It is certain that the taste of bread cannot be dissociated from the composition or makeup of the dough. For French bread, the composition is simple: a dough based on 100 kg flour will contain around 60 L water, 2 kg salt, and 2 kg yeast.


Potassium Bromate Bean Flour Crust Color Calcium Propionate Fresh Yeast 
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  1. 1.
    Many North American flours already contain malt products, which are customarily added at the mill. Bakers are advised to verify whether their flour does or does not contain malt and make adjustments as necessary.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Citric acid is of greater benefit to yeast raised rye breads than to sourdough ryes.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Lecithin is used primarily in large industrialized bakeries, rather than in artisan production.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Professor Calvel says azote,which is the inert gas nitrogen. However, he actually means benzoyl peroxide, which is used in the bleaching of white bread flours. Chlorine, another bleaching agent, is used primarily for cake flours in common practice.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Since this was originally written, many of the English-speaking countries have banned the use of potassium bromate outright or placed restrictions on its use, as have a number of U.S. states.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Azodicarbonomide is added to certain North American flours and should also be avoided in the production of French bread. It permits the elimination of the bulk fermentation, with predictably disastrous effect on the taste and other desirable characteristics of French bread.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    See above note. The use of potassium bromate is also banned throughout Canada.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    It is also important in many parts of the United States when using water pumped from private or municipal deep wells. Much of the United States has ground water that exceeds 240 ppm of dissolved calcium carbonate. See: Water Atlas of the United States by Thomas Geraghty, David Miller, Fritz Van Der Leeden and Gary Troise: Water Information Center, © 1973. The Reference Source annual (formerly Bakers’ Reference Source) published by Sosland Publishing Company, Kansas City, MO, regularly includes information on water types, buffering, and how to adjust pH and TTA of water.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Water that is too soft also makes the dough very sticky and difficult to process. This was one of the reasons for the development of the so-called mineral yeast foods, which were originally standardized mineral packages in a starch carrier.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    This section was edited to clearly express Professor Calvel’s antipathy to the delayed salt method. A more literal translation might be subject to misunderstanding, since Professor Calvel does not make his point until the end of the section. A direct translation might be: “However, it should be pointed out that in France, since the 1960s, the salt is generally incorporated 5 minutes before the end of the mixing stage whenever processing involves intensive mixing. Having understood that salt plays an antioxidant role, the baker today uses fine table salt and delays its addition to encourage the maximum level of oxidation and bleaching. In addition, it should also be pointed out that the absence of salt tends to facilitate the forming of gluten bonds at the beginning of dough formation. This delayed salt method results in a slight improvement in dough strength, but there is also such a great decline in the quality in the taste of bread produced by this method that it might be considered a general disaster. This effect has in the past led me to refer to it as a practice which most certainly has the effect of ‘washing out’ the dough.” A cursory reading of the paragraph might lead the reader to think that Professor Calvel favors the delayed salt method, whereas in actual fact he is adamantly opposed to it.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    In the recipes throughout this book, Professor Calvel has generally used the higher 2% level.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Flavor-producing results of the baking process include the caramelization of crust sugars and the Maillard browning reaction (a browning of the protein in flour due to heat and enzymatic action).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    These ambient yeasts are found not only in the atmosphere but on the surface of grain, and thus are found in flour itself.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Professor Calvel almost certainly means that the relative humidity is elevated because of the presence of the river.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Ambient yeasts include both airborne and surface-borne microflora as noted above. Some of this spontaneous fermentation is certainly due to yeasts already present in the flour, rather than inoculation from the air. It should be noted that the dough used in the Chopin alveograph tests do not contain any added yeast but may contain ambient microflora of many types.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Raymond Calvel

There are no affiliations available

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