The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Spelt loaves just keep getting biga

ReneR's picture

Spelt loaves just keep getting biga

To be honest, posting more in order to use the above tabloid-type title rather than to share some new bread breakthrough, but here goes anyway. Apologies for overdoing the biga theme in the process.

My latest bake was a 50% white spelt 50% strong white wheat flour loaf with 5% golden flaxseeds (pre-full hydration). All the spelt went into the 'shaggy' biga.

Bigger biga

The loaf had amazing oven spring. I would say at least doubled in size in the dutch oven, lifting the lid in the process.

Lovely soft texture, crunch crust and open crumb and nice, slightly sweet, taste. Kept really fresh for a long time as well. Still almost like fresh after about 2.5 days from the bake.

Bigger biga 2

I have plucked up the courage to try pushing the biga experiment to the limit as per the conversation in the previous posting with GaryBishop about whether 50% biga is the sweetspot by going for a 100% biga in the next loaf I a preparing. Trying for a 30% wholegrain rye loaf.

Will be reporting back with results.


GaryBishop's picture

I'm inspired by your posts. Life has been preventing me from getting started. Next week I hope. 

I'm enjoying the tabloid titles.

mwilson's picture

I can see the dough had lots of strength, that's a nice wide bloom.

Well done!


ReneR's picture

Very much appreciated, especially from such an expert on the science of bread making.

I knew that spelt head a very nice warm round slightly sweet nutty flavor from my past liquid levain bakes, but the texture was always a little off or tough/rubbery compared to wheat. And psychologically hated that slightly sinking feeling when I would do a stretch and fold and after 40min coming back and finding the ball I had left flat, even if it would come together again after the next s&f.

Having a way now to have great texture is really letting me enjoy the taste of spelt and handling the dough too. Nice rich warm and round taste. I was close to giving up on it for good. Glad I didn't.

Not sure why this technique helps so much with the strength of the dough. Any explanation you might have would be very welcome.

tpassin's picture

A very dramatic loaf, for sure! Very nice!  It makes me want to try some spelt flour.  My local mill has started up grinding again now that the water probably won't freeze.  They mill spelt so maybe I'll be able to get some soon.


Benito's picture

Very lovely loaf Rene, well done, you must be pleased.