Voodoo Chile

crust 001 small“2 teaspoons active dried yeast
¼ cup warm water
4 cups plus 1 tablespoon bread flour
¾ cup plus ½ cup polenta
1 cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
1¾ teaspoons kosher salt
1 can (15 ounces) yellow corn kernels with liquid
1 egg
½ cup buttermilk
¼ cup dark unsulfured molasses
1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped
1 pound orange Cheddar cheese cut into ¾ inch cubes”

Stick that in your spreadsheet calculator. If its citizens can negotiate a recipe like this one it’s not surprising America is the most powerful nation on Earth.

So your first task is to convert the recipe into grams. When you’ve done that, convert it to sourdough.

Chef Gert said he was cooking New Orleans this week and when I asked what he had in mind he had a think and said “chile”. I wasn’t feeling terribly inspired but, rereading one of my favourite bread books, “The Cheese Board Collective Works” on the train to Birmingham I came across their Corn Onion Cheddar Bread. No it doesn’t contain chile but I thought it would go well in the mix.

I know I shouldn’t do it but I often bake an untested recipe for sale. I reduced the amount of cheese and substituted (for five large loaves) two jars of jalapenos (200g) and a scotch bonnet, spring onions for yellow onion and treacle for molasses. “Don’t be alarmed by the stickiness of the dough” the book warned. But to achieve anything vaguely alarming I had to add an additional 700g liquid – could be my maths, who knows.
dough 002 smallI can’t say it looked or felt promising until it came out of the oven.
fold 002 smallbasket 001 smallproved 001 smallBefore and after proving. Can you see much difference?
slashed smalltray 001 smallReally messy but noticeably bread. And the flavour …… . I’m reduced to licking my lips.
baked 001 smallDid I get a withering look from Sue when I explained that “Voodoo Chile” is a pun …

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5 thoughts on “Voodoo Chile

    1. Not if you’ve always pronounced “Voodoo Chile” as “Voodoo Chili”. We do hope you are familiar with the Gil Evans version with the tuba taking the Jimi Hendrix guitar part.

  1. So now that you’ve converted the recipe, would you mind sharing the converted version (pleeeeeease) to save my lazy bones from having to do it too. Looks fabulous!

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