100% whole wheat test
Intrigued by the method in PR's "Whole Grains" book, I decided to try it out. I milled a batch of organic hard red wheat, and basically split the formula in half. One half for a long cold levain (w/starter) to make the acids, and the other half as a flour-soaker to break down some of the carbohydrates into sugars. I think PR refers to it as an "epoxy". You then join the two halves together, optionally spike it with bakers yeast (for a quick leavening), and bake.
For my milled flour, the 75% hydration was a little too slack, or mabye I had not developed the dough well enough -- the loaves expanded more horizontally than vertically in the oven. But, no matter. The aroma in the house is intoxicating. It's been a while since I've done any high percentage grain breads. Next time I might lower the hydration a bit, S&F the final dough more, or simply put into a 9x5 pan or something. Taste is incredible, pre-soaking the whole-wheat flour works. No need to add any sugars (honey or anything) to it! It has a deep, slightly sweet whole grain taste, with the tang from the sour levain. It almost has a buttery taste, as if someone lightly buttered the bread. If I had wanted to wait longer, I could have let my levain do the final rise at room temp by itself, but I chose to try the quicker leavening method by adding some baker's yeast (since all the flavors were supposed to have been developed already, only thing left to do is leaven).
Not much to look at, though... next time will be better. :)