The Fresh Loaf

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whole wheat recipe

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lizaveta's picture
lizaveta

whole wheat recipe

hello. i have finally received my mill and have a few questions about adapting the recipes i have been using to whole wheat.

what should i do if a recipe asks for 800 grams bread flour and 200 grams of whole wheat and i want to make it 100 percent whole wheat? should i sift some flour on fine making it sort of bread flour-like? and what is the idea behind sifting anyway? when i called pleasant hill, they said that milling too fine will make a heavy bread, does this even make sense? i thought that milling too rough would accomplish this. should i be adding more water? honey? i know that this is probably a trial and error type thing but i would really appreciate some suggestions and/or whole wheat recipes from people who have gone through the process since i don't want my family to suffer through brick-like bread. i bought both rye and wheat berries and have made just one bread since i got my mill, without sifting or anything, and it turned out pretty hard. don't get me wrong, i love crusty, hard bread, but this was hard throughout.

so, if some of you have had success with freshly milled whole wheat or mostly whole wheat bread, any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

liza

cranbo's picture
cranbo

Lots of questions, here are my thoughts:

what should i do if a recipe asks for 800 grams bread flour and 200 grams of whole wheat and i want to make it 100 percent whole wheat? should i sift some flour on fine making it sort of bread flour-like?

You can just use the full 1000g of whole wheat. Granted, it may be somewhat more dense, more whole-wheat-y and possibly more bitter; a lot of that depends on the overall recipe, your flour, and your baking techniques. 

and what is the idea behind sifting anyway?

Sifting does a lot of things:  aereates to promote better measuring and water absorption, removes bran, helps mix ingredients together with flour. In general, sifting is done to improve the quality of the flour for baking. 

when i called pleasant hill, they said that milling too fine will make a heavy bread, does this even make sense? i thought that milling too rough would accomplish this.

Not sure about this, but common sense suggests that either extreme (too rough or too fine) will not produce optimal results. 

should i be adding more water? honey?

More water: definitely. Whole wheat sucks up more water and requires slightly higher hydration to produce good results. How much more? Hard to say, you'll need to go by feel. Honey or other sweetener is nice to counteract the bitterness that come along with whole wheat. 

Przytulanka's picture
Przytulanka

Do you bake with sourdough? If yes -I can invite you to my blog http://bochenkowo.blogspot.com/-full of my wholegrain recipes. If you don't have sourdough starter,  it's a good idea to built one. 

I bake only whole grains breads for a few years and I don't even remember how white bread taste(I eat wholemeal breads for over 10 years). At the beginning I baked only 50% wholegrain breads +bread flour to accustom my husband to the different flavor and more heavy crumb and crust. It also helped my to learn how to work with wholegrain flours. I have never sifted wholemeal flour and I don't use sweeteners. To have softer whole grain bread you need to add more liquid. You also need more patience, proofing and rising are slower and you can't expect amazing results  for example large holes.

I'm not a baker and my English is poor so I can't answer to your questions. At The Fresh Loaf , there are many people wiser and more experienced than me. My advice -use search box to find their recipes and you will learn a lot from them. 

Here is the useful link: http://www.sourdoughbaker.com.au/baking-methods/whole-grains-use.html.

and many recipes here:

http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/bread/whole-grain/whole-wheat-.

Anna

 

lizaveta's picture
lizaveta

thanks,

i do have a sourdough starter that i keep, so that is not a problem.  anna, i will check out your blog, don't worry about your english, i am russian myself.

i know that i need to just spend more time using my newly ground flour to get the feel for it. but time is lacking as always and i just wanted someone with more expertise to help me out.

thanks again,

liza

barryvabeach's picture
barryvabeach

Liza,   Peter Rheinhart hasn't written anything about home milling, but has written extensively on whole wheat bread making -  one of his books gives a rule of thumb on how much water you need to add when switching from white to whole wheat - 14  grams of water for every 54 grams of whole wheat  if I wrote it down correctly - which would be another 200 grams of water since you are substituting 800 grams of whole wheat.   In general, I usually up it a few percent- so if the recipe calls for 60 percent hydration, I might go with 65 or 70 and see what happens.  I suggest you try Artisan Breads Daily,  it is one of his later books and the recipes are easier than some of his earlier books.  He admitted that he streamlined the recipes, and that the result is the same or better.  There is also a book called No More Bricks - and it is focused on home milling and wheat bread -  while I tried the a recipe a time or two, I haven't had great success, and have since lent the book to a friend.  One major point that she stressed was that if you get a normal rise, and it falls a bit in the oven, you can counteract that in future loaves by adding vital wheat gluten.  She says it doesn't help bread rise as much as keep it from falling.  Another point she made was to take one recipe, and just keep making it and tweaking it, until it works for you -  I think it is fantastic advise, though I haven't taken it to heart completely.    I have gone to 100 % whole wheat ( often red spring, but also mixtures of winter white and red ) for all my baking for the last 6 months - some successes, and lots of not great, though still edible, loaves.   Good luck  Barry.