The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Help Changing Recipe

bitbyter's picture

Help Changing Recipe

Hello again everyone! I have been happily using the recipe below for my weekly bread but have decided that I want to add some more whole grains / seeds to the recipe. Last week I added (after soaking for a few hours) steel cut oats, 3 grain cereal and some oat bran. After draining the soaked grains I added them to my regular recipe. During mixing I ended up adding a bunch of exta AP flour to get it back to the correct consistancy due to the extra moisture from the grains. I am asking for some help in altering the recipe below so that I can add the extra grains and still only get 2 large loaves instead of the two and a half I got by just adding the grains to the recipe.

8 oz / 1 cup Water (just above room temp)
8 oz / 1 cup 2 % Milk (at room temp)
1 large Potato (cooked until very soft)
2 oz / 1/4 cup Salted Butter
1.5 oz / 3 tbsp Honey
0.375 oz / or 2-1/4 tsp Active Dry Yeast
0.333 oz / or 2 tsp Kosher salt
28 oz / 3 1/2 cups Bread Flour
12 oz / 1 1/2 cups AP Flour
8 oz / 1 cup Whole Wheat Flour
4 oz / 1/2 cup Wheat Bran

I would like to add oats, oat bran, flax seed and 3 grain cereal. Any suggestions would be appreciated as well as techniques for using them (soaking, not soaking, cooking them first, etc).


bakerb's picture

Hi, bitbyter, I developed this recipe...I wanted white bread, because of the moistness & texture, but I wanted to add as much nutrition as possible, it's really good:

Fourteen Grains Bread   

The grains (1 T. each):Rice cereal (ground brown rice)Course cornmeal (Polenta)BulgarSteal-cut oatsBarleyRyeQuinoa, rinse well before boilingAmaranthTeffBuckwheatMilletCook these grains in 3 – 4 c. water for 30 min. adding the smaller grains last…Sunflower seedSesame seedSoak these 2 in water at room temperature…Flax seedCombine boiled grains, and seeds…this should be the consistency of thick oatmeal, 15 – 25 oz.…The dough:17 oz. bread flour2 t. yeast0.7 oz. salt12 – 14 oz. waterIn a bowl, whisk the yeast & salt into the flour…put 12 oz. water into bowl of mixer…add grains & flour mixture…mix on low speed until combined…knead (with dough hook) on high speed for 10 – 30 minutes until dough comes away from the sides & creeps up the hook…while kneading, add water, if necessary, until the dough is like a thick pancake batter, it will be very wet.  Place in oiled graduated, clear container (so you can monitor it’s progress) and proof dough until it triples, it must triple (about 2 – 3 hours).

Turn out onto board with a thick layer of flour, let rest 5 minutes.  Stretch dough and fold, like a letter, twice, brushing off excess flour…divide into 4 pieces…stretch & fold each piece, twice…place on a large piece of parchment paper…preheat oven & baking stone to 500 degrees…slide loaves onto stone…reduce temperature to 450…bake 15 – 20 minutes (internal temperature of 205 degrees), 2 loaves took 33 minutes…cool completely on rack before slicing…



Susan's picture

Do you have photos?  Love those seeds and chunky grains in my bread, too.  They provide great flavor.

Susan from San Diego

bitbyter's picture

Thanks Beth but I am looking for something that will bake well in standard loaf pans. Your recipe seems to be for an artisan loaf and has much higher hydration than mine. Anyone have any advise on how to alter my recipe to add additional grains?

bakerb's picture

bitbyter...can you tell me how you get your recipe to look like a recipe?...with all the ingredients in a list like my original?...I'd appreciate it.  This format is too confusing to follow...Beth

ehanner's picture

Every time you press the return key the cursor drops two lines for a new paragraph. If you press and hold the Shift Key first, then it only drops one line. Like this;
It looks nicer when you give each item a line.

  • You can also click the Bullet button above, just right of the Underlined button.
  • Hope this helps.


Paddyscake's picture

Thank you..I have been trying to figure out how everyone else could do that and not me!!!

ehanner's picture

It took me a while to discover that shift trick also. Hehehe

holds99's picture


Thanks much for tip on single spacing.  Very helpful.  Been wanting single spacing but had no idea how to do it.


rebecca77's picture

I've adjusted a similar recipe by replacing some of the flour with the grains oz for oz, rather than just adding the grains to the original amount of flour (Reinhart says you can use whole grains up to about 1/3 of the total flour.). Getting the water right can be tricky, since it depends on how the grains absorb the water, but I generally soak the grains in an amount of water that just covers them (usually an oz of water or slightly less for an oz of grain), and add the entire mixture to the final dough. Then I only add the additional water after I've added all of the other ingredient and I add it slowly stopping when I get to what feels like about the right consistency. (Since you use active dry yeast, you'll have to dissolve the yeast in a little water to start, but it doesn't have to be much.). I've heard that you should also increase the salt a bit when you are using whole grains, but I haven't really noticed this one way or the other. Anyway, I've had good luck with this method, so it might work for you too.

(Also, I don't know whether you are using volume or weight measurements, but I believe that flour is about 4.5 oz/cup, not 8 oz /cup like water)

dolfs's picture

Read my post on the dough calculator (click on link to the left) and you will be rewarded with a tool that handles your problem. You will start by inputting your original recipe in the "Reverse" worksheet. It will be converted to Baker's percentages. Next put this on the "Recipe" worksheet and adjust the weight of the total dough until the quantities match your original. Now you know how much dough made your two loaves. You will also know the hydration of your original recipe (amount of water relative to flour).

Your next step will be to determine the amount of water in your soaked and drained grains. Weigh the grains while dry, soak them, drain/squeeze them, and weigh again. The difference in weight is water. The weight of that water, divided by the weight of the soaked and drained material is the percentage water in the soaked grains. You will create an entry for those soaked grains in the "Lookup" worksheet.

The final step is to add a line to the recipe for the soaked grains and adjust its baker's percentage to reflect the amount (relative) you would like to incorporate. You will now notice that the amounts for each ingredient have decreased to keep the total dough weight the same, and you will also notice that the hydration has increased somewhat.

If you would like to keep a somehwat similar crumb structure and size, you will want to bring hydration back to the original value. Start reducing the baker's percentage for the original water component until you have achieved this. The adjustment in grams/oz (although you will not directly enter this) will be equal to what you determined by weighing the soaked grains.

The final step, now that you have your modified recipe in baker's percentages, is to set the total dough weight to the amount you need for the number of loaves you desire to make and the "Recipe" worksheet will give you the amounts (oz/volume, grams) for each ingredient. Likewise you can also change the dough weight to half to get the recipe for one loaf etc. 


See my My Bread Adventures in pictures

bitbyter's picture

Using the calculator I have worked backwards and modified my recipe. I am going to give it a try tonight and will post the results with the modified recipe if it comes out well. I do have one question though for everyone. The grains I soaked made way to much for my modified recipe. Can I freeze the left overs and use them in future batches?

holds99's picture

They should freeze fine in a tightly sealed zip lock bag.  I roll them tightly in plastic film and then put them in a Foodsaver bag, vacuum sealing them (eliminating any air in the bag) with the Foodsaver machine, then label and freeze them..  If you don't have a Foodsaver just put them in a zip lock bag and squeeze as much air out as possible and freeze them and they should be fine.  If you freeze them in a jar the frost free fridge may draw some of the moisture out of them and it will form on the inside top of the lid of the jar.

bitbyter's picture

Well the bread turn out ok. I think I need to reduce the grains a bit as my Kitchen Aid mixer had issues kneading the dough. I decided to finish it by hand and the dough went through a normal rise. It baked off fine and I am happy with the taste / crumb of the final bread. In this version I used 25% bakers percentage soaked grains. I think next time I am going to reduce that to 15% and see if the Kitchen Aid can handle the kneading on its own.