Sunday, October 13, 2013

Soaked/Sprouted Whole Wheat French Bread

I have tried a lot of French bread recipes, but this one is my favorite.  It calls for both hard red whole wheat as well as sprouted soft white wheat flours.  (If you want more info on the different types of wheat, this is a good post to read.) 

If you would like to kick up the nutritional value even more by reducing the phytic acid that keeps your body from absorbing precious minerals in your bread, you can soak your hard red wheat flour the night before.  I've found the texture of the bread turns out so much nicer this way than sprouting that particular wheat. 

To soak the hard red wheat flour, just take 2 tablespoons of an acidic medium, e.g. whey, raw apple cider vinegar, or yogurt, and combine with enough filtered water to equal 1-1/2 cups (leaving 1/2 cup for the next day to proof your yeast in).  Mix with the 3 cups of hard red flour that this recipe calls for as you can and allow to sit on your counter for 12-24 hours.  

Whole Wheat French Bread 
Makes 2 loaves or 4 baguettes

  • 2 C warm filtered water
  • 1 T yeast
  • 1 T honey
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 T salt
  •  3 C hard red wheat flour, sifted
  • 2 – 2 ½ C sprouted soft wheat flour, sifted

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water (110 degrees) and honey in large bowl; allow yeast to proof or foam (about 10 minutes). 
  2.  Add salt, oil, and 3 cups flour; beat for 2 minutes. 
  3. Stir in about 2 cups flour to make a stiff dough. 
  4.  Knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. 
  5.  Allow to rest 15 minutes. 
  6.  Knead for one more minute.  Place in oiled bowl, turn dough to coat all sides, cover and let rise until doubled. 
  7.  Punch down. Gently knead for one minute.  Allow to rest 15 minutes.
  8.  Divide in half and shape dough into two long slender loaves.
  9. Grease or sprinkle with cornmeal either a French bread pan or large cookie sheet. 
  10. Place loaves in pan and cut diagonal gashes on top of each loaf (I use scissors).   Spray with olive oil. 
  11.  Let rise until almost doubled. 
  12. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes or internal temperature is 200 degrees.

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