One of the things I love most from the Whole Foods bakery is their “Seeduction” bread. It’s dark, hearty, super sweet, moist and has hints of crunch.

It’s also nearly $5 a loaf, and the closest Whole Foods is clear across town. We only go near it when we’re picking up our CSA once a week (Hey, like those red okra in the background?!), so it’s not especially convenient, either. For that reason I decided to try my hand at coming up with something that would be a close approximation.

Until now, it seemed like just about everyone was using a recipe that had been posted by Robin Damstra Salant of Caviar and Codfish. While I’m sure her bread is quite tasty, I wanted to stick to the grains that Whole Foods lists in their video. I also wanted to start with a wild yeast (sourdough) starter rather than instant yeast, if only because I realized the jar I have is old and didn’t want to kill a bread with this many ingredients. This was especially true after having had to make two stops to find millet.

What I came up with is not as sweet as the Whole Foods version. If you want a sweeter bread, use more honey and adjust your liquids accordingly. My version also uses whole wheat instead of white flour for a healthier bread.

Ingredients

Starter:

  • 9oz elaborated whole wheat starter (126g white whole wheat, 126g water)

Soaker:

  • 100g King Arthur Whole White Wheat Flour
  • 2g salt
  • 60g water

Biga:

  • 50g Millet
  • 30g Poppy Seed
  • 30g Pumpkin Seed
  • 30g Sunflower Seed
  • 15g (~1T) Sweet Molasses (NOT Blackstrap!)
  • 63g (~3T) Honey
  • 175g King Arthur Whole White Wheat Flour
  • 100g Water

Have additional flour and water on hand for adjustments as needed.

Instructions:

Day 1

Mix all of the soaker ingredients. Allow to sit at room temperature 2-4 hours (longer if time allows), loosely covered. Refrigerate overnight.

In a separate bowl, mix all biga ingredients. Allow to sit at room temperature 2-4 hours (longer if time allows), loosely covered. Refrigerate overnight.

Feed 3 oz of unelaborated starter 3oz of white wheat flour and 3oz of water. Allow to sit, covered, until ripe (About 4-8 hours, depending on room temperature.) I fed my starter last thing, just before going to bed.

Day 2

Remove all components from the refrigerator at least 1-2 hours prior to making final dough. Chop into small pieces to facilitate warming.

Place starter and soaker into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the dough hook, begin mixing on the lowest setting. Begin adding small bits of the biga and mix until incorporated. Turn mixer to “2″ (On a Kitchenaid) and knead dough for about 10 minutes, adding more flour or water as needed to reach ┬áthe proper consistency. Dough should be somewhat tacky but not overly sticky and have enough gluten to almost pass the windowpane test. A windowpane test will be difficult on this dough due to the amount of seeds wanting to shred the dough when it is pulled. Do not over knead.

Transfer to an oiled bowl and turn the dough to coat. Allow dough to ferment for about 3-4 hours at room temperature until it has doubled. Divide dough in half and shape into boules or batards. I shaped mine into batards and let them rise in a floured banneton, thus the grooves and dusting of flour on my bread. They will take about 3-4 hours to double a second time.

When your dough is close to having doubled, preheat your oven to 400F and place a baking stone on the center rack. Bake loaves one at a time (unless you have a very big stone) for about 30 minutes, until the bread reaches an internal temperature of 200F.

While it’s a bit late, hopefully this will go into next week’s Yeast Spotting over at Wild Yeast.

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