The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

My bucket list

nampafarmgirl's picture

My bucket list

Hello all, Happy New Year,
I am new to making bread, obviously. I am a dabbler. I love to try anything and everything. I am really interested in living a self sustainable lifestyle. I have raised pigs, goats, chickens (both layer and meat), turkeys and this spring will try lambs. I also love to craft that would include sewing, quilting, rug hooking, (yes, I am a hooker, lol), I weld and am new to scrapbooking.

On my 2013 bucket list, I want to learn to make bread. My favorite is sourdough, I am originally from the San Fransisco, California area, moved to Idaho 8 years ago and I really miss the SF sourdough. I have found a few places to purchase the starter but I am still a little lost.

Hy HB bought me a grain miller for my kitchenaid mixer for Christmas and am anxious on using it.

I guess I should start with "What flour(s) do I need to mill for sourdough? Fortunatley, I am not gluten intolerant. I have a Whole Foods, Natural Grocers and a Huckelberry's near me. I think Trader Joe's is on the area radar as well.

I would appreciate any info anyone is interested in giving me, :)

pmccool's picture

about which grain you feed them.  So, what kind of bread do you want to eat?  

A word of caution about the grain mill attachment for the KA: be careful not to overload your machine.  While I don't have that attachment and can't speak from first-hand experience, posts that I have read indicate that you will need to mill the grain in 2 or 3 passes, starting with a coarse setting and finishing with a fine setting.  Feel the motor housing of your KA frequently to detect whether or not it starts overheating; if it is getting hot, turn it off and give it time to cool down before resuming grinding.

There is a lot of information here on TFL from various home millers.  You may find it beneficial to read their blogs.  I would point you to PiPs, bwraith, proth5, Janetcook, or others.  You can also find a lot with the Search tool at the upper left-hand corner of the page.  Type in milling or home milling as search terms and you will get a lot of hits.

Have fun!


nampafarmgirl's picture

Hi Paul,
Thank you for the welcome and the info about my mixer. I wonder if it makes a differnece in the artisan or the professional. I have the professional. I'll let you know.

I would like to start with a sour dough with a crunchy brown crust and soft center. I dont know if its called anything other than sour dough, see how new I am?

Just as I am responding to you, I see a pix to the right of the screen showing a country sourdough and a san joaquin sourdough, who knew? lol.


MangoChutney's picture

You will need at least some flour with gluten in order to make bread with a decent rise.  That is either wheat or rye, and the type of loaf you get will depend on which of those you use as the primary grain.  100% rye bread is an altogether different beast from 100% wheat bread.  Some people strongly prefer one over the other.  I would suggest starting with 100% wheat at the beginning because the bread will be more like what you can buy in the store, unless you really prefer dark rye bread.  If you do prefer dark rye bread, then you are probably better off starting with rye flour and learning the techniques for that type of bread right away.

Of the wheats, hard spring wheat has the most gluten.  Using that wheat for part of the flour gives you some leeway to add other, lower-gluten, grains to the bread for flavor or variety once you have learned to make bread.  For instance, it is possible to add some rye flour to your wheat flour and get some rye flavor while still having a wheat type of loaf.  Other grains that you can add are barley and oats.  These have even less gluten than rye.  You can also try some older varieties of grain in the wheat family.

Hard winter wheat is also good for making bread, but has less gluten than hard spring wheat so it cannot balance out quite as much low-gluten flour. 

Soft wheats make cake flours.  You don't want them for making bread.

Wheat comes in both red and white strains.  Red wheat is the traditional wheat berry.  White wheat is a strain which is identical to red except for lacking most of the tannins.  This makes the bread less bitter, and causes the bread to look more like that made from refined flour.  This can be important when making bread for fussy children or timid spouses.

pinoy_panadero's picture

greetings from manila! i'm planning to raise my own chickens and maybe some wild boar later this year. i know this is a bread forum, but do you have any tips? haha..

happy new year and happy baking!