The Iron Hand Knight's Challenge Bread--A Porridge Miche
I love challenge bakes and thanks to Karin from Brot and Bread and TFL we had plenty of fun with this one. I won't repeat the background of this famous German Knight, but I will tell you that my apprentices Max and Lexi as well as Mookie were more inclined to bake a bread fit for the Black Knight who tried preventing King Arthur from continuing his quest for the Holy Grail. I had to explain to them that unfortunately the Black Knight would have had much difficulty eating this bread having no appendages left to use.
Alas, either way I believe my third attempt at this hearty multi-grain porridge bread was well worth it and certainly worthy of a Knight with one hand or even no hands!
I used an Organic Six Grain Flake mixture from King Arthur Flour and added plenty of ancient grains and some potatoes for moisture as well.
My first 2 attempts at a similar bread were not worthy of a knight nor a knave as they both ended up looking like flying saucers for several reasons including accidentally adding too much water to the starter. In any event the third and final version came out great and is a tasty and hearty bread with a thick crust and creamy crumb.
Here are the Zip files for the above BreadStorm files.
I built the Levain up in two stages starting with my 66% Hydration AP starter. You can adjust accordingly depending on your starter.
Levain Build 1
Mix all the levain ingredients together for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap. Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled. I used my proofer set at 83 degrees and it took about 4 hours.
Levain Build 2
Add the water, AP and Kamut flour to your Build 1 Levain and mix thoroughly until incorporated. Cover and let rise until doubled which should take around 5-6 hours at room temperature. You can now use this immediately in the main dough or refrigerate for 1-2 days before using.
Oat Porridge Directions
Add about 3/4's of the milk called for in the porridge to the dry ingredients in a small pot set to low and stir constantly until all the milk is absorbed. Add the remainder of the milk and keep stirring until you have a nice creamy and soft porridge. Remove from the heat and let it come to room temperature before adding to the dough. I put mine in the refrigerator and let it cool quicker.
Main Dough Procedure
Mix the flours and the water for about 1 minute. Let the rough dough sit for about 20 minutes to an hour. Next add the levain, cooled porridge and salt and mix on low for 1 minute and then add the potatoes and honey. Mix on speed #2 for another 5 minutes. You should end up with a cohesive dough that is tacky but manageable. Remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds. Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold. Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold. After a total of 2 hours place your covered bowl in the refrigerator and let it rest for 12 to 24 hours. (Since I used my proofer I only let the dough sit out for 1.5 hours before refrigerating). Note: this is a pretty wet dough so you may need to do a couple of additional stretch and folds.
When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1.5 to 2 hours. Remove the dough and shape as desired.
The dough will take 1.5 to 2 hours depending on your room temperature and will only rise about 1/3 it's size at most. Let the dough dictate when it is read to bake not the clock.
Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 550 degrees F. and prepare it for steam. I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf. I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.
Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, score as desired and then add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.
After 5 minute lower the temperature to 450 degrees. Bake for 35-50 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 205 degrees. (Note: since I made a large Miche I lowered the temperature after around 35 minutes to 425 degrees so the crust wouldn't burn).
Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.