Kamut


Not only did I find spelt (albeit at a high price) finally hitting our organic shops, I also spied a lone packet of kamut (triticum polonicum). Spelt costs double that of plain flour, but kamut cost double that of spelt. Being one to try anything at least once, I'm going to bite the bullet and get some to bake. According to Ed Wood, "it can be substituted in any recipe for 1 cup of rye or wholewheat flour."

Has anyone here baked with kamut before? Please share your experience. TQ.

 

 


26 comments

Well, until now for me Kamut was triticum durum from old egypt....tr.polonicum is a new info, I must check some time..
Kamut is expensive, right.
For that, I' ve done only a few experiences.
I used it for pizza, "Schrittmacherbrot" (whole grain bread with rye, splet, kamut and amaranth and for cakes.
Because of being a durum (hard grain) I 'd problems to mill (flour isn't offered here), I only got a sort semola with a glissando feeling so my semola needs a bunch of soak time.



You pop up at the most unexpected times! :D

From what you've mentioned above, I can see kamut can be used (successfully?) for making pizza dough and cakes at the least. I got the scientific name from Ed Wood's Antiquity book. As for amaranth, I just got a bag for the first time and cooked together with rice. Gluey, isn't it? Quite unlike quinoa, although at a glance, both look similar, cooked.


For pizza I tried only once, it's too expensive, durum (ital. semola rimacinata) plus ital. "00" is good for me.
Cake (100 %) or, coupled together with other mmaterial, wholy bread ;) , that are my turns. If I ever get some satisfaction with my "Schrittmacher" experience I post the reciepe, until now I'm struggling against amaranth, it makes a strong aftertaste.
Quinoa I never used.
Hi I use spelt and kamut in baking as DH has a wheat intolerance but can handle both of these.
Kamut used to be cheaper than spelt  but it became hard/impossible to get at my normal organic haunts in Melbourne.
Since I decided to start sourdough baking I found Santos in Byron Bay have both but Kamut is heaps cheaper. $2.95 Kamut VS $4.10 Spelt Per KG

I quite like normal non-bread baking with kamut and planned on trying different combo of spelt/kamut as I start this sourdough experimentation.
Kamut doesn't tend to be as heavy as Spelt IMHO. I have made successful sponge cakes from kamut whereas spelt ones turn out to be pancakes <chuckle>

Sourdough newbie.


If the lone packet of kamut is still left on the shelf, I'll get it this morning.

Update: It's gone, it's gone, it's gone.


Kamut is much more sensitive than wheat or spelt it normally needs less mixing time, less of a bulk proof and a lower water temp it also needs a high hydration level. I have found that variations in kamut flour are much more pronounced than wheat or spelt.







Wow, that looks beautiful. I haven't done such a long first proof before but if that is the result, sign me up! Congrats.


Here comes my questions. :)

How does it compare with spelt? More dense or less? I don't know how to put it, but, is there a feeling of gluten developing as you knead it? And the taste?

Easier to shut me up with a slice of kamut bread.

TP



Forgive me if I just cut and paste my post on my other food forum:

Last night I tried two batches of dough using 100% organic kamut flour. Using my usual wet sourdough starter (1 part by volume of water to 1 part by volume of flour), I began with my usual 74% hydration recipe, but pretty soon realised that it was waaay too dry. I ended up making one 700g loaf at a massive 88% hydration, and another at 81% hydration. Because I'd read that kamut was similar to spelt and other ancient grains, and therefore unlikely to be high in gluten, I added a tsp of vital gluten to the 81% batch.

Very long bulk proving time - 12.5 hours. Minimal kneading - I gave the dough a quick 30 second knead, and then a couple of folds before I went to bed. (I'd also read that kamut doesn't like to be overhandled). This morning, both doughs had risen substantially, but neither seemed to have the elasticity that regular bread flour doughs have, nor were there any big air bubbles in the dough. Proved both in my pvc wicker baskets (I love these!), which had been sprayed with oil - no flour. Allowed to rise for an additional 1.25 hours.

Baked on preheated pizza stones in a 220C FF oven for 20 minutes (sprayed the oven with water), then dropped the heat to 175C for an additional 15 minutes. The loaves baked very brown. Not much oven spring, and interestingly the added gluten didn't seem to make much difference to the loaves (the gluten loaf may possibly have risen just a little bit more, but the higher hydration loaf spread more).

The baking loaves gave off an interesting and delicious, almost sweet, aroma, quite different from regular flour loaves. The loaves came out pretty solid, but well cooked. When cut, they presented a really interesting crumb - not gluggy, but perhaps a little cakelike in texture, and very tender. The slices were delicious - reminiscent of rye in flavour, but without the overwhelming heaviness of a 100% rye loaf. They passed the peanut butter test, and the cheese test. :) The bread also has a lovely sourness to it, probably because of the long overnight prove. I really like this bread. It's probably a little heavy for every day eating, but it certainly makes a nice change. It surprised me that it wasn't very much like spelt at all - I guess I'd linked the two in my head. For next time, I won't bother with the gluten, but will definitely stick to the higher hydration dough.



Very good points to note for when I get ahold of some kamut. You certainly nailed it on your very first try. I love the patterns your baskets make.

Cheers
TP, off to chop some (excess) sage into some SD buns.



There was an interesting piece about Kamut in Richard Bertinet's new book CRUST:

Khorason (or Kamut) - This is another ancient wheat which, like spelt, fell out of favour and has been reborn.  In America, where is is grown organically in Montana, it is called Kamut, and the story is that it was used in ancient Egypt and rediscovered by an American airman in the 1950s.  However, at Shipton Mill, where I buy the flour, they have done their research and discovered that its true name is Khorason, and it probably originates in northern Iran.  In parts of the Middle East and Central Asia, it has been grown in subsistence farming systems for centuries.  The flour is slightly more fibrous than wheat flour, with a sandy golden colour and a lovely earthy flavour - almost a taste of the fields.  You can use Khorason on its own, but it contains a less strong form of gluten than wheat , which can make for heavy bread, so I find you get much lighter results when you blend it with strong white flour.



I finally found kamut flour and bought a small bag. Anyone else have any experience with it? I'm thinking of making bread, maybe 50:50 kamut/bread flour.

C, have you been baking more bread with it?

Cheers
TP



Teep, I made some fougasse with it, but haven't tried a mixed loaf.  On my very limited experience, I'd recommend using a very active starter, extra water and a looooong bulk fermentation if you're planning a straight kamut bread.  From memory, it makes a very cakey bread - don't expect big holes!

I'd be interested to see how you go with a 50:50 loaf.  I've been making a lot of mixed wheat/spelt loaves, and the boys have really loved them.  Actually, I don't know if you'd need 50% kamut - you might get away with less - that way your small bag might go further.. :)

Can't wait to see how you go - make sure you post pics!




Thanks, C. I'll go and give my starter some pep talk and feed it over 2 days.

TP



I've just dragged my 5kg bag of kamut out as well, Teep.  Will try a mixed loaf tomorrow to keep you company. :)




We'll see how long I can stretch my baby bag of 567g...weighing at 1/10th of yours. :D

TP



It's just so ridiculously cheap here for some reason.  $2.95/kilo at Santos Trading!

Dough is rising as I type.. :)




I bought mine 2 wks ago. Glimpsed at the price, passed it to hubby to pay, can't remember it now...but I think my Bob's Red Mill kamut cost easily triple yours. Hubby balked but I said I just had to try it 'once'. 8)

What flour mix did you end up with? I'm looking at Wood's recipe with 1/4 rye, 1/4 kamut and 1/2 high protein plain flour.

TP



I've got it rising at 50:50 kamut:wheat, using the L'Ancienne recipe from the ciabatta thread.  No real reason why, but I'm still fascinated by how the ice water changes the way the dough develops. 



I've been baking kamut commercially the last few years.

I have more success employing a long knead, a tightish dough & pretty much the same time-frame as 100% wholewheat.

I use Four Leaf's "Egyptian Gold Flour". More info here:

http://www.fourleafmilling.com.au/products.php?id=38 

 

I'd never considered using Kamut for pasta before...interesting link, thank you.

Here are today's loaves - 50:50 kamut to white bread flour, using Dom's ciabatta recipe.  The kamut makes the loaf much denser, so no big holes this time, but a nice textured crumb nonetheless.





Whilst this has a distinct flavour, I think I prefer the straight kamut, simply because it's so different in both texture and flavour.  But mixing it with the bread flour certainly made it easier to work.

Celia




OK...I'm now undecided between 50:50 or 100% kamut....easier handling vs stronger/clearer kamut taste.

Thanks for your input, Dave. Gosh...you guys are so spoilt for choice. So many kinds of flours and at friendly prices.

TP



Mine doesn't look like your 50:50 at all, C. My kamut bread has a tight crumb, and is a bit like spelt, looks tight but it isn't heavy. An interesting flour with a very creamy horlick-ish colour. I just had a nibble...need to chomp off more before I can describe the taste. Later.

I think I might have overhandled the dough a bit. When I did the fold and turns, the surface was breaking up in some parts. The recipe called for 54% hydration but I whacked it up to 75%. Still, the dough was rather stiff.



TP, that looks like my first loaf did.  Interesting crumb - looks dense, but it's actually very tender, almost a bit cake like.  I needed a really high hydration as well - the flour seemed to soak up the water!

Pete commented that the kamut bread is best when eaten with something, rather than on its own.  I think that's true - it certainly seems to work best with a topping.

I hope you enjoyed the experiment - your bread looks great! :)



I thought it looked like your 1st, though, being a 50:50, it should have looked like your 2nd. You work wonders with bread dough, C. 

Eating thick tomato/lentil stew and also roast chuck tender beef with it. Yum.

Next experiment will be to make other baked stuff with it, came across shortbread and pizza using kamut today.

TP