Cold-Risen Mini Baguettes


Crumble the yeast into the water and stir until it has all dissolved.

Add the remaining ingredients and blend into a dough with the aid of a food processor for 8-12 minutes at low to middle speed. Stop once the dough is smooth and elastic.

You can also knead the dough by hand but it will take much longer, as the dough must be smooth and elastic. The dough ought to feel a little soft/moist, and it is important not to give into the temptation of adding more flour to it.

Place the dough in the fridge in a bowl for a minimum of 10-12 hours covered in cling film. This ‘resting period’ is important, as it helps the yeast and the flour in the dough to develop a good bready taste. If it fits better with the rest of your schedule, the dough can be left in the fridge for up to 24 hours.

Once it has sufficiently rested, take the dough out of the fridge and let it sit for about an hour on the kitchen table until it returns to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 250°C (fan-assisted) and place a baking pan at the bottom of the oven. Dust the table with durum wheat flour and carefully stretch out the dough into a long form. Cut the form into 4 mini baguettes. Being careful not to need the dough, place the 4 baguettes onto 2 baking sheets lined with greaseproof paper and leave to rise for a little longer.

Give each of the baguettes 3-4 cuts across the top with a very sharp knife/razor blade before placing them in the oven for 5 minutes at 250°C (fan-assisted) and a further 8-12 minutes at 200°C (fan-assisted).

It helps to ‘throw’ 2-3 tablespoons of water into the baking pan sitting at the bottom of the oven when you put the baguettes in, as the steam helps to keep the surface of the bread moist and elastic for longer, allowing the bread to develop a little more.

If you have a pizza stone, this is great for baking baguettes on.

The bread can be stored in the freezer and simply removed ½-1 hour before you need to use it and heated up in the oven at a very high heat (250°C).