Country Bread Baking – Secrets of Romanian Crusty Artisanal Lovely Taste
Romanian Rustic Country Bread Baking Secrets
Bread is one of the easiest 4-ingredient food most commonly eaten in all over the world. Country bread baking makes every home feel cosy, with a festive holiday scent, comforting those who have grandparents living in rural area. However, this simple food seems to carry a profound meaning with it. Bread is a christian symbol of Life through Christ’s sacrifice once for all:” I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”
Traditionally, Romanian artisanal country bread is baked in clay ovens, resulting in a richly flavored and wonderfully smoke-infused crusty bread.
The secret to making amazing bread stands in the ingredients, that is to say the quality of wheat flour, water and yeast. A good bread is obtained from additive free flour. It is heavier and denser than the bread containing additives. Water is an essential element. Here, at the bread bakery from Iaslovăţ village, they use natural spring water and an additive free fresh flour milled at the water mill nearby.
The dough is mixed, weighed and shaped into a boule or braided bread and left to rise for a couple of hours. Before baking, water is rubbed over it’s surface so it stays elastic and cook evenly while forming a crisp and shiny crust.
It is baked for 20 min at a temperature of 60–70° C ( 140-158°F) inside a 25 year-old wood fired American DAMPF oven with pipe heating.
The pipes are heated at temperatures between 800-1000 ° C, transforming the water flowing through them into superheated steam with a temperature of 350 ° C. When passing through the free space of the pipes from the baking chamber, the steam condenses, giving up the heat.
Braiding Shaping and Baking Artisan Bread
Customs such as the bread and salt greeting is known to people from many countries like Russia, Bulgaria, Romania, Poland, Slovakia, where bread symbolizes Jesus and the salt His Church „You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?” Hence, in the traditional Romanian home, every holiday and life event is celebrated with beautifully braided bread.
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