The Art of Baking
Baking bread is a complex balancing act between a good knowledge of physics, chemistry, ingredients, baking, artisanal skills and careful management. These factors combine to form an equilibrium that we call the art of baking.
Mixing & Kneading—We take our dough through a long hydrolysis process that last up to 12 hours with rye flour. This hydration process allows our bread to develop a beautiful and intense caramelised crust. We knead our dough slowly to give time for the flour to develop to its fullest potential.
Hydration—We hydrate our dough at an average of 80% humidity - at this level, our bread is harder to shape however the result is fabulous. In Hong Kong’s high humidity weather, having a higher hydration level allows our bread to be “flashed” in the oven which puts back the “crunch” into the crust without drying out the bread crumb.
Fermentation—Our crusty breads are fermented on sourdough for more than 24 hours before baking. It’s during this period that the magic happens! Lactic and acetic acids form while the wild yeast ferments the natural sugars in the flour, giving our bread its specific aromas and features.
Shaping & Proofing—Once the dough has rested at room temperature, our bakers begin shaping the breads by hand. It’s a process that machines cannot replicate, especially with dough hydration levels at 80%. The shaped breads are then laid to proof on linen cloth and returned to the proofing room where they develop their full aromas.
Scoring—We score our breads or flip them upside down, depending on the look we desire for them. Making a subtle score on the loaf creates an opening that results in slightly browned edges. Scoring allows more steam to exit the bread during baking thus creating grooves on the surface.
Baking—We bake our loaves on a stone bed – Artisan style. With just the right amount of steam, our breads have a beautiful oven spring. Long fermentation allows the natural sugars to caramelise the crust and combined with the acids, provide its delicate flavour. Our breads are conveniently delivered 90% baked.