Not Quite NigellaThe cooking, eating and travel blog of a hungry blogger from Sydney, Australia featuring original recipes, interviews and articles on all things food @
Sunday, October 11, 2009
The Great White Flour Comparison
I have several different kinds of flours and one of favorite things to do when visiting a new place is to check out the baking isle in a local grocery store. I am always on the lookout for some new or better or cheaper kind of flour since I go through flour like you wouldn't believe! My daughter-in-law discovered a wholesale source of flour for me and I picked up two different kinds- one a hard winter wheat and the other a soft wheat. I have used them both but tonight I decided to do a comparison test. I made two different dough using 2 cups of flour, 1 tsp. of instant yeast, 1 tsp. of kosher salt, and 1 cup of water. I mixed the ingredients in the KA just enough to combine them, let it have an 8 minute autolyze, then mixed it for another 5 minutes on speed 4. I let them do their proof thing and the doughs were noticeably differnt. The hard wheat was slack but wasn't sticky. The soft wheat was pretty gloppy and I could tell there was less gluten formation. I decided to make foccacia with the doughs since they were way too slack for bread. The soft wheat dough became pizza crust for potato pizza. It sounds strange but it was really very tasty. I used the mortar and pestle to combine olive oil, garlic, maldon salt, and fresh oregano frm my herb patch. I mandolined paper-thin slices of potato and arranged them on the dough that I spread and coaxed (lliterally) in a round pan. I baked it at 450 for 15 or so minutes. Mmmmmmmm. Simple but pretty and tasty. Who knew?? The other dough became this pillowy soft, airy, crusty focaccia that I made in a rectangular pan. I used plenty of olive oil top and bottoma nd sprinkled it with a garlicky herbes-de-provence from my stash of goodies from Tuesday Morning. I love that place... We ate the pizza with shavings of peccorino romano and Jocelyn and I agreed that we like the peccorino better than parm reg. Again, who knew! So what lesson did I learn tonight? I will save the soft wheat for cakes, cookies, etc., and use the other for breads. But tonight we had a fine dinner and leftover focaccia for panninis tomorrow!