Thursday, May 21, 2009

Whole Wheat Bread

I love home made bread. I love the smell of it baking. I love to eat it warm. I love to eat it as toast with home made jam the next day. I love to see it sitting on my counter cooling. I love home made bread.

Today I'm going to share a recipe with you for Whole Wheat Bread. The best whole wheat bread EVER!

First of all: The Ingredients.
What? The white flour didn't make the photo. You'll still need it.

Freshly ground whole wheat flour
. If you don't have a grinder, use a friends, if you don't have a friend with a grinder... Go ahead and use the stuff from the store, it tends to be very fine but will still work. (or get to know a Mormon neighbor, they often have one they will let you use and probably 100's of pounds of wheat they will share, too.)

Brown Sugar. Light or dark... whatever you have in the pantry.

Yeast. I use Red Star Active Dry. The recipe doesn't specify but I've always used active dry.

Warm Water. To dissolve the yeast in.

Sugar. What? You don't put sugar in everything you make?

Salt. Once I thought I could health it up by omitting the salt. Don't do it. Resist the temptation. Flavor was lost. If you need to make it healthier, use applesauce instead of shortening.

Milk. Whole, non fat, 2 %, canned, whatever you have in the fridge.

Shortening. Apple sauce can be used to omit fat. Sometimes I just don't want to deal with the hassle of shortening so I just unwrap a cube of butter. It sure is yummy that way.

Water. This is separate from the first bunch. So if you have to; get if from a different sink.

White Flour. Sorry it didn't make it into the family photo.... you'll still need it.

You should have 10 ingredients because you do not want to combine the water.

1. In a bowl larger than you think you need dissolve 2 Tbsp. yeast (the big T means the bigger spoon) in 1/2 cup warm water. Stir these together gently and add 2 Tbsp sugar (there's that big T again. Actually there are no little t's in this recipe so just leave it in the drawer.) Set aside and watch it grow.

2. Combine in a separate large mixing bowl 4 cups whole wheat flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and 1 Tbsp. salt.

3. Heat 1 1/2 cups water, 3/4 cup milk and 1/4 cup shortening in microwave to lukewarm.

4. Gradually add liquids and yeast mixture to dry ingredients (flour mixture).

5. Beat at low speed until moistened, then at medium speed for two minutes.

6. Stir in enough white flour to make soft dough. About 2 - 2 1/2 cups. Don't add it all at once. Add a cup, mix, add a cup, mix and you're going to have to just trust yourself about what a soft dough is. If you have a dough hook let it knead for 10 minutes.

7. Now is the fun part. Dump the dough onto a lightly (or not so lightly) floured surface and knead away. Kneading bread dough is not difficult but you'll want to avoid getting your fingers very involved. So, using the heal of your hand push the dough into the counter. Roll it back toward you and push again. Rolling and pushing, hitting and pounding. You really want to get those glutens working and work the yeast throughout the bread. It works well if you are angry or frustrated because you can really beat up on your dough and it's actually good for it.Work it baby. (I wonder how many calories you burn doing this?)

8. Place in a greased bowl and grease all sides of dough. (I just spray the bowl and the dough) Cover.
9. Let rise. About 30-60 minutes. It should double in size.
Watch it grow... I only removed the lid to take a picture. You should keep it covered so it doesn't get a hard crust on top.
10. Divide in two pieces and form into loaves.
11. Place in greased (again... spray) loaf pans and again let rise double. (about 30 minutes)
12. Bake 35-40 minutes in a preheated oven 350 degrees Farenheit.
13. Let rest on cooling rack for about 5 minutes then gently remove from pans and replace onto cooling rack until cool. (After the 5 minute resting period, it's okay to slice into a loaf, smother with butter and savor the goodness of your own healthy and delicious creation.)
Sooo scrumptious!

Whole Wheat Bread

4 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp salt
2 Tbsp yeast
2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup warm water
1/4 cup shortening
3/4 cup milk
1 1/2 cups water
2 - 2 1/2 cups white flour

Dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water with 2 T. sugar. Combine whole wheat flour, brown sugar, and salt. Heat water, milk and shortening to lukewarm. Gradually add liquids and yeast mixture.
Beat at low speed until moistened, then at medium speed for two minutes. Stir in enough white flour to make soft dough. Knead 10 minutes. Put into greased bowl and grease all sides of dough. Cover and let rise until doubles (about 30 - 60 minutes). Divide in two pieces and form into loaves. Put in greased loaf pans and let rise double (about 40 mins) Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes.



Dawn said...

What are you doing up so early! You're fantastic! Wouldn't your Dad love to bite into that! Maybe I'll have to do it some time. Yes, I have a grinder and tons of wheat! Sort of like a reservoir of water where everyone wants to boating!

Me and My Family said...

mmmmmmmm. Looks so yummy. The thing about asking a mormon for some wheat was cute. I am going to have to invest in a grinder to live up to it though. I don't have one nor do I have any wheat to grind. I love homemade bread too!

Whitney said...

Hmm.. you make this look and sound so simple. Yum!

Ashley said...

Yumm! Looks so good! I have a bread maker that I need to put to better use.

Linda said...

I can smell it from here!

Joy For Your Journey said...

Oh, Jenny! That looks so yummy! I love whole wheat homemade bread. Breads are my favorite. I can't wait to try your recipe--in four more weeks when I am off the very strict part of this dumb diet! But what a temptation!! Yikes, your pictures and description made me so hungry!

The Traveling Gublers said...

Mmmmm, the bread looks so yummy! One of these days, I'll have to try making bread.

tipper said...

Sounds so YUMMY! I love to make homemade bread-I'll have to give this a try.

Jenny86753oh9 said...

That looks SO good. Finally a recipe for bread that doesn't involve a bread maker!