War Eagle Mill Flour
Bread authors have slowly nudged me toward buying some organic and stone ground flours to experiment with. Exploring the web and other sources led me to hone in on War Eagle Mill (WEM) in Rogers Arkansas for my source for they have a good reputation and are closer than most. When they ran a 20% off sale with free shipping for orders over $100 I had to give it a try so I ordered 25 pounds each of organic AP and BF (roller milled), and 10 pounds each of stone ground organic WW and White WW. The flour came Wednesday so I cranked up the oven to make Tartine yesterday. Photo below.
I only used the BF and WW and the dough is mostly BF. The BF has more aroma of wheat then the KA AP and BF I normally use. The BF is about 11.5% protein according to War Eagle. The WW had a wonderful texture and aroma also. The dough seemed a bit touch dryer than KA for the same hydration - but softer. During the bulk ferment the "wheaty" aroma of the flours really grew evident. Tasting the dough revealed it to be sweeter and "grassier" than KA. The dough responded very well to S&Fs but, despite its drier feel, remained a tad stickier than the KA AP and stuck to the bannetons - and also flowed rather dramatically on removal from the bannetons, giving a rather flat disk in my cloche. Oven spring was very good and the expansion almost hid the folds from the banneton sticking. Flavor was wheatier than KA.
Preliminary conclusions: The WEM BF is similar in behaviour to KA AP but with more nose and more color. The aroma gives the bread a "lighter" taste profile. The crumb has a bit less bite than the same bread make with KA AP and WW. The WEM WW appears lovely and worked very well in the role of supporting flour. I think I will next try it or the white WW in a miche - or maybe one of each. Given the WEM AP is supposed to be about a percent lower in protein I am guessing I won't use it much but I will try it in Banh Mi for I have been struggling to get the crumb as delicate as I want. Overall I was pleased with this initial foray into organic and stone ground flours.
The loaves were made following the Tartine recipe with one exception. My starter is less sour so I use 50 grams of starter to make the 400 grams of levain in the first step. Then I used 200 grams of the levain and followed the recipe. Key difference was that my kitchen was around 67F so the bulk fermentation ran about 7 hours. The Hamelman videos at KA on loaf forming reinforced the need for the dough to be airy and I gutted it out. After shaping I moved to a warming drawer to accelerate the proof. The loaf I cut had a small peak at the top and I guessed it indicated larger holes and that was verified. The other loaf will be more uniform. I tried moving the preheat down to 475 with the bake at 440 and the loaves came out a bit light for my taste (internal temp 210). The surface has a duller finish than I like because I used rice flour in the flour mix to coat the banneton since the dough was pretty sticky. More photos follow.