100% Whole wheat bread

Since I’m starting to feel more comfortable with bread making, I decided I should try my hand at making something that is a little healthier.  We had switched from buying bread to me making tortillas for wraps for our lunches (less dense, less calories).  Somewhere along the way I started to get interested in making bread and I want to try to keep this new hobby as healthy as possible.  I most definitely will not stop making other white breads and such, just thought I should try to do some healthy breads.

Poolish

  • 100% Whole wheat bread – 240 g
  • Water – 240 g
  • Instant yeast – 2 g

Remaining formula

  • 100% Whole wheat bread – 480 g
  • Water – 480 g
  • Olive oil – 50 g
  • Honey – 75 g
  • Instant yeast – 3 g
  • Salt – 3 tsp

I must have done something wrong with my conversions because this created an almost 100% hydration dough.  And it all just went downhill from there.

The poolish came out fine as above.  However, I then mixed up the poolish and the above remaining ingredients.  As I was doing this, I was thinking to myself that this hydration was a bit high.  I let the dough do its normal rest and then did the stretch and fold method for 3 minutes, then let it rest.  I repeated the stretch and fold method at 25 minute intervals but the dough just did not seem to be coming together, it remained a very moist and weak structure.

I finally gave up on it developing any sort of strength and form.  I elected to throw it into my breadpan and see what would happen.  As expected, it didn’t turn out great.  There was no good proofing and oven spring and it came out as an inedible brick.

The above happened on Saturday.  I worked Sunday and so to make myself feel better I whipped up a quick white bread boule (I did add a little whole wheat flour into it).

This bread had the following formula:

Poolish

  • 170 g bread flour
  • 170 g water
  • 1/4 tsp (2g) instant yeast

Remaining mixture

  • 100 g bread flour + 30 g whole wheat flour
  • 180 g water
  • 10 g salt
  • 3 g instant yeast

I mixed the poolish (overnight in fridge) with the remaining mixture and then let it sit for 30 minutes to allow some autlyse (let the flour absorb all the water).  I then followed the Richard Bertinet slap and fold.  I feel like I’m getting a better hold of this kneading method as the dough started to form up and come together after only about 10-12 minutes of kneading.  I formed it into a ball and then let it bulk ferment for about 1.5 hours.  It’s been warm here and the bread probably didn’t need to ferment that long but I also needed to fit my long run in so I let it go a little longer.  I did 2 stretch and folds with 10 minutes between them.  By now the dough had developed good gluten and structure.  I was able to form the dough into a nice boule and did the drag method on the counter to create a nicely tensioned top portion of dough.  I then placed it into a well floured cloth in a bowl to let it proof.  After about 1 hour of proofing, I tossed it into my pre-heated dutch oven (450 F) and covered it.  I let it cook for 20 minutes covered then removed the lid and turned the heat to 425 F and let it go another 20 minutes.  By then it had a nice brown crust and I checked its internal temp (~195F).

IMAG2844
Looks good!

Overall I’m happy that I seem to have the basics down.  Now I just need to work some more on the whole wheat stuff.  I think that tweaking the hydration level will probably allow me to create a better product next time.  I should have paid attention that I was creating an essentially 100% hydration dough.

For dinner I also did pizza and I’m getting better at developing pizza dough that isn’t too loose.  I think one problem I’ve been having in the past is that I let the dough go way past what it should (over-proofing).  Before I had just been blindly following someone’s recommendation on the Jim Lahey No-knead but now I actually am listening more to the dough.

-StewsCat

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