Difference between HIgh-Gluten Flour and Bread Flour


I recently bought High-Gluten flour instead of bread flour. I'm noticing my breads and even pizza dough have a more dense texture. They are proofing just the same but I'm not sure if it's the flour that has caused it or perhaps the drastic change in temps where I live have.

I've been searching and am not really sure what the difference is between the two and when you should use one or the other. To me, I thought these two flours were the most interchangeable.

Could really use some help on this!

Thanks and Happy Holidays!

badge posted by: loriannmonte on December 05, 2010 at 2:04 am in Q & A
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reply by: pjh on December 05, 2010 at 8:41 am

Hi Lori - If you bought King Arthur bread flour and King Arthur high-gluten flour, the difference in protein level is 12.7% for the bread flour, 14.2% for the Lancelot - significant. The reason your bread might be denser with high-gluten flour is that high-gluten flour needs more liquid than bread flour to attain the optimum dough consistency; a dough with too little liquid compared to flour will be dense and dry. So you can definitely use the high-gluten; just add more water, and expect a chewier texture.

reply by: loriannmonte on December 05, 2010 at 7:21 pm

Thanks... so that's what I need to do, add more liquid. They just feel so 'heavy'. Stuff tastes great but it's just so heavy.

Is there a rule of thumb when to use which? Like use bread flour when you want to make thin crust pizza or sweet breads and use the high-gluten flours to make bagels/thick crust pizza?