The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

70% Whole Wheat Bread with 100% Poolish

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Bob S.'s picture
Bob S.

70% Whole Wheat Bread with 100% Poolish

 The preferment for this loaf contained 100% of the water and yeast, as well as 1/4 of the total salt. The malt extracts contained in the malted milk powder supplied the necessary diastatic action to sustain the yeast during the long preferment stage. Here is the formula:

70% Whole Wheat Flour
70% Water
5% Malted Milk Powder
2% Vital Wheat Gluten
0.6% Instant Dry Yeast
0.5% Salt
0.18% Soy Lecithin Granules

The photo below shows the sponge after 8 hours of fermentation.

30% Bread Flour
2.8% Shortening
3.5% Sugar
1.5% Salt

The poolish was fermented for 8 hours at 75°F (24°C). This should be long enough for the enzyme phytase to hydrolyze most of the phytic acid content of the whole wheat flour into inositol and orthophosphoric acid. Even after 8 hours, the poolish had not yet reached the “drop”, so the fermentation time might be extended. There was a 1.8% fermentation loss during the sponge stage.

The ripened poolish was re-mixed with the dough ingredients using a KitchenAid K5SS stand mixer equipped with a spiral dough hook. Total mixing time was 5½ minutes, with the first two minutes at low speed and the remainder at speed setting #2. After a short rest of about 10 minutes, the dough was panned. Proofing and baking proceeded normally.

Mebake's picture

Lovely panned whole wheat bread, Bob. 

Interesting, i've never heard of malted milk powder. Why have you chosen shortening over, say, butter? 

Happy baking,



Bob S.'s picture
Bob S.

Malted milk powder has been around a long time in the US, but it does not seem to have had much international distribution. It is mostly added to fresh milk or a mixture of milk and ice cream (a "malted milk shake") to impart a pronounced malty flavor. When used in bread baking, it supplies malt enzyme extracts and powdered whole milk.

Butter does have shortening power, but it is used in baking mostly for flavor. Shortening, on the other hand, is bland, but promotes a softer crumb and better keeping qualities. The small amount of lecithin in the formula increases the effectiveness of shortening.


Antilope's picture

but I used malted milk powder and diastatic malt flour (didn't have any lecithin so I added the diastatic malt). What brand of malted milk powder do you use?

Bob S.'s picture
Bob S.

I use Carnation (Nestle) malted milk powder. The first ingredients listed on the package are wheat and barley malt extracts, followed by powdered milk. There is no sugar added, but lactose is present in the milk. The first ingredient listed in Ovaltine is sugar, so I avoid it.

The function of lecithin is to act as an emulsifier. It imparts a much drier feel to the dough as it is being handled, along with other benefits such as a more uniform crumb and better loaf loaf symmetry.

Antilope's picture

Our local WalMart carries the Carnation (Nestle) malted milk powder. For anyone that want to try this, don't buy the chocolate flavor. I have to get some lecithin.

dabrownman's picture

getting pretty close to WW Wonder Bread which is a real compliment.  Well done and

Happy  Baking

Antilope's picture

I've just made my third loaf from this recipe. It's now my go to recipe for light wheat bread.