Thursday, April 23, 2015

Bread Number 74: First Try with Hodgepodge Beer Bread

Others tell me that beer bread dough rises the same way and with the same timing as their other doughs. I must be living in the twilight zone then because each time I use beer, the bread takes three days to rise. Now even if the coldness of the beer slows down the process, the beer is certainly warm a couple of hours later. 

This time the starter was lively, there was a nice mix of flours, the hydration percentage was 78, and yet the dough rising time was already at 38 hours when I left home this morning. What's another day? 

I used 50 percent whole grains because I ran out of whole wheat and spelt flours. I also added about 40 grams of cornmeal. Plus, of course, the bottle of beer. Stella Artois. My husband thought it would be the right lightness to go well in a bread.

Two days later 
Now, on baking day, the dough will have been in the fridge for 54 hours. Not much hope for this one. Already contemplating a re-do. 

Results were not the disaster expected. Despite a dough that rose somewhat, but was flat, at the end of a long - patient on my part - bulk fermentation, there was respectable oven spring. Perhaps due to the extended four-day fermentation, with two days on the counter and two in the fridge, the bread had a decidedly sour taste. I liked it, but it did go overboard. 

Definitely will do this one again this weekend. This time, I plan to let the beer get to room temperature before mixing it with the other dough ingredients. Hoping the spouse is willing to donate another beer to the effort. Otherwise I will be compelled to actually purchase some for the first time.

Recipe after the do over
I will write up the recipe after trying this one again. Starting to think that my kitchen is located in a no-beer-baking zone. 

In other news, I am researching storage times for whole grain flours. Nothing much for storage except to keep the flours in dry, cool, places. I put mine in ziplock bags in the freezer. What I am curious about is whether there is data on average times that whole grain flours, whether in bulk or from small producers, sit on grocery store and supermarket shelves.

Update - the recipe
Because I ended up making a new bread instead of a do over of this bread, I wanted to add the recipe to this post.

330g beer
35g starter
100g whole wheat flour
100g spelt flour
200g bread flour
10g flaxseed meal
9g salt

Mixed, covered, and let sit for 38 hours. Refrigerated for 51 hours. So many hours = very sour taste. Baked at 475 degrees for 45 minutes with dutch oven. Boy that thing gets hot. Needed oven mitts AND pot holders.

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