Today's JH 5 Grain Levain Bake
Today I baked my 4th attempt at the JH 5 Grain Levain bread. I don't mean to bore everyone with yet another post of this bread, but I would like to show everyone the help that David Snyder's tutorial post on scoring bread gave me. I am finally producing some ears and slashes that are looking the way they should, along with some blooms that I could rarely accomplish before. I still have a lot more practice ahead of me to say I am confident with scoring, but at least I am getting somewhere. Thanks to members of this site like David, new bakers can really benefit from the lessons and suggestions given on this site. Also bakers like breadforfun, who post photos that inspire to bake better. I will post the crumb photos when they have had time to cool and I can sneak into my local grocery store to use their professional slicing machine. Shhh.
Hi John, looks like you hit it. You got good blisters and a nice color. I'm sure the crimb will be perfect. Congrats!
Hey Brad, I sure am happy with it. Sandwiches with beef and barley soup are going to taste amazing tonight. I love this bread as it is amazing fresh or week old and toasted.
These look great :-) Don't you just love it when something works? So nice to see the results of your persistence with this formula. I imagine the crumb will be nice too and the flavor excellent.
Thank you Janet. Yes, the crumb is very moist and flavourful. Now I just have to make sure I do as good or better each time I do this one in the future!
Beaut lookin bread ... Lovely sheen on the crust ... did you bake them in a dutch oven?
Thanks Phil. It was actually baked in my trusty turkey roaster pan. It is my version of a dutch oven until I get a real dutch oven.
puts crust on bread better than any of my DO's do. It's not even close. The Magnalite wins every time. Your crumb came out fair to Midland too. Now you have the trifecta - nice looking inside and out and it tastes real good too!
I'm glad the scoring tutorial was helpful.
Thanks David. It has been VERY helpful. My mistake reading it the first time was to skim through. After my last frustration with scoring, I read the tutorial over and over until everything sank in. I tend to skim over the details that are important.
is some fine baking and great looking bread. Perfect color, blisters, scoring and bloom. Way to go Brad. You seem terribly hooked now. Bread is better than most other addictions too! Nice turkey roasting - just in time for Thanksgiving!
Thanks dabrownman! Actually, here in Canada, Thanksgiving was a month ago. The turkey I made then wasn't so 5 grainy and crusty. :)
I am hooked...I admit it. It started out as just a necessity to re-create a particular type of loaf that at our local grocery store goes for over $5.00 per small/med. sized loaf. That loaf is exactly like JH 5 grain levain except it is rolled in seeds. Now I have moved onto other loaves like San Fran style sourdoughs, rye, etc. I never thought I would be capable of learning or interested in baking so many different breads but it is addicting and so satisfying. I used to get that high from cooking, but now I have met a new desire. I love it.
of grocery store 'artisan' bread goes for $5 in Canada then you are making some $10 loaves. Now we need to get you doing some sprouts to go with your soaker and you'll have $15 bread :-)
$10 per loaf?? Sold! Ill send a 5 dozen down to my parents in Mesa. When will your next order be? :)
Sprouts IN the soaker? How would one do that? Im a fan of sprouts so do tell.
Here are the crumb photos.
THANK YOU! :)
I agree - BEAUTIFUL :-)
I especially like the color. I know how wonderfully crispy the crust is on this bread (just baked some myself today).
Thanks Glen! You should post photos of your results. I would love to see.
These are friggin amazing!
Do you have a link to the formula that you finally used after the adjustments you made to JH's original 5-grain formula? I really want to try this using locally produced grains (from South Africa.)
Hi Paul and thank you so much for your comments! Judging from your profile photo I take it you are a professional baker? If you are, you just made my day with your compliments :)
This is the full detailed recipe and process:
227g bread flour
45g mature sourdough starter (mine is maintained with 1/3 rye to 2/3 white bread flour feedings).
82g cracked wheat
82g flax seeds
71 g sunflower seeds
71 g rolled instant oats
20g pot barley
369 g boiling water
510 g Levain
All of soaker
436g bread flour
227g whole wheat flour
18 g vital wheat gluten
238 g water
The night before baking, build the liquid levain by mixing together all of the ingredients in a medium bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 12 to 16 hours.
Also the night before, prepare the soaker by toasting the dry ingredients well. Then mix together all the dry ingredients and cover with boiling water, stirring well. Cover and let sit at room temperature overnight.
For final build, place all ingredients of final build (excluding the soaker build and final build salt), in a bowl and mix until well combined. Let the shaggy mass of dough sit, or autolyse, for 30 mins. After autolyse, add the soaker and final build salt. Knead until a medium gluten development is achieved.
Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled glass bowl or plastic container. Cover and let rise for 2 hours. Stretching and folding twice after 50 mins each time. Return to the bowl (seams down) and let rise for the remaining rise time. It should about double. Remove the dough, flatten and pre-shape into round. Let dough rest for 15 minutes then shape into batard or boule. Place shaped loaves seam side up in a well floured banetton or couche. Place in fridge overnight. On baking day, remove loaves from fridge and let come to room temperature, approx. 2 - 3 hours. Preheat oven to 500 degrees for 45 minutes before proofing is complete. Turn heat down to 460 degrees, slash and bake with steam for 30 minutes, then without for 10-15 minutes. Take bread out of oven and let cool on cooling rack.
Makes 3 medium loaves.
To see my steaming method, check out my post here:
Thanks again, and I would love to see your results!
Yes, I am a pro baker specialising in French pastries (viennoiserie) and sourdough breads here in Johannesburg, South Africa. I have never tried a multi-grain formula hence my interest was aroused with your posting.
As soon as I get a break in the lead up to the festive season baking, I will give it a trial and post the results (and of course, the pics!)
Well Paul, I am truly humbled by your interest and comments.
I hope it goes well for you, and I feel silly saying this to a professional, but if you have any questions, let me know!