100% Whole Wheat or Multigrain crust

Does anyone have a recipe for a tasty Whole Wheat crust that is not just subbing 25% Whole Wheat for white flour?
Any help would be appreciated.



Just to make sure we are on the same track, a whole-wheat/ whole-grain dough/crust has no white flour in it at all. If there is any white flour in it, regardless of the amount it is correctly referred to as a “wheat” crust, not a whole-wheat/whole-grain crust.
The easiest whole-wheat crust to make is one made using whole white wheat flour, especially when the flour is milled to a finer particle size. There are a couple of things you need to know first.

  1. It WILL have a HIGHER absorption than regular white flour. Expect the absorption to be around 70%.
  2. It WILL absorb water at a slower rate than white flour. A good method to make dough using this type of flour is to put the water in the mixing bowl followed by the flour and remaining ingredients except for the yeast and oil. Mix the ingredients together at low speed for 2-minutes and allow the flour to hydrate for at least 15-minutes, then add the oil and mix for 1 more minute at low speed. Add the yeast and mix for 1-minute at low speed then finish mixing at medium speed until a fairly smooth, cohesive dough is achieved.
  3. Whole-wheat doughs should be slightly tacky after mixing, if it isn’t your dough absorption is too low and the finished crust quality will suffer badly. Use a little salad oil on your hands to facilitate handling (scaling and balling) the dough.
  4. Whole-what doughs are best after 18 to 24-hours in the cooler.
  5. Aside from the dough absorption, no other ingredient changes are needed.
    Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

I neglected to address your multi-grain part of your request.
A multi-grain dough/crust is made using both white flour and a multi-grain blend (typically a blend of 7 or more different grains). A good formula is one containing 65% white flour and 35% multi-grain blend. The multi-grain blend can be a commercially purchased multi-grain blend (normally a blend of 8 or 10 different grains) or it can be made by grains that you select and put together yourself but if you make your own be aware that it should not be changed in any way unless you want to test the new blend to determine its absorption which is critical to know.
To find the absorption of the multi-grain blend put 10-ounces into a tared bowl, begin adding water until it makes something like a paste, cover and allow to hydrate for 30 to 60-minutes, add more water to bring it back to a thick paste like consistency, cover and allow to hydrate for 30 to 60-minutes. Keep repeating this until you see that the mass doesn’t appear to be getting stiffer during the hydration period. Once you reach this point the multi-grain blend is fully hydrated. Divide the weight of water that you added by the weight of flour (USE ALL WEIGHT MEASURES) ounces works well, now multiply that number by 100. This is the total absorption of the blend that you are using but it is too high for making a dough so now you will reduce that percentage by 5. Example: 10-ounces of multi-grain blend + 8-ounces of water. 8 divided by 10 = 0.8 X 100 = 80% minus 5 = 75%. This is the dough absorption value that you will used for the multi-grain blend portion of your flour. If your normal white dough absorption is 58% and the multi-grain absorption is 75% all you need to do now is to multiply .58 X the white flour weight + .75 X the multi-grain blend weight = total dough absorption for your multi-grain dough.
Like the whole-wheat dough this dough should also feel slightly tacky after mixing, this is normal and desirable. These doughs perform best after 16 to 24-hours in the cooler. If you feel that the dough is too soft or extensible reduce the dough absorption slightly for the next dough. These doughs should be soft and pliable, very easy to open into skins. If it is firm and dry the finished crusts will have all of the unique eating properties of a sheet of Styrofoam :(.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor