TIPS - WHOLESOME INGREDIENTS
Ingredients are just as important as the crust, look and texture.
I make a nice
rye loaf using a pumpernickel meal. Any meal for that matter is good.
Meal is high in fiber. Meal is just coarse ground flour with nothing removed.
You can make your own meal with a flour mill that has a course setting.
Stone-ground whole wheat flour is one of my favorites. Any stone-ground flour has more
nutritional value that a commercially milled flour. Commercial milling uses
steel grinding wheels. The wheels heat up in the grinding process and bake off
some of the nutritional value. That does not happen with stone-ground. The stone
grinding wheels don't heat up.
Unbleached flour is better than bleached. Flour is
bleached using chlorine. That's what makes it white. The food value is removed for storage
and fed to farm animals. Food
value is added back when the flour is later sold to the consumer. We know it as
all purpose flour. Adding the nutritional value back is called enriching.
Unbleached is more natural. Never removing in the first place and not having to
Gluten content of flour is also
important. Bread flour has high gluten/protein content - fourteen grams of
protein per cup. All purpose flour has 11 grams of protein per cup. The high
gluten/protein content is what gives us a big full loaf. You pay more for high
gluten flour. You need it in bread baking. All artisan breads use high protein,
high gluten flour.
For sweetener don't use
refined sugar. Again go natural with honey or molasses. Honey for whole wheat
and molasses for rye. Use vegetable oil or olive oil. No animal product. Use water
and no milk. Use no eggs. Salt is a must, but you can use sea salt or some other
Think nutrition, fresh and
wholesome. Buy fresh ingredients. Flour from a small health food store may have
been around for a while. Ask if it is fresh. Special order your flour or get it
from a food broker. From a food broker it will be fresh. Their product does not
sit on the shelves long.
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