Well, I’m not an accomplished bread baker by any stretch of the imagination. I simply enjoy it, especially focaccia because we can’t easily get good ones where we live.
Actually the one thing that has helped me the most so far is using my Thermapen to make sure that the water for dissolving the yeast is at the right temperature. I find it’s too hard for me to judge the water temp correctly otherwise.
Now I’m mostly taking a break from all baking to enjoy the summer. Not a baking technique but I endorse it anyway. Because fun.
Hmm. Might you be overthinking it? I only do simple breads such as white, wheat, Challah, biscuits, dinner rolls, once hamburger rolls. I just follow the directions and it comes out. I’m thinking about branching into sourdough but that seems another branch of chemistry.
Same. I am baking challenged, and those baguettes turn out heavenly every time. @Respectfully_Declined, you should absolutely try these once. I’ve tried baking many different things over the years, and they all turned out so-so to awful, but these were perfect the first time and every time.
Kenji is the heart and soul of seriouseats.com. (Alert: Don’t read this @Auspicious). His recipes are thoroughly tested, and mostly well reproducible. I suggest you read the article: Kenji’s No-Knead Bread, revisited
I’ve made the low-knead version a couple of times now, given some to friends, and everyone loved it. It’s really not difficult, and it will help you build up confidence.
I’m baking so much and it can be hard to measure the things. It’s disappointing when you spend the whole day on the cupcakes and due to the wrong proportions, you messed up everything.
Thermapen is trustworthy.
Before that, I used to check the weight with the help of my board. I divided it into three or four parts and measured the number of chopped ingredients.