Monday, August 03, 2009

Change == Good

I've been baking bread from whole wheat for a couple of years now.  The last few times I needed to replenish my stock, I picked up King Arthur's White Whole Wheat.  Not because I prefer it to the regular kind, but because it was the only type of whole wheat available at my Trader Joe's.  TJ's has since switched to a an in-house brand of the same thing.

The front of the package claims that you can substitute White Whole Wheat for equal amounts of flour in both all-purpose and whole-wheat recipes.  I've regarded this with extreme skepticism.  Anyone who has eaten both types of bread knows that they don't taste the same; how can the same flour work for both?

I've been pretty happy with bread loaves I've made with it, though I think I could stand to back off the sweetener a little bit - white whole wheat is not as bitter as the regular kind, so it probably doesn't need as much honey.  So far I've avoided substituting it for regular all-purpose flower, until this weekend.  I finally took the plunge and made a totally non-whole-wheat recipe: Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars, the first thing I ever really learned to bake.  It calls for 2 1/4 cups of white flour; I substitutes 1 cup of White Whole Wheat for 1 cup of the flour.

And, amazingly, the cookies turned out good!  They don't taste the same as usual, but I think you could miss the difference if you didn't eat these as often as I do.  It tastes different, but definitely not bad at all.  Maybe just a tiny bit heavier, a little fuller, not quite as light.  Still pretty addictive, I'm sad to say.

So, that's one occasional baker's verdict.  Next time I may try doing a full substitution to see how it compares.  So far, I'm pretty content with it, and evidently it is as healthy as they claim.  Hooray for food!

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