The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Five-Grain Bread from the book "Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes: by Jeffrey Hamelman

saraugie's picture

Five-Grain Bread from the book "Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes: by Jeffrey Hamelman

I made Five-Grain Bread from the book "Bread: A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes: by Jeffrey Hamelman.
It calls for a mature Liquid-Levin build to use in this case the next day. I've never had any confidence in my starter but I think it tasted and looked good. I did add a wee bit of instant yeast to the levin build to make sure it would have rising power. The bread tastes great.  I do know it did not come out as it was supposed too.  When I took it out of the basket onto the peel, it spread a lot and did not rise much in the oven.  My scoring is laughable, you can tell its a different color but the beautiful ears and other looks have alluded me in every loaf I've made.  I think I cut correctly, have a lame, tomato knife, cut to 1/4 inch and at the right angle but to no avail.

I will just keep reading all I can here, read my books trying to learn the correct way to do things.  The very bright side in all this is most of what I make tastes pretty good to me and the family.

bakinbuff's picture

I found stretch and folds made a huge difference to my bread, particularly higher hydration doughs.  They give the dough strength which enables it to hold its shape much better.  Check out this video...


Or just google stretch and fold dough and you should get lots of useful videos.  It's pretty amazing the difference proper handling of dough can make in the finished product.  Hope that helps some!

Zeb's picture


Just got back from the doctor who said eat more linseed (flaxseed)  so am looking at this recipe as well and hoping to make it this week. Your bread has a beautiful colour, and shaping comes with practice - it took me a while to realise that the basket just holds the bread, but doesn't put any tension on the 'skin' of the dough, so all the shaping has to be done before it goes in the basket for the final prove, or at least that is how I understand it now....  If you shape it once, then leave it to sit for a bit, then shape it again before you put it in the basket, you get a more upright loaf at the end....


  I also read this post the other day on a very good blog where the same bread was made - wonderful pictures and lots of advice in there too


best wishes Zeb

Doc Tracy's picture
Doc Tracy

Just pulled two loaves of "Five Grain Sourdough with Rye sourdough" out of the oven. I made some interesting changes to it. I completely converted it to whole wheat, replacing the high protein flour with whole wheat + 4tbsps of vital wheat gluten and adjusting water as needed. Replaced sunflower seeds with millet because I don't really like sunflower seeds. Didn't have rye chops so used rye berries and cooked them in boiling water, then let them sit in the hot water for 20 minutes. (plus they soaked for 14 hours)

I autolysed for one hour to accomodate the wheat bran. Also, added my favorite bread spices-caroway, fennel and onion.

Hubby says this is the best bread ever! And can you imagine how healthy it is? it's so light and soft, I couldn't even believe it when I started slicing into it. I thought, what is this? How could this be?

I'll be taking notes and baking this bread again and again!!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Congratulations!  You went with your guts and got what you wanted!   That's one good feeling!

I can see you in your new future kitchen running out of the house to bake bread in the RV!


Doc Tracy's picture
Doc Tracy

Can you imagine if I can't figure out the new oven and have to resort to the RV oven? However, since the RV is a loaner, it will be gone. I will miss it in a way. It's been a good friend and this has been an interesting experience.

saraugie's picture

While I hope you do not have to run to the RV to cook bread, I'm glad it worked for you.  I really love this bread.

The last time I made it, I forgot to half the recipe, so I froze 1/2 right before the final proof before final shaping. I am going to take it out of the freezer, let it slowly over a 24-48 hour period warm up in the fridge, then take it out shape, and let it proof while it warms to room temperature, which is around here is 75˚ for two hours or so, until the push almost springs back.

Do any of you see a problem with my procedure of  taking it out of deep freeze this way, then shaping before the final proof, then into the oven ?

saraugie's picture

bakinbuff, I did fold, in fact one extra time.  I usually half JH's formulas as they usually make more than I want to bake at one time.  This time I forgot and made all, 4LBS of dough.  When I went to do the first fold, I saw that not all the flour got mixed in.  So, I folded anyway, returned all the flour to the mixing bowl, added some water because now the hydration level would not be enough, this formula calls for 98%, hand mixed a bit to make sure all the ingredients rotated a few times together and then mixed on #1 for about 3 minutes.  Then stretched and folded a second time, it only called for once. I could and will S&F more and will as I froze some of the dough and will bake it again.

Zeb, this is the first time I am "hearing" this.  I probably have read it before but it did not sink in.

Thanks to you both, I will do both suggestions next time with this particular dough and with others.