Making Bread

IMG_4809Okay, so I am making bread… not only because homemade bread is better for us, but because my current research focuses on flour as a raw material. Here is this week’s recipe. i have been working on it for a while!

 

200 grams of European style white flour by King Arthur (11.7 percent protein)

240 grams of whole grain hard white flour by Bluebird Farms in Washington State (14 percent protein)

2 teaspoons of instant yeast

1.5 teaspoons of non-iodized, fine salt

3 tablespoons of brown sugar

3 tablespoons of olive oil

1.5 cups of warm water

 You could use 440 to 480 grams of a normal bread flour as well, but I like the flavor of the unrefined hard white flour. I start by mixing the yeast into the water to let it sit for a few minutes.

 I put everything in a mixer except for the water/yeast mixture and use the paddle attachment to blend the dry ingredients with the olive oil. I add the water/yeast mixture and use the dough hook attachment while scraping the sides to the get the flour mixed in. The dough is very wet and sticky, so when I turn it out onto the counter, I use more European or some all-purpose flour on the silpat mat and my hands to knead the dough. I only knead it gently and briefly.

I put the dough in a bowl and let it rise for a bit (30-45 minutes or until it has about doubled in size). I then use more flour and knead it again for a minute or two. I try not to overwork the dough. I then transfer it directly to the bread pan, I set it aside and let it rise for about 1.5 – 2 hours.

 Bake it at 375 degrees for 24-28 minutes. Let it cool for only a minute or two in the pan, then tip it out onto a cooling rack.

 You can use less yeast if you want it to rise more slowly. It will also develop more flavor that way, but I find that the timing is more difficult the less yeast I use, so I only use less when I have all day to sit around and watch the loaf. I have made this recipe successfully with as little as ½ teaspoon of yeast. Sometimes I substitute honey in for the brown sugar. Additionally, you can leave out the oil, but I think it helps the texture of the bread. Sometimes I use avocado oil in place of olive oil.

 My total actual labor time for this recipe is very low, maybe 10-15 minutes, most of it spent cleaning up afterward.

 Hopefully you get a chance to try it out sometime. As a side note, I am trying to move away from using King Arthur flour, so after I have used what I have, I will probably try Hodgson Mill for my more refined whole wheat flours. I’ll try to update how the changes work out.

-b