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Rolled grains and adjusting hydration

Captain Foulweather's picture
Captain Foulweather

Rolled grains and adjusting hydration

I have been experimenting with various rolled grains (barley, emmer, einkorn, etc.) and haven't yet figured a good method to determine how to adjust the overall hydration for the recipe. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how they have resolved this conundrum ? I really love the additional texture and nutrition provided by these whole grains. I promise to post my latest experiment as soon as it finishes with both formula and photos. 

albacore's picture

I'd be tempted to soak them overnight, maybe by pouring boiling water on them and allocate the same hydration as the rest of the flours in the recipe.


David R's picture
David R

You may need to experiment a bit - different grains, probably rolled to different thicknesses, and possibly having been soaked or steamed to different hydrations when they were being rolled, means they're going to behave differently. Indistinct mush is probably not your goal any more than hard lumps are.

gavinc's picture

Start by knowing the bakers % for each ingredient of the overall recipe.  You can then determine the weight of each ingredient (I work in grams).

For the soaker, if I use 4 seed type I call each 25% (total of 100%) and use 125% water. Subtract the weight of each from the overall recipe when mixing the final dough.

I also pre-ferment 35% of the flour at 65% hydration and 2% salt and a pinch of instant yeast.  This also gets subtracted from the overall recipe for the final dough mix.

To adjust the hydration of the overall recipe is done before determining the weight of everything else. Start with knowing the total weight of the dough mix you desire.  Divide this by the total amount of bakers % to give you a conversion factor.  Use the conversion factor as a multiplier against each ingredient bakers % to give you the weight of each.  I set up a spreadsheet to make this an easy task.

In short, if you want to dabble in adjusting hydration, I recommend using bakers %. I have a very nice whole-wheat bread with a multigrain soaker that uses four different seeds and a pate-fermentee.  Happy to provide the bakers % and ingredients list if you want as a starting point. I have a spreadsheet for this recipe also.