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.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Hodgepodge Bread: ww/hemp/spelt/chia/mesquite mix

This could have been zemblanitous, but thankfully it was serendipitous.

Periodically I have to get rid of a bunch of half-bags of flour or grains of varying sizes and description.  I end up with a hodgepodge bread.  I don't know what it is going to be like at the outset, and I don't know what sorts of amounts I have on hand.  I just know I have to clean up a messy cupboard.  I begin adding things together.  I sort of go by feel.  And scent.  And the look of it.  

I did calculate the final weight of the flours to find out how much salt to add.  But that's all the figuring I actually did.

This is the hodgepodge that I ended up with today.

Hodgepodge Loaf

  • ww 1000g
  • hemp 502g
  • chia 133g
  • whole spelt 236g
  • red amaranth seeds 49g
  • chili powder 2g
  • cumin 0g (about 2 TBsp)
  • mesquite flour 63g
  • started with 800g water; added 100g later, and still 80g more with salt
  • starter 300g
  • total flour wt: 1934g (ww, hemp, chia, spelt, mesquite)
  • 35 g salt  (1.8%)

This much flour -- almost double what I usually use -- had me looking for larger bowls in which to mix it in by hand.  I found an old metal washtub that we sometimes use for washing vegetables, and that I also occasionally use to mix my homemade kimchi before fermenting it.

I kneaded this dough twice, once for about 5 minutes prior to the addition of salt and the final water, and again following the incorporation of the saline mix by squooshling it up between my fingers.  The dough was not well hydrated, if you simply look at the baker's percentages, but was quite slimy, probably due to the high gum content of the hemp and chia.  I could not have stretched this dough, but it was nice and tight when kneading it.

They were only bulk fermented for 2 1/2 hours before being divided and set into baskets to rise.  I had intended a 4 hour proof, but I turned off the alarm while napping, and awoke a couple of hours later remembering that I should have also got up when the alarm went off.  I guess I needed the sleep, switching from working nights to working days.  So they got about 6 hours of proofing.

And that was okay, they were nicely plumped in the basket, yet still held together nicely too.

I baked these on a stone with steam, as they were a bit overlarge for my Dutch Ovens.  I was happy with the way they stood up nicely on the stone, didn't sag under the scoring process, and yet plumped up to fill in the score marks.

And the bread tastes great, to me.  It has a mildly nutty, curiously wild and woody taste, and it fills you right up.  I've figured out the baker's percentages, in case I want to make this serendipitous loaf again some day.

  • 51% whole wheat flour 
  • 26% hemp, cracked
  • 12% whole spelt flour
  • 6% chia, cracked
  • 3% mesquite flour
  • 2.5% red amaranth seeds
  • 0.1% chili powder
  • 0.05% cumin powder
  • 15.5% sourdough starter
  • 1.8% salt
  • 51% water

Notes to Myself
  • I forgot the wheat germ. I should have added 50g of wheat germ. I can't call this a whole grain bread because the germ has been removed from the whole wheat flour
  • This loaf is a good one. I don't know what it is, but the amaranth seeds and the chili powder -- both barely noticeable, but certainly they leave a trace in the tastebuds -- and perhaps the mesquite, and certainly the hemp… Quite a tasty loaf. A serendipitous loaf.

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