The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Focaccia - Flour

PizzaCalcio's picture
PizzaCalcio

Focaccia - Flour

I am testing some different flours for my focaccia in search of a more open crumb and more oven spring and have found that I achieve a lighter more open airy crust with a 75% Central Milling ABC+ (11.5% Protein Content) 25% Semola Rimacinata combination. However, I achieve more oven spring, however a more dense focaccia when I use 50% Central Milling ABC+, 25% Central Milling High Gluten, 25% Semola Rimacinata.

I have always thought using stronger protein content flour would give me a more open crumb but I have found quite the opposite during these tests. Up until I started experimenting with these new flour combinations, my best has been to use 90% King Arthur Bread Flour and then 10% other flour, Maiorca, Spelt, Semola Rimacinata, whatever I have around. These tests have made me wonder if I should bump down to King Arthur All Purpose instead of Bread Flour

My process/recipe - 20% pre-fermented flour Biga at 60% Hydration with 0.06% IDY - biga sits for 14.5Hours - Mix remaining flour with 75% water, 2% salt 0.40% IDY - bulk ferment at 72 degrees for 3 hours, proof in pan for 2 and then bake at 500

The picture is the 75% Central Milling ABC+ (11.5% Protein Content) 25% Semola Rimacinata combination

 

MTloaf's picture
MTloaf

During the recent baguette Community bake we had better luck with lower protein flour for getting a more open crumb and a softer chew. You may find that less water and kneading will be required because of the lower protein. The semola may also contribute to a less open crumb than an all white flour version. 

PizzaCalcio's picture
PizzaCalcio

Through tests I found out that my main issue was in shaping - instead of pushing the focaccia to dimple down right before I bake, I dimple and shape and then let sit for 20 min - difference was night and day

retbaker's picture
retbaker

Your focaccia looks great, I want to try that flour combination, seems like the Semola would add a nice taste too.

Have you tried 100% Italian style Type 00 flour? I had good results and an open crumb with Caputo "Chef" Type 00 (13% protein, soft wheat, imported from Italy). It is available in some grocery stores like Whole Foods in small 1 kg bags. I mix it at high hydration (94%) and usually do a 8-12+ hour bulk in the fridge. Central Milling also has some Type 00 US flours that work well, but I seem to get a little better crumb with the Italian flour.

PizzaCalcio's picture
PizzaCalcio

I have tried a blend of Tipo 0 and Tipo 00, really good

You should try Mulino Marino Tipo 00 - they sell it on the website of Formaggio Kitchen - really great flour