The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

60% Home-Milled Grain

pogrmman's picture

60% Home-Milled Grain

Today, I tried something I’ve wanted to do for years: a sourdough with home-milled grains! I was gifted a Wondermill and some whole wheat and rye berries for Christmas, so I was excited to try it out.

I came up with this loaf last night as I was milling the grain and making the levain. I had heard that home-milled flours could have issues with strength and with bran, so I decided to play it conservative and only go 60% home milled/40% KA All Purpose flour for my first batch. I also went for a firm levain (60% hydration) and decided I’d do an overnight saltolyse with my home-milled flours so they would hydrate.

The overall formula is as follows:

45% home-milled Butler’s Gold wheat (a hard red winter wheat)

15% home-milled Ryman rye

40% KA All Purpose Flour

~80% hydration

1.75% salt

10% prefermented flour — 1/2 whole wheat, 1/2 whole rye

I milled the flour just before mixing the levain at ~6:30 or so. This was 330g of the Butler’s Gold wheat and 110g of the Ryman rye. I weighed out a little extra of the raw berries and was pleased to see that the mill only retained about ~2-3g of what I put in. 

I was quite pleased with the texture of the flour — I was worried it would be too coarse, but it was very comparable to some flours I’ve purchased. I’ve been using Barton Springs Mill’s flours and they are definitely finer than this, with smaller bran particles, but this was not bad at all. The aroma of the freshly milled flour was phenomenal! I really thought the rye, especially, was outstanding.

I mixed up my levain with 36.4g of each of the fresh flours, 44g water, and 11.2g of my 60% hydration starter (which works out to 10% prefermented flour here, too). 60% hydration was very stiff with these flours, but I was pleased at how not sticky it was with 1/2 rye flour.

I mixed the saltolyse later, around 10:00. I decided I wanted to keep it pretty firm to prevent too much enzymatic activity, so I took the rest of the fresh milled flours, added all the salt (12.7g) and enough water to bring it to 70% hydration. This was quite stiff, but not like the levain. When I mixed in the water, the flour released a lovely sweet aroma!

In the morning, I mixed the white flour with enough water to bring it to 72.5% hydration and let it rest for 10 minutes to hydrate. I then layered the three doughs on top of each other and kneaded them together gently. I used the KitchenAid for about 2-3 minutes to incorporate more water, then I mixed with the Rubaud method, incorporating even more water on the way (about ~100g total extra water). 

I was very happy with the gluten development in the fresh flours from an overnight soak and was also pleased to see that the bran had softened enough to not really damage the gluten too much. It was easy to mix it to a nice windowpane, despite the high percentage of whole grains.

I did 4 stretch/folds during bulk ferment, which went fast — about 3.5-4 hours or so at ~70°F. By the end of bulk, the dough had lovely strength and was very airy, which made shaping a breeze! I proofed the first loaf about ~90-110 minutes at the same temperature and the second went about 40 minutes longer as the first one was in the oven.

I was very pleased with the oven spring on these loaves. When I cut into the first loaf, I was shocked to see how open the crumb was!

This bread tastes outstanding! There’s a nice, soft sweetness and a really lovely wheatiness without any bitterness, with just the faintest hint of lactic acidity. The fresh milled flours bring an outstanding flavor to the bread and I’m very excited to play around with more grains! In addition to all the different wheats and ryes, I’m also curious about Kernza, triticale, barley, and that’s just scratching the surface.

I‘m definitely keeping this formula in my back pocket — and am also now curious about trying the saltolyse with pre-milled whole wheats, too.

jo_en's picture

Beautiful loaf!

tpassin's picture

Purely gorgeous!

Our Crumb's picture
Our Crumb

Your lovely products caught my eye as their formula closely resembles our weekly bake.  We use a higher proportion of Triticum, a bit more salt, often some porridge and a shorter/warmer bulk, but otherwise a very similar bake.  Your dough's KA treatment and surely other factors gave you a fashionably open crumb.  Beautiful.