The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Flour for panettone

adelie's picture
adelie

Flour for panettone

Happy holiday baking season!

I’ve been browsing the internet for holiday bread recipes and I’ve stumbled across several amazing panettone recipes that seem exciting to try out. However, they all call for very strong flour (around 15% gluten content) like Canadian bread flour or strong Italian 00 flour. I live in the US and these are all pretty pricey from the online vendors I’ve checked out, especially with shipping fees and whatnot. The strongest flour in shops seem to be King Arthur’s bread flour, which only has a gluten content of about 12%. Is that fine to use? Are there any substitutes or online vendors that sell high gluten flour at a more affordable price? Thanks, and happy baking to all!

suave's picture
suave

KABF does fine in sourdough panettone recipes.

Beatrice's picture
Beatrice

Hi, I baked a Panettone yesterday (I'm italian) and I used a W350 flour with 11 % protein content. It worked fine :) 

Edo Bread's picture
Edo Bread

Any pictures?!

Beatrice's picture
Beatrice
Edo Bread's picture
Edo Bread

Thank you! Looks very nice. I have not made it before and keep thinking this might be the year.

Jean Paul's picture
Jean Paul

Bravo!

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Hi Beatrice.

I am very familiar with flour specifications from Italian millers. W350 at only 11% protein content? Really? If you mean 11% gluten then sure that sounds plausible. However if you are correct then the flour must be highly refined (00) and slighly tenacious P/L > .55

Can you link to the flour in question, I would like to see the specifications of this flour.

Cheers,

Michael

Yippee's picture
Yippee

if the butter % is high in the formula, be aware that the butter content in some of the formulae can be as high as 50%!  Giusto's Ultimate Performer claims to be the "highest protein bread flour" and has 13-14.5% protein. 

http://giustos.com/home_baker/flours/bread-flours/organic-ultimate-performer-unbleached-white-flour.html

It also has a High Performer Flour:

http://giustos.com/home_baker/flours/bread-flours/high-performer-high-protein-unbleached-white-flour.html

I once followed a formula using approximately 70% KAAP and 30% KABF.  The panettones turned out beautifully, but the formula only calls for 26% butter. 

Yippee

Abelbreadgallery's picture
Abelbreadgallery

Use the strongest flour you can buy. Usually for panettone you should use a flour around 15% proteine content. If you don't find it, you should reduce the % of sugar and fat. Think that a real italian panettone contains around 450 ml water, 450 gr sugar, 550 gr eggyolk, 700 gr butter and around 1 kilo of candied fruit x 1 kilo of flour. And you need to ferment this with only lievito madre. It's a huge challenge.

Beatrice's picture
Beatrice

I'm italian and I don't agree with your measures! I used less butter, sugar and yolks (as all the greatest pastry chefs do here). In this way, with a long bulk, the panettone could achieve tenderness and airyness without being too heavy in the mouthfeel!!

clazar123's picture
clazar123

I have some thoughts about panettone but am only an amateur having never made an authentic recipe but more brioche-type knockoffs. I've been reading about it and then I finally tasted a real panettone. Wow! That is when I started really analyzing the crumb structure. So here goes...

Is strong flour needed because of the long rising times that would make mush of a lower protein flour dough? The texture I experienced was a loaf with long feathers of soft, melt-in-the mouth,buttery deliciousness. How did they achieve the strength with that cotton candy mouth feel? Is it that the very strong bread flour, that would normally make a chewy crumb, is degraded in a skillful,calculated way by the acid of prolonged fermentation? The  butter and sugar further tenderizes the crumb for its wonderful mouthfeel.

The second question is would this type of dough benefit (or not) from a levietro madre that is cultured with sugar to make a sugar tolerant culture.? This was talked about in "The Modernist Bread" video as being very do-able. But then would a very strong flour be needed?

I have been waiting for a panettone discussion. I am very interested to hear everyone's thoughts on this.

mwilson's picture
mwilson

You already know the answers to your questions, well mostly...


Is strong flour needed because of the long rising times that would make mush of a lower protein flour dough?

Yes. Generally speaking, the longer the leavening time the stronger the flour required.


How did they achieve the strength with that cotton candy mouth feel? Is it that the very strong bread flour

Yes. Strong bread flour, which is has ample gluten provides the texture you describe. Don't forget that the flour only contributes about 30% of the dough mass whereas in a lean loaf it would be well above 50%.

The perceived problem of very strong flour making a dense loaf is only a problem in the hands of someone that doesn't know how to fully utilise its strength and take it to the great heights (large volume) it is inherently capable of.

would this type of dough benefit (or not) from a levietro madre that is cultured with sugar to make a sugar tolerant culture.?

No. No. No. Nobody does this, this is not how a lievito madre is maintained nor is it necessary. Proper maintenance will select for the capable microorganisms. If too much sugar is consumed then then final product will be dry and will lack the characteristic mouthfeel. The use or not of strong bread flour has no bearing on this factor.

Elnymiel's picture
Elnymiel

May I know what flour you use, Mike? Is it KA and do you mix or combine with other type of flours, too? If yes , pls advise its ratio. Many thanks  

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Hi Elny,

I'm in the UK and so I don't use nor have access to KA flour.

As of the last year or so, I have settled on using flour from Marriages (Essex, UK).

I use their "Superfines" flour with 15% protein.

sgagnon90's picture
sgagnon90

Hi Michael, 

The flour I have access to has a protein content around 12%. Do you think it's worth adding gluten flour to increase its protein content to around 15%? More?

But the way, I've been working on my panettone for a while now and your posts have been very helpful. 

Thanks!

Sam

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Hi Sam.

I can't see any problem with adding gluten if that's what you want to do. I would expect suitable flours to be 13%-15% protein.

Cheers,
Michael

Evrenbingol's picture
Evrenbingol

How about vital wheat gluten ?
I know it does not add extensibility as it does not have gliadin but only glutenin but if you plug more water would that work ?

mwilson's picture
mwilson

VWG is liberated from hydrated flour by washing away starch, the result of which is then dried and so it contains both glutenin and gliadin constituents.

"Vital" means it retains its viscoelastic properties.

If you wish to add VWG then you can do so. No doubt you'll have to experiment with it a bit and see if it does what you want it to do.

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Michael, I understand there are notable differences between the way protein is calculated in different countries. I think it has to do with the moisture content of the flours. Someone recently posted a great link explaining the differences BUT I don’t remember where I read it. From memory 13% American flour has considerably more gluten than 13% European flour.

Can you elaborate? This may benefit a lot of interested bakers.

Update - I found one of the links shared by “Idaveindy”
http://www.theartisan.net/Flours_One.htm

 

Danny

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Hi Danny.

When I first saw this crop up, I was sceptical. And so I did some research looking at scientific literature, flour spec sheets and US/UK regulations and standards.

The standards which stipulate how the physio-chemical properties of flour are measured are indeed different in the US and in Europe. Physio-chemical data includes, ash, protein, moisture and falling number. However in the US, UK and EU this data isn't typically available to the consumer nor is it on the packet.

French and Italian flour analysis is based on dry weight (0% moisture) while US data is adjusted to include an assumed 14% moisture as standard.

However over here in the UK and EU most every packet of foodstuff includes nutritional content per 100g.

Nutritional testing is different and the data it provides includes moisture content, which makes sense since many foods include a high water content and the intention is to be informed of nutritional food groups (carbs, fats, protein, fibre) by weight.

Therefore the protein content of flour given as nutritional values in the US,UK and EU are comparative since they all include moisture content.

So some confusion has occurred and there is no need to adjust the protein numbers.

Ash is however a different story...

PS. An example showing the disparity between protein given under physio-chemical (0% moisture) and nutritional (includes moisture) values.

albacore's picture
albacore

I too have pondered the conundrum of protein content relative to moisture content and whether there is a difference between European and US declarations.

And I have to say that I am still confused!

Michael, if we look at your example, then we have a protein content of 15.5% at 0% moisture. We know that the moisture content is 15.0%, because it's in the analysis. So if we adjust the protein content for moisture we get an as is protein content of 13.5%. But this is NOT the same protein content as listed in the nutritional value, which is 14.59%.

Any thoughts? And what does % su s.s stand for - perhaps a clue?

I do agree that US protein levels are always adjusted for 14% moisture, but I'm not sure about this side of the pond.

Also, interestingly, (and to make life even more confusing) it seems that wheat grain protein is based on a moisture of 12% - home millers take note! Source here.

Lance

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Physio-chemical and nutritional tests are independent of each other. They only attempt to provide the absolutes we seek.

Nutritional data includes moisture and what that moisture % may be could be variable at the point of the test.

% su s.s = su secco.secco = on dry.dry as in dry/dry.

PS. It is not implicitly stating 15% moisture. That figure is in fact a Maximum.

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

Michael - I have seen formulas for high sugar doughs that call for osmotolerant yeast, and I have seen claims that you can in 48 hrs shift a starter culture to tolerate high sugar levels.  I was under the impression it was an issue of having a yeast that would tolerate high sugar, not one that would consume lots of sugar.  Can you clarify?

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

It is my understanding that with commercial yeast that a special coating on the yeast makes the difference. But what is it about a sourdough culture that makes it a t differently with sugars and such?

suave's picture
suave

Bacteria have mechanisms to counteract external stress/shock.  Basically, when faced with external stimuli they launch their internal machinery and produce proteins that help counteract it.  I imagine that in the case of osmotic shock they express new cell wall proteins and rebuild cell walls to prevent water from being sucked from them.  The yeast can do that just as efficiently, it's just that with yeasted doughs you want them to start working right away.

JoshuaTrees's picture
JoshuaTrees

Hi all

I'm relatively new to bread making.  Had a lovely days course last summer, dabbled a few times since. I usually use the local brand which is Marriages of Chelmsford and do ok with fast acting yeast.  OH even less of bread maker. However due to the current ‘situation’, OH has ordered a 25kg bag of Caputo Manitoba Oro flour thinking that will be just fine for bread making.  But oh boy, it’s so different to what I’m used to!  Any words of advice gratefully received.  I’m also conscious that we’re dividing the bag with two other families, so I don’t want to be the source of ruinous efforts and if I can pass on advice I’d be grateful xx

albacore's picture
albacore

What problems are you experiencing?

Lance

JoshuaTrees's picture
JoshuaTrees

The  recipe I usually use has 500gm flour to 250ml milk/water, pinch of sugar, 10gm salt, 15gm yeast although I've had to use block of live yeast as shops sold out of fast acting so used 30gm fresh.

if this Manitoba flour is all I'm going to be using for the forseeable future, I don't want to waste it!

So do I need more water? When I was needing it, it felt dry. As I stretched and folded over, the dough seem to keep those laminations and never really got as smooth as I would expect, certainly not as stretchy as other flours I've used.  

 

I left it to prove covered by a damp teatowel for a good 1hr 30mins, on warm window fill- I had a feeling it wasn't going to be fast! And having read up more about Manitoba flour I'm not surprised. I've now put it the airing cupboard with everything crossed that it will keep going.

What should I do different next time? More sugar? More water - it was only tacky but very stiff to knead. Longer to proove?

 

Thank you for your guidance 

albacore's picture
albacore

You are desperately low on liquid - for just about ANY bread flour and Manitoba takes more than most. Your hydration is 50% (weight of water as a percentage of weight of flour). You should be looking at 68%, so use 340g (best to weigh your liquids too, for accuracy), all water will do, or you can add some milk.

Cream your fresh yeast with a little of that water at 25C and your pinch of sugar. It should soon get nice and frothy. When it is, add it to your flour and give it a good mix and knead.

BTW your yeast qtty is rather high. If your yeast is fresh, 10g should be plenty.

Lance

JoshuaTrees's picture
JoshuaTrees

Hi Lance

Thank you for your advice- I'll increase the liquid quantity and cut down on the yeast in future.  

Nicky

TrulyScrumptious's picture
TrulyScrumptious

I just purchased this flour and I'm hoping it will work for my Panettone. I think the protein is fine, but it is not 00 grind. Do you think this will work? I'm having trouble finding Manitoba Flour.

Abelbreadgallery's picture
Abelbreadgallery

I have been making panettone with italian bakers. If you wanna make Panettone, you need a very strong flour specially for the 1st mix, and also for your stiff starter.

For your stiff starter and the 1st mix you need a white flour with these atributes: W350 PL 0.55

For the 2nd mix you need a weaker flour, W280/300 PL 0.5-0.55

If you use Caputo flours, this means you could use Manitoba or Sacorosso for the first mix, and you can use Superiore for the second.

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Abel, is it improper to use Manitoba for all of the Panettone flour

Abelbreadgallery's picture
Abelbreadgallery

It's better to use Manitoba in the first mix and a weaker flour for the second. If you use a Manitoba flour for the second mix, the panettone needs more time to proof (six hours or more). If you use a not so strong flour, your panettone will be ready to bake in 3-5 hours.

albacore's picture
albacore

If you look in old breadmaking books, they always match the strength of the flour to the desired fermentation time.

They even talk about a 2 hour flour, a 4 hour flour, and so on.

 

Lance

Abelbreadgallery's picture
Abelbreadgallery

Yes it's true. That's why you use a very strong flour for 1st mix (usually 8-12 hours of fermentation) and a weaker flour for the second one (only 3-6 hours of final proof).

suave's picture
suave

Then why does Cresci show either the same flour in every dough or goes from weaker to stronger?

albacore's picture
albacore

 Maybe that's why his book got this review on Amazon?

"This book may be fantastic in Italian, but the English version is a complete waste of time and money as none of the recipes work. A very expensive mistake"

Apologies for my flippancy ;)

Lance

suave's picture
suave

Well, this changes everything.

Kiril's picture
Kiril

Hey,

 

I'm having some issues with the panettone and as a newby I'm trying to find out. Its quite interesting experience to figure it out on my own, but i think its time to ask for some help. 

 

I've been trying to make panettone several times. In some way it works, but I don't achieve a great rise.

1) At first I switched the flour from pizza "00" to Selezione casillo 0 Manitoba flour.

2) I definitely saw some improvement, but not a 3x rise of the starter (converted liquid to stiff) nor first dough. A 2x barely. 

3) I've made pasta madre and the weekend after 15-17+ days I tried again. I saw improvement, but again it was somehow 2x rise for the pasta madre and not enough for the first dough.

Now I'm considering that the problem is not the starter, but the flour. Is it possible that the above flour which is with W400 to give more resistence and that to be the reason for the rising problems? Also - when you look the first dough after 8 hours there are a lot of small bubbles on the surface.

Please give me some advice on how to fix it. I think I reviewed the whole youtube and google for those issues. Even translated a lot of sources from Italian and still I'm missing something.

Bests,
Kiril

Kiril's picture
Kiril

Hey,

 

I'm having some issues with the panettone and as a newby I'm trying to find out. Its quite interesting experience to figure it out on my own, but i think its time to ask for some help. 

 

I've been trying to make panettone several times. In some way it works, but I don't achieve a great rise.

1) At first I switched the flour from pizza "00" to Selezione casillo 0 Manitoba flour.

2) I definitely saw some improvement, but not a 3x rise of the starter (converted liquid to stiff) nor first dough. A 2x barely. 

3) I've made pasta madre and the weekend after 15-17+ days I tried again. I saw improvement, but again it was somehow 2x rise for the pasta madre and not enough for the first dough.

Now I'm considering that the problem is not the starter, but the flour. Is it possible that the above flour which is with W400 to give more resistence and that to be the reason for the rising problems? Also - when you look the first dough after 8 hours there are a lot of small bubbles on the surface.

Please give me some advice on how to fix it. I think I reviewed the whole youtube and google for those issues. Even translated a lot of sources from Italian and still I'm missing something.

Bests,
Kiril