First bread with home milled flour

Recipe is Ken Forkish’s ‘75% whole wheat levain’.
Milled flour is 710 gms hard white.
Recipe includes 90 gms KA bread flour.
360 gms levain with 1.8 gms of yeast added.
5 hour room temp fermentation followed by a 12 hour refrigerated proof.
The crumb is tighter than I am used to but it’s not a brick. I will have to see how to get a few more holes in the crumb for next time.
The flavor is pretty light also; it doesn’t really have that whole grain flavor.
I like like it. My partner in crime likes it. I’ll call it a success.
More pics are at the end of the link.

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Well, well, well…turns out transcription is an important skill.

The dough for this was really tight and dry and the final crumb is pretty dense. I went looking for techniques to get a more open crumb and found that recommendations include a longer autolyse, a higher level of hydration, and longer proofing times. I planned to bump the autolyse from 20 minutes to 60, increase water from 600 grams to 650, and use the maximum suggested bulk rise and proofing times next time.

I transcribe recipes out of my bread books onto note cards so I don’t get the books full of flour and water. I did a quick verification of ‘book vs card’ and discovered that the actual recipe calls for 660 grams of water. Hmmm… Perhaps this is the reason the dough was so tight!

I’m still going to try the other changes to see how much difference they make but I’m willing to bet the low hydration had a big part of the crumb.

I’m still going to eat my ‘mistake’…dense or not they’re pretty yummy.

What was the total flour weight and total water weight, levain included? Just curious :slight_smile:

I have a whole grain home-milled sourdough going right now that is 82% hydration (water / flour) and I am thinking it may be on the dry side.

I have been using Elly’s 100% ww sourdough, cold autolyse method. (Find it on Youtube.)
The hydration there is 90%. It has worked really well for me.

Oh, on Cranberry WW SD: I dried some fresh cranberries and stuffed them into my freezer. Then I rehydrate them with a bit of water and honey just to take the edge off the tartness. After chopping them coarsely , fold them into the dough at the second stretch and fold. The color was so nice when used with white whole wheat in pita-they even inflated!

I just tried Elly’s 100% whole wheat sourdough (from her newer video that came out something like yesterday where she skipped the cold autolyse and it was a sourdough she made in one day while at home). It was the first time in ages I tried using all whole grain. I will definitely be using the initial 12-hour refrigerated autolyse next time, and I’ve also become convinced that my flour (maybe because of where I live, I don’t know) needs even more hydration than Elly’s, so I’ll be going for something like 95% hydration or more next time. An open crumb has always been a challenge for me, but it comes out more open and softer or springier when I use more water.

I believe that because I am currently (and newly) using hard red winter wheatberries – which I mill in my Blendtech blender – it is more of a challenge. I had expected it to be easier somehow than using hard white spring wheatberries, but I do not believe that is the case. One thing I have decided for sure: no more 100% ww for me. I really DO like to put in a bit of rye flour, even if it is just a quarter cup, as well and a half cup or more white bread flour or strong flour.

I have not yet come to grips with working with such a super-wet dough, but will be working on it. The times I have suffered a super-wet dough are the times I seem to have been the happiest with my results! Meanwhile, the (quite dense) bread I made just this morning from said new recipe is not a total failure. Very edible. :slight_smile: Thank goodness.

Thank you for the pointer to Elly’s videos; they look like a great source of new ideas and techniques. I’m so new at this that every bit of information is helpful.