I want to make the Maple-Pecan Bread from Domestic Goddess but can't find whole wheat bread flour. Can I substitute ordinary whole wheat flour? Thanks.
Nigella's Maple-Pecan Bread (from HOW TO BE A DOMESTIC GODDESS) is a loaf studded with pecans and slighty sweetened with maple syrup. It has a combination of wholemeal (whole wheat) and white bread flours as this gives a loaf with some of the flavour of wholemeal but a lighter texture.
Flours used in bread need to have a high level of gluten. Gluten is a protein in flour that, when mixed with water and kneaded, becomes stretchy and elastic and lets the dough rise. If the gluten levels are too low then the bread will be on the dense side. Bread flours usually have a protein content of 13-15%. Some regular whole wheat flours have quite high protein levels of around 13%. We suggest looking for King Arthur's Flour or Bob's Red Mill whole wheat flour. Alternatively look on the nutritional information on the packaging of the whole wheat flour, as this should give the protein content (if it is per cup then look for 4-5g protein per 1/4cup/30g). If you can't find a suitable whole wheat flour then you could use all white bread flour instead.