The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Whole Wheat Flour VS Bread flour.

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Newfieguy's picture
Newfieguy

Whole Wheat Flour VS Bread flour.

Hello everyone,


Quick question.  I have been experimenting with WW flour in making various types of loaves and Bread Flour.  Big fan of the rise of the bread flour where as most of the WW flour loaves come out a little more flat but still very tasty.  I have been measuring it down to the gram, 500 total, 250 WW and 250 BF, 300 WW, 200 BF 150/350 and so on and just keeping notes on how it all pans out!  Ultimately I would like to use pure WW flour but the loaf just never turns out the same with out the Bread Flour. 


When I grind my own wheat is there anything I can add to it as I grind it to get the same effect as Bread Flour or is there a type of grain I can grind to get more the effect of Bread Flour?  I know I can throw some yeast or enhancer in the WW flour which helps a bit when I bake it but it still never has the growth that the pure Bread Flour loaves get but I am still trying to go all Whole Wheat.


I guess I am just curious, how the heck do I make/grind my own whole wheat bread flour if that even exists?


Thanks all, great forum as always!


Newguy

clazar123's picture
clazar123

I use hard, red,spring wheat and have no problems.It has plenty of gluten. 


My whole wheat loaf is relatively light but will never be as fluffy as a white flour loaf-it has the bran from the kernel, after all. The trick is to make sure the bran has a chance to hydrate.


I mix my dough up and put it in an oiled container overnight in the refrigerator.Some people autolyse and some use soakers. There are all different methods for this-the bottom line is that it takes hours for the bran flakes to properly absorb water. Adding milk,eggs or oil also helps to soften a loaf.


Use the search box or just scan under the Whole Grain category-there has been a LOT of discussion on this.

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

I too mill my own wheat.  My personal preference is a 70% WW and 30% bread flour.  I find that this can result in a very light bread that my children like.  I also somtimes add 5% oat bran and reduce the WW to 65%.  And also adding 5-10% rye adds complexity, yet still light.


My theory is this has to be at least as healthy as 100% WW given the fiber, yet it is light enough for the tastes of the kids.  See a prior post of mine per the link below.  Once there go to the bottom where I talk about milling, followed by a recipe, and yet another in the same thread showing pictures of "frankenloaves"  One reader made it twice and raved.  Give it a try and you can always adjust from there... Good luck!! 


The good news is you are grinding your own and as you well know by now, the flavor cannot be beat.


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/17713/can-anyone-appease-my-frustration-home-milled-allpurpose-or-bread-flour

rayel's picture
rayel

I don't grind my own, but have been getting very satisfactory results with a stone ground organic flour for my 100% whole wheat breads. Recently I tried Bob's Red Mill, organic stone ground, and got loftier bread. I believe it was a finer grind, than the flour I had been using. In fairness, I also used fresher yeast, in my higher loaf. Active dry, as per the recipe. My instant yeast I had stored in the freezer, in a single container (wide mouthed jar), so  i believe the yeast might have been part of my problem. The package indicated it was good till 2011,but with repeated use, the damp air probably got to it. This yogurt bread lower picture, was made when my instant yeast was fresher, and with my regular whole wheat. It was made with an overnight sponge. Upper loaf is a buttermilk straight dough, made with finer whole wheat and newer active dry yeast. Ray

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

Very impressive loaves!  As good as your loaves are, you may find that SAF gives even better results- lots of discussion on this forum as being the best yeast out there, which mirrors my own experience too.  I buy mine in Whole Foods store for less than $5 for a huge bag, also like you store by freezing.  I find it works well a year of more later. 


That said, it seems hard to imagine how you could improve on those loaves!


Cheers

Franko's picture
Franko

When you mix your whole wheat dough do you use the same hydration as you do for white dough? Whole wheat flour sucks up a lot more water than white because of the bran and fibers not present in white flour. Whole wheat doughs normally have to be mixed longer than white doughs as well because the bran interferes with the gluten development. If the dough isn't given sufficient mixing time it'll be underdeveloped and will have poor gas retention resulting in a flat loaf. Try a 60 to 70% ratio of water to whole wheat flour weight and mix it 4 to 5 minutes longer, being careful not to let the dough get too warm. You might want to use a cooler water temp to prevent this. Give it a try and you should see better results.


Franko

rayel's picture
rayel

Thanks for your compliment. I did use SAF instant yeast for the yogurt breads, and while the yeast was newly frozen, it worked as well for me as the active dry. My post is confusing because one of the picures I wanted to show, of bread results with older saf yeast, stubornly refused to materialize. So I ran with pictures that cooperated. (I am still learning picture posting.) I apologize for the resulting mish mash. The bread I was trying to post was still a good rise, but not  quite as high. Thanks again.  Ray

rayel's picture
rayel

Nick, I went to your link, and the poster who said you guys are insanely amazing, reminded me of the movie, Young Frankenstein, when the henchman was asked, whose brain did you bring me? Marty Feldman's charachter said, Abby Normal's brain. Hope you caught this old movie, or the above will not make any sense whatsover. Your Breads are beautiful. The recipe is interesting as well. Great picture. Thanks again, Ray

Danai Wangsiri's picture
Danai Wangsiri

Hi Nickisafoodie,


They are rally beautiful loaves, must taste good too.


I more often that not, I have a problem on shaping. I use Pyrex  1 1/2 quarts glass pan. The ends that I tug under not join well, causing unsmooth underside. Also , how can you achieve 3 sides crack?


Thanks in advance.


Danai

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

Danai, in the search box on the upper left type in Shaping Loaves- tons of info there, plus a many videos on you tube that show you how.  You may also want to do a search on Scoring Loaves, lots of information there too!