The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

French flour query

davesixstringsperry's picture

French flour query


A kind friend brought me back some flour from France, as follows:

- type 110 rye flour

- type 150 wholemeal wheat flour

They had apparently enquired and were told that these were commonly used in making baguettes. It's difficult to get actual advice online on how to best use and combine all the various "types".

I normally make fairly decent baguettes using English strong white flour (which I now notice has no mention of "type" on the packet) at 65% moisture. I experimented with a 50/50 mix of the French flours and 66% moisture, which produced a very thick dough which was really difficult to work with - I had to push it around on the surface rather than my usual slap 'n' fold method. It's currently "rising" but I'm not holding out great hopes for producing anything other than maybe a few solid rolls.

I don't have a huge amount of the flour to experiment with, so I thought I'd ask: what combination of these doughs, and what moisture %, would you go for to produce a half-decent baguette?



kendalm's picture

doesn't involve anything but White T55/65 flour usually at around 70% hydration. Anything with rye or wheat would be sold under a different name - baguette de campagne for example. I can't speak for English flours but generally French flour requires less h20 to get a slack dough (than American flours) - might suggest using an AP flour at 10-11% protein and then blend 20% of the WW then shoot for 70+% hydration - that might get you a more workable dough (you should end up with more like pain de compagne shaped as baguette)

DesigningWoman's picture

I'm new to bread baking and have been struggling with the various types and definitions of the flours here. Most people will say that T65 is the equivalent of bread flour, but if you take a look at the protein content, American bread flour can range between 12% and 14% (I think?), whereas French T65 has trouble making 10%.

Dan Lepard says that when using French flour instead of UK to dial down the H2O by 10-15%

Both your T110 and T150 are a bit too much for traditional baguettes, as kendalm pointed out, but would make tasty country-style baguettes.

If you like, Abel has posted this recipe, which expressly calls for T150 flour.

And Shiao Ping posted a T110 miche recipe which I've bookmarked and not goteen around to yet.

A couple of resources:

The kicker is that I don't know where the Weekend Bakery got that info on protein levels. Even my supposed strong bread flours weigh in at less than 12% protein.

Not helping much, I know, but good luck and enjoy your bakes!