The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

100% Sourdough Oat Bran Bread

MostlySD's picture

100% Sourdough Oat Bran Bread

I have finally managed to bake a 100% sourdough bread with oat bran that is not too dense and tastes rather good. The first criteria I decided upon was the weight of the loaf I wanted to bake. In this case, it had to be small since this was an experiment, hence 600g total. I was not sure how it would turn out and did not want to waste flours. The slashes are not very good. Maybe next time.

This bread was formulated to allow for the interaction of a couple of specific enzymes. A dough enhancer was also factored in. I wanted it to be from a natural source, namely in this case extra virgin olive oil. The added oat bran and wheat bran had to be of specific weights, calculated as a percentage of total flour weight (TFW). This bread is hand kneaded.


60g of mature whole wheat/rye starter, comprised of:
14g stone ground whole wheat
22g stone ground dark rye
24g filtered water

Sourdough preferment
All of starter
9g organic wheat bran (finely ground)  [2.5% of TFW]
34g organic oat bran (finely ground) -  [10% of TFW]
102g filtered water (room temperature)

106g unbleached all purpose flour [~ 46% of TFW]
160g unbleached bread flour [~ 31% of TFW]
108g filtered water
7g sea salt - 2%
14g extra virgin olive oil - 4%

Total flours (including oat bran & wheat bran and flours from starter): 345g (100%)
Total liquid (including from starter & preferment): 234g (68%)

1. Starter is built the day before & allowed to grow at room temperature for 12 hours.
2. Preferment is then prepared by thoroughly mixing the starter with the water, and adding the ground oat bran and wheat bran. Fermentation lasted 12 hours.
3. All remaining flours and water are then mixed with the preferment and the salt; the dough is then kneaded until everything comes together.
4. Extra virgin olive oil is then gradually incorporated in the dough and the dough is kneaded for a few minutes more.
5. Bulk rise lasted 3 hours. Dough had not doubled but I did not want to wait longer to prevent the development of too much sourness.
6. Three sets of stretch & fold were performed at 30 minutes interval.
7. Dough was preshaped and allowed to rest for 20 minutes.
8. Dough was shaped and transferred to an oiled & semolina-coated clay baker for proofing.
9. Proofing lasted 3.5 hours.
10. The clay baker finally went into a cold oven and the temperature turned to 450ºC.
11. The loaf was baked covered for 20 minutes at that temperature, then uncovered for another 30 minutes at 375ºC, to an inside temperature of 210ºC.





Darwin's picture

You have a fine looking loaf, congrats.  Small loaves are now my favorite. You get to bake and experiment more often, more variety, less waste and more hot loaves.  :) 

dabrownman's picture

to the starter to make a levain.  The wee beasties don't seem to mind not getting the good stuff!  Love the crust and crumb on this one and the slashes are fine - no worries.    The whole grain adn bran have to pump up the flavor too.  Well done and happy baking.

MostlySD's picture

Thank you Darwin and dabrowman!

I'm going to share some stuff that I'm learning here. I hope this doesn't put people off. Anybody not interested in that stuff may just skip this comment. First, I must admit not understanding most of what I read from those sources. I do have a biologist partner who explains the parts I really need to understand to me. Mostly, I zoom in on the content that helps me with my bread baking and ignore the rest in the hope that those on this forum who do understand better that stuff can fill in the blanks.

That said, on to the importance of rye. Here's the money quote:

[T]he addition of rye, either as whole meal rye flour or as sourdough starter, markedly increased the solubility of ß-glucan and proteins and simultaneously decreased the viscosity of the water-soluble fraction of oat bran suspension. This suggests that a hydrolysis of ß-glucan had occurred that could change the rheological properties of oat bran in baking and the physiological potential of oat bran in nutrition.

That's why in this instance I used a starter containing rye in the fermentation of the oat bran. Indeed, there was a marked difference in the handling of the dough when I did this compared to when I added the same starter in the usual manner, that is AFTER the oat had been soaked and THEN added to the starter just before mixing in the dough flours.

And then there is the "mystical" thing. I know many people say, what the hell, this is just bread! Not me. I have not worked with 100% hydrated starter, so I don't know how they behave. This one starter with rye fermenting with oat bran and wheat bran was something else. It didn't rise much, yet there were so much life in there. I could definitely hear a low fizz, like when Alka-Seltzer meets water, only more subdued. It felt like the organisms were dancing and singing in there. Whatever others may say, that is for me truly magical and mystical. I felt a bit sad having to bake the little guys and felt the need, like the hunters, to thank them for the bread. May be I'll do that from now on.

MostlySD's picture

Oops! Sorry I misspelt your moniker up there dabrownman. Won't happen again.

dabrownman's picture

as my post here proves.  I like to get the hard bits in the levain for a couple of reasons.  The SD culture seems to like the extra minerals and enzymes in the feed.  I think it might  lead to a more sour levain,  I like ti get the hard bits as wet as possible, for as long as possible so they have a chance to soften up - then they might not tear up te gluten stricture as much later leading to a more open and light crumb (like yours).

Happy Baking 

MostlySD's picture

Good then, dabrownman! I won't worry about it.

Regarding the levain being more sour, you may be right there. My loaf's crumb was a bit more sour today than it was yesterday.  I do not know why except perhaps that this has something to do with the levain. I will have to monitor that more closely as I bake more of this bread. Like many here, I like a bit of sourness but not too much.

Happy Baking to you too!

golgi70's picture

Inside and out.  All I'd suggest is pushing the bake and caramelizing the crust a bit more.  



MostlySD's picture

I would indeed like that. I suppose I could try baking a bit longer, say about 10 minutes more, or same baking time but with a higher temperature. I will try both and compare.

isand66's picture

Very nice looking loaves.  I usually take the temperature of my loaves and bake them until they hit 205 F to 210 F.

MostlySD's picture

I will need to tweak the recipe some though. The crust gets harder the following day while the crumb becomes more sour. It's interesting that the white sourdough I bake has a crust that softens with time but becomes crackling again when toasted while with the oat bran sourdough, it's the reverse: the crust gets harder with time but regains some softness when toasted. I'd like to know why and whether I can do something to prevent the crust from hardening that much. It's not quite back to the drawing board, but more work is needed.

In the meantime, thanks to all for the encouragement.