The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Sir Galahad or KA Special

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Ricko's picture

Sir Galahad or KA Special

I've been doing a lot of sourdough as of late using the KA Bread flour obtained from my local supermarket. I'm well pleased with the results, and the oven spring is great.

I had the opportunity, and in my haste purchased several bags of the KA Sir Galahad flour before I realized I could have gotten the KA Special. I understand that the KA blue bag bread flour in my retail store is the same as the Special, commercial grade flour.

Now I'm wondering if this lower protein flour (SG) is going to be noticeable in the great oven spring I've been getting up to this point? Perhaps I could substitute 20% of Hi Trumps to my flour to regain any loss in oven spring that might occur? I've never had the good fortune of using the Sir Galahd flour, so I'm unsure of the degree of difference I should expect to see in my breads. Thank you

dghdctr's picture

Hi Ricko,

To the best of my knowledge, King Arthur's commercial brands "Special" and "Sir Galahad" correspond to their retail brands "Bread Flour" and "All Purpose."  In other words, Special is the same as their Bread Flour and Galahad is the same as their so-called All Purpose.

I have to say that I am surprised you can buy these commerically-branded products at a grocery store.  What size bags can you choose from?

Anyway, their "All Purpose" (Sir Galahad) is actually milled completely from hard winter wheat.  It is not as high in protein as the "Bread Flour" (Special), but its gluten is still strong.  It is more extensible, it is more tolerant of long fermentation, and it tends to produce a crisper crust and less chewy crumb.  Professional artisan bakers generally consider these qualities to be desirable traits.  Most of them would choose something close to Sir Galahad (or even a bit weaker) to make baguettes or pain au levain.

You could certainly mix it with High Gluten flour to boost it if you like, but I'd encourage you to try using it as it is and then using less water initially (add more if you need to).  You might find that you prefer it.

--Dan DiMuzio

Ricko's picture

Hello Dan,

Sorry if I mislead you on the source of supply, it was through a local wholesaler. I'm finding that such wording as "bread flour", "best for bread", etc. are somewhat of a misnomer, as not all of these flours produce with the same results. I'd rather go by protein percentage vs. descriptive title wording. Even then, I think there is a wide tolerance when it comes to the given percentage number. I maybe all wet on this idea, but that's the feeling I'm getting when trying the different flours.

I appreciate your comments, and will interpret them as two good flours that may show slight differences in finished products. I enjoy the KA flours for their repeatability, predictability and reliability, as well as the hi-gluten All Trumps which shows the same characteristics and is a new flour for me. Lest I forget to mention, I acquired your book last week and I'm having trouble putting it down. Great job, it's a great read!

dghdctr's picture

Thanks for your kind words about the book.

I'm not familiar with All Trumps personally.  Who knows where they get these wacky names for flour?  Bouncer?  Mello Judith?  Even at the commercial level, some milling houses like Con Agra or General Mills will use different brand names in different regions to refer to the same flour.

I've heard that All Trumps is high-gluten, and if that is so, it is likely stronger than either Galahad (11.7%) or Special (12.7%).

Pjacobs's picture

All Trumps is milled by General Mills in KC and is a high-gluten flour that I normally buy in 50 pound bags. I have never had dough rise as high with other flours. It has a protein level in the 14+ range. It probably compares well with Bouncer and KA's Sir Lancelot which I understand are in the same protein range. I have had nothing but great results from All Trumps and have won some bread contests at fairs with it over the years.



PJ Hamel's picture
PJ Hamel

Yes, Special and Bread are the same and Galahad and AP are the same. I don't think you'll notice much (maybe any) difference with your oven spring - where you'll notice it is the flour/liquid ratio. You'll want to use less water with the Galahad to obtain the same dough texture. I use AP/Galahad all the time for bread - I only use Special with a high percentage of "heavy" whole grains, like oats or rye. Good luck - PJH, KA baker/blogger

pmevans's picture

That's interesting news.  I can see that AP and Galahad are the same protein content. Is the ash content the same?  If so, you've saved me some hassles. I was planning to stop in the KA store every time I go to Vermont to pick up 50# bags of Galahad. (I haven't yet found a wholesaler who will supply me in Manchester, NH.)  If AP and Galahad are the same, I can just get 25# bags of AP locally.