As promised part two to my personal bread challenge (if you are looking for part 1 it can be found here.)
Now down to the nitty gritty…or they yummy part!
First of all here is my make twice a week whole wheat bread recipe that is almost identical to the one that my folks made for so many years…my go to recipe…everyday bread for sandwiches, toast, and just because I feel like bread!
Mix…2/3 Cup Oil (I use organic canola), 2/3 to 3/4 Cup Sweetener (honey, molasses or a combo), 5 1/2 Cup very warm water.
Add…3 Tablespoons yeast and let proof (stand until the yeast is all puffy!)
Mix…4 heaping Tablespoons Vital Wheat Gluten, 2 Tablespoons Salt, your ‘extra’ flours up to 4 cups (I usually use 1 Cup rye, 1 Cup oat, and 2 Cups White Whole Wheat flours)…you do not have to add these flours but it is fun!
Mix into liquid/yeast mixture.
Then add your Whole Wheat Flour
In total you use about 14 Cups of flour (this includes the ‘extra’ flours)…this is approximate as it is slightly different each time.
All of this I do in my Bosch Bread Mixer…you can do it by hand.
Knead 10 minutes. Turn into very large oil coated bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled. Punch down, form into loaves and let rise till it is about an inch above the rim of the bread pans.
Bake at 350 until a deep golden brown (or 195 on a bread thermometer)(or until it sounds hollow when tapped)
This makes 6 loaves or 1 large pan of sticky buns and four medium loaves.
My sticky buns are made from this recipe. I pre-cookk raisins with brown sugar and cinnamon and then roll out my dough into a rectangle and add the raisins on top. Roll into a long log. Slice into rounds and put in a pan that has a little oil, brown sugar, cinnamon and chopped nuts at the bottom. Flip the whole thing over when done so the sticky bottom is on the top and the plain top is on the bottom. I am trying hard to resist the urge to be humorous here about sticky bottoms and sticky buns…but I will refrain!
Next is one of my all time favorite recipes it is directly from the back of my bag of King Arthur Flour’s organic cracked wheat. I don’t make it for us anymore since going vegan but I still make it for my friends and they always appreciate it….it is heavenly!
Pour 1 1/4 Cups boiling water over 1/2 Cup Cracked Wheat in a large bowl, cover and let rest for 10 minutes stirring occasionally.
Stir in 2 Tablespoons butter, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 Cup Honey or Molasses let cool to lukewarm. Add 2 teaspoons yeast and let proof for about 10 minutes (skip this step if using instant yeast)
Stir in 1/4 Cup organic dry milk, 1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour, and 2 Cups White Whole Wheat or All Purpose Flour ( I used White Whole Wheat)
Knead by hand, mixer or bread machine to make a soft slightly sticky dough (8 minutes by hand is what I did). Let rise covered till doubled (1 1/2 hours or so). Shape into loaves and put into 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch loaf pan. Cover and let rise till 1 to 2 inches above rim. Cut a vertical slash down the middle of the loaf place in preheated 350 F oven. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until brown and hollow sounding when tapped or 195 degrees F on instant-read thermometer.
Makes 1 loaf.
Finally there is a whole book that Alan asked me about that I use often. It is called Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. It truly is a time saver and an incredibly easy way to make bread. My go to recipe is the olive oil dough that I use with white whole wheat flour for pizza and focaccia bread. There are recipes galore in there although most are not whole grain. It takes a little playing with the recipes to adapt them for whole grain flours but it is well worth it.
The concept of this book is to mix without kneading, let rise and then put the dough in the frig for use every day. Just grab some, shape, sometimes let it rise or sometimes not (depending on what you are using it for) and voila…bread in just minutes of prep time…awesome! It keeps from 5 days to almost 2 weeks depending on the recipe…if you love sourdough leave it in he fridge a week and use, yummy!
Now for the technical stuff. I use a very old Bosch Mixer, Grain Master Whisper Mill for grinding grain, I order most of my grains from Azure food co-op with some speciality flours from King Arthur. King Arthur also has a great book called Whole Grain Baking…wonderful recipes!
Lastly as far as baking with kids here are a few hints to make it easier and more fun. I bake with two little ones ages 6 and 2, they both have their own stools to bring to the counter (although the baby ends up on the counter most often) They each get an itty bitty bread pan or two to make their own loaves…trust me this can take a loooong time. We use measurements and reading recipes for reading and math for homeschool. We often give bread as gifts which the kids love…they make a card and tie the loaf up with ribbon. Sweet Girl likes to experiment with different spices in her bread…some have been hits (pumpkin pie spice) some not so much (white pepper). Remember this is a learning experience for them…this is how we bring up the next generation of bakers and lovers of real food.
Most of all have fun…take the time…it is seriously worth the effort!
Kim raises organic fruits, veggies, critter, kids, and a camel over at the inadvertent farmer
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