January 27, 2010

Whole Wheat GOODNESS!!!

This is THE best whole wheat bread EVER!!  So soft, so moist, so delicious!  I'm dead serious!  If you like to make bread, make this!  I don't buy bread at the store any more, just make this for our everyday use.

A friend made this bread (and some yummy lentil soup--I'll post that recipe someday) for me after I had Oliver.  The recipe below has been adapted just a bit from the one she gave me.

3 cups very warm water
6 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoons yeast
1 tablespoon salt

1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons honey
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup gluten

Place the first set of ingredients in mixer, starting with water and 2 cups of flour and alternating with other ingredients until all 6 cups have been added. Turn the mixer on low as soon as there is enough flour in the bowl, and leave it on while adding the remaining ingredients. Add the oil and honey, stopping to scrape down the bowl as necessary, then the remaining flour and gluten. Allow the dough to mix for 10 minutes. Take it out of the mixer, and on a clean surface, divide it into 3 equal parts. Form each dough section into a loaf, pressing out air bubbles as you go. Place each loaf in a greased loaf pan and allow the dough to rise in a warm place for about 90 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Take the loaves out of the pans as soon as they come out of the oven and cool on a wire cooling rack.

***Some things to keep in mind (or what I've been learning).  Use filtered or bottled water.  Try different brands of whole wheat flour and find what works best for you (Bob's Red Mill is my #1 and King Arthur is a close 2nd).  Make sure the mixer is on the whole time you are measuring and adding ingredients.  I wrap and freeze one loaf and bring it out a few days later.  We eat all three loaves in about a week.

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