The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Why is my white bread flour producing pale brown crumb bread

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louise davies's picture
louise davies

Why is my white bread flour producing pale brown crumb bread

I'm following a recipe to produce a  loaf in a 1kg tin,

500g stong white flour

10g salt

10 g fresh yeast

350 g water

Bake at 220c for 30 minutes, with a tray of boiling water in the base of the oven for steam.

The loaf comes out a good size, with a lovely crust, but the inside is a pale brown colour - tastes great.

totels's picture
totels

What flour are you using?

louise davies's picture
louise davies

Marriages Very Strong White Canadian bread flour or Allinsons Very Strong White bread flour 

 

totels's picture
totels

I am not familiar with Marriages, but Allinsons is not a bleached flour, what you are seeing is a more representative example of the natural color of the wheat at the level it has been processed. What you are probably used to in a store-bought loaf is a bleached flour.

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi totels,

I suspect Louise is UK-based, like me...and you, it seems, given the 2 flours she is listing.   We banned bleached flour in the UK about 15 years ago now.   Our plant bread is whitened by intensive mixing only,...oh, and the obligatory fortification [!] of Calcium Carbonate, of course.

I think the crumb colouration is more to do with process.

Best wishes

Andy

ps. Marriage's is great flour; you should try it out.   I use their Organic Strong flours, both white and wholemeal; highly recommended.

totels's picture
totels

I know about benzoyl peroxide bleaching being prohibited (and I've heard the EU ban on chlorine, bromates and peroxides should cover the rest, but I'm never sure which things from EU regulation make it to the UK when). There are also methods of bleaching that have nothing to do with chemical additives.

I will look at Marriage's flours, thanks for the recommendation. I'll have to work through my Bacheldre subscription quickly one month to make room for it though.

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi totels,

Amendments were made to the Bread and Flour Regs (1995) in 1998, which brought the UK into line with the EU.

That means no chlorine, bromate, peroxide or ADA.   The only permitted dough strengthening chemical additive is L. Ascorbic Acid.   In practice, most of the functional ingredients in a dough improver now are enzymes.

The intensive mixing used in the Chorleywood Bread Process destroys the caratenoid pigments [flavour compounds, of course], which has a bleaching effect in the finished dough

Best wishes

Andy

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

of the bread.  First try looking at the crumb under a different kind of light source,  like sunlight.  The finer the crumb, the more it reflects light and appears whiter or brighter.  Large bubbles in the crum may make the crumb appear darker.  Look carefully at the bread between the bubbles.  What do you see?  

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Louise,

The formula is not typical for panned bread, as the hydration is high, the flour is premium quality, and there is no fat content.

But I'd be interested to know more about the process you use.

Best wishes

Andy