Polenta Spelt Rye Bread

6 Jan

This was my second bake of 2018.  The first one I attempted to make some baguettes using a formula I adapted from German Rolls but increasing the whole wheat flour.  Needless to say it was a disaster and hopefully my worse bake of the year :).

For this bake I used a nice % of fresh milled high extraction spelt flour with a little fresh milled rye and the balance KAF Bread flour.  I made some polenta for dinner the other night which included a little butter and cheese added in and used the left-over cooked polenta in this bake.

The spelt always is a challenge due to its low gluten content and this dough was highly hydrated and sticky.  I didn’t take my own advise I gave another fellow baker and let this over ferment.  The dough spread out more than I would have liked and there is a slightly dense bottom crumb.  Overall it does taste pretty good with a nice tasty thin crust and nutty flavor from the spelt.  The addition of the polenta adds a nice subtle flavor to this one as well and the Greek yogurt didn’t hurt the crumb either, which was moderately open and moist.

This would make a great grilled bread and some tasty sandwiches as well.  Baking it in the oven last night while it was 5 degrees F. outside was a pleasure just to open the oven door and feel the blast of heat :).

I’m off to Vegas for the CES show tomorrow, so I froze most of it to have when I return at the end of the week.


Download the BreadStorm File Here

Levain Directions

Mix all the Levain ingredients together for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled.

Either use in the main dough immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 day before using.

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours and water together in your mixer or by hand until it just starts to come together, maybe about 1 minute.  Let it rest in your work bowl covered for 1 hour.  Next add the salt, starter (cut into about 7-8 pieces), Greek Yogurt, cooked polenta and olive oil and mix on low for 5 minutes.  Remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds.  Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold.  Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold.  After a total of 1.5 hours place your covered bowl in the refrigerator and let it rest for 12 hours.

When you are ready to bake remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it set out at room temperature still covered for 1.5 hours.  Remove the dough and shape as desired.   Place your dough into your proofing basket(s) and cover with a moist tea towel or plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray.  The dough will take 1 to 1.5 hours depending on your room temperature.  Since this dough has Spelt in it which tends to ferment very quickly, I would not let this one sit too long.  Better to bake it a little early to get better lift.

Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 550 degrees F. and prepare it for steam.  I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf.  I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.

Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, score as desired and then add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.

After 1 minute lower the temperature to 450 degrees.  Bake for 25-35 minutes until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 205 degrees.

Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.




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