The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Multigrain Levain

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Syd's picture
Syd

Multigrain Levain

I have been going through a bit of a baking drought lately, but on Friday lunch refreshed my starter so that I could bake when I got off work in the evening.  I hadn't planned on anything, but when I got home and found the starter at its peak, I had to act quickly and there was no time for elaborate planning.  Accordingly, I just ad libbed and this is what I did.  

100g mature starter @ 100% hydration

250g water

3g diastatic malt

50g rye flour

100g re-milled fine semolina flour

100g whole wheat flour (I sifted out the coarse bits of bran)

200g bread flour (11.4% protein)

10g salt 

* I used less starter than usual.  Normally, I would use 150g of starter for this amount of flour, but because it is just so hot over here now, I was worried that it would be too much.  It turned out to be the right amount. 

 

Overall Formula

water (including water in starter) 70%

bread flour (including flour in starter) 50%

semolina 20%

whole wheat 20%

rye 10%

malt 0.6%

salt 2%

Whisk up the starter, water and malt until frothy.  Add the rye, semolina, whole wheat and bread flour in increments and ensure all the flour gets wet.  Autolyse for 50 mins.  Add salt. Knead to medium gluten development.  Bulk ferment.

This dough developed fast.  This is in part due to the whole grain and diastatic malt and in part due to our very high summer temps.  It was ready for final shaping in an hour and a half. 

Pre-shape, rest 15 - 20 mins, final shape, place in banneton and retard overnight.

Baked at 230C, with steam for 20 mins and without at 200C (convection on) for another 25 mins.  Crack open oven door, turn oven off and allow bread to rest on baking stone for another five minutes.

It has a moderately open crumb. The large holes were unintended.

I really like the flavour of this bread.  It has a mild tang and it improves in flavour with time.  Yesterday it tasted great with some good cheese ( a nice mature cheddar) and nothing else, not even butter. 

Syd

 

Comments

ananda's picture
ananda

That's a "well-fired" loaf, Syd, I bet the crust has loads of flavour.

Pre-fermented flour at just 10% of the total flour: that's an active starter you have.   It must be really hot and humid where you are right now?

All good wishes

Andy

Syd's picture
Syd

"Well fired" indeed, Andy. What a very fresh way of putting it! :) Yes, it is verging on the well to over-fired if you look at the edge of that ear.  That, I am afraid, is a result of the convection oven, as we have been discussing on your most recent blog entry.  But the crust does have lots of flavour. 

My starter is very active and especially at this time of the year.  I live in Taiwan, in the tropics.  I usually explain it this way to people who enquire about the climate here: In Taiwan we really have only two seasons.  One is hot.  The other is very hot.  Humidity is high, too.  Most people use warm water and proofing boxes to encourage yeast activity;  I use ice water and refrigerators to discourage it.  :)

Best,

Syd

varda's picture
varda

It is nice to see what you are up to.   This bread looks terrific.  Nice combo of flours.   I don't think the holes are too big.   I have been working with your White Sandwich Bread formula but don't have a hold of it yet.   Deceptively hard?  -Varda

Syd's picture
Syd

Thanks, Varda.  :)  The only advice I can give on the white sandwich loaf (without knowing what problems you are having) is make sure that your poolish is ripe.  Not ripe enough and you won't get a decent final rise, nor will you get full flavour. Overripe on the other hand, and protease activity will probably be too high and the gluten is going to suffer, resulting in poor volume. Also, you need to knead it to a pretty thin windowpane.  Don't forget to scald the milk, either.  And, if you have it, include the vitamin C.  It helps.

All the best,

Syd

varda's picture
varda

Not sure I've been patient enough.    Thanks for the tips.   -Varda

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

It looks like everything came together for this bake.

Paul

Syd's picture
Syd

Thanks Paul.  Well, not quite everything. :) The oven was a little hot, but the result was tasty anyway.

Best,

Syd

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Great looking crumb shot too!  

Sylvia

Syd's picture
Syd

Thanks Sylvia. :)

Syd

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Syd, that is a nice looking crumb, great cell structure.  That flour blend sounds tasty.

Glenn

Syd's picture
Syd

Thanks Glenn.  It does make for a very tasty loaf.  I almost always have to include some form of wholegrain in every loaf I make, otherwise I find the taste boring.  Having said that, a well made, all-white can be very satisfying, too. 

Best,

Syd

MadAboutB8's picture
MadAboutB8

That was great cracking crust, Syd. I love the colour of the crumb, so creamy and mouth-watering. 

Great impromptu bread!

Sue

http://youcandoitathome.blogspot.com

Syd's picture
Syd

Thanks, Sue.  It is not as creative as those croissants you have been making but it is a step in the right direction!

Best,

Syd

Franko's picture
Franko

This is a great looking loaf Syd, and kudos to you for adapting on the fly as it were in taking it at it's peak. Far better I think to have a boldly baked loaf that captures the flavour of the grains, as well as giving it a good crust. As for the larger holes you mention in the crumb , they look good to me . What I see is a very good crumb, with character to spare, showing that it was made by a baker who knows what they're doing.

Nice work!

Franko

Syd's picture
Syd

Thanks, Franko and nice to have you back again!  Hope you have lots of time to bake now that you are home!

All the best,

Syd

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

As long as the crust tastes sweet, not bitter, it is not burned, in my book. I favor a bold bake like yours.  Note that the malt would contribute to a darker crust.

The crumb structure looks perfect for a sourdough bread of 70% hydration. I think you caught the fermentation and proofing perfectly.

David

Syd's picture
Syd

As long as the crust tastes sweet, not bitter, it is not burned, in my book.

Quite agree with you.  And that is especially true for the SFBI miche.  That has so much flavour, I could cut off the bread and just eat the crust!  Thanks for commenting, David. :)

All the best,

Syd

Alejandro's picture
Alejandro

Sdy.

I´d like to know how you prepared the Starter you used for the Multigrain Levain.

Thanks.

Regards.

Alejandro.

Syd's picture
Syd

It is just my regular 100% hydration starter.  No preparations needed, really.  I just removed it from the fridge Friday morning, gave it a stir and let it come back to room temperature.  It then sat at room temp. for 4 hours while it used up any remaining food it hadn't used up while in storage.  At lunch time, I discarded all but 50g of it and fed it 85g all purpose, 15g rye and 100g water, gave it a good stir and it was fully ripe when I got off work in the evening.  Hope this helps. 

Syd