Thursday, September 16, 2010

100% Spelt Bread, Plain and Simple

The assigned HB5 group bread was a 100% whole wheat bread, but we had the option to use spelt flour.  There was only enough spelt flour for one bread, and this seemed a good time to bake it.

100% Spelt Bread, Plain and Simple

The dough for this bread seemed quite loose, even after refrigerating overnight.  Our book says that both whole wheat flour and spelt flour weigh the same.  I wonder if they absorb flour the same way.

The next day, the consistency was like our gluten free breads.  The dough  was hard to shape.  I decided to bake the bread in a loaf pan.  The bread is shown above.  It was a nice bread; we really like spelt!

That's the bread, plain and simple.

 Handwise tips:  If you have hand pain, tendonitis, or arthritis or any other pain issues and want to make this recipe,
  1. You might space it out over a few days.  Make the stored dough several days before.  You don't have to bake on the same day, that's the beauty of this dough!
  2. A mixer or food processor can help you.  You could put soapy water in it and run it for a few seconds to help clean it after removing the dough.  
  3. Then, if you are using a food processor, remove the dough hook/blade so that you can fill up the bowl even more.  Put an empty (cleaned)  container from 35mm film upside down, over the center portion and you can fill it up higher to soak. The water shouldn't leak out!
  4. When you shape it, let the dough rest if it resists stretching out.  Wait 10-15 minutes after doing the gluten cloak, and it easily should be able to be shaped.  Good time to have a seat and rest your hands!
  5. Soak your tools in your empty dough bucket or a pan when you are finished using them.   That way, you can wash them easily later (or tomorrow!)  Give yourself the permission of time to clean up much later.

This bread is one of the breads from the "Artisan Breads in 5 Minutes a Day" book.
The HBinFive Baking Group, started by Michelle of Big Black Dogs, is baking through all of the breads in the "Healthy Breads in 5 Minutes a Day" book.  To see what my HB5 baking buddies have made recently, check out  HBin5, 19th bread braid

Thanks so much for stopping by.  I hope that you will leave a comment.  And please stop by again soon, to see what's baking in my kitchen!



  1. Even though your dough was loose, your finished loaf is very nicely shaped and would make perfect slices for sandwiches.

  2. Since spelt is a species of wheat you would think that it should hydrate the same. Maybe it is ground differently. Also, there is the whole "temper of the day" thing, flour is going to have more moisture in it in summer when it is humid than winter when it is dry. But you would not think that should make such a big difference. Curiouser and curiouser.

  3. Thanks, Michelle. The loaf did make nice slices for sandwiches--or just a quick slice of toast. I still have part of the loaf that's already sliced in the freezer.

    Guff, keep that curiosity going! Your'e probably right about the humidity of the day. Maybe I should have added most of the water, and then checked the texture.

    Thanks for stopping by, guys!

  4. I have enjoyed using spelt, but haven't baked enough with it to be an expert at all. Chemistry in food is very interestering, thanks for possing the question.

  5. Great lookin loaf. I've used spelt before, but not alone. Whole wheat hydrates differently than white flour, so I too wonder if spelt absorbs water differently.

  6. I have never eaten spelt flour but have seen it in the "health" section of the shop. I will have to give it a try. I have had the odd very loose dough and have found it ultimately baked very well.

  7. Thanks, guys. We love the flavor of spelt, but the flour seems to take up the liquid differently. I'm sure we will all be able to work well with spelt with practice.