“The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable in its evocation of innocence and delight.”MFK Fisher
I love receiving edible gifts, especially those that are unusual. My friend B gave me a pack of Einkorn Flour a couple of months ago. I’ve been totally intrigued by it and couldn’t wait to try it out.
I’ve done a bit of research on the grain itself and found this interesting article from Wikipedia. I’ve also looked at various different recipes for bread and found that just like regular (modern) wheat flour one can use the Einkorn in many different ways. I’ve opted to follow the instructions on the back of the pack and, since I’ve had a whole load of time on my hands, I decided on taking things s..l..o..w..
I followed the instructions carefully. I weighed out the flour, yeast and even the salt! Normally I would just chuck stuff together and go by feel, but since I didn’t know how this dough should feel, I wanted to make extra sure that I get it right.
I am very glad that I watched the various YouTube clips on Einkorn flour as the dough is very crumbly at first. If I didn’t know of any better, I would’ve added more water to it to make it more sticky, but apparently this crumbly texture is good.
I tipped it out onto a clean, flour-dusted work surface and started kneading. There is just something about kneading bread dough with your hands! It is so therapeutic.
Once kneaded I replaced the dough back into the bowl, covered with my trusty shower cap, and set the timer for 15 hours.
I was truly amazed how the dough has transformed from a tight ball to a very airy and soft dough. Unlike modern wheat flour, you do not knock the air out of this one and give it a second rise. Instead you tip the aerated dough into a greased tin, cover it with foil and place it into an oven that has been preheated to 220 degrees celsius.
According to the instructions, the bread had to bake for 30 minutes whilst covered and for another 30 minutes uncovered. I thought that this would’ve been way too long and that the bread would come out rather dry and/or burnt, but I was pleasantly surprised.
After nearly 24 hours I had a very flat little bread. I was disappointed that it didn’t rise much in the oven and that the slices were a bit on the small side.
The bread tasted fairly bitter, almost like a good beer. It was very earthy, but quite pleasant and even better with a bit of butter and a slice of mature cheddar.
Have you ever tried making bread with a lesser known ingredient? Please let me know!