Monday, December 1, 2014
TEASER ABOUT SUCCESSFUL SPROUTED WHEAT BREAD (MINIMAL FLOUR)
This is going to be a short post with no recipe (YET!). I promise to post a great soup recipe in the next two days to make up for this! But I just had to post the photos of an experiment I did today (started several days ago).
I prefer not to buy sprouted wheat flour-- it's very expensive. And, in any case, we grind our whole wheat flour, so we have lots of wheat kernels in the house at all times. So,. because I am interested in bread with a lower glycemic index rating (which may have a positive influence on my husband's triglyceride levels-- sourdough breads are lower on the glycemic index, too ), I did some research on making yeasted sprouted wheat breads with no flour or minimal flour. ("Since particle size influences the glycemic index (the smaller the size the higher the glycemic index), bread made from grain kernels have been shown to be lower GI. Not yet tested but probable, bread made from sprouted grains can be expected to have a similar effect." From http://tinyurl.com/ywve7) I found one recipe that looked like the type of bread we are used to-- nicely risen, not flat and brick-like.
So, I placed 6 cups of hard wheat kernels in a bowl of warm water to soak and eventually sprout. The sprout is supposed to be tiny. Unfortunately, our weather is quite cold right now, so it took about 3 days for them to sprout at all-- some didn't. But I have to go to work tomorrow, so today was now or never.
I took the advice of the blogger in the link above and ground the kernels in my food processor (but I did it in 3 batches). I don't think I drained the kernels sufficiently, though, because the "dough" seemed very wet. I ended up adding 3 cups of whole wheat flour while kneading in my Bosch mixer for 10 minutes. It also felt like a lot more dough than two loaves worth, so I added another 1/2 tablespoon salt. I used 1/3 cup brown sugar. Instead of the 2 loaves mentioned in the recipe, I ended up with dough for 3 loaves, 1 lb., 12 oz. each, plus 9 ounces more, which I used to make 3 flatbreads in a cast iron frying pan on the stovetop. ** Next time I'll drain the kernels for an hour or so before grinding and I hope that will preclude the need for any flour. And it will probably mean that I won't have 9 oz. extra to deal with (I hope!).**
As you can see by the photos above and below, the recipe was a success-- dough was easy to handle and rose beautifully, baked up nice and crusty (I used my husband's baking method-- 5 minutes at 485 degrees F and 25 more at 375), tastes great, smells heavenly (kind of nutty) and the crumb is lovely. It makes delicious toast!
But the thing that was NOT so positive was that when I removed the initial ground sprout mixture from the food processor and the kneaded dough from the mixer bowl, I was left with a thin coating of sticky dough that stuck like glue, particularly to the blade (inside and out) of the processor. After soaking everything in warm water, it took me about 20 minutes of scrubbing to clean everything, and the sponge had to go into the garbage can.
I let the dough rise in an oiled bowl and that bowl was easy to clean (thank goodness!). When I cut and rolled the dough and shaped the loaves, I oiled my hands and had no problem with sticking. When I rolled out the flatbreads I oiled the counter a little and they rolled out just fine-- no flour needed.
So, contrary to what I was thinking while washing those sticky appliance parts this morning, I WILL try this once again, but I plan to oil everything the dough touches! I am hoping that this will make cleaning much easier. So, I will post again when I do the second trial! Stay tuned!