Tight grain and crumbly bread from Peter Reinharts Whole Grain Bread Recipes
I am a novice baker. I started with a couple of no-knead style recipes and my wife recently bought me Peter Reinhart's "Whole Grain Breads". I am finding that with the WGB recipes the bread tastes great, but the crumb is very tight, and is crumbly when cutting. I know that I won't get the open crumb of an all white flour loaf, but I feel like I am doing it wrong. I have also noticed that I have to stir longer than the one minute suggested, and I am also having to knead much longer than the 2/3 minutes plus a minute after rest to get some a decent window pane, which still is barely making a window before tearing. I am kneading more like 10 minutes or more to even start. One thing I will note is that I am in Denver, CO so I am not sure how much the altitude and the dryness is affecting my results. I have had a little better luck with the transitional recipes than the 100% whole wheat, but still doesn't look anything like the pictures ;)
I think my technique for kneading isn't the best. I am mostly just mashing and folding. I have seen a couple of videos that explain the virtues of the french fold, and other very little kneading required techniques. I haven't tried them because I am not sure how the fit into the normal flow of the WGB style recipes. I would appreciate any feedback or knowledge about ways that I can make my bread a little more open and less crumbly.