My favorite recipe is from Tassajara….but it’s the fermented grains that make it a whole food…..You can buy them, or just soak the wheat berries overnight, dry, then mill.

The sponge is created with gentle stirring and kneading, creating a wet mixture, ready for rising.

Add the rest of the rye and wheat flours, oats, corn meal…whatever you have, and knead it into beautiful loaves that rise.

As I write in FoodWISE,

The concept of whole in its strictest form simply can’t apply to all foods.

Certain foods require some processing to improve their digestibility, or the

addition of naturally-occurring substances to make them into the food we want to

consume. Adding yeast and allowing rising time to create fermented bread, for

instance, gives us a less chewy starch that’s still crafted mostly from whole

foods—and needs only a few ingredients. My favorite Tassajara Bread Book

recipe (see Part 4 Recipes) has served me well for over thirty years. I might get

carried away with ingredients—molasses and dried fruit, milk, oats and cornmeal

and wheat berries, nuts, apples. But those ingredients are themselves whole, and a

lot fewer than the twenty or more I read on a grocery package (yes, even for

breads found in a store’s “natural foods” section)—minerals and vitamins, canola

and/or soy oil, distilled vinegar, dough conditioners … right down to components

like azodicarbonamide and monocalcium phosphate. Calcium propionate is a mold

inhibitor, isn’t it? What does “defatted soy flour” mean? Yes, I know that ascorbic

acid is a famous water-soluble vitamin, calcium sulfate is a source of calcium, and

nonfat dry milk means added protein. But do I need the extra protein, and how

does it stack up against those whole-food nuts I throw into my homemade bread?

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