This french-style wholewheat bread is made with 2/3 wholewheat flour and 1/3 plain white flour. The original recipe from Brotdoc.com uses a speciality flour from France but here I have used regular supermarket flour and the resulting wholewheat bread is rustic and flavourful with a robust crust. It is quite simply a great everyday healthy bread.
A combination of a pre-ferment, sourdough starter and fresh yeast are used to leaven as well as flavour the bread. Using this “3-way” approach gives a wonderful light yet robust structure to this wholewheat bread.
Although this is a slightly adapted version, thanks and acknowledgements must go to Brotdoc for posting the original recipe. I have been a fan of Brotdoc.com for some time and highly recommend browsing through the wonderful collection of bread recipes and baking tips posted there.
Recipe for french wholewheat bread
Ingredients and method for 2 loaves of wholewheat bread
180g plain white flour (550)
180g water (at 32-34 degrees)
0,2g fresh yeast
Mix the flour, water and yeast until well incorporated, cover with cling film and leave to ferment for 8-12 hours.
Sour dough starter
70g rye flour (1150)
70g water (at 32-34 degrees)
7g rye sour dough starter culture (taken directly from the fridge)
Mix the rye flour, water and sour dough starter, cover and leave to ferment alongside the above preferment for 8-12 hours, or until bubbly and expanded, it may need a little longer to reach this stage.
Sour dough starter
600g wholewheat flour
350g plain white flour (550)
600g water (at 32-34 degrees)
24g Sea salt
10g fresh yeast.
Mix the wholewheat and plain flours with the water and leave for 20 minutes to fully hydrate. Then add the pre-ferment, sour dough, salt and yeast and mix to combine. Knead either by hand or with the dough hook of your standmixer for 10 minutes. Rest the dough for 10 minutes and then stretch and fold the dough by hand for 1-2 minutes until you have a nice elastic dough with well developed gluten. Form into a tight ball and place in an oiled bowl, cover and leave to ferment and rise for 1,5 hours. After 1,5 hours the dough should have tripled in size. Turn out the dough onto a floured work surface and gently deflate. Divide the dough into 2 equal sized pieces and place in floured prooving baskets. Loosely cover the baskets and leave to rise at room temperature for 45 -60 minutes. In the meantime pre-heat your oven to 250 degrees and place a roasting tray of water on the oven floor to provide steam during the baking. Carefully turn the risen dough out onto baking sheets. Using a sharp serrated knife, criss-cross cut the surface of the loaves and immediately bake in a hot oven for 50 minutes ( or until your desired level of browness).