Durum Wheat has More Protein than any other kind of wheat; the quality of the protein for bread making, however, is not as good as the protein in hard winter or hard spring wheat. Durum has a tendency to break down in the mixer if even slightly overmixed. It is advisable, therefore, to slightly undermix the dough, and make folds on the bench if it is necessary to increase dough strength. Durum is typically milled into semolina, which is quite coarse and sandy textured, or into durum flour, which has more of a floury feel. Semolina tends to have somewhat of a puncturing effect on the developing gluten network of the dough as it mixes, unlike the softer durum flour. For bread making (and when making pasta too, for that matter), I find that durum is incorporated more easily into the dough and makes a nicer finished loaf. The soaker in the present formula gives a deeper body to the bread, as well as better moisture retention, so the loaf stays fresher a little longer. The fennel seeds contribute a distinct flavor that complements the other ingredients in the dough. A light toasting of the seeds adds even more flavor.