I mixed the cornmeal and water as the soaker and let it sit overnight. Morning arrived bringing with it the time to make the sponge. This went together easily and showed signs of promising performance immediately with the appearance of bubbles. I allowed it to rest for the required hour; then returned to complete the dough build. This formed a very moist, sticky dough. With the dough turned out for the knead, I added a little flour at a time. When the dough was tacky rather than sticky, I returned the dough to the greased bowl for a rest of 90 minutes. I have learned a moist, tacky dough can be a good thing and adding more flour to prevent sticking can make a tough loaf.
The bowl filled and the dough was beautiful. I turned it out for shaping. Still a tacky dough, I dusted my hands rather than the dough. That turned out to be a good decision. I made two 1.5lb loaves and placed them into the bread pans for the final proof. Cooler temps today (even in Florida) caused me to increase this rise time to just more than an hour.
In a preheated 350 degree oven, I slid the pans in and set the timer. At the end of 45 minutes, the loaves looked great, but I have grown to appreciate more color for the crust. I added 12 minutes.
Removing the loaves from the pan started out as a worry. Patience served me well today. I let the loaves rest for about 5 minutes, ran a spatula along the interior of the bread pan for the release. There they were on the rack in a cloud of steam, aroma and rich honey color.
As the aroma filled the house, the Combsman appeared, hovering. But he waited, allowing the bread to finish and cool. Soon he was rewarded.
| Color is good but I would prefer |
a bit more dome rise above the edge of the bread pans.
Slicing and tasting brought satisfaction of the flavors and textures of a well baked Anadama
This recipe is in every bread book I have on the shelf and a few other cookbooks as well. I had never made this and without Chris' BBA Challenge we wouldn't be sharing and enjoying this treat this weekend.
Come on back soon. There will be more reviews of recipes and more BBA Challenge results. Comments are welcome.