The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Are my Wheat Berries Sprouted or DROWNED??

  • Pin It
tessa's picture
tessa

Are my Wheat Berries Sprouted or DROWNED??

I have a bread baking blog where I posted some information about sprouting wheat berries at home, then dehyrdating them and grinding them to bake bread.  I posted a topic called WHY SPROUTED WHEAT?


http://valeriejaquith.blogspot.com/2009/10/why-sprouted-flour.html#comments


Someone posted a comment to my topic saying that there was a good chance that my berries where in fact DROWNED and not sprouted!  Here is an excerpt from that posted comment:  "...and of utmost importance, they conduct the falling number test to determine that the grain has been sprouted and not drown...all steps that cannot be done in a home operation. Based on convention wisdom about how to sprout grains, most of the grain is being drown and not sprouted"


I conducted a test to see how many of my sprouts had actually sprouted and to see if any of the berries did not sprout, indicating that they are drowned I suppose.  I could only find a few berries that may not have sprouted after 24 hours of sprouting following a 10 hour soak.  Here is the photo of the sprouts:



I plan on waiting another 24 hours to see if the berries that are questionable did develop a full blown sprout.


Can anyone provide me with some more information on this topic?   

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

People have been sprouting grains at home with great success much longer than your comment maker has been alive. 


Your sprouted grains look perfect to me,


Jeff

tessa's picture
tessa

Thank you Jeff for the reply.. That is what I thought.  I appreciate the feedback. 


 

Ryeblossom's picture
Ryeblossom

From the little experience I have and from what I read about sprouting, I can tell you it can be done safely at home, surely with wheat berries. Make sure the berries are not moldy, get them from a good source, make sure to sprout in a clean environment and clean utensils, and you should be fine. 


It's not so good to put them in the refrigerator, unless you intend on using them within 2-3 days, as mold like the refrigerator better than the freezer...


It's said the sprout is ready when it's the length of the seed/berry/legume, but I like it a bit longer.


Here's a good link: http://chetday.com/sprouts.html 

tessa's picture
tessa

In this photo I am just sprouting the grains to see how many where able to grow into plants.  When I sprout for bread flour I just sprout for about 10 hours until just a tiny bud appears on the grains.   Then I dehyrdate them and store them in a bag in the fridg.


I have concerns about storing the dehyrdating grains the freezer though, I used to store them in the freezer in a ziplock bag.  When I pulled the bag out of the freezer condensation instantly formed on and inside the bag.  I was concerned that this condensation would form ice crystals on each grains and the inside of the bag upon returning the bag to the freezer. 


So I switched to the refridgerator for my dehydrated sprouts.  ??

flourgirl51's picture
flourgirl51

Your grains are sprouted. Your sprout tails could be even shorte and still be considered sprouted.

tessa's picture
tessa

When I sprout to make sprouted bread flour I only sprout them until I can just barely see the sprout.  It takes on average 10 hours.  Then I dehydrate them. 


I sprouted these longer in the photo so I could tell if they were "drowned" and not sprouting.  The commenter on my blog told me that the little sprout I was seeing on the grains I am sprouting for dehyrdating was actually the endosperm bulging out and not a sprout.  Obviously he was wrong.


Thanks for the reply.

jannrn's picture
jannrn

I LOVE the idea of sprouting your own grains and dehydrating them, then grinding them into flour. Is there a good sourse to find out just how to go about all this?? Is there a certain length the sprouts should be?? Is it hard to do this and how do you dehydrate them?? WHAT A GREAT RESULT!! Seems to me that your "commenter" has proven, as we say in the south, "Opinions are like behinds....ours are the only ones we are entitled to and they all stink." It would appear that you have proven your commenter very wrong!!

inlovewbread's picture
inlovewbread

Hi Tessa,


I just wanted to let you know that you've inspired me to start this sprouting thing! I actually have my hard red and hard white wheat berries sprouted as we speak and tomorrow I will be dehydrating them.


Thanks for the write up you did (from the link you provided above). I found a lot of really helpful information there regarding this topic. 


I can't wait to try the Reinhart's sprouted wheat bread! 


Thanks again- results to follow....

tessa's picture
tessa

Good luck with the endeavor - please post your results at some point and send me a note!  It feels good to inspire!  Also, I think that sprouted flours are goings to be coming on stronger and stronger as people realize how nutritionally beneficial it is to go the extra mile! 


With the cost of sprouted flour WAY out of our budget I am happy to devote the effort and time to producting such a nutrious food!   Besides, I have a motto these days about processing my own food from raw ingedients, I call it


NO BAR CODES!  :) best regards! 


 

flourgirl51's picture
flourgirl51

I just sent you a message regarding this.

katecollins's picture
katecollins

The answer to your question is - you can't tell.  A lot of your grain has sprouted but a few kernels look like the endosprem has protruded - the result of drowning.  You can't tell unless you let every last grain sprout a tail.  Protruded endosperm doesn't sprout. 


Yes, people have been soaking and sprouting grain for thousands of years and it is not likely that anyone is going to get sick from a bit of drown grain.  But you don't get the nutritional benefits if the grain is not sprouted.


I used to sprout, dry and mill my own grain until my life became to busy in other areas.  I did a lot of checking and found that the Essential Eating sprouted flour is the best way to go.  They test to assure the grain has been sprouted.  I like that they seem to care about the process. It's what I use until I once again have the time. 

sprouted bread baker's picture
sprouted bread baker

Sorry, what these people at essential eating are claiming about "drowned" wheat is simply not true. You want to prove it? Continue to allow your sprouted wheat berries to grow - keeping them moist - spritzing is best - and you will have wheat grass - as thick as your lawn. It does not take any special scientific research lab to figure this out - anyone can and should sprout their wheat to make a healthy, wholesome bread and for people at essential eating to "claim" that their flour is the "only" truly nutritious sprouted flour is not only not true, it's wrong and they need to tout their flour as a great easily available choice but don't go around telling home bakers that their wheat berries are drowned. 


signed,


 


baker


columbia county bread and granola


www.columbiacountybread.com


 


 


 


 

sprouted bread baker's picture
sprouted bread baker

And if you're interested, please check this out...


 


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/22011/calling-all-sprouted-wheat-bread-bakers

sprouted bread baker's picture
sprouted bread baker

And if you're interested, please check this out...


 


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/22011/calling-all-sprouted-wheat-bread-bakers

CClaire's picture
CClaire

Hold your sprouted berry horses!  What I can't figure out is that now that we finally have an artisan producer of great organic sprouted whole grain flour why is anyone in our baking community bashing them for doing so?  


I use the Essential Eating sprouted flours and they are amazing.  They don't say that you can't sprout at home.  But as an artisan producer, they can assure me the customer that the steps they are taking consistently make the claims that we all want for our flours. I cannot do that in my kitchen. So all I have to say for Essential Eating is sprout on!


 

sprouted bread baker's picture
sprouted bread baker

they make a very good product - no argument there - and you're right, they don't say you CAN'T sprout wheat berries at home but what they do say is that if you don't buy their product, you are drowning your wheat berries, not getting the benefit of sprouting, etc., etc. This is misinformation, no, let me rephrase that, that's out and out false information, and if it discourages one person from attempting a better bread through sprouting it's not helpful.


baker


columbiacountybread.com


 

Caltrain's picture
Caltrain

Am I the only one curious as to why essential eating, whose registrant is located near Scranton, PA, is about an hour drive away from columbiacountybread, also in PA? I mean, that's gotta be in the same farmer's market circuit, right?


Is there some kind of cut-throat sprouted flour industry there or something?


@tessa: Sorry for the threadjack, but it looks like this thread is starting to take a life of its own. If it helps, I think your sprouts looks great. :P

sprouted bread baker's picture
sprouted bread baker

I've talked to the folks at essential eating and I heard the same thing that they tell everyone on every post pertaining to sprouted wheat breads - you're not sprouting, you're drowning the wheat. And, therefore, if you want the full benefit of sprouting, you have to buy our product. Well, sure, theirs is a great product but I'm highly skeptical of anyone who says our way or the highway. And I am especially offended if they put people off to the whole idea of sprouting because (according to them) maybe they're doing something wrong. The fact is, sprouting is easy. Making bread from sprouted wheat is a challenge. That's why I want to gather together sprouted wheat bread bakers and enthusiasts from all over the USA and England.... Let's hear everyone's ideas, let's share experiences and knowledge. I've been baking sprouted wheat bread for ten years and I know what a challenge it is but I've learned a lot in those ten years and continue to learn. 


If this sounds like a good idea then contact me. Maybe essential eating will show up and make their case. Or maybe they'll try to denigrate a sprouted grain baker's conference because it isn't about promoting one company's product over another. We'll see.


baker


columbiacountybread.com


 


 

CClaire's picture
CClaire

The amazing part about sprouted flours from Essential Eating is that for every one of my recipes I substitute it one for one for my all-purpose or whole grain flours and it works beautifully.  No challenge.  Just great baking.


When and where is your sprouted baking gathering?  Maybe someone should invite Essential Eating.  They have a Lifestyle and Cooking School at Lackawanna College in Scranton, PA so it appears that they are into sharing their knowledge.


 


 


 


 


 


 


 

hanseata's picture
hanseata

The idea that you drown your wheat or other whole grain berries when you dare to try to do it at home, instead of buying a ready made product, sounds like a clever sales pitch too me. I baked Sprouted Spelt Bread (Peter Reinhart's WGB recipe for Sprouted Wheat Bread) and, also, Schwarzbrot with sprouted rye instead of just soaked berries (due to very warm temperatures).


Those berries had definitely sprouted, showing nice little tails (in case of the rye even longer sprouts) -  and the breads tasted great!



Sprouted Spelt Bread


Karin

sprouted bread baker's picture
sprouted bread baker

Wow - beautiful loaf - rose nicely - held its shape and perfectly scored. Congratulations! Can you offer more details on your process - proofing, oven temp, any dough enhancers, flour, honey, etc.? Also, sprouting spelt has always been much harder for me, the grain's husk is so tough. Any particular trick in getting it to sprout?


 

hanseata's picture
hanseata

Thanks!


I looked at my notes and the original recipe from "Whole Grain Breads".


Here's the link to my version of the recipe:


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/22148/sprouted-spelt-bread-variation-wgb-recipe


The spelt kernels sprouted without problem, it was summer and rather warm in my kitchen. And yes, I used a bit of vital wheat gluten. Though I usually reduce the sweetener in Peter Reinhart's recipes I didn't have to do it for this one.


I added a bit of coriander - it goes well with spelt.


Karin