I am wondering if any other bakers buy bags of grain at beer brewing supplier. At this point in time I am thinking of using it more as a supplement to purchased flour.
I buy little bags of various kinds of malt (barley, rye or wheat; plain or toasted) to add to my breads. It's a cycle really - my hubby has been buying his beer and wine making supplies there for years. I use one of his beers in one of my most popular breads, and once a week I send a couple baskets of bread over there and they sell them. We then use the credit to buy more beer & wine making supplies, as well as little bags of malt! I love this economy... :)
They do have some lovely malts. One that I get is a very dark special malt (barley) that is hulless and looks (and tastes) like tiny little coffee beans. Beautiful in rye breads. Milled crystal malt is also quite tasty in many multigrain or whole grain breads.
The small bags of different toasted grains look fabulous!
Just be careful and know what you are buying. I am sure most, if not all grains, from a brew shop are malted grains. At least the brew shop i go to very rarely sells raw wheat berries or raw barley If you did not know this, you do not want to just use malted wheat in large large quantities in your breads.
Like Lazy loafer said though, putting some of the crystal malts and/or roasted malts in your bread is a fantastic addition. There is no enzymatic activity in those types of malts so you wouldn't have to worry about your dough breaking down and turning to mush. =)
I dont want to use large quantities just something to enhance the flavor. They are a big supermarket of craft beer, yet I have never seen anyone besides myself in the grain aisle.
You can kind of go nuts then as an enhancement. Like i said though, make sure you get something that is caramel and/or roasted.... basically your looking for any grains that aren't a "base malt" for beer. I have baked a few breads with brewing grains and personally, i would recommend get some grains that are hull-less. So you are looking at any caramel/roasted/chocolate wheat, and any sort of darker rye malts. you could also go with any debittered barley malt, because those have the hull removed and then roasted.
Reason I say is because no matter what I have tried up to this point, i always seem to have little hard bits of the hull find its way in to the final bread.... and to me, thats pretty annoying when Im trying to enjoy all the other awesome things about the bread i just baked. I tried soaking and milling to flour, but for some reason, the hard hull always pulls through. One thing i haven't tried is mill into a flour, then just treat THAT like a soaker... Hmmm now I have something new to try! At any rate, hope you have fun experimenting! Happy Baking
Hey Rake and LL, I took your advice and ground a small amount of the soaked grain and I am expecting it to create a texture, in the final loaves. If it is edible I will bring a loaf back to the brewing supply store. Hopefully I will post about it.
Sorry that the slice is its on its side, and I didnt exactly measure my ingredients as I was trying to use up some other stuff from the refridgerator, but I was pleased with the color and am already planning my next bake. I have a better sense of it now.
And t I did bring a loaf to the beer super market where I purchased the grain. I think it was probably the first loaf of bread a customer has ever given them, and I honestly think they didn't know how to react.
It was not as satisfying as bringing a loaf of bread to my favorite donut shop in Norwalk CT , Speedy Donuts, They gave me a free donut!