The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Farmer's Market Week 27 (50% Whole Grain Spelt Levain)

golgi70's picture

Farmer's Market Week 27 (50% Whole Grain Spelt Levain)

Well my hiatus is over.  The full market has begun and I'm ready to return to the weekly trading routine.  Been hooked on the stiff levain lately so i decided I'd switch in up and build a liquid levain and then do a second build and use a young levain to keep it mellow and sweet.  I had honey in the formula and opted to omit and allow the young levain to bring the sweetness.  I kept the pre-fermented flour low to give enough time to gently build the gluten.  The dough was lovely and easy to work with and after bulk was full of life and ready for a nap in the fridge.  This one is a keeper. 


Spelt Levain

Levain: 3-4 hours (76F) 11% PF
40 Seed (50% Spelt/50% FLOUR MIX) --> (78% Bread Flour, 20%Wheat, 2% Rye)
40 Spelt
80 H20
Dough: (76F)
405 Spelt
600 H20 (hold back 50g to add with salt)
19 Salt
Total Flour:     910               (50% Spelt, 39% Art, 10 % Wheat, 1% Rye) 11% PF
Total H20:       700               (77%)
Total Dough: 1629               (12 @ 810g)
Autolyse with Levain 1 hour
Add Salt and 50g h20 and squeeze through until well incorporated.
6 SF @ 30 minutes, rest 30 minutes
Divide and Rest 30 minutes
Shape and Retard 8-12 hours
Bake 500 with steam for 15 minutes and vented for 20-25 longer.


Bounty Local dehydrated Shitakes, Local Mytakes sp???, dried soup herb blend (so good), local eggs, fresh raw goat milk, organic local merlot, spicy greens, a bunch of dried figs (fignfennel comin up soon), and some ground lamb owed to me.  Thank you for the land I live in and the wonderful things produced here.  




dmsnyder's picture

The crumb is amazing! I somehow got the idea the quality of the gluten in spelt wouldn't support that kind of crumb structure, but there it is.

It looks like there are lots of interesting products at your farmers' market. We came home from ours this morning with strawberries, oranges (end of season for navels), asparagus, broccoli and lettuces.


dabrownman's picture

whole spelt.    Has ti e just as tasty.  Love this one inside and out.  You are getting some nice stuff in trade for it  and there is no wonder why.  Just professionally done all over.  Well done Josh and

Happy Baking.

Syd's picture

Those look great Josh.  Lovely ears!  Did you exchange all those goods for your breads?  What awesome swaps.



golgi70's picture

@David - Spelt is very much like wheat but ferments faster and is a bit more fragile.  Gettin them in "underproofed" or shall we say spelt is properly proofed at a less grown state than a white/wheat bread.  Also why I kept my PF a bit lower Have you seen txfarmers 100% Spelt?  Its' pretty darn impressive.  

@ Syd  Yep I started this 1 year ago today.  Trade with some great farmers and craftspeople for other wares.  Lots of fun and a great reason to bake. 


isand66's picture

Beautiful loaf Josh.  I love the nutty flavor whole spelt imparts and have been enjoying throwing it in the mix a lot lately.

Your crumb can't get much better than this one and your fellow marketeers must be happy to swap with you for sure.


Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

LOVE that crumb the heck??

I have been trying to get that in some of my loaves.  What would you account for that particular type of variable open and defined crumb structure?  Flour?  Gluten development?


golgi70's picture

I've had good luck with Spelt and I really love its flavor/aroma.  This photo is maybe 1/3 into a loaf while the center was a bit tighter so I'm not all that good.  But I think all of those things you mention are important.  I think spelt acts pretty similar to red wheat with a few key differences.  It really likes to ferment quickly, it's a bit looser but does have a good supply of gluten, and that gluten is "delicate".  So keep your levain/yeast % down,  And if you retard overnight in form don't give it the 12-16 hours try and get to it in about 8 hours or so.  If you were to proof ambient you'd want to get it in in a state that you might consider under proofed.  Catch it with some bounce left in the dough.  


CeciC's picture

Fantastic Loaf josh!! I wish I have achieved something like yours. Reading your post after lunch is a really bad idea, it makes me hungry again!!

When you shape your loaf does it feel dry and tight? Coz I have increased my 50% Multi Grain loaf to 80% its still a little tight when shaped, not sure if I gave it too many S&F or not enough rest.'s picture

If you ever think to swap out your subcellular TFL handle, I suggest R. Crumb, for Righteous Crumb. 

I haven't gotten around to commenting on your breads until now, Josh, but have enjoyed seeing them here through all 27 weeks of farmers markets and it's time to share my awe at such invariably flawless crumbs:  Right up there with TFL deities like txf & pips.  You've got the touch, no doubt about it.  Joys to behold - and eat, and share, no doubt.  Works of art.



golgi70's picture

Those are some kind words and I appreciate the feedback.  If I blushed I would be blushing right now.  But even if I did the beard would hide it.  Maybe I'll use R. Crumb for the bakery name if and when it happens.  For now it's Joshfox Bread Co.  but I've already begun thinking of different names.  


Josh's picture

Joshfox Bread Co sounds great.  The way you bake, I don't think it'll matter much what you call the place.  You might get some grief from the real R Crumb (or his lawyer) if you named it that.  Then again, Our Crumb might be nice.