Does anyone use barley malt in their breads? If so what does it do for flavor?
when they are required by the recipe. Barley malt syrup for bagels inside the dough and in the boiling water. Also use it in pumpernickel and rye breads. All used for color of the crust and sweetness to the crumb. I also make and use red dry malt for color of the crumb and crust. White malt is used for sweetness and to add extra enzymes to the dough that break down protein bonds to convert them to sugars that yeast and Labs can eat - great for releasing enough food for very long retards.
There are lots of other reasons to use malts that other folks will point out. Malts are on if the great bread additives.
This is what Bob's Red Mill says about their malted barley flour:
"Malted Barley Flour, also known as Diastatic Malt, improves the flavor and appearance of yeast breads. Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon for every 3 cups of flour in your favorite bread recipe to give the loaves a slightly sweet flavor and moist texture. Malted Barley Flour also prolongs the shelf life of baked goods."
I use a little(very tiny amount) in virtually all of my breads.
i put 3 - 5 g each fo red and white malt in just about every bread I make.
...in baguettes. Its amylase enzyme makes more sugar available to the yeast for proofing and oven spring, and residual sugars to increase crust browning. I use 1 tsp. for each 375g (~3 cups) of flour. The baguettes' narrow shape, and smaller dough mass, requires less baking time than a boule or batard, reducing time for browning in comparison to other bread shapes. We like a thin, but well browned crust on baguettes.
I use hopped malt barley extract, more commonly known as beer kits. The hops are a bit bitter, so I only add a touch to dough and use honey for the rest of the sweetener, when required.
Not barley malt, but diastatic malt. The enzymes convert the starch to sugars which the yeast loves.
I've begun using my own homemade diastatic malt in my loaves. It's exactly what one purchases from KAF and Bob RM. My first result was pretty phenominal in my fresh ground hard white whole wheat loaves (still experimental) so I'm sold on it. My wife is picky, but she proclaimed these loaves as being very good. I'm still working on the recipe though.
Diastatic malt doesn't just come from barley, but that's what most folks think of because it's used in brewing.
I make mine by sprouting the wheat berries (soft wheat this time), then dehydrate them at low temperature so as not to deactivate the enzymes, and then grind into flour. It takes time but it's not difficult. The sprouts are ready for drying when the sprouts average about the same length as the berry itself.
Right now I have rye sprouting for use in rye bread. To me it just makes sense to use rye for diastatic malt in rye bread.
Here's a bit more information about making homemade diastatic malt and a recipe: http://www.dryit.com/diastaticmalt.html
Edit: corrected sprout length
Diastatic Malt was my next experiment on my whole grains adventure. Wasn't sure which would be better, Barley Malt flour (from BRM) or Diastatic Malt powder. I had a concern with the dextrose added to the powder.
Thanks for posting that link BBQ!
I've been sprouting and grinding my own malt flour like BBQinMaine. I've been doing a 19:1 ratio of plain wheat to sprouted wheat, which sounds like it's a lot more than the 1 tsp per 3 cups flour. I always let that flour soak a while to make sure the enzymes get some work in. I notice the difference drastically - a malt-free loaf looks pale and unappetizing compared to a malt loaf. I haven't noticed a difference in flavor particularly, but the malted loaves always look amazing.
I add Ovaltine Original Malt powder or Nestle-Carnation Original Malt powder (not the chocolate flavor) to white and whole grain sandwich breads. It adds a nice flavor note. Two or three tablespoons to a 1 1/2 lb loaf.