One quibble about the name of this bread: it’s not a whole wheat bread. It has rye flour. I dunno. Anyway, I thought I should try it since I did review Michael Pollan’s book, Cooked.
Since I was making two different doughs at once (Pollan’s and Sam Fromartz’s Turkey Red Miche) I labeled them so as not to get confused which bread I was taking a picture of.
I did an overnight starter for Pollan’s bread and Fromartz’s bread. Look at the difference! One is a loose, high hydration leaven and one is a stiff leaven.
Here is my dough the morning of the day I planned to bake. I still had the starter separated, but I mixed up the whole wheat flour, AP flour and rye flours of the final dough and did a short autolyse before adding the salt and starter to it.Here is the final dough immediately after adding the salt and starter. Each time I did a stretch and fold to Fromartz’s dough, I did one to Pollan’s dough.
After one stretch and fold:
After the second stretch and fold:
I did two more stretch and folds. I could really feel the gluten developing. Certainly more than my home-ground flour dough right next to this one!
This made me laugh. I guess I’m not the best at dividing without weighing the doughs.
This is the inside. You can thank sourdough starter for the light, airy crumb of an otherwise dense bread. The only improvement would be to give the flours a longer autolyse. The book tells you to soak the flours overnight, but since I lack reading comprehension I didn’t realize this was a step until this morning. I did a short, one-hour autolyse which was ok but didn’t provide enough time for the starches in the flour to convert to natural sugars.
Overall, though, this was a delicious bread. Bravo, Michael Pollan.