Once again I got ogled as I pushed my bread into the oven on a baking peel. Translation: I put my bread on a wooden paddle which I used to place it into the oven while curious (and nosy) beginning baking arts students looked on in wonder and amazement.
Today’s whole wheat bread class yielded 2 types of loaves: buttermilk sandwich bread and an herb and garlic flat bread. The goal of this course is to use only whole grain flour and natural sweeteners to make a ‘healthier’ version of our daily bread. Tips gleaned from today:
- For the ‘real deal’ look for authentically stone ground whole wheat flour. In this process the entire grain (i.e. germ, bran and endosperm) is ground by stone rather than steel. This helps maintain the integrity of the oils and nutrients (found mainly in the germ). While the steel method is quicker, cheaper and suited for mass production, the heat from steel rollers tends to heat up during prolonged use causing the oils and nutrients to degrade.
- Be gentle when combining whole grain ingredients in a mixer. Low and slow are key. Mix the dough on low speed for a longer time than you would with refined flours.
- For a lighter crumb, combine whole wheat pastry flour and regular whole wheat flour.