed at 13:30, so the levain was 5 hours old, not quite peaking, but I know it to peak out around the 8 hour mark, so I trust it'll be fine - it did float for what it's worth. This is my first attempt at using the levain this young.

Combined roughly into the autolyse.

Butter and milk powder

I gave the dough turns at 30 minute intervals, and after the first two (1 hour of fermentation), I made a paste of the butter and milk powder, and incorporated it into the dough. For the third turn, the dough was noticably softer.

Bulk fermentation

This dough just never gained any kind of strength. I'm not sure what went wrong, but there are multiple suspects:

Could be too much of these? Maybe these additions require more mechanical handling of the dough to develop it - I've used similar amounts in breads that were mixed by machine with great luck.

I did let bulk fermentation go for an extended 8 hours, but still there was very little hold. I did try to bake the result, but sadly it was inedible.