The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

French style flour from King Arthur

holds99's picture

Has anyone had any experience baking with King Arthur (KA) French style flour?  I ordered and received a few 3 lb. bags and have been using it to make baguettes (using the poolish and scrap dough method).  I haven't had as much success with this flour as I have had with KA all-pupose flour.  With the KA French style flour the baguettes don't seem to get enough good oven spring and the crust is hard, despite using steam in the oven at the onset of baking.  The interior of the loaves are a bit tacky (the texture of the interior/crumb is slightly damp and tacky, similar to what happens when malt powder is added to the flour mixture, but I'm not using any malt powder).  I also scored them and baked them until they were golden brown, 20-25 minutes.  After several attempts at baguettes; making the dough wetter, being careful not to deflate the dough any more than necessary during shaping, etc.  I went back and read the labels on both the KA French style and KA all-purpose flours and found that the KA French style flour has only 3g of protein per 30g or 10%, whereas, the KA all-purpose flour has 4g of protein per 30g or 13%.  My understanding is that a minimum of 11%-11 1/2% protein is needed to make good baguettes, boules, etc. when using pre-ferment.  My assumption is that protein translates into gluten during the mixing process, right?  Anyway, I sure would appreciate hearing from anyone who has had experience with KA French style flour---or if you could recommend a better flour other than KA all-purpose (if there is one) for making baguettes.



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