The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

(7-plan) Journey to perfect a 100% WW Sourdough Pullman Loaf

texasbakerdad's picture

(7-plan) Journey to perfect a 100% WW Sourdough Pullman Loaf

Time to start adding various ingredients to give this loaf some character. Not sure what ingredients to add, I asked for ideas in a separate post:

To kick off this firsts bake, I am going to constrain my process. "7-Grain Whole Wheat" always sounded cool to me. So, I'll arbitrarily limit keep the recipe to 7 grains or additives. After reading everyone's responses to the thread linked above, I was really interested in trying Rye, Sweet Potatoes, and Spelt. Unfortunately, I don't have sweet potatoes or spelt in my pantry, so I will have to make due with what have.

Here are the 7 grains/additives I am going to go with this bake:

  1. Hard White Wheat
  2. Rolled Oats
  3. Russet Potatoes
  4. Rye
  5. Einkhorn
  6. Quinoa
  7. Black Sesame
  8. Cracked Wheat
  9. EDIT: Adding hemp hearts because of a recent comment from Mini Oven ("Soft little crunchies")

Yep, you read that right... 8. I just said 7, but my list is 8. OK OK OK... This is my bake, I can do what I want, but I really wanted both sesame AND cracked wheat. But now, I have to figure out how much to add to the recipe.

In the previous bakes I had 50g of rolled oats. That seemed to be about right, I could tell the rolled oats where there but they weren't overpowering the loaf. And, I think the sesame seeds and cracked wheat should be less, I don't know why I think that, I just do, maybe because they are least like flour. And the flours will replace the hard white wheat at 10%, versus the other ingredients will just be added to the recipe. AND then as for water... if any of these ingredients are likely to absorb water, I will guess at the absorbtion rate and add that much water to the recipe. The flours will have water added at roughly 95% hydration.

Here is the list again but with amounts and water additions.

  1. Hard White Wheat 360g (345g water)
  2. Rolled Oats 50g (50g water)
  3. Russet Potatoes 50g (25g water)
  4. Rye 45g (40g water) 
  5. Einkhorn 45g (40g water)
  6. Quinoa 50g (40g water)
  7. Black Sesame 25g (0g water)
  8. Cracked Wheat 25g (10g water)
  9. Hemp Hearts 25g (0g water)
  10. More salt for all of these extra ingredients

Am I doing this right? I don't know, it is just an experiment!

Side comments so I don't forget:

  • I really wanted to try hemp hearts. Maybe next time.
  • After this bake, I will be out of hard white wheat berries and won't be getting a new shipment until the end of the month. Next bake will have to be with store bought wheat... boohooo.


The wife has tasked me to come up with a sandwich bread recipe our family can bake at least once a weak to completely replace our regularly purchased box store sandwich bread.


  • Soft and light
  • 100% whole wheat
  • Recipe must be easily repeatable and easy to execute.
  • Recipe must be designed for a covered pullman loaf pan.
  • My 12 year old daughter must be able to bake the bread from start to finish
  • Sourdough leavening only.
  • From start to finish, the bread must be completable in 1 day.
  • Process must exist to enable the baker to know with reasonable certainty that the loaf is perfectly proofed.
  • Dough needs to contain a few softened chewy seeds, grain berries, etc. for texture and flavor.
  • Don't use bran flakes as a bread topping.
  • 1.5 out of 10 on the TexasBakerDad sourness scale, whatever the heck that means :-)

Modifications from Previous Bake

  • Add a bunch of ingredients to the loaf and hope something resembling bread comes out of the oven.
  • Shape the dough into 4 mini loafs and then load into pullman.


  • 60g (12%) sourdough starter (50:50 hard red)
  • 50g rolled outs
  • 50g russet potato
  • 50g quinoa
  • 25g black sesame
  • 25g cracked wheat
  • 30g (6%) honey
  • 15g (3%) non-iodized salt
  • 30g (6%) virgin olive oil
  • 550g well water
  • 360g home milled hard white wheat (sifted to remove bran)
  • 45g dark rye
  • 45g home milled einkhorn (sifted to remove bran)
  • More rolled oat that the mini loaves will be rolled in upon shaping.


  • 0:00: Peel russet potato and chop 50g of it into tiny pieces
  • 0:05: Put potato, rolled oats, quinoa, honey, sesame seeds, cracked wheat, and 550g of water into a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Then let sit for 10 minutes
  • 0:30: Test the cracked wheat to see if it softened enough. If it did good, if not, boil again and wait, do this as many times as needed to soften the cracked wheat.
  • 0:30: Add oil and mix
  • 0:31: Check the water temp and just make sure we are below 110dF, since we are heating up more water than previously it is possible the water is too hot.
  • 0:32: Mix in all of the flours into a shaggy mess. Then let sit for 10 minutes.
  • 0:42: Smear 60g starter over the top of the dough mess. Use drum on Ankarsum and knead until dough stops showing improvement (record time elapsed, about 8 minutes).
  • 0:55: Dump dough onto bench, siphon off 20g for aliquot, then preshape into 4 equally weighted balls, then wait 15 min.
  • 1:00: Prepare pullman pan
  • 1:10: Shape dough and load into pan, roll tops into oats on bench, seem sides facing inwards?
  • Let dough proof in pullman until aliquot shows 1.7x rise over original volume. roughly 8 hours later.
  • 8:20: Preheat Oven to 375dF 
  • 9:00: Score, put lid on pullman and bake in oven covered for 1 hour 15 min.
  • 10:15: Pull from oven, transfer to rack to cool. Let cool for at least 2.5 hours.
  • 12:45: Slice and enjoy.



Ilya Flyamer's picture
Ilya Flyamer

You are going all-in then! Good luck, hope this works. I thought you wanted to go slow and add ingredients one by one, but I'm sure this way you'll get a delicious and flavourful loaf.

texasbakerdad's picture

I am halfway through the bake. So far the bake has been stressful and full of problems :-)

I had to make a lot of changes along the way. Basically, I made a few major mistakes... Too much starch in the added ingredients, the potatoes took much longer to soften than I anticipated, I cut the potatoes too small and couldn't mash them (but I think I got them soft enough to mash on their own during kneading), the overall weight of the added ingredients was just too much. I ended up mixing them all together and then halving the additions but doing some math to come out with the right amount of water.

Like I said... not a fun bake, but I will learn a lot. I think I will still end up with flavorful and edible bread in the end.

Benito's picture

I forgot to mention in the other thread, something I really like using for sandwich bread to give it softness of crumb without adding butter is making a Tangzhong. I’m not sure you’re familiar with Tangzhong but it is essentially a roux you make by cooking some of the flour in water or milk.  You allow it to cool and then add it to your dough during mix.  It is easy and really adds something to sandwich bread.

texasbakerdad's picture

I have a made 2 or 3 loaves using hte Tangzhong method in the past. My wife always complained that she didn't like the flavor and I am pretty sure she was picking up on the cooked milk flavor in Tangzhong. I like that flavor and I think it is a super mild flavor, but something about that flavor rubs her the wrong way.

Benito's picture

Ah OK, have you tried it with water instead of milk?  Just a thought.

texasbakerdad's picture

No, I haven't. Although, I think am sort of getting a partial Tangzhong gelatization effect when I scald the rolled oats with boiling water. This bake will be interesting because I ended up having oats, quinoa, and chia seeds (I ended up using chia instead of sesame). All of which gelatinize.

I definitely overdid the changes this time! I feel like a mad scientist, emphasis on the mad.

texasbakerdad's picture

I guess I was misinformed. I thought Tangzhong was specifically for a milk/flour roux, but I guess it doesn't mean specifically milk. My first introduction to the Tangzhong method was making Hokkaido milk bread.

Benito's picture

Not misinformed, but you can easily get the benefits of the gelatinization of the flour without dairy.  Water, almond milk, oat milk etc can be used to cook the flour as well.