Sunday, 9 August 2015

Finger millet bread experiment

I’ve used finger millet in bread before, and the results made me think I should nudge up the amount I use. 

Here’s what happened during my second bread experiment with this nutritious and beautifully coloured grain!


70 g wholewheat sourdough starter
210g flour
140 g ragi flour
260 ml water (74% hydration)
6 g salt


I mixed all the ingredients and covered the bowl, so that the gluten could get its beauty sleep. 
After 30 minutes, I added salt and kneaded the dough - in a few minutes, it had become smooth and velvety. It was very slack though.
A few drops of oil are squirted into the bowl, the dough rolled around, and then off went the dough for a rest.
This took long, very long, actually. After about 6 hours, there was nearly no change in the dough volume. None. So I shaped it anyway, gently enough to preserve even loner bubbles that might have formed inside. From the look of the dough, I had very little hope :(
After 5 hours,  the dough looked the same. So I covered the proofing basket with a very damp towel and put it into the fridge.
The next morning, I wasn’t too surprised that the dough still looked almost the same. This dough was teaching me al lot about disappointment.
And at this point, I gave up.
The first pic shows the dough when I put it in the oven.
The second is after 10 m at 100ºC and the third is after
10 m at 250ºC.
I tipped the dough onto a peel, slashed it, and put it into an oven at room temperature. I set the temp at 100ºC (yes really).
In 10 minutes, the slashes had widened a bit. Encouraged, I turned up the heat to 250ºC and sprayed the insides of the oven and the bread with water every minute or so.
And in a few minutes, we were back in business! The bread had sprung up at last!
After 10 minutes, I turned down the heat to 180ºC and 40 minutes later, I was rewarded for all my stress with  gorgeous bread!