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Old 12-14-2006, 08:38 PM   #1
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Bread flour

Hi all. I was wondering can I use all purpose flour instead of bread flour? I want to make some herb bread tonight and cant get to the store, but the only recipes I can find for herb bread call for bread flour. ( or if someone has a recipe that would be nice to) Thanx.

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Old 12-14-2006, 08:42 PM   #2
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Yes, you can. It just won't develop quite as much structure from the gluten. I made bread for many years before bread flour was a common find in the supermarket.
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Old 12-14-2006, 08:48 PM   #3
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You can make Bread with most flours. Bread flour is high in gluten. I agree with Candocook.
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Old 12-14-2006, 09:03 PM   #4
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Cool. Thank you both!
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Old 12-14-2006, 10:02 PM   #5
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AP flour can't hold as much liquid as bread flour so you should decrease the amount of water or other liquid to get the same dough texture.
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Old 12-14-2006, 10:31 PM   #6
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I prefer to use High Gluten Bread Flour for baking bread. But if you want to bake and you have just all purpose you can still make bread.
Be prepared to add more of less water when you experiment with different types of flour since flours have different absorbency rates, varying from grain to grain and from season to season. The blend or brand of flour you use on a regular basis may vary depending on the moisture in the air the day you make your bread or the growing conditions of the wheat during that particular year. When experimenting with a new type of flour,be prepared to add more water or a bit more flour to a dough to accommodate the variations.
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Old 12-14-2006, 11:15 PM   #7
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My psychosis....Here is a recipe for you
Pesant Bread
2-1/4 teaspoons dry yeast
2 cups(warm) water
3-3/4 white flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
(please refer to many of the Bread Making Directions on DC or my info on Great Homemade Bread Using Your Food Processor)

This makes one large loaf (King Arthur has a long,deep,bread tin)
Bake 425 oven for 10 minutes Bake 400 oven for 20 additional minutes.
Questions?
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Old 12-15-2006, 03:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
AP flour can't hold as much liquid as bread flour so you should decrease the amount of water or other liquid to get the same dough texture.
hi Andy

What, in your experience, makes you say that "AP flour can't hold as much liquid as bread flour"?

From what I've experienced making bread baking , AP flour more *readily* absorbs liquid than bread flour. (If you go the long rise route, I don't see any difference in the absorbtion ability of AP vs bread flour).

Always want to learn! TIA - sf
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Old 12-15-2006, 09:10 AM   #9
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From what I've read, the higher the protein content of the flour, the more water it can absorb.
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Old 12-15-2006, 11:56 AM   #10
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I've become obsessed with bread baking recently and I think that Andy is right, but I am not sure that there is a huge difference.

Depending on the mfr. AP flour's gluten content can differ by quite a bit. I am told that King Arthur's, for example, is quite high -- nealry that of some bread flours.

Also, the humidity of your kitchen will affect how much water the flour will absorb, so it's all a sort of guessing game which you need to evaluate as you make the bread.
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Old 12-15-2006, 01:26 PM   #11
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With different flours, different brands, different kinds of wheat going into the flour, climate, interior house humidity, outside humidity, etc. they may differ from recipe amounts, but it is nothing so large that can't be accounted for. And I think it would be hard to tell which way it would go--more liquid or less. I just go by feel and look of the dough. It shouldn't be sticky (for most bread recipes) and it shouldn't be too "tight".
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Old 12-15-2006, 02:34 PM   #12
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Candocook, YES. You know your Bread Making.
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Old 12-15-2006, 03:05 PM   #13
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Yes, different brands of the same flours can differ in protein content.

Yes, humidity/atmospheric conditions can effect the amount of water needed for a recipe.

However, those conditions are irrelevant, obscure the issue and don't address the original statement.

Bread flours are high protein flours
Cake flours are low protein flours
AP flour is a blend of high and low protein flours. As such, you would expect its protein content to be somewhere in between bread and cake flours.

Given identical conditions, the higher the protein content of a flour, the more water it can absorb.
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Old 12-15-2006, 04:38 PM   #14
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The beauty of bread making is in the simplicity of its ingredients: flour,salt,yeast, and water. Starting with the four most important fundamentals of bread dough...FLOUR.

The purity of bread springs from the ground up, the fertile ground from which wheat grows. Flour is the foundation of bread making. Despite what you have herad or read about it,the flour in the shelves of supermarkets can help you bake bread that is considerably better than the bread you'll find a few aisles.down.
YES...what matters in bread making is the protein content of the flour. More protein is not necessarily better. TO KEEP IT SIMPLE: remember that, in most cases the higher the protein, the more gluten it will produce. Gluten is the substance that enables bread to rise.

Different strains of wheat have different protein and starch contents; the higher the protein content of the flour, the more gluten- forming ability the flour has. To make good break....you must keep trying...it is possible and easy.

I prefer King Arthur Special Bread Flour for its constent quality, high protein content and lack of chemical additives but I have used Gold Medal and Pillsbury, with good results.
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Old 12-15-2006, 04:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aria
...I prefer King Arthur Special Bread Flour for its constent quality, high protein content and lack of chemical additives but I have used Gold Medal and Pillsbury, with good results.

I don't recall seeing this flour. Is it a different product from their regular bread flour in the blue and white bags?
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Old 12-15-2006, 05:05 PM   #16
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See the King Arthur Catalog. Many products.
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Old 12-16-2006, 12:45 AM   #17
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Ive been obsessed with sourdough baking for a while now, and I guess that since I always use long ferment times, i dont notice any absorbtion rate difference. I do notice that I get better results with high gluten bread flour than with all purpose flour. If you are making yeast bread and want a higher rise, use high gluten.
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