The Fresh Loaf

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Spent Grain Bread

limmitedbaking's picture

Spent Grain Bread

Got quite a bit of spent grains from a friend who is into Homebrewing and decided to try making a bread out of it. The grains (mainly barley) were roughly cracked using a hand grinder before being heated for about 2 hours to create a malt extract from them. This means that they are no longer sweet but still lend a nice texture to the bread.

I scoured the web for some inspiration before building a formula that works nicely with my schedule and timing. 

Sourdough Preferment
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup water
1 Tbps starter

Mix and let it ferment for about 8 hours or until ripe.

Main Dough
All of the preferment
1 3/4 cup AP flour
1 cup red fife flour
1 1/4 cup water
2/3 cup spent grains
1 1/2 + tsp salt

Combine all ingredients aiming for a 70% like hydration. Bulk ferment 7 hours at 20C. Preshape, rest 30 mins. Shape and proof for 1.5 hours at 24C. Bake at 240C with steam for 1st 15 mins. Reduce to 230C for another 30 mins.

Here's the dough preshaped and resting.

And here's the final product:

While quite a few recipe's called for grinding up the grain further, I decided to keep it whole as I thought it would lend a nice texture to the bread, which it did! However, you do get some husk in the bread, but I find it adds a rustic quality to the bread. Next time I might even be tempted to increase the amount of spent grains to 1 cup. Crumb is reasonably open and moist with the grains contributing a nice bite to the bread. All in all, a nice homemade loaf and probably my best canadian bake thus far!



Mebake's picture

This is one healthy bread. Nice work


limmitedbaking's picture

Thanks Khalid!

golgi70's picture

I know some brewers and want to do the same thing.  I was unsure how to treat the spent grains. (whether to grind or try and remove the husks)  Now I know I'm good to go.  Will be trying this soon. 

Very Nice Loaf


limmitedbaking's picture

Hi Josh, my friend grinds it up and mixes it together int he bread and it works well too. Try it both ways, I am sure your brewing friends have more spent grains than you can bake bread!

yozzause's picture

I think that is a mighty fine looking loaf and great use of a by product from your friend, no doubt if you give him a sample you will have all his spent grain in future, a great result 

regards Yozza

limmitedbaking's picture

Thanks Yozza! I am sure he will be more than willing to give me the spent grains! It's the amount of bread I bake that is limiting. No wonder bread and beer used to be made in one place in the past. There is so much in common.