The Fresh Loaf

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Whole wheat holes

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JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Whole wheat holes


Well, I had mixed success with TomsBread's method. I mixed 450 grams of whole wheat flour with 388 grams of water (85% hydration) and just a pinch of yeast. I put it in the beer-cooler incubator at 85 degrees F for 3 hours, and than popped it in the fridge for about 15 hours. I then pulled it out, let it warm at 85 degrees for an hour, and tried my best to mix in 1 tsp yeast and 9 grams of salt. Wasn't easy, though, because the dough was very well developed by this point.

I then did a stretch and fold every half hour for a total of three, shaped it and let it rise for about 90 minutes. I forgot to slash the loaf, but I baked it in the cloche at 500 degrees for about 45-50 minutes, with 30 of those minutes covered.

The bread tastes great -- wheaty, sweet, a buttery after-taste with very little dry, bitter bran flavor. The texture is weird, though, which probably comes from my not mixing the yeast up well enough. Big holes in places with very dense sections elsewhere. "Fault lines" where the bread easily splits apart, as you can see on the lower left. I imagine thats from a layer of yeast that didn't get mixed. But I did learn that big (or moderately big) holes are possible and that 85% hydration doesn't have to mean flat bread. Next time, I think I'll try a combo of pain a l'ancienne with the NYT / Sullivan St. Bakery method. Mix up the full dough with cold ingredients and just 1/4 tsp of yeast. Pop it in the fridge for 12 hours or so. Then, pull it out, do three stretch and folds once per 45 minutes to an hour, shape and let it rise. Slowly.

Maybe I'll try it this weekend. If I do, I'll post how it went.

Comments

Srishti's picture
Srishti

Great job, JMonkey!!!

Those holes are nice, I'd try to shoot for that next time I bake :)

Thanks

Srishti

tomsbread's picture
tomsbread

Hi JMonkey,

The process you describe is pretty much the same that I use. I have to mention that the way I added the yeast was to sprinkle bit by bit onto the dough and fold the dough over it as I rotate the mixing bowl. It probably takes quite a few folds before all the yeast is incorporated. Same way for salt. I believe Charles Perry from Carl's Friends described this in r.f.s. I pre-heat my oven at 275C for an hour and my oven has pretty good heat mass because I have a thick slab of granite. Was your cloche preheated? I am asking this question because the 'wetting angle' of your bread may indicate insufficient bottom heat. Did you get a good crust at the bottom? I cannot make it out from the picture.

The term 'wetting angle' is incongruous to bread making but I use the term to illustrate the shape that arises from oven spring. You can see what I mean from the diagrams

http://www.fys.uio.no/~eaker/thesis/node9.html

What I say above is just my speculation and the reasons for the difference in results are many and I am unable to pin point the cause. I faced a similar situation situation when I first started baking breads from BBA and Hamelman. I was not able to achieve the results as shown in the books. After endless failures, I realised that the ingredients, equipment and ambient conditions for the authors may be greatly different from mine. Climatic differences can be a major factor. I live 1 deg North of the equator on a tiny island of about 600 square miles and the humidity and heat is almost unbearable. 

Hope you have better luck with the Ancienne/NYT combo process.

Tomsbread

syllymom's picture
syllymom

Ok, so reading this got me thinking of somethng I was doing with the good ole bread machine and whole wheat flour.  (in an aim to get a lighter WW loaf).  I mixed the flour (minus 1/2 a cup) with the liquid which was water and some yoghurt.  The active bacteria in the yoghurt is to assist in breaking down the phylate acid.  I would let this sit overnight and then add the remaining ingredients and start the machine up.  Doing it this way I almost always had lighter WW bread which was great for sandwiches and it had more flavour too.  I forgot about this but now this makes more sense. 

tomsbread's picture
tomsbread

The key to 100% WW is soaking and a sourdough starter works even better. The long slow cool fermentation not only results in a more flavorful bread, the time given to the bran to soften results in a loftier loaf. Stretch and fold with gentle shaping results in the holey crumb.

I have been working on 100% Atta flour. The Atta available here is probably regular stone ground whole wheat from India, not the Durum Atta mentioned in some threads here. The bread below is 100% WW Atta with only salt and a natural leaven. No oil, not even for greasing the bowl.

100% Atta bread

Tomsbread

http://www.angelfire.com/planet/tomsbread/index.htm

titus's picture
titus

Tomsbread:

This is probably a dumb question, but I always have problems when soaking the flour.

If I use the amount of water the recipe calls for with coarse whole wheat flour, the flour doesn't even get damp. I keep adding more water, but by then, the mixture is like soup.

What is the ideal consistency of the presoaked flour? And while I'm adding water, should I wait a few minutes inbetween additions to give the flour a chance to hydrate so it doesn't go to the other extreme and be too wet?

Thanks for any tips.

tomsbread's picture
tomsbread

Hi Titus,

I usually use a 85% hydration for 100% WW bread. The dough will probably be described as slack. I usually add all the water at the same time. It may take some time for the flour to hydrate. I usually leave it aside for over 30 minutes for an autolyse. The salt is then added and the dough is left on the counter for an hour before I put it in the fridge for 12-18 hours depending on my work schedule. I live in a very hot and humid country so my process may differ from bakers in temperate countries but then summer temperatures in these countries may be just as hot although not as humid. In any case, the refrigerator is the baker's savior. I just need to ensure that the dough is not over fermented. After it has doubled, I'd do a stretch and fold and then the usual shape,proof and bake.

Hope this helps

Tomsbread

p.s There is no such thing as a dumb bread question

titus's picture
titus

Thanks, Tomsbread:

Thanks for the advice; I appreciate it!

To clarify something -- are you using this technique for regular whole wheat sandwich loaves?

tomsbread's picture
tomsbread

I am assuming what you mean by sandwich loaves as bread enriched with fat, milk and sweetener. I seldom bake such breads as I prefer lean breads made from flour, water, salt and leaven only. The process is generic and should worked with the addition of other ingredients. I would normally do the autolyse first before I add the other ingrediens.

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Tomsbread, have you ever tried using hot water in the autolyse period? If so what are your thoughts on how it affects the outcome. I have read where some have thought this heat releases some natural sugar in the grain.

Eric

tomsbread's picture
tomsbread

I have never done that before. It is an interesting idea. I watched a food program on TV in which the chef mentioned adding cold water to the dough for steamed dumplings and hot water to the dough for the deep fried ones. Unfortunately, he did not elaborate on the reasons for doing so.

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I have been reading this thread and it looks like jmonkey was trying to convert Tomsbread's method to SD. Did you figure out a way to use a SD levain and a long cold autolyse? Maybe I missed it on a separate thread if so my apologies.

Eric

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

No, alas. I've not done it yet. My idea was actually to use a small amount of yeast and mix it up very cold, like Reinhart's Pain a l'ancienne, and then, after an overnight cold spell, let it rise very slowly like the NYT recipe.

But I've not yet tried it. I hope to, but not sure when.

ehanner's picture
ehanner

From my experience thus far in trying to adapt yeasted formula to SD, it seems to me that the dough always takes on a smoother feel using SD starter. I would say the gluten strands develop better and it feels more like the french bread in that way. I put together a batch of 100 g starter, 400 g ww at 85% hydration, figuring the starter at 60/40 flour/water. I didn't want to use any yeast but alas, I chicken out and after kneading, folding and waiting for 2.5 hours, I tossed in a scant pinch. The plan is to let it sit at room temp until it doubles and then confine it to the refer until tomorrow.

The dough was slack but it felt great after a few s/f's. As it started to develop it was sticky to the point I had to use a scraper to get all in the air for some french folds. I eventually added about 1/3 C of ww flour as I worked it on the counter. It's just barely past sticky and into tacky now. I've never had much luck with the window pain test especially with ww flour but it's starting to feel good.

I'm anxious to see the results of this trial. I really like the simplicity of Tom's method and I have come to enjoy the full flavor of sour dough.

Eric

syllymom's picture
syllymom

So last night I soaked 400gr of WW flour with 300gr of water with some yoghurt mixed in.  This morning I added some salt yeast and one egg and mixed it all together.  It was a very slack dough (slack dough is something new I'm learning and I can't say I'm really all that excited about working with it yet)  Anyway, the rising went really well and oven spring was really nice and now I have great light WW loaf for sandwiches.  Next I'm trying to revive my starter and will give WW sourdough a try.

syllymom's picture
syllymom

Here is the WW loaf that the flour was soaked and a plain white bread beside it.  The WW loaf was lighter than the white this time.

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I had a big day today. First the buns turned out great then the Tomsbread 100% whole wheat total ferment had it's turn in the hot box. We took a vote tonight and all agree this is the best WW bread any of us has ever eaten. Moist and deep flavor with an airy crumb and smooth but sweet after taste. I'll post mt variations (flour combinations) when I have more time. I really enjoyed the elasticity of all that ww flour, didn't think it would do that.

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

That's a gorgeous looking loaf! Nice!

tomsbread's picture
tomsbread

Your description of the taste of 100% WW bread was exactly what I experienced with my first loaf of 100%WW. I'd also add that it has a sweet nutty taste. The so called WW bread sold here in Singapore has only a small percentage of WW flour and the crumb is white with brown specks. Nothing compared to the taste of 100% WW. A friend who operates a small local bakery was surprised that it was possible to make 100% WW bread.

Tomsbread

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Tomsbread,

The taste and texture is a surprise to me also. So much of the WW bread available is dry and tasteless from the stores I didn't really expect much better. It would be totally possible to get the airiness and not have a good taste so, double surprise for me.

In my blend I used 200g of straight Bobs WW, 150g white WW from King Arthur and 50g of Rye flours. To that I added 1 T of Malt powder, 1 T honey and the usual 2% salt. The 100g of sourdough starter was the semi firm variety about 60/40 hydration. I set the hydration at 85% and much of the kneading/stretching/folding was done with a scraper as a helper.

I should have maybe started with a loaf with out my additions and I will in the next day or so but as you pointed out it is a generic recipe.

 The flavor is so much better with whole grains and much better health wise for us, I can't help but believe there will be a demand for this type of product. I'm enjoying a slice at the moment and kicking myself for not making 2 loaves yesterday.

Last night I put together my first attempt at Mimo's Brown Bread from Zolablue. Mostly because of timing I thought I would try slowing down the activity in the refer and the dough was more like 80% when I finished. It's just about ready to bake and looks great.

You sound like a scientist Tomsbread. You are in a great city with lots of resources and activity. I had forgotten how humid it is at the Equator, that must be a challenge for you in bread making. Thanks again for opening my eyes to 100% ferment.

Eric