The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

50% Spelt Bread

Emelye's picture

50% Spelt Bread

I bought a bag of Bob's Red Mill spelt flour a number of weeks ago and let it sit in my cupboard for longer than I should have, mostly because of a lack of confidence but also because I couldn;t decide what kind of bread/roll/muffin I wanted to make with it.  I finally decided to try a 50% spelt/wheat flour loaf.

From reading the posts here about spelt I noted that it doesn't require as much kneading as regular AP or bread flour so I decided to use the white flour in a biga, to let it sit for a number of hours to allow it to develop some gluten over time, as in a no knead loaf.  Here's the formula:

• Bread Flour     8 oz    224 g   50.0%
• Water               8 oz    224 g   50.0%
• Inst Yeast 1/8 tsn
• Spelt Flour      8 oz    224 g   50.0%
•Milk                  2 oz      56 g     12.5%
• Salt            0.32 oz        9 g        2.0%
• Honey          1.5 oz      42 g        9.4%
• Inst Yeast 0.16 oz        4 g       1.0%
• Butter        0.24 oz        7 g        1.5%

Makes one 1½ lb. loaf

Mix the bread flour, water and 1/8 tsp instant yeast together. Allow to ferment at room temperature for about 8 hours, or for about 4 hours then refrigerating overnight. Let sit at room temp for at least an hour after removing it from the fridge before mixing the dough.

Put the biga into a 4 qt bowl and add the milk, honey, yeast salt and butter. Mix together, then add the spelt flour. Knead for about 5 to 6 minutes or until the spelt is fully incorporated and the dough is soft and pliable.

Let the dough ferment for about 90 minutes or until it's doubled. Shape into a loaf into a boule or bâtard and cover with an oiled piece of plastic wrap. Retard overnight in the refrigerator.

The next morning, remove the loaf from the fridge at least an hour before baking it. Prepare the oven for hearth baking and preheat 450ºF. Score the loaf just before sliding it into the oven.

Bake for 5 minutes, spraying the oven walls with water at roughly 1½ to 2 minute intervals, then drop the oven temperature to 350ºF and bake for another ten minutes. Rotate the loaf and bake for another 15 minutes of so, or until the crust is a golden brown.

Here's what it looked like (I had to rush to get the pic before it was all gone).  Not the prettiest crumb but the flavor was exceptional!

50% Spelt Bread


gingersnapped's picture

This looks exceptional!  I'm starting my first experiment with spelt tonight too (but much tamer, just in pita bread).  This makes me so excited! 

AlaskanShepherdess's picture

My mom uses 100% spelt flour and uses a regular whole wheat recipe. It tastes much better then wheat and turns out just fine. She says that you must knead for 20 minutes or else the gluten doesn't develope enough.

Emelye's picture

The biggest reason I use a 50% spelt/Bread Flour mix is cost.  The bread still tastes wonderful and the cost of the bread flour is about half that of the spelt.

I recently used up the lst of my spelt using this recipe to make some 4 oz hamburger rolls.  They came out very nice as well.