Friday, 16 July 2010

The Babes Get Sprouting!

Put on your floppy old hat, take off your socks and shoes, feel the ground beneath you. For this month's Bread Baking Babes Bread we are sprouting and then grinding our own wheat berries. Yup, the hippie days are back. Cookie Baker Lynn has challenged us all to go back to the land for this one and I couldn't be happier. I love the sweetness that sprouting gives to the grain and the challenge of baking without flour.
My wheat berries started to sprout within hours and I let them go for about 24 hours in total. Then I drained them for a couple of hours in a sieve and then spread them out on a sheet pan, covered them with a tea towel, and let them spend the night in the fridge chilling and drying further. I think the lengths that I went to to dry my sprouted wheat berries was the reason for my success with this delicious bread.
Want to make Yeasted Sprouted Wheat Bread with us this month? If you'd like to bake along and receive a Baking Buddy Badge to display on your site, bake the Yeasted Sprouted Wheat Bread and post it before the 29th, send Lynn a link to your post (lynncraigATcomcastDOTnet).

Yeasted Sprouted Wheat Bread
from Laurel’s Kitchen bread book

makes 1 loaf

3 cups hard spring wheat berries (1-1/4 lb or 575 g), about 6 cups sprouted
1 tsp active dry yeast (1/8 oz or 3.5 g)
2 Tbsp warm water (30 ml)
2 tsp salt (11 g)
3 scant Tbsp honey (40 ml)

To sprout the wheat:

Rinse the grain and cover with tepid water, letting it stand 12 to 18 hours at room temperature. Allow the longer period in cooler weather, the shorter period in warm.

Drain off the liquid, rinse the grain with fresh, tepid water, and store in a dark place with a damp cloth over the top of the container. Rinse at least every 12 hours, just until the tiny sprout is barely beginning to show and the grain itself is tender - about 48 hours, then refrigerate until they are cool, overnight or longer, but not more than a day or two.

Make the loaf:

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water.

Put the regular cutting blade into a standard-size food processor and measure just over 2 cups of the sprouted wheat, a third of the total, into the bowl. Pour about 2 tsp of the dissolved yeast liquid, a scant Tbsp of honey, and about 2/3 tsp of salt over the wheat in the bowl. To protect the yeast, use separate measuring spoons for each of the ingredients.

Process until the ground wheat forms a ball, about one minute. Scrape the sides of the bowl, and process about two more minutes. Stop processing before the ball completely falls apart; if your wheat is not exceptionally high in protein a minute and a half might be all it can handle. If it falls apart, check the time, and with the next two batches, stop a little sooner.

Repeat with the remaining two-thirds of the ingredients, in two batches. Knead the three dough balls together.

Form the dough into a ball and place it smooth side up in the bowl. Cover and keep in a warm draft-free place. After about an hour and a half, gently poke the center of the dough about 1/2 inch deep with your wet finger. If the hole doesn’t fill in at all or if the dough sighs, it is ready for the next step.

Press flat, form into a smooth round, and let the dough rise once more as before. If the dough is cold, the first rise will be fairly slow, but as the dough warms up, the rising will telescope.

Gently knead into a round. Use water on your hands to prevent sticking, and keep the ball as smooth as possible. Let it rest until it regains its suppleness while you grease a standard 8 x 4-inch loaf pan, pie tin, or a cookie sheet.

Deflate the dough and shape into a loaf. Place the dough into the greased loaf pan and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until the dough slowly returns a gently made fingerprint. Bake about an hour at 350 deg. F, though if your bread rises very high, it will take less than that.

This bread has been Yeastspotted!

The Bread Baking Babes

Hey Buddies! Want to help choose the 3rd year anniversary bread? Check out Tanna's announcement here.