Substituting wholemeal flour

Hi, I have a great simple (flour, water, salt, yeast) recipe/technique for white bread using 'bread' flour - it's a white, high gluten flour. I've tried simply substituting wholemeal flour and I'm ending up with a very dense loaf. Because it also seemed quite dry I've been adding slightly more water each time but this hasn't really helped. I've just read a post in this group that suggests pure wholewheat flour doesn't rise as well because the shards of bran cut through the gluten strands. The solution given was to add a percentage of high-gluten flour. Before I go down this road I wanted to see if there are any other general things I should be doing when substituting wholewheat flour into a recipe. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks! Paul
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Paul
I find that whole grain flours absorb more water than white so I generally use less whole grain flour. When I'm mixing I'll put in all but the last cup of flour and then let the dough sit for 10 minutes or so. This gives the flour a chance to absorb the water and then I can fine tune the dough with any remaining flour if needed. This really helps prevent a dry crumbly loaf.
If you can find a copy of Peter Reinhart's Whole Grain Breads book there are many wonderful whole grain recipes to try along with some neat techniques for working with whole grain flours.
marcella
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Marcella Peek

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