Saturday, March 15, 2014

Molasses Eight Grain Levain

This bread is another healthy whole grain invention. 75% of the flour comes from whole grains, not to mention a significant sized soaker. Needless to say this is a case study in fiber. 

I decided to try feeding my sourdough build with freshly ground whole oat groats. I also spontaneously decided to use Liza Mae, my rye starter in order to add one more grain to the mix in this multi-grain bread. Typically, in a bread like this, I would use honey, but I went with molasses which gave the soaker a wonderful deep brown color. The soaker contained, Cracked Spelt, cracked oats, sunflower seeds, cracked white wheat, millet and cracked kamut. Since this bread is made without yeast, it is given a relatively long fermentation time. Three hours on the bench with two solid folds, and then two hours in proofing baskets, seam side up. This long fermentation greatly helps flavor production and this bread's flavor will change as it rests. It will be a little on the sweeter side from the molasses, but still on the earthy and wholesome side. I also used some whole spelt in the dough. I substituted 50% of the whole wheat flour with freshly ground spelt flour, which has such a delightfully brown, earthy color. The one thing this bread will benefit from is raisins which is just enough to give it a chewy bit of sweetness. 

This bread then baked in a 450 degree oven for 45 minutes. The loaf that I had the most success with was the one baked in the combo cooker covered for 35 minutes and uncovered for 10 minutes. The other loaves did not achieve the same deep color. I later realized that I forgot to steam the whole oven after setting up the loaf in the combo cooker. It was late and I was ready for bed. Oh well!

I also totally forgot to get some pictures. Hopefully, one of my buyers will take a photo or two for me!! 

I am loving this combo cooker thing! It is great! I can not wait to get another one, and a dutch oven and ......... This whole bread hobby thing is really taking up quite a bit of space in my place! 

-DW, The Rye King

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