Sunday, August 30, 2020

A Golden Bread With Scoring

I missed the original posting of the Bread Baking Babes because, mostly, it was too hot to bake the bread with pretty scoring patterns mid-month and the loaf that I baked earlier was just plain ugly. Since our challenge by Kitchen of the Month Elizabeth of blogging from OUR kitchen was to do some fancy scoring, I decided to try again.

It's cooler now, although unfortunately very smokey, so I baked a yeasted loaf using some pumpkin puree in it, which made the interior a lovely golden color. I found the recipe in Ken Haedrich's The Harvest Baker book. There were a lot of changes. He used delicata squash and I used roasted pumpkin from a neighbor's garden. He made his as dinner rolls, but I made on long (16 inches) batard. I used a linen cloth with both bread and rice flour for the rising and put some rice flour on the top of the loaf, too, to help show the pattern, but all the flour browned to about the same color as the crust of the loaf, so that didn't work out so well. The scoring that was deeper allowed the interior gold to show. Next time I'll score deeper if I make this bread.

This is a lovely, moist, brioche-like bread. The pumpkin mostly gives it color and a faint sweetness, but not a true pumpkin flavor. Of course there is only 1 cup of roasted pumpkin puree and over 5 cups of flour. I used bread flour instead of all-purpose because I wanted a true skin on the loaf so the scoring would go better. You can see that, especially in the middle of the loaf where the scoring looks almost like a flying bee. I also reduced the sugar to two tablespoons, eliminated the yolk, and added a cup of flour, stirred in to the yeast/water mixture, before I added any other ingredients. I find that coating the yeast with flour helps when you are also adding butter, milk and things like veg puree.

Do try making this bread, either as a loaf or loaves or as dinner rolls. It's really delicious!

Roasted Pumpkin Long Loaf
a variation of Golden Delicata Squash Dinner Rolls
by Ken Haedrich in The Harvest Baker

1 medium pumpkin
1 tablespoon olive oil, or olive oil spray, plus more for the bowl
1/3 cup lukewarm water
1 packet (1/4 oz) active dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm milk (I used soy creamer)
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (I used non-dairy margarine)
2 teaspoons salt
5 1/2 - 6 cups bread flour

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil. Cut the pumpkin in half at the middle, so there is one half with a stem and one half with the bottom of the pumpkin. Scrape and remove all seeds and stringy bits. Oil the foil/spray with olive oil spray. Put the pumpkin halves, cut side down on the prepared baking sheet and roast until the pumpkin meat is tender, about 50-60 minutes. Still in baking sheet, cool pumpkin on a wire rack. When it has cooled, scoop out the flesh and put it through a potato ricer, or press it through a fine wire mesh strainer to make a puree. You will use 1 cup of the puree. Save the rest, if any, for other uses, refrigerated.

Pour the lukewarm water into a large bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over the water and stir briefly with a fork. Wait 5 minutes for the yeast to dissolve. Yeast will look a bit puffy.

Add 1 cup bread flour to the proofed yeast and water and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon to combine. Add the warmed milk, sugar, butter and salt and stir again to combine. Add another two cups flour, a half cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean shower cap and set aside for 30 minutes.

If you have a stand mixer with dough hook, you can use that to add the additional bread flour until you have a soft, slightly sticky dough. If you don't have that, turn the dough out onto a well-floured clean work surface and knead the dough, adding flour as you go until the dough is soft and slightly sticky.

Coat a clean bowl or rising container with oil or spray olive oil. Form the dough into a ball and place in the container, turning the dough over to coat all with the oil. Cover with a damp tea towel or clean shower cap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1-2 hours.

Turn risen dough out of the container onto a lightly floured clean work surface and knead once or twice to get rid of excess gas. Shape into dinner rolls (18) or one or two long batards, making sure to pull the dough to the bottom a number of times so that there is a skin of stretched dough on top. Set shaped rolls or loaves on a parchment lined baking sheet, leaving room between. Cover with a damp tea towel, or oiled plastic wrap and let rise to almost doubled, about 30-40 minutes. While dough is doing this, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

If doing scoring (probably not on the rolls!), chill the loaves if possible in the freezer for 10 minutes after sprinkling lightly with a mixture of flour and rice flour. Then score with a lame or very sharp knife to allow the bread to expand and to make a pattern.

Bake in the preheated oven. It will take about 30 minutes for the rolls and about 45 minutes or a little longer for loaves.

Let loaves cool until barely warm (better yet, cool completely) before cutting. Serve the rolls warm.

Makes 18 rolls or one 16-inch long loaf or two 8-inch long loaves


  1. I love pumpkin in bread! It adds such a gorgeous color and flavor.

  2. I'm so glad you got a chance to join us this month. And this is perfect (not the smokiness part though - I sure hope that you get rain and that all the wildfires are under control very soon). The golden colour of the crumb and the deeper gold of the crust are really lovely, Elle!

  3. Gorgeous color! Love the pumpkin, you're ahead of the game...