One of my customers requested a baguette with hazelnuts and golden raisins. After several trials, this is the end result. My first dough was a basic baguette dough with pre-soaked golden raisins and chopped, toasted hazelnuts. It didn't pack the flavor punch I was hoping for. Next, I ground a portion of the nuts and introduced them to the dough in the very beginning of the mix. I could be making this up, but I think the heat generated during the mixing process helps to pull all the oils out of the ground nuts which imparts more flavor into the dough.
I was much happier with the results after adding the ground hazelnuts but the formula still wasn't quite where I wanted it to be. I switched from a white poolish to a wheat poolish to add even more nuttiness and texture to the dough. I also soaked the golden raisins in apricot juice to add more complexity and sweetness to the bread.
The golden raisins disappear into the dough. Normally, I would want to see them when I cut into the baguette but I like that, through the soaking process, they plump up and burst apart during mixing. This helps distribute the flavor and it keeps the bread super moist.
The baguette tastes like an upscale peanut butter and jelly sandwich. The grape flavor from the juicy raisins is the first taste, followed by the earthy, nutty crunch of the toasted hazelnuts. I drizzled honey on my baguette for breakfast this morning. It would also be the perfect addition to a cheese plate and it would make an ultra-classy turkey sandwich.
If you're wondering why there's a stick in the photo, it's because my 3 year old woke during my photo shoot and insisted I take a picture with the stick she brought home from the park yesterday. How could I turn down that request?!?
After the stick entered the photo, I thought it would be fun to get Josie's help getting one last shot of the whole baguette. So, in addition to the stick, here are two of the cutest, most helpful, three year old hands in the baking business!
If you have any questions about my breads or if you would like the complete recipe for Hazelnut Raisin Baguettes, please email me.
This post is being submitted to YeastSpotting!