How to Make Pain D’epi, Wheat Stalk Baguette Recipe

Home 9 Bread With Preferment 9 How to Make Pain D’epi, Wheat Stalk Baguette Recipe

Pain d’epi or wheat stalk bread is a kind of French baguette. The process of making it is the same up until the scoring. Where a regular baguette gets slashed with a razor a few times diagonally, pain d’epi gets cut up with scissors.

This makes it quite different. The deeper cuts create more surface area, and the bread becomes a lot crustier. It is a great tear-and-share loaf as you can pick it apart piece by piece. This would work great with some tasty soup. This recipe makes 2 decently sized baguettes. Multiply the amount of ingredients to make more.

Check out the bread with preferment page for more delicious breads that use a similar preparation method to this one. Preferments open a whole new world of bread making.

Watch the video down below for detailed instructions.


For the poolish

90g (3.2oz) strong white bread flour

Pinch of yeast

90g (3.2oz) cold water, if it is summertime and your kitchen is hot.

To learn more about dough temperature control click here.


For the main dough

200g (7.1oz) strong white bread flour

6g (0.2oz) salt

2g (0.07oz) dry yeast or three times the amount of the amount of fresh yeast

90g (3.2oz) cold water if it is summertime and your kitchen is hot. If your kitchen is cold, then use warmer water.

To learn more about dough temperature when using a preferment click here.


Linseeds for sprinkling (optional). You can use different seeds too.


  1. Make the poolish by mixing the water, yeast and flour and fermenting for 10 – 12 hours or until doubled in size. If the poolish is fermenting rapidly and you are not ready to make the dough yet, then you can place it in your fridge to slow down the fermentation. 
  2. Add the remaining water, yeast, salt to a bowl mix to hydrate the yeast and dissolve the salt. Add the poolish and the flour. Mix until well combined.
  3. Tip the dough out on your work surface and knead for 5 – 7 minutes. Desired dough temperature 24 – 25C (75 – 77F). If your dough is warmer, then it will ferment more rapidly. If it is cooler, then it will take longer. Adjust the proofing times up or down accordingly.
  4. Cover and proof for 45 minutes.
  5. Fold.
  6. Proof for 45 more minutes.
  7. Divide & preshape. Do not preshape too tightly. We want the dough to be able to relax enough during the 15 minutes of resting so that we can easily shape afterwards. 
  8. Rest for 15 minutes.
  9. Final shaping. This does take some practice, but it is not too difficult. Watch my hands and take your time.
  10. Final proof 45 minutes. During this time preheat your oven to 240C (464F) fan off.
  11. Cut the dough using scissors into the wheat sheaf shape. You can make the segments larger or smaller. The more cuts you make the  crustier the bread will be. 
  12. Bake for around 20 minutes until puffed up and golden brown all over. Enjoy whilst fresh!

Watch the video here

Understanding the principles of bread making will let you be in complete control every time you make bread. It will reduce the failure rate and turn you into an even more confident home baker.

I highly recommend you check out the Learning page where I have detailed, easy to understand explanations on each step of the bread baking process and the principles behind it. You can find all the equipment I use and recommend in the Shop (UK) & Shop (US) pages.

Show/Hide Comments (9 comments)


  1. HaldanFarmArts

    I’m so excited to try this! Your videos are amazing—you are a natural teacher and clearly an extremely knowledgeable baker. I’m going to start my poolish tonight so I can make this bread tomorrow. Thank you!

    • ChainBaker

      Thank you so much! That’s awesome! Let me know how it goes 🙂

  2. Lan

    Hi, i have my poolish fermenting – do you use a steam method for bkaing the pain d’epi in the oven?

    • ChainBaker

      It is always advisable to steam the oven when the bread goes in. So definitely do it for a better result.

      • Lan

        Charles, thank you for the recipe and the video (which I wacthed countless times today). I was successful in making the Pain d’epi – I can’t seem to post a picture in the comment, otherwise, I would. 🙂

        • ChainBaker

          I’m so glad you were successful and that you enjoyed it 🙂 I love the way the epi looks. Btw it is also possible to stuff the dough with a filling and then cut it and bake it. I will make a video on this in the future. If you have Instagram, then you could tag me in a picture there or message it to me @ChainBaker. Alternatively send it over to 🙂

  3. Lan

    Is there some point I could make the dough and put in the fridge and then shape, cut and bake tomorrow morning?

    • ChainBaker

      Because it is made with preferment it will be more active and may over proof in the fridge. You could experiment and see. Try mixing the dough, leaving out for 30 minutes and then refrigerating it till the next day.

      • Lan

        Thank you for the recommendation – will test that today.


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