With several attempts in using white bread flour, some success and some that requires more practice. I was prepared to start trying something different, Whole wheat flour and Rye flour. I researched on what I might be able to do with it, at least with some success at the beginning. Most of the recipes are so complex, with sourdough, poolish, starters. It's really requires a longer time than other bread. So, I decided to select a recipe that I can work on easily, without much complexities.
Here's the recipe that I found, and I thought, this isn't as difficult as others. I'm one who prefers white bread than whole wheat and rye bread, I wasn't sure about the taste, so, I thought I had better do a safer bet on using a mix of flour. http://www.artisanbreadbaking.com/blogs/?p=41
Barry's recipe is a huge bread. I decided to cut down the recipe. Here's the adapted version:
4 oz Rye
4 oz whole wheat
8 oz water
1/2 tsp yeast
This is mix in and left overnight, about 9 hours. There were lots of bubbles when I woke up. And the smell, wow, strong liquor smell. Well, it looks correct. I wasn't sure.
200g whole wheat
2 tsp yeast
1 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp honey
2 vegetable oil
2 oz white flour
1 tsp salt
Next is mix the yeast, sugar into the poolish. I wasn't sure if I was suppose to do a lot of stirring or what, but I did. The recipe says let stand for 15 min and it will activate. Ok, I saw it expand the poolish a little.
While the yeast is working on the poolish, I mix the rye, whole wheat, water and honey (mixing the honey into water first), and stir it well. Its suppose to take the place of autolyse. Not exactly sure what to expect.
Ok, is the poolish ready? I waited probably a little longer about anther 10 minutes before I started mixing the poolish and the 2nd mix together. it says beat the batter and let stand for 15 mins. I just used a wooden spoon and mixed them well. I can see the gluten is working well though.
Added vegetable oil and salt and stir and add the white flour. The dough is very very wet. I used the Peter Bertinet's sweet dough method to knead. The dough was still wet and sticky after 15 mins. I added a little more white flour, probably a tablespoon or two. Knead some more and still very sticky, add a table spoon of whole wheat, more kneading using the traditional method. Still very sticky, add a table spoon of rye, more kneading, using the stretch and fold method. Ok, it's getting slight better. I'm able to pull it together into a ball.
It's big, I decided to split them into 2, one for the loaf pan. Roll it oval, that was so difficult, the dough was still sticky, not as bad, but a little. Pull and twist it and threw it into my loaf pan.
Next 2nd piece of dough, I decided to go for 6 rounds. 5 of the same size, 1 bigger to place it in the center. I decided to put some walnuts in as well as I have some ready ones. The rounding of the dough is easy, flour them and place them onto my round pizza pan. Now wait for them to expand. The proofing went very well, perhaps a little too well. as it didn't have any oven spring after that. I decided to put it into my oven that is still warm, after I used it to heat up my breakfast. Afraid that it'll dry out, put a cup of hot water in the oven. Well, it took me probably just about 1/2 hour to see that the dough expanded. I scored the expanded doughs and it sort of went deflated a little. threw some grated cheese on 2 of them to see how it turns out.
I wasn't sure what temperature I should put, I decided to go for 190C, 25 minutes. The round ones are ready.
For the loaf, I didn't use the oven, instead I covered it with a blanket, which I found really effective, and I decided to put it under my lamp, so that it is not affected by the cold environment that I'm in. It rose quite well too, after 1 1/4 hours. I baked the loaf at 200C, 30 minutes. Same thing, there's not much oven spring.
The bread turns out really good, chewy and every little part of the dough had sprung up well. The holes are well spread out.
Verdict: Easy recipe, will be useful if I have bread machine as I'm aching from the kneading with such as huge amount of flour. Taste is bland but chewy good. It'll be a good breakfast sandwich.
To improve: I'm still not getting my proofing correct, really really don't know how to control as I still don't have an oven thermometer to get a good measurement. And, my shaping for the loaf pan, next time, I'll just go for the fold.
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