All grains contain peptides that mimic morphine or endogenous opioid substances. This is where I deal with my latest loaf craving. Get your bread-based exorphin fix here.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A variation on Nils Schoner's "All Day Bread"

A variation on Nils Schoner's "All Day Bread"

This is a "use what you have" variation I have made, using Nils Schoner's recipe for his "All Day Bread".

I started out with a bit of rye flour and wheat flour that were left over from my home-milling experiments today (I haven't written on these experiments yet -- I am trying out a couple of different sourdough recipes, more on this later).  I had some coarse-ground fresh rye flour, about 75g worth, and a total of 100g of whole wheat flour, with some cracked wheat and even some whole wheat berries in there.   The Rye Flour was an experiment with the other old coffee grinder that I had recently purchased, to see how fine a flour it gave me when milling rye.

Other than this, the recipe uses the ingredients from Nils Schoner's recipe for his "All Day Bread" fairly closely.  I used All Purpose Flour instead of his 1050 flour; and instead of fresh yeast, I am using Instant Dry Yeast..  A complete list of ingredients:

  • 75g Freshly milled Whole Rye Flour, coarsely ground
  • 100g Freshly milled Whole Wheat Flour, cracked wheat, and wheat berries
  • 240g All Purpose Flour
  • 40g Rye Flour
  • 240g Rye Sourdough @ 100% hydration
  • 180g Warm Water (200 ml)
  • 2g Instand Dry Yeast
  • 8g Kosher Salt
  • 8g Molasses (1 tsp)

If you total up the flour and water, you see that this dough is
  • flour total 575g (rye 235g,  ww 100g,  ap 240g)
  • water total 300g (includes the water in the sourdough)  

This means the dough is at  52% hydration -- quite a dense bread!

Why All Purpose flour?  I haven't used that stuff in a long, long time.  Have I caved?

Well, not exactly.  I still want to use Whole Grains in my diet.  Most of the bread I make and eat will be whole grain based.  I prefer it, even if I am severely challenged in my bread-making ability with these flours.  Nutritionally, it just makes sense to eat breads made with wholemeal flours.  For example, take this table that I found in an article I just read, Truswell, A. (2002) Cereal Gains and Coronary Heart Disease. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2002, 56, 1-14:

Nutrients (per 100g) compared in wholemeal and white flours

Wholemeal FlourWhite flourRetained % after refining
Protein (g)12.79.474%
Fat (g)2.21.359%
Carbohydrate (g)63.977.7122%
Fibre (g)8.63.642%
Sodium (mg)3 (before processing)3100%
Potassium (mg)34015044%
Magnesium (mg)1202017%
Phosphorus (mg)32011034%
Iron (mg)3.91.538%
Zinc (mg)2.90.621%
Manganese (mg)3.10.619%
Selenium (μg)5348%
Thiamin (mg)0.460.1022%
Riboflavin (mg)0.090.0333%
Niacin (mg)5.71.730%
Vitamin B-6 (mg)0.500.1530%
Folate (μg)572239%
Vitamin E (mg)1.40.321%
From McCance & Widdowson's The Composition of Foods, 5th edition (Holland et al, 1991)

So it just makes sense to use whole grains.  But the past couple of weeks, I've had a couple of interesting experiences.  

One, my wife invited some friends over for dinner and she wanted a baguette to go with her lasagna, and wondered if I had any dough that could be turned into a baguette on a moment's notice.  The answer was no.  She went to the store and bought a loaf.

Two, we visited a farmer's market where we met an interesting Latvian baker who had several nice handmade loaves for sale.  We settled on a couple that my wife would eat, one was a rustic yeasted white bread, and the other a rye bread that was probably a 40% rye, made with sourdough and yeast.  These breads were nothing like what I make, but they were nice breads, and they were more in keeping with my wife's idea of what bread should be.  I had a couple of slices of the rye loaf he had made.  It does contain wheat bread flour, or all purpose flour, and our Latvian baker said that bread "must" contain some white flour, or it would not be bread.

Huh.  So if I make a whole grain loaf, it is not bread?  Well, I guess everything I have been making lately goes "against the grain" of his philosophy of bread, because obviously,  I do make breads without bread flour or all purpose flour.  Sure, they are dense, they are crusty, they are nothing at all like what you might buy in a store.  Sure, my wife won't eat them.  But I like them.  I eat them.  And that brings us to the third thing that happened.

The doctor took some blood samples from me and she says my triglycerides are high.  Now there are a couple of ways this might be, but to me it is fairly obvious: I eat too much, and I don't exercise enough.  

I am eating far too much bread, in fact.  It is not just the bread, it is also what I put on it -- butter, cheese, eggs, and occasionally peanut butter.  But I have read a study recently (Ezenwaka, C.E. and Kalloo, R. (2005). Carbohydrate-induced hypertriglyceridaemia among West Indian diabetic & non diabetic subjects after ingestion of three local carbohydrate foods (2005) Indian J Med Res 121, Jan 2005, pp.23-31) that suggests wheat bread by itself can increase triglycerides.  Certain other grains will not do this -- in particular, whole rice and whole barley, and probably whole oats will rather have a beneficial effect; rye seems to neither help nor hinder the triglycerides.  But wheat has this peculiar property whereby if you take too much of it, your triglycerides are going to rise.  The dangers of that are that one might gain weight, become insulin resistant, get pancreatitis, and a whole host of other problems might occur if one falls into the metabolic syndrome pathology, including kidney troubles, atherosclerosis and heart disease.

With no one to help me eat the bread I like, I tend to eat too much of it so that it gets used before it goes stale.  And so I find that I am going to have to compromise.  I am going to have to bake some bread that my wife will eat, and cut back a little bit on my determination to eat more whole grains, more sourdough -- and more densely packed, nutritious bread.

So I guess I have caved, a little.  I have to begin to make breads that more than one person in the world likes to eat, and I have to eat less of it, and I have to exercise more.

To that end, I have made this loaf today with some of my leftover hand-milled flour, and I have otherwise followed Nils' recipe for his all-day bread.

Now here is the thing: I was expecting the extra 175g of coarse grain flour to require more hydration.  But this wasn't really necessary.  The dough was still wet enough.

The other day my wife made some pizza dough in our Oster Bread Maker that I have never used before.  I didn't even remember we owned it, quite frankly, until I saw her using it.  But today, I used the Oster Bread Maker that I had forgotten we even had, to mix the dough and perform the bulk ferment.  The Oster's Dough setting takes 1 1/2 hours.  During that time, I did have to push some of the flour to the middle so that it could be incorporated.  But it seemed to mix up okay, and it kept the dough warm and gooey.

After this was done, I poured it out on the counter and performed a single fold with the pastry cutter and shaped it for my wicker basket, lined with a floured couche.

It didn't rise particularly well, but I put it in a casserole dish and baked it at 465 degrees F for 10 minutes after wetting it and scoring it twice.  There was way too much flour on the bread and I should have scraped some off before baking or applying the water.  But as I was baking it in the casserole dish, there was nowhere for me to brush it off to.  That's one reason people use peels, I think -- i.e. to brush off the extra flour before baking.

The bread looked okay when I took it from the oven, but there was one problem: it stuck badly to the casserole dish, and it wouldn't come out.  I think that this was because it only preheated for the time it took to preheat the oven, about 15 minutes.  It probably should have preheated at least 30 minutes, minimum.

I brushed water on top of the loaf while it was still in the casserole dish.  I waited 10 minutes and then tried to dig it out.  It was still well stuck on the bottom, so I let it sit quite a bit longer.  It didn't seem like it was going to come out intact.  In fact, it didn't: I ended up cutting it so I could get a spatula under it.  All my tugging at it did not improve the crust or the crumb.  It really shows some stress signs.

But when I finally took a picture of the interior of the loaf, my wife walked by and said "That looks good.  Not like some of your breads that are mighty dense."  

"Mighty dense," she emphasized.

I was surprised that the colour of the crumb was so brown.  Yes, it has some whole wheat in it, but not that much; and yes, it has some whole rye in it, but not that much.  

This loaf is 41% rye, 17% whole wheat, and a whopping 42% all purpose flour.

Notes to Myself

  • Rather than gorge yourself on bread so that it gets used before it goes stale, let it go stale, soften it in water, and feed it to the chickens.
  • Preheat your casserole dish a minimum of 30 minutes before putting dough into it.
  • Use a minimal amount of flour in the couche and brush it off before putting the bread into the oven.

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