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Cracked Wheat Porridge Sourdough, by Annie Clapper of The Family Crumb

Cracked Wheat Porridge Sourdough, by Annie Clapper of The Family Crumb

By: Terra Brockman (Read Bio)

Cracked Wheat Porridge Sourdough, by Annie Clapper of The Family Crumb

This recipe for a moist, flavorful loaf that lasts well comes to us courtesy of Annie Clapper, baker-owner of The Family Crumb in Bentonville, AR. Annie says:

Winter is cold, y'all. And if you live in the midwest, it can feel endless. Growing up, we leaned on certain comforts to get us through. Long bouts of sledding followed by steaming mugs of hot cocoa, good books enjoyed by a fire, and hot breakfasts. As a special treat during the winter, my dad would often wake us up with cracked wheat porridge and top it with a pad of butter, brown sugar, and raisins (which I avoided at all costs). This loaf is my nod to those cozy winter breakfasts.

Whether you're an inclusions master or a newbie, porridge loaves are a wonderful way to expand your baking experience. The added moisture from the cracked wheat porridge keeps the bread from staling for a longer period of time, and adds a creamy texture that is really appealing, especially for morning toast.

Scroll down to learn more about Annie and The Family Crumb. 

Yield: 2 loaves


200g whole wheat flour, such as Janie’s Mill Whole-Kernel Bread, Turkey Red, Red Fife, Einkorn, or Black Emmer flours
800g Janie’s Mill Sifted Artisan Blend Flour
700g room-temperature water
150g ripe starter (100% flour/starter/water, freshly fed) 
25g salt

100g Janie’s Mill Cracked Wheat (raw bulgur) or Cracked Rye (Rye Chops)
200g oat milk – Oatly or Chobani plain oat milks preferred (or regular milk)
30g vegan butter (or regular butter)
60g brown sugar


      1. The night before mixing, prep the porridge: Soak the cracked wheat (raw bulgur) with the oat milk and let rest overnight in the fridge.
      2. The day of mixing: Mix the flours and water together and let rest at least 20 minutes and up to two hours. 
      3. Cook the porridge: During this rest, take the cracked wheat porridge out of the fridge and cook for 20-30 minutes on low heat until the porridge is thicker and the consistency of cream of wheat. Once cooked, add the butter and brown sugar to the porridge and mix until everything is incorporated and the butter is melted fully. Let cool while the dough continues to rest.
      4. Add the ripe starter to the dough and mix until fully incorporated. Let rest at least 20 minutes and up to one hour.
      5. Add the salt and room-temperature porridge to the dough and mix well. (If the porridge is still hot, pour it onto a baking sheet, spread it out, and pop it in the fridge. With more even air distribution, it should cool off more quickly.)
      6. Stretch-and-fold the dough 3 times, once every 30 minutes.
      7. Transfer the dough to a countertop or bench and cut the dough into two roughly equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and let the dough rest for 30 minutes.  
      8. Shape each ball into either an oval or round. If you have wheat bran, I like to coat the loaves in bran at this time. Then transfer the dough seam side up into your banneton. Let the dough rest overnight in the fridge.
9. The day of baking: Place your Dutch oven or other heavy lidded pot in the oven and preheat the oven to 500 degrees for 30 minutes. Take one loaf out of the fridge, carefully transfer it to your dutch oven, and score the loaf using a razor blade, lame, or a pair of scissors. Be very careful not to burn yourself while scoring– you can even wear gloves if the gloves allow enough movement.
10. Place the lid back on the dutch oven and put it back in the oven. Turn the temperature down to 450 and bake for 25 minutes. Take the lid off, and bake for 10-15 more minutes at 450. Repeat this process with the second loaf, preheating the dutch oven for 10 minutes at 500 degrees in between.
11. Let the loaves cool for at least an hour before digging in. Enjoy!

Background and Inside Info on The Family Crumb 

About five years ago, Annie Clapper, baker/owner of The Family Crumb, reached out to Janie’s Mill Manager Jill Brockman-Cummings in search of freshly milled flour. After her first order, she emailed us saying, “We really love your Red Fife Flour. It's made such an extraordinary difference in the taste of the bread." Since then, Annie has moved to purchasing our whole berries and milling them herself so she has the most flavorful and nutritious flours for her breads and other baked good. 

Here's more about Annie and her baking life, in her own words!

I am the owner and baker at the Family Crumb. I mill the whole grains, keep ingredients stocked, mix and shape the bread, run sales through the website, and do social media. 

Of all of these things, I like the slow-paced parts the best. Milling the grains while I sip my morning coffee. Observing the transformation of the dough throughout mixing day. Watching the sun rise as the bread bakes on bake day. Cutting a fresh piece of bread for our kids to have with breakfast.

My baking career is relatively new--I’ve been doing this professionally for about five years now. Baking professionally was a passion born out of necessity. When we moved to Northwest Arkansas from Chicago, I had to drive 40 minutes to get to a bakery that made good sourdough. I began making bread for our family because it seemed more convenient. It blossomed from there when a friend from the local Farmers Market approached me about selling my bread.

I feel immensely privileged to be able to work with locally grown and sourced flour. I’m originally from Chicago, so I learned about Janie’s living down the street from Baker Miller and from following Greg Wade of Publican Quality Bread.

I truly love all of the flours and grains from Janie’s Mill. My favorite thing about all of the flours at Janie’s is how alive and active they are. That flour really makes some happy bread!

Posted on January 14 2023