We had company over last night for board games. I baked a loaf of heirloom wheats so that everyone could try and compare the varieties side by side:
I decided on a combination loaf because I thought that would be easy to bake into a reasonably good and consistent result and it would eliminate variables that could happen if I baked all four little breads individually. The sections tasted distinctive, which was my one concern going in.
I started by milling 150 grams of each wheat berry. (Each process repeats four times, once for each variety.) I then combined in a tupperware 100 grams of a flour variety with 100 grams of cold water and a faint pinch of yeast as a poolish. I put the “extra” 50 grams of flour into another tupperware. I refrigerated both overnight then pulled them out in the morning to warm up.
In the morning I added the reserved 50 grams of flour to the poolish along with 3 grams of kosher salt (2% salt as a percentage of flour weight) and 1/2 teaspoon of Instant (not Rapid-Rise) yeast. Mix all to combine thoroughly, cover, and let sit one hour. Form the doughs into oblong disks so that all four will fit side-by-side in a 9″ x 5″ baking pan. Cover. Let rise another 90 minutes, then bake at 450F for 30-35 minutes.
They were definitely distinctive. The Rougue de Bordeaux tastes of cinnamon and spices. The Red Fife is less spicy but also sweeter. The Turkey Red was described as “meaty” or “bold”. The Sonora White is mild by comparison and it’s really intended more for tortillas, but it was a good contrast to the other red wheats.
It was fun introducing people to bread like they’d never experienced. I think next time it’ll be four (or just two) full-sized loaves — two loaves would be way less fiddly and people could literally stick their nose in to smell the aromas.
2 thoughts on “A “Sampler” Heirloom Wheat Loaf”
That Rouge de Bordeaux is a surprise. I’ve never tasted a wheat that had spice notes.
I think it’s the most interesting. The berries before milling are super fragrant too.
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