Monday, January 19, 2015

Air tastes good!

Hello, eaters.  This weekend I did my second bake with home-milled flour.  This time I set the mill to a finer grind, and the effect was pretty dramatic.  The dough was much much different to work with.  It was much wetter, and it was stickier.  I got a little sick of the damn dough sticking to my hands when I was trying to shape.  I had a feeling that this loaf was not going to stand as tall as the last, but that it would have a more open crumb.  My feelings were correct, which is a good sign.  I am learning to read the dough.

I assume that the difference between this bake and the last was due to the coarseness of the flour.  However, there could have been other factors at play.  One was that this was a different brand of wheat berries, although it was the same variety: Hard Red Spring Wheat.  Last bake's wheat was Palouse, this was Great River.  I only bought a small amount of the Palouse, but I have a 25lb. bag of Great River.  So I'll be able to experiment more accurately with this big ol' bag of Great River.  I also could have screwed up the measurements, but I'm usually pretty careful.

What I plan to do this week is go for a medium grind, to see if I can find the sweet spot of flour that is course enough to be strong and stand tall, and be fine enough to get more air in the bread.  That is assuming that I am correct in my diagnosis that the fineness is what's influencing my outcome here.

My overall verdict is that although last week's loaves stood tall and had wicked awesome ears, this week's loaf was better tasting.  Air tastes good.

I go on experimenting...

Seriously needed that headband, folks.  It wasn't just for show.  

Air is good!

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