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Health, Home, and Happiness: Soaked Wheat Sally Fallon-style bread

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Soaked Wheat Sally Fallon-style bread


I played around a lot in the Nourishing Traditions cook book this past summer, mostly with wheat and other grains, but made yogurt, falafel, and fermented veggies too.

The grain recipes in this book are all soaked. The flour is actually what's soaked, not the whole grain, so it's easy for anyone to do. By soaking the flour with something acid (lemon juice, whey, yogurt- see my step-by-step instructions in the links below) the phytates that make whole wheat bread normally hard to digest and the nutrients hard to absorb are broken down. I'm able to get a nice chewy bread that is slightly sour (how we like it, we're from the California Bay Area- home of sourdough) and isn't dry or crumbly or brickish, which is how my non-soaked whole wheat bread turns out.

I've started making bread again consistently in this past month because it's healthier, and it's cheaper. I bought a 5-gallon bucket of wheat berries and a wheat grinder over a year ago, so having those on hand makes it practically free.

Bucket of wheat from Wheat Montana

To soak the wheat I put 4-5 cups of wheat flour in a bowl, add the juice of a lemon or a couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Then I add water and stir until it's pudding consistency. Yogurt can be used, or whey, but I'm dairy free right now to see if that clears up Sam's eczema (it seems to be working too)

Then I cover it with a dish towel and set it on my counter for at least 12 hours, but I try for 24. After it's done sitting, I dump it in my KitchenAid mixer bowl (I suppose this could all be done in my KitchenAid bowl, but I usually need it for something else while the flour is soaking), add a couple teaspoons of yeast, 1 teaspoon of sea salt, 1/3 cup of honey, and a few glugs of olive oil or a few tablespoons of coconut oil, and a cup of unbleached white flour. Then turn on the mixer with the dough hook on low for a few minutes until it's all mixed. The dough is really wet, not like what you'd get when you're kneading on the counter, but I seem to get better bread when I have wet dough. After it's all mixed I let it sit in the kitchen aid bowl until it's puffy, then turn the mixer on again to deflate it. Then I grease two pyrex loaf pans, put the dough in, and let rise until the dough comes up near the top of the pan. Bake at 400 for 30-35 minutes.

This is loosely based on the Yeasted Buttermilk Bread from Nourishing Traditions

Want to see more? I took pictures of the bread making process, start to finish:
Part 1: Soaking the flour
Part 2: Making the dough
Part 3: Baking and slicing

And
Soaked wheat pancakes
Soaked wheat waffles

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8 Comments:

Anonymous Jessica said...

That loaf of bread looks delicious. I've had wet dough make good bread before also, but not in my bread machine - there it has to be firm enough to tolerate the longer rising cycle.

July 1, 2009 at 9:52 AM  
Blogger Justin and Rachel said...

Your crumb looks amazing! I just picked up Nourishing Traditions from the library. I'm going to try this today!

September 26, 2009 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger Shelle said...

looks good...i've never tried a wet dough...would like to try sprouted bread. I've found rice milk is a great substitute in bread if you want the richer taste of a milk bread. have a great week!

January 31, 2010 at 10:14 PM  
Blogger nika said...

I sprout the wheat, dry it, then grind, to get fantastic low phytic acid flour.

Phytic acid is a way that the grain protects itself (its a component of seed coat and in germplasm). When seeds sprout, they begin to breakdown this nutrient-chelating acid.

Its thought that before modern times, much of our grain, not being harvested by huge machines and pampered with modern tech, was sprouted on some level before it reached the mill.

I blogged about how to sprout, dry, grind (super easy) at this link: http://nikas-culinaria.com/2009/05/26/sprouted-wwflour/

You might wish to consider using the mechanisms evolved in grain to break down phytic acid rather than using a chemical method.

February 1, 2010 at 1:17 PM  
Blogger Cara said...

Thanks Nika,
I was *just* learning about the 'whys' of phytic acid from a Youtube series by Sally Fallon last night. The sprouting does make sense in that case! I'm going to need to get another mill... I have a bunch of wheat berries and a deal mill.

February 1, 2010 at 2:43 PM  
Blogger ERK said...

I tried making your bread this week. We loved the taste, but mine never rose. I have a couple of questions to try and figure out how to make it rise. How much butter/coconut oil/olive oil do you use? I noticed in your step by step pictures, you used butter and coconut oil. Does it matter what combination of oil is used? Also do you knead your dough in your mixer? From your directions I did not think that you did, but I was wondering if that would help develop the gluten. Thanks for any help you have. My husband liked this recipe much more than the one I have been making in my bread machine.

March 14, 2010 at 8:36 PM  
Blogger Cara @ Health Home and Happiness said...

That's great! I am posting again, with a recipe on Thursday. I do use the mixer, though when my mixer was dead for a while I just made a wet dough and it was fine just stirring by hand. Glad you like the taste, we like sour bread too :)

March 14, 2010 at 10:18 PM  
Blogger help007 said...

Just made this, and it is very yummy! I had wondered if you could soak flour, rather than the whole grain, so this recipe was exactly what I was looking for. My son loves it, too! Going to take the second loaf to a pregnant friend =)

April 20, 2010 at 4:19 PM  

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