Oatmeal bread

I used the basic brown loaf quantities but used 200g wholemeal, 350g strong white and 50g oatmeal. The natural oils in the oatmeal are meant to soften the crumb. My head was so thick with the cold that followed my bout of flu, that I completely forgot to put any salt in the mixture at all. So all things considered, I’m pleased it has as much flavour as it does.

I kneaded it for longer (15 minutes), but I’m still finding the final dough is very sticky – it sticks to my fingers terribly, and I’m sure it should coming away more smoothly. I have been religiously following the ‘wetter is better’ tenet, but perhaps I should try a bit more flour at the end, to get it off my fingers. The texture was different: slightly grainier, because of the oatmeal.

I started by making a sponge on Thursday night. I then made the full dough on Friday evening and left it in the fridge overnight. The dough rose much more than it ever has before (it didn’t form a skin this time: I’ve sorted out how to make an air-tight cover).

On Saturday morning I knocked the dough back and moulded into the bread tin, and put it in the fridge at 9am. I was out for the day, and when I came back at 5pm it had risen beautifully. I gave it another 30 minutes at room temperature (which may not have been necessary) before baking it.

It came come out beautifully. The crust was a little on the thick side, but not to the point of being inedible, and the crust was ever so slightly crumpled on the top (my book says this could have been an over-long proof). The crumb is indeed lovely and soft. Having given the yeast quite a long time to act on the flour, the bread has quite a bit of flavour despite the absence of salt.

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~ by jobes on April 2, 2008.

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