Not including the two "extra" recipes embedded in the final grace note, the Whole-Wheat bread recipe is the last recipe in the Bread Baker's Apprentice. I'm glad I have one more bread to blog about because if this had been the last recipe from Peter's book then it would have been a sad ending. A whimper instead of a bang.
You know that I love lofty crusts and you can tell from the picture that I did not get the loft I crave from this recipe. I even used the smaller loaf pans that I have and still the loaves are only a couple inches high. I thought it was the low amount of yeast in Peter's recipe but when I sliced into the bread I found lots of big air pockets and the crumb was fairly airy and light, as far as wheat bread goes. So my conclusion is that I should have just baked it in just one larger loaf pan. I probably also could have gone with a commercially milled flour but again, given the nice crumb I saw, I doubt I would have seen the 50% higher rise to meet my standard.
The recipe involves an overnight soaker as well as a day-before-poolish. Kneading the dough can be a little rough by hand because the wheat bran chaffs a little. However the chaffing eases up as the flour becomes fully hydrated. I like the whole wheat recipes from Peter's Whole Grain Breads book more than this recipe so I think I'll go back to making one of the recipes from there instead.
Only one more bread to go!