ETA: The 2nd version, with sourdough, would be considered the ‘best’ of the bunch. I like the first version.
I’ve made ‘baguettes’ before using regular bread dough, and even sourdough, but the attempts didn’t really conform to the traditional recipe (no sugar, just yeast or starter, flour, water and salt) and shaping of the real thing. I wanted to join a recent sourdough French baguette event on a FB group I belong to but didn’t have any active starter as it’s been either frozen or dried.
An attempt to thaw and build up some of my first sourdough starter from the freezer was a failure as I rushed things and overfed the small amount of live yeast in the frozen starter. I ended up adding some of the failed starter to a regular yeast bread recipe because I didn’t want to waste the flour. I even made a “lame” with a razor blade (package of 5 for $4) and a bamboo skewer so I could I could do proper slashes. I rehydrated some dried starter for the second try.
Comparison between the two baguette trials … the baguette on the left of the picture (yeast one) was pulled from the freezer so it looks a bit shriveled.
French baguette Trial #1 – yeast (plus failed starter from the freezer so as not to waste the flour). I used Kat’s French bread recipe from FB as a base but omitted the Vital wheat gluten.
The slashes opened up during baking but the placement was a bit off.
French baguette Trial #2 – sourdough using the recipe here and referring to the YouTube video for shaping
Crumb of the yeast (left) and the sourdough (right) baguettes