Golden Raisin and Walnut Bread

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Dough Yield: About


    loaves at 1.5 lb each

Appears in


By Jeffrey Hamelman

Published 2004

  • About

The Bite of Walnuts in this Bread is nicely rounded by the concentrated sweetness of golden raisins, which also give a lovely random flecking of color to the bread’s crumb. Adjusting the proportion of whole-wheat flour gives a correspondingly more or less whole-grain flavor to the bread. If adjustments with the whole wheat are made, pay careful attention to the hydration—slightly more water may be needed as the percentage of whole-wheat flour increases. The walnuts can be increased to 20% of the flour weight for a fuller-tasting bread.

Pre-Fermented Flour: 25%


Overall Formula

U.S. Metric Home Baker’s %
Bread Flour 16 lb 8 kg 1 lb, 9.6 oz 80 %
Whole-Wheat Flour 4 lb 2 kg 6.4 oz 20 %
Water 14.4 lb 7.2 kg 1 lb, 7 oz 72 %
Salt .4 lb .2 kg .6 oz 2 %
Yeast .24 lb, fresh .12 kg, fresh .13 oz, instant dry 1.2 %
Golden Raisins 3.2 lb 1.6 kg 5.1 oz 16 %
Walnuts 3.2 lb 1.6 kg 5.1 oz 16 %
Total Yield 41.44 lb, 20.72 kg 4 lb 1.9 oz 207.2 %

Stiff Biga

Bread Flour 2.5 lb 1.25 kg 4 oz ( cup) 50 %
Whole-Wheat Flour 2.5 lb 1.25 kg 4 oz ( cup) 50 %
Water 3.1 lb 1.55 kg 5 oz ( cup) 62 %
Yeast .01 lb, fresh .005 kg, fresh ( tsp, instant dry) .2%
Total 8.11 lb 4.055 kg 13 oz

Final Dough

Bread Flour 13.5 lb 6.75 kg 1 lb, 5.6 oz (5 cups)
Whole-Wheat Flour 1.5 lb .75 kg 2.4 oz (½ cup)
Water 11.3 lb 5.65 kg 1 lb, 2 oz ( cups)
Salt .4 lb .2 kg .6 oz (1 T)
Yeast .23 lb, fresh .115 kg, fresh .13 oz, instant dry ( tsp)
Biga 8.11 lb 4.055 kg 13 oz (all of above)
Walnuts 3.2 lb 1.6 kg 5.1 oz ( cups)
Golden Raisins 3.2 lb 1.6 kg 5.1 oz (1 cup, Packed)
Total 41.44 lb 20.72 kg 4 lb, 1.9 oz


  1. Biga: Mix the bread flour, whole-wheat flour, water, and yeast on first speed until evenly incorporated. The biga will be stiff, but a small addition of water may be necessary depending on the absorption of the whole-wheat flour. Cover the bowl with plastic to prevent a crust from forming, and leave at about 70°F for 12 to 16 hours.
  2. Mixing: Place all the ingredients in the mixing bowl, with the exception of the biga, the walnuts, and the golden raisins. In a spiral mixer, mix on first speed for 3 minutes in order to incorporate the ingredients. As the dough is coming together, add the biga in chunks. If necessary, correct the hydration by adding water or flour in small amounts. Turn the mixer to second speed and mix for another 3 minutes. The dough should be of medium consistency, but with perceptible dough strength and gluten development. Add the walnuts and golden raisins and mix on first speed just until they are evenly incorporated. Desired dough temperature: 75°F.
  3. Bulk Fermentation: 2 hours.
  4. Folding: Fold the dough after 1 hour of bulk fermentation.
  5. Dividing and Shaping: Divide the dough into 1.5-pound pieces (or make rolls with smaller pieces). Preshape lightly into rounds and place on a lightly floured work surface, seams up. Cover the rounds with plastic. When the dough has relaxed sufficiently (10 to 20 minutes), shape it into tight round or oval loaves. Place the loaves into floured bannetons or on lightly floured baker’s linen and cover with plastic.
  6. Final Fermentation: Approximately 1 to 1½ hours at 75°F.
  7. Baking: Invert the risen loaves onto the loading conveyor or peel. Score the loaves with the desired pattern using a straight lame. Presteam the oven, load the bread, and steam again. Bake at 460°F. Open the oven vents after the loaves show color, in order to finish the bake in a drying oven. The sugars in the raisins will add color to the dough, so the oven temperature can be lowered by 10° or 20°F after about 20 minutes of baking. Loaves scaled at 1.5 pounds will bake in approximately 40 minutes.