Wholemeal grain loaf

Kind of a simplified version of Dan Lepard‘s Five-grain loaf from The Handmade Loaf, I’ve been a bit ‘absent’ from my dough of late, so decided to make something winter-ish and comforting.

300g strong white
100g wholemeal
100g leaven (100% hydration half light rye, half plain white)
40g oat flakes
20g sunflower seeds
30g black treacle
20g golden syrup (didn’t have the honey I wanted to use)
1 tsp ADY
2 tsp ground salt
230ml room temp water

Hydrate the ADY in some of the water, heated up to tepid, hand-hot temperature, should take about 15 mins.
Put the rest of the water in a bowl, add the leaven, treacle, syrup, oil and mix together thoroughly.
In a larger bowl, mix the flours, oat flakes, sunflower seeds and salt together well.
When the yeast is hydrated, pour it into the sticky liquid mix, roughly combine and pour onto the dry ingredients. Mix using the ‘usual’ Dan Lepard minimal hand-kneading technique, at intervals of 10, 15, 30 and 60 mins, then prove in a basket for 2 hours.
Heat up the oven to 250C with stone on a shelf getting nice and hot.  Let the oven get upto full heat and the stone warm up fully before baking, for approx 35 mins.  Turn the heat down 20C after the first 10 mins, and make sure you rotate the loaf as necessary according to the ‘eccentricities’ of your oven.

Couple of notes – don’t use rubbish, tired old yeast, like I did, get some fresh.  I should have twigged when I rehydrated it and it didn’t show any life.  The fact that this loaf came out at all is almost certainly more luck than skill in this instance!  Taste-wise, there’s a pleasant maltiness, which I was aiming for, and a gentle crumb which will make it into cracking toast.

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