The Fresh Loaf

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isand66's picture

Kamut-Fresh Milled Flour Sourdough

  I received a Nutrimill for a present from my wife last week....another new toy to play with!  I've ground fresh flour in small batches in my coffee grinder, but it is no comparison to using the Nutrimill.  I have yet to purchase any drum sieves to sift the flour and I definitely want to buy some bulk grains as soon as I can find a good source.

For my first attempt I used whatever I had on-hand which was Kamut, Hard Red Whole Wheat and Hard White Whole Wheat.  I used the Kamut to make the levain and also made a scald with some of the white whole wheat.

I added the scald ingredients to the hydration calculations but I think I did something wrong as I'm coming up with a crazy number for the hydration with add-ins.  The potatoes were calculated at 81% water content which as something to do with it.  In any regards, the dough is a bit on the wet side but the fresh grains really soak up the water, so it's not that hard to handle.

I added the potatoes which I had left-over from making potato pierogies over the holidays and it had cream cheese, butter and milk in them.  This was probably the best tasting pierogies filling I've made to date.

I also used some honey to try to cut some of the bitterness from the whole wheat and made the scald for the same reason.

All in all, for the first loaf made with my milled flour it was very good.  The loaf is very tasty with a moderately open crumb and a nice crust.  I sent one of these off to Arizona as a belated present to Max's friend Lucy and DA.  I hope they enjoy it along with the Orange Shandy Durum Semolina bread.





Levain Directions

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.

Scald Directions

Boil the water in a small sauce pan and add the flour.  Mix until you end up with a paste.  This should take only a minute or two and then you can remove from the heat and let it cool down before using in the main dough.


 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours, and water 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), potatoes, and honey 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.



Capn Dub's picture
Capn Dub

My New Proofer

My daughter gave me a Brod & Taylor proofer for Christmas.  It's the best thing since sliced bread.  Here are a couple of pics of the product:



Ichrisi's picture

Help gluey dough texture?

I can't understand it.  I used to make good bread In my Bosch and with mill. I can't find the common denominator for why my dough just does not work anymore. 

I still live in the same dry place 3000 ft above sea level. I use the mill on medium fine to fine and have used hard red and recently red fife. I have tried a short knead, long knead and hand knead. Does not matter which grain I use, how long I knead, the variety of different recipes I have tried, adding more flour or not. As soon as I add the flour to the liquids and knead for a few minutes it gets stringy and gluey.

It does not shape except very loosely and settles into a flat smooth shape while rising. It rises well but does not form a dome. The finished bread is coarse with a dense base. 


I only use whole grain. My white dough does not do this. 




makebreadnet's picture

Sourdough struggles

Hi All,

I've been reading the Tartine book for a few months and am still struggling a bit with my starter and bread.  Can someone point out what I may be doing wrong?

When I began the starter, it was just living in my kitchen until I had the 'predictable 24 hour cycle' where it would rise and crash and I would feed and purge it.  I then moved the starter to my fridge in order to elongate the 24 hour cycle in to something that fit in to my schedule a little better.

When it comes time to bake, I take out the starter, take some (half-ish?) and feed it with new flour and warm water and put it in a new container in the kitchen.  I feed the other half and put it back in the fridge.  When the new starter is growing well (I'd say it has nearly doubled - maybe 8-12 hours later), I begin the process.

Flour, water, a little salt, and the wild yeast all go in to a bowl according to directions and ... things never seem to happen.  The dough doesn't rise.  It takes on a weird shiny color and smooth texture that gets me excited but it's like the yeast is just dead.  I deal with it...stretch and fold or otherwise manipulate the dough as instructed but don't get any feedback from the yeast. 

Last night after working the dough for a while I decided to fold and shape it.  I put it in a bread basket, covered lightly with plastic wrap, and put it in the fridge for an overnight rise.  It never rose.  This morning I put it in the oven anyway.  The bread kind of exploded as I thought it would and it did spring a little bit, but it's an awkward looking boule that's spewing from its sides. 

I'm guessing that my timing is off.  I likely have to let the yeast sit by itself a little longer, right?  It feels like I've tried that but gotten no better results, but maybe I haven't. 

Does anyone else keep their starter in the fridge?  What's your procedure and baking gameplan?


HappyHighwayman's picture

Burned bread bottom

I was teaching my step mom to make sourdough bread, it came out pretty perfect except that the bottom of the bread stuck to the dutch oven we baked it in, and when I got it loose it was all black/burned on the bottom.

The only difference was she added some honey to the dough. Is it possible that's why it burned, or is it likely it burned because we didn't clean the dutch oven properly?


TFLTFLTFL's picture

Gluten Free Sourdough Bread

Hi there,

I've tried making gluten free starter - the first time mold grew on it after a week, the second time it went too sour.

Has anyone ever made gluten free sourdough bread that is tasty but also easy to make - with the minimal amount of ingredients?  

Please advise!



BigelowBaker's picture

Aluminum Dutch Oven vs Cast Iron?

I love baking in my cast iron dutch ovens, but i was wondering if there is any performance advantage to using cast iron vs. something lighter, like aluminum.

Anyone out there ever do a comparison?

SugarpineJaci's picture

Soft Pretzel and Bagel Water Bath Flops

Following a couple different traditional recipes for German Soft Pretzels and Bagels I end up with the same problem.  The water bath!  Everything looks perfect until I drop in the water and then the bread deflates.  I've continued through the recipes and baked them even though they don't look right.  They taste good, but are a flatter than they are supposed to be.  I've only used a baking soda bath.  Can humidity affect it?  Could I be letting the dough rise too much (I'm going by the recipe and never have a problem with other breads)?  Would lye make a difference?  Do I need to add more baking soda?  The first one in or the last one in seem to deflate similarly.

We still eat them as they taste good, just can't serve to family or friends (oh darn!  More for me!)



abrock_ca's picture

Can I replace leaven with yeast?

I just got a copy of Dan Lebard's book "Handmade Bread". He discusses how to make Leaven, and a bunch of recipes use it.

I'm not really ready to do Leaven yet; can I substitute some amount of yeast for it? For example, the sunflower bread uses 3 1/2 oz of leaven (100g); I'd like to make it - how much yeast should I use?

(Apologize if this has been answered already; a quick search didn't find it...)

thunderlake's picture

New to the Fresh Loaf

Greetings from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan..

I have a couple of questions - how do I convert grams to cups?

Is there a basic bread recipe here that I could start with? I have white whole wheat and yeast and sugar ?

Thank  you and Happy New Year to everyone!!