Multigrain Bread that isn’t just for Sandwiches (BBB May 2019)

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BBB: Let's Keep Baking summary: recipe for Multigrain Wild Yeast Bread; just how much water is absorbed by multigrain cereal? fixing the hydration; can’t stop baking in the combo-cooker; sigh… late again; information about Bread Baking Babes;

Bread Baking Babes (BBB): Multigrain Sourdough Sandwich Bread

I love bread with lumps in it! – me, blog from OUR kitchen | Muesli Rolls sans Chocolate (BBB June 2015)

BBB May 2019

We have been happily making “sourdough” bread since July 2017. We did have a few earlier rough starts though….

Ever wonder how to bake sourdough, but don’t know where to begin? I’m going to tell you a secret: You don’t have to be a professional baker or have a concrete knowledge base to get started. Sourdough can be accessible to anyone. […] I used to think it was some kind of mad science project myself. But in actuality, it’s a technique that can be traced back thousands of years […] It is not necessarily “sour” dough. The flavor can be either mild or tangy, depending on how the starter is cared for and how the dough is made. You won’t find any hydrogenated oils, corn syrup, or preservatives lurking in homemade sourdough-it’s 100% natural.
– Emilie Raffa, Artisan Sourdough Made Simple | Introduction

But I confess that the bread we’re making is almost always based on Chad Robertson’s basic country loaf in his wonderful cookbook “Tartine Bread”. I used to make multi-grain bread all the time when we were only using commercial yeast. But now, with bread raised with our Jane Mason starter, we’ve almost forgotten what it is like to have lumps in our bread!

Here’s how things went with making May’s bread:

BBB Multigrain Sandwich Bread diary:

1 April 2019, 15:49 I would never have thought to put coconut oil in bread. I wonder if its flavour comes through….

13 May 2019, 15:37 Eeek! Here I am behind schedule AGAIN. But not late. Yet….

I have just now come up for air!! Yesterday afternoon was the 3rd last concert of many this month (Stravinsky Pulcinella Suite AND Brahms 4 on the same concert yesterday!!) All the pieces that are left so far are Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique, Respighi Pines of Rome, Rossini overture to Gazza Ladra, Mozart viola 5tet, Haydn string 4tet … and those are only the difficult ones – mercifully not all on the same concerts.)

I looked at the ingredients list to see
70 grams (1/2 cup) King Arthur Flour Harvest Grains Blend or Bob’s Red Mill 10 Grain Cereal, or another mixture of grains and seeds
– excerpt from BBB May 2019 recipe

While I’m sure that King Arthur Flour and Bob’s Red Mill make excellent multigrain blends, I am definitely going to mix my own!

King Arthur Flour Harvest Grains ingredients list is

  • Whole Oat Groats, Wheat Flakes, Rye Flakes, Sunflower Seeds, Sesame Seeds, Flaxseed, Poppy Seeds, Hulled Millet.

Bob’s Red Mill 10 Grain Hot Cereal is made up of

  • whole grain hard red wheat, rye, triticale, oat bran, oats, corn, barley, soy beans, brown rice, millet and flaxseed meal

Genius Kitchen has a recipe for homemade multigrain hot cereal. The ingredients are

  • millet, rye flakes, wheat flakes, oats, brown rice, amaranth, barley (or barley groats), buckwheat flakes (or buckwheat groats) has “Ancient Grains” cereal listed on their site. There is also a “9 grain blend cereal”. The ingredients are

  • Ancient Grains: Oat, rye, barley, spelt, khorasan, quinoa flakes, oat bran, millet, and flaxseed
  • 9 Grain blend: wheat, oats, millet, flaxseed, rye, barley, triticale, sunflower seeds and corn meal

multigrain cereals ingredients

WHAT are khorasan flakes?? click click click click... Aha! Thank goodness for the internet… Khorasan is Kamut! (Who knew that “Kamut” was a brand name?)

I think I’ll just use the ingredients form our recipe for granola. But without the coconut flakes. And maybe I’ll add some millet, malted barley chops, and khorasan flakes. If I can find khorasan flakes.

Question: Do you think I am correct that the grains in either of these cereals are uncooked in the package and that we are to add the uncooked grains to hot water?

Aha. How handy. Karen answered my question: “Yes, uncooked grains. The hot water will “cook” them.”

13 May 2019, 16:15 I am re-reading further. (I know! Not only am I reading, but I’m RE-reading!)

In a large bowl, mix the starter, water, honey, and oil with a dough whisk or fork. Add the flours and salt.
    Mix the dough by hand in the bowl to form a shaggy dough. Cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.
    While the dough is resting, mix the multigrains and hot water in a separate bowl and let rest. Drain thoroughly before using.
– BBB May 2019 recipe

Hmmm. Why not soak the multigrains earlier and use that drained water (once it has cooled nicely) to make the shaggy dough? It can’t hurt, can it?

14 May 2019, 15:12 As we rode our bikes to the health food store today, I was thinking, “Didn’t I just post about the BBBs’ April bread? Surely a month hasn’t gone by so quickly!” And then I remembered that I was exceedingly late with my posting in April…. It turns out the time doesn’t fly quite as quickly as I thought. :lalala:

I was going to buy some kamut or quinoa at the health food store. But it turns out that they sell their own blend of “Kim’s 12 grain” cereal in the bulk foods area for $4.99 per pound. (Don’t even get me started on why on earth the cereal is being advertised at price per pound rather than price per kilo!) The ingredients listed are “cracked wheat, cracked rye, cracked tritical, barley grits, yellow corn meal, millet meal, rice semolina, buckwheat grits, durum grits, rolled oats, sunflower seeds, flaxseeds”. How perfect is that?

Naturally, I couldn’t remember how much was needed for the bread, so I guessed and for $2.55, got 234gm – about a cup and a third. Ha. Way too much! I’ll freeze the extra.

15 May 2019, 09:43 plan ahead! Karen even warned us about the need to plan ahead:
Yes, ladies, [this bread] requires some planning. You have six weeks, starting now!
-Karen, in early April message to BBBabes

Did I pay attention? :stomp:

Sylvester Jr.

Will I ever learn??? I managed to comprehend yesterday that tomorrow is the day we are expected to post about this bread. Which meant that I could have put together the starter last night and mixed the bread this morning. But that would mean that T would have to shape AND bake it – I have to leave at 16:00 today and won’t be home until late. The situation is somewhat similar for tomorrow. But Friday is wide open (I think). Therefore, I will be late. Again.

16 May 2019, 23:17 Look at me, almost (sort of) on time! I just finished mixing together the leavener ingredients. Of course I know I’m only supposed to use 50gm of starter. But 100gm for roughly the same amount of flour has been working so well for us with our Tartine bread. So that is how much I’m going to use. So there. (Ha, I LOVE starting sentences with “so”! Perhaps, I should start adding “yah” after the “so” as well.)

17 May 2019, 08:19 Dry ingredients weighed. The bowl of 12-grain cereal is soaking – along with the honey and coconut oil – in boiling water now. Timer is set for when to mix everything together.

09:39 It was a bit of a struggle mixing in the dry ingredients. And a surprise too because of this note from Karen: [T]he dough is pretty wet. However, you should not add more flour. Rather than shaping the dough on a floured surface, the author suggests shaping the dough on an oiled surface.
-Karen, in early April message to BBBabes

Ha! Pretty wet? Doubt it, Ralph. This is the dryest dough I’ve ever encountered.

Add more flour? There’s no chance of that! Granted, I haven’t yet added the salt and the last 35 grams of water, but at this point, I’m going to be more inclined to add more water. (Did I make a mistake in the measures? I’d better double check….)

09:46 I’m pretty sure I calculated correctly. But maybe not very much water comes out of the soaked cereal. When I mix the salt in, I’ll reassess. If the dough is still this dry, I’ll definitely add more water.

10:33 Whoa!! That’s dry dough!

I clearly didn’t take into account how much water would be absorbed by the soaking grains, and how much would be drained off in the original recipe. It really doesn’t make sense to me to throw that water away. (But this is the trouble with being a self-proclaimed expert, isn’t it? And how mistakes happen….)

I asked the BBBabes how much water (about) is drained away after soaking the multigrain cereal. Here are the responses:
Kelly: Maybe half? It will depend on the grains used in the soaker and whether they are whole or cracked as well.
Cathy: I didn’t measure it but I drained off a good bit.

I must admit that when I dumped the soaker into the dough, it didn’t seem like there was a whole lot extra liquid. I had to make a re-adjustment to the adjustment I had made initially in the recipe: I added 100 grams more water. The dough is still pretty stiff, but I’m thinking that might be enough extra water.

12:23 I turned the dough – grainy, isn’t it?

I still wouldn’t call it particularly wet dough, but at least it looks a little more like it might actually turn into a decent loaf.

14:09 Ah! NOW the dough looks beautiful. In half an hour, I’ll preshape the bread.

16:10 Tightened bread and added oatmeal. I sure hope it stays on!

I made an executive decision to bake the shaped bread in our combo-cooker, instead of fighting with parchment paper and the derelict and neglected bread tin that may or may not be covered in dust.

18:10 The bread smells fabulous! Only 30 minutes more in the oven. Then, yikes! We’ll have to be strict with ourselves and let it cool before cutting into it.

18:35 Look at that oven spring!

BBB May 2019

We tasted the bread this morning. Wow! Is it ever good! Grainy – but not too grainy, inside beautifully soft – but not too soft, and just the tiniest hint of coconut flavour from the coconut oil.

BBB May 2019

It is spectacular toasted as well.

In a word: Delicious!

It’s so delicious that we’re going to butterfly a chicken to cook on the barbecue tonight so we can have chicken sandwiches tomorrow.

And, because this is sandwich bread, on Victoria Day (this Monday) we will celebrated the bread’s excellence and the coming of spring at last by making open faced egg sandwiches, aka Eggs Benedict. Garnished, of course with chives just recently bursting up in the garden.

Once again, the maxim “better late than never” holds true.

What a great choice for this month, Karen!

Here is the May BBB recipe that we were given. And here is what I did to it:

Multigrain Sourdough Bread
based on a recipe in “Artisan Sourdough Made Simple” by Emilie Raffa

makes one round loaf


  • 10gm whole wheat (100% hydration) starter from fridge
  • 45gm 100% whole wheat flour
  • 45gm water

Multigrain Soaker

  • 96gm (1/2 c) Kim’s 12 grain cereal (The BBB recipe calls for “70 grams (1/2 cup) King Arthur Flour Harvest Grains Blend or Bob’s Red Mill 10 Grain Cereal, or another mixture of grains and seeds”)
  • 240gm boiling water
  • 30gm virgin coconut oil (The BBB recipe calls for melted coconut oil to be added to the dough.)
  • 20gm honey (The BBB recipe calls for the honey to be added to the dough. Our honey has crystalized so it made sense to add it to the hot water.)


  • flour (the BBB recipe calls for “450 grams (3 3/4 cups) bread flour” and “50 grams (1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon) whole wheat flour”)
       » 410gm unbleached “no additives” all-purpose flour
       » 50gm “no additives” 100% whole wheat flour
       » 10gm wheat germ
       » 5gm vital wheat gluten to change all-p into bread flour
  • all of the Soaker (cooled), from above
  • all of the leavener from above
  • 135gm body temperature water, divided (hold back 35gm for when adding the salt)
  • 9gm seasalt


  • Rolled oats
  1. Leavener: In the evening of the day before making the bread: Put the starter, flour and water into a smallish bowl. Mix with a wooden spoon until the flour is stirred in well. Cover the bowl with a plate and set aside overnight in the oven with only the light turned on.
  2. Soak the multigrain cereal: In the morning of the day you will be making the bread: Put the multigrain cereal into a smallish bowl. Pour boiling water overtop. Add coconut oil and honey. Set aside to cool.
  3. Mix the dough When a small forkful of the leavener floats in a small bowl of room temperature water, you can go ahead and mix the dough. If the leavener does not float, stir in a little more whole wheat flour and water – even amounts by weight – cover with a plate and leave for about 30 minutes more. Chances are that it will now float.
    Put flours, wheat germ, vital wheat gluten, all but 35 grams water, the cooled soaker, and the leavener into a large mixing bowl. Use a wooden spoon or dough whisk to mix these ingredients to make a rough dough. Cover the bowl with a plate and leave on the counter for about 40 minutes.
  4. Adding the salt: In a small bowl, whisk the salt into the final 35 grams water. Pour the salt mixture over the dough.
  5. Kneading: Use one of your hands to squoosh the salt and water into the dough; use the other hand to steady the bowl – this way you always have a clean hand. At first the dough might be a bit messy and seem like it’s coming apart. Persevere. Suddenly, it will seem more like dough than a horrible separated glop. Keep folding it over onto itself until it is relatively smooth. Cover with a plate and leave to rest for about 30 minutes.
  6. Stretching and folding the dough: Turn the bowl as you fold and re-fold the dough into the center. Cover the bowl with a plate and leave on the counter (or if the kitchen is cool like ours in winter and spring, into the oven with only the light turned on). Repeat the folding step about 3 times in all at 30 minute intervals. You’ll notice that after each time, the dough will feel significantly smoother (in spite of the grains from the multi-grain cereal). After the final time of folding, the dough is ready to pre-shape.
  7. Pre-shaping: Scatter a dusting of all-purpose flour on the board and gently place the dough on the flour. Fold the dough over in half, gently patting off any extra flour that might be there. Continue folding in half until the dough is shaped in a ball. Cover with a tea towel and let rest for about 30 minutes.
  8. Shaping and add the topping: Without breaking the skin, use the dough scraper on the sides to tighten the dough ball further. Once it has been tightened, run your hands under the cold water tap and gently rub the top of the ball to wet it thoroughly. Cover the top with a single layer of rolled oats. Lightly spray again before putting the shaped loaf seam-side up in a proofing basket. Cover with the tea towel again and let sit for an hour or so to allow the loaf to almost double.
  9. Baking: To know when it’s time to bake, run your index finger under water and gently but firmly press it on the side of the bread. If the dough springs back immediately, recover the bread with the tea towel and leave it in the oven with only the light turned on. If the dough gradually returns back after being pressed, leave the tray on the counter. Put cast-iron combo cooker on the middle shelf of the oven and preheat to 400F.
  10. Scoring: When the oven is preheated about fifteen minutes later, turn the shaped loaf out into the frying pan part of the combo cooker. Score the loaf and immediately put the hot deep-sided pan of the combo cooker on top as a lid. Place in the oven and immediately turn the oven down to 375F. Bake for 30 minutes with the lid on. After 30 minutes, remove the lid and, without stopping to stare in amazement at the fantastic oven spring, close the oven door to continue baking for another 30 minutes, until the crust is a lovely dark golden brown and the bread sounds hollow when knuckle-rapped on the bottom.
  11. Cooling: When the bread has finished baking, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool on a footed rack before slicing and eating; the bread is still cooking internally when first removed from the oven! If you wish to serve warm bread (of course you do), reheat it after it has cooled completely: To reheat any uncut bread, turn the oven to 400F for 5 minutes or so. Turn the oven OFF. Put the bread into the hot oven for about ten minutes. This will rejuvenate the crust and warm the crumb perfectly.

This bread is excellent as sandwich bread or for toast.


Leavener: The leavener is made with a 100% hydration starter. It takes about 5 days to create. (Please see our take on Jane Mason’s Natural Starter made with Wheat Flour.)

Coconut Oil: The BBB recipe calls for “45 grams (3 tablespoons) melted coconut oil” to be added to the dough. For those who don’t like the flavour of coconut, it might be a good idea to use olive or sunflower oil instead. Or walnut oil! I bet that would be good too.


BBB May 2019

Bread Baking Babes BBB: Let's Keep BakingMultigrain Sourdough Sandwich Bread

Karen K is the host of May 2019’s Bread Baking Babes’ project. She wrote:

This [multigrain sourdough bread] is from the book, Artisan Sourdough Made Simple by Emilie Raffa. I’ve made several breads from this book and have been really happy with all of them. […] This bread is very flavorful and an easy way to incorporate sourdough.
– Karen, in message to BBBabes

We know you’ll want to make Multigrain Sourdough too! To receive a Baking Buddy Badge to display on your site: make the doughnuts in the next couple of weeks and post about them (we love to see how your bread turns out AND hear what you think about it – what you didn’t like and/or what you liked) before the 29 May 2019. If you do not have a blog, no problem; you can also post your picture(s) to Flickr (or any other photo sharing site) and record your thoughts about the bread there. Please remember to email the Kitchen of the Month to say that your post is up.

Please note that it’s not enough to post about your bread in the Facebook group. Because of the ephemeral nature of Facebook’s posts, your FB post may be lost in the shuffle. Please make sure to directly contact the kitchen of the month if you want to be included in the BBBuddy roundup.

For complete details about this month’s recipe, the BBB and how to become a BBBuddy, please read:

Please take a look at the other BBBabes’ May 2019 Multigrain Sourdough.


The forsythia finally blossomed last week; the chives and garlic burst out of the cold ground, and then – oh then – look: The Bridal Wreath Spirea actually sent out blooms!

Spring Garden 2019

Spring at Last!

edit 22 May 2019: We loved the BBB multigrain sourdough sandwich bread so much that I had to make another loaf yesterday. This time round, I used olive oil instead of coconut oil, a tiny bit less honey, and 100 grams whole wheat flour instead of the 50 grams suggested in the BBB recipe. With easily as much loft as the first time, the bread is slightly different – a little more delicate in texture. And, of course, there is no hint of coconut flavour.
The other change I made this time round was to soak the multigrain cereal in just 140 grams boiling water. I added 200 grams water to the dough and did not drain the cereal before adding it, along with the salt and 25 grams more water, after letting the just mixed dough rest for 40 minutes.

Multigrain Bread that isn't just for Sandwiches (BBB May 2019)

This is a great recipe! Thank you again, Karen!

Next time, I MUST remember to try making the bread with walnut oil – and maybe add a few walnuts to the dough as well….


This entry was posted in baking, BBBabes, bread - yeasted & unyeasted, bread recipe, food & drink, posts with recipes, sourdough and wild yeast, whine on by .

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6 responses to “Multigrain Bread that isn’t just for Sandwiches (BBB May 2019)

  1. Karen

    I see why your bread dough may have been dry…. I don’t see the 300 grams of water on your ingredient list. All in all, your bread turned out beautiful though!

    Some of that 300 grams went into feeding the starter (I used twice the amount that was called for). And some of it was to soak the multigrain cereal (I didn’t discard any of the liquid after it had soaked.) But T thinks that the presence of the rice semolina in the multigrain cereal I used might have made it even more absorbent than ever – and why it didn’t throw any extra off. – Elizabeth

  2. Katie Zeller

    If you would have been on time you wouldn’t have any left for sandwiches tomorrow.
    So there.
    (One sentence started with ‘If’ and the other with ‘So’)
    You made a lovely bread.

  3. Kelly

    That is a supremely gorgeous loaf! Fabulous oven spring and quite impressive loaf if you possibly used half the water we did. You got a fabulous crumb regardless.

  4. ejm Post author

    Karen: Because I didn’t drain the soaked 12-grain-cereal, I thought that I was adding all the water. But judging from how ridiculously dry the dough was before I added that extra 100 grams of water, this was faulty thinking on my part.

    Elle: Thank you! We were awfully pleased with the looks of the loaf as well. It was almost as if I had placed the oatmeal on just one half of the bread on purpose! And yes. This bread really is the perfect sandwich bread, isn’t it?

    Katie: So we are not allowed to begin sentences with “If” now either?? If these rules continue, I’m going to go into a decline. :lalala: (Good point about the timing of the bread making….)

    Kelly: I know!! I could not believe the oven spring! And the bread is staying beautifully “fresh” even when two days old. What a terrific recipe.

  5. Cathy (Bread Experience)

    Elizabeth, your round loaf looks superb! I need to try this one as a boule instead of in a loaf pan. I enjoyed the addition of the coconut oil, but I bet walnut oil would be good. I like that idea!

    Thank you, Cathy! We liked the coconut oil too but as we were tasting the hint of coconut, felt that it is a “once in a while” kind of addition. I made the bread again yesterday, using olive oil instead of coconut oil. It was good that way. But rats!! I completely forgot about trying it with walnut oil. Next time…. – Elizabeth


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