Malted loaf

This is such a nice bread! (specially after the last two “failures”). It’s like the ideal granary loaf, only without the “industrial nasties” (have you looked at the list of ingredients in a supermarket loaf?)… and also without any decoration, because I forgot to flour it 😂

We’re enjoying it toasted and buttered (and with a cup of freshly ground and brewed coffee… yum!)

Malted loaf cut
Look at those nice holes

Ingredients (and utensils)

  • 200g sourdough rye starter
  • 280g water 20℃
  • 108g strong white flour (Gilchesters Organics unbleached)
  • 392g white malted wheat flour (I’m using Duchy organic from Waitrose)
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • A shower cap (to cover)
  • A bread tin (obviously)

I’m using this mixture of flours because I wanted to finish the normal strong white flour first. We don’t have space for so many flours at home, so things have to be finished 😅

Preparation

  1. In a big bowl, mix the sourdough starter and water together and dissolve.
  2. Add the flour and salt, and mix everything. Knead it a bit to finish mixing thoroughly.
  3. Then scrap any dough from your hands back to the bowl, cover with the shower cap and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
  4. Uncover, lightly oil your hands and work surface and knead very lightly again (keep turning the dough around, in about 20 seconds), then oil the bowl, place the dough back, cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Do this a few times (2 or 3).
  5. Lightly oil work surface (if needed) and your hands and stretch and fold, and leave to rest for 30 minutes. Repeat three times or until you think it’s enough. (I’ve sometimes forgotten to do this bit and it seems fine for tin-baked breads).
  6. Shape, close the seam and place on tin with the seam facing the bottom. Cover with the shower cap and leave to prove for about 4 hours (if your kitchen is cold, you could also prove in the oven with the light on to give it an ‘oomph’—I had it for about 45 minutes after the 4 hours).
  7. Set the oven to 200ºC.
  8. When the oven reaches the set temperature, score the bread with a knife, along the length of the bread. Make sure it’s deep enough so the bread can expand there and not break in a random place.
  9. Spray the bread with water*.
  10. Place a bunch of ice cubes on a tray*.
  11. Place the bread three quarters down from the top, and place the ice cubes tray underneath, then close the door and bake for about 45 minutes or until it looks brown enough and smells nicely.
  12. Take the bread out of the tin and let it finish cooking and cool down over a rack so it ventilates and dries out properly.
  13. ENJOY! 🤩
Slices of malted loaf

The only failure here is that the bread refused to “stay cut”. I don’t know if it’s because the dough was too wet or what. As soon as I scored it, it fused back together again. So I cut it again with a big sharp kitchen knife… and it fused again. So I gave up. I need to investigate more about this…

(*) About the water spraying and the ice cubes: this is to “create steam” and to allow the surface to be flexible without breaking while the inside expands due to the heat.

Stats

  • Bread number: 3 (in 2019)
  • Looks: 7, regular holes and nicely formed crust without being too hard. I forgot to ‘decorate it’ with flour, so it’s a bit plain, but the inside is very nice.
  • Smells: 7, somehow sour, very nice malted smell.
  • Tastes: 7, I think it could benefit from a bit of white flour (or maybe it was the unbleached white that made it a bit too ‘whole’).
  • Frustration level: 0.
  • Would I try baking this again? Yes! and with a mix of white and malted flours.

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