This bread arose from a “What if…?” musing. Specifically, what if I used oat flour in place of barley flour for the Barley/Wheat Bread I made previously? As it turns out, it's a pretty good idea.
The formula was:
350g whole oat flour
50g whole rye flour
400g whole wheat flour
400g bread flour (I wound up using King Arthur all purpose flour)
10g active dry yeast
After milling the oat, rye, and wheat flours, I autolysed them with 850g of water and all of the honey for about 45 minutes. The other 50g of water was used to hydrate the yeast. At the end of the autolyse, the yeast and water were mixed into the dough, followed by the salt, Finally, the bread flour was mixed in. Since the resulting dough was still quite loose, an additional half cup of bread flour was mixed in.
The dough was manually kneaded for 10 minutes, then covered and allowed to rise. Since the kitchen temperature was about 75F, the dough took about 50 minutes to double in bulk.
The dough was portioned and shaped into two loaves, then placed in two greased 9x5 loaf pans for the final fermentation. As with the bulk fermentation, the final fermentation also moved briskly and the loaves were ready to go into the oven in less than an hour. They were then baked at 375F for 55 minutes.
The crumb (sorry, no pic), in spite of the loaves having expanded generously in final fermentation and while baking, is fairly tight; more so than the barley version. It is also slightly more prone to crumbling while slicing even though the baked bread is quite moist.
The bread has a mild, pleasant flavor. The honey, while not enough to make the bread taste sweet, rounds out the flavors of the whole grains. It is very enjoyable, whether eaten with a smear of butter, or in a sandwich, or toasted.
This bread, whether made with barley or with oats, is a winner. I could see it going off in several different directions: maybe bump up the rye percentage, maybe add some molasses, maybe add some butter or oil, maybe add an egg or two, or… Of course, it's pretty darn good as is.