Multi-grain w/Harvest Grain Soaker & Beer
I love the rich nutty flavor beer adds to a sourdough especially when there is a good hearty mix of whole grain flours and add-ins.
For this loaf I wanted a good hearty bread so I used some fresh milled spelt and hard white winter wheat in the starter along with some KAF French style flour and for the main dough I made a soaker with KAF Harvest Grains. The Harvest Grains contain oat berries, rye flakes, millet, wheat flakes, poppy seeds, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds. I let this soak in hot water overnight and drained the excess water before adding it to the final dough. I counted the water that was absorbed in the hydration of the dough.
The main dough contains more French style flour along with spelt, hard white winter wheat (freshly milled) and some potato flour.
In the end this came out great with a nice deep nutty flavor with a bit of sweetness even though there is no sugar of any kind added. I really love what the soaker added to this bake. The bread just smells fantastic and this one is perfect for sandwiches or a good soup or stew.
Mix all the Levain ingredients together for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap. Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled. I usually do this the night before.
Either use in the main dough immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 day before using.
Pour the boiling water over the Soaker ingredients and stir. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit 7-8 hours at room temperature. When ready to use drain excess water and add per directions below.
Main Dough Procedure
Mix the flours, soaker and beer together in your mixer or by hand until it just starts to come together, maybe about 1 minute. Let it rest in your work bowl covered for 20-30 minutes. Next add the salt, starter (cut into about 7-8 pieces), and mix on low for 3 minutes. Mix on medium for another 3 minutes and then remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds. Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold. Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold. After a total of 2 hours place your covered bowl in the refrigerator and let it rest for 12 to 24 hours.
When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1.5 to 2 hours. Remove the dough and shape as desired. I made 1 large boule shape. Place your dough into your proofing basket(s) and cover with a moist tea towel or plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray. The dough will take 1.5 to 2 hours depending on your room temperature. Let the dough dictate when it is read to bake not the clock.
Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 550 degrees F. and prepare it for steam. I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf. I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.
Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, score as desired and then add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.
After 1 minute lower the temperature to 500 degrees and after another 3 minutes lower it to 450 degrees. Bake for 35-50 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 210 degrees.
Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.