Wednesday, May 28, 2014

100% Whole Wheat Bread


How are you surviving the summer? My crew has been out of school for three weeks already and I think I'm about ready to send them back. Kidding. Slightly. haha Well, having them around all the time means more meals at home and trying to give them healthy stuff. I have been loving making all my own breads over the last several months. I started last year making all my own rolls... then that progressed to all my own french bread and now I have worked up to making all my own wheat bread. It is amazing and finding the perfect recipe can be tricky. My kids love it and it is so easy on both my time and budget that I can't help myself.
 
My good friend shared this tried and true recipe with me last fall. I was so nervous to do it because it meant that I'd have to be brave and grind my own wheat. When I started making my oh so delcious 14 grain bread I realized just how easy and nutritious grinding my own wheat can be. Once you break down a whole grain - like in the case of making flour - it starts to lose nutrients. The quicker you can use the flour from the time it was milled then all the better for you and those little tummies in your family. 

I am in love with my Wondermill grain mill. I ordered it off of Amazon last year and it has been great - it's fast, cleans up easy and has never disappointed. Which grain mill do you love?

Let's jump into our recipe...

100% WHOLE WHEAT BREAD


Ingredient:                                 For four loaves:                             For six loaves:
Hot water                                     3 ½ cups                                       5 1/4 cups
Oil                                                 ½ cup                                           ¾ cup
Honey                                            ½ cup                                          ¾ cup
Ascorbic acid powder                 1/3 teaspoon                                    ½ teaspoon
Salt                                           <1 tablespoon                              <1 ½ tablespoon
Yeast                                        2 tablespoons                                 3 tablespoons
Dough enhancer(optional)           1 tablespoon                                1 ½ tablespoon
Wheat berries put through grinder      6-7 cups                                   9-10 ½ cups


First things first. Get out your grain mill {if you don't have one skip this step and then you'll just add whole wheat flour later on} and your hard white wheat. My favorite way to purchase wheat is by the bucket - Thrive Life is obviously my go-to source. I have been very happy with the quality. So why in a 6 gallon bucket? Because you go through a lot of wheat when you make your own bread. If you buy it in the traditional #10s you will go through nearly a whole can when you make the 6 loaf version of this recipe. 

Oh, and let's back up. I'm sharing both the 4 loaf and 6 loaf versions of this bread recipe. I have a 6 quart KitchenAid mixer. The 4 loaf recipe is a breeze to do and what I do usually. I have done the 6 loaf version and it is a bit much... by the time you are kneading it is a bit overwhelming but not impossible to manage. I just recommend doing it at a slower speed if you do this. If you have a Bosch mixer either recipe works fine with no problems. 

Okay, so have your grain mill out and all hooked up nice to your flour container {mine came with one and is a dream... note if making the 6 loaf recipe that it is the max amount of flour you'd want to do at one time. Turn on your grain mill and then add in your wheat berries/kernals. Minutes later you've got warm and fragrant whole wheat flour. You cannot beat the taste of fresh ground flour!

Next up add the first seven ingredients of the recipe: water, oil {I use EVOO}, honey, yeast, salt, dough enhancer {I use honeyville's dough conditioner} and ascorbic acid {I've never used this... but have heard it is great} to the mixer bowl and mix with the dough hook attachment.. Add in half of your flour until incorporated. Then mix in remaining flour until dough forms a ball, pulls away from the sides of the bowl and follows the dough hook around the bowl. You don't want to add too much flour - just enough so that the dough holds together and is not sticky. I always use all of the flour that I've ground but no more. Machine knead dough for five minutes. Remove from bowl and hand knead for about four turns just to smooth it out. Divide into appropriate number of loaves; place in greased loaf pans. Allow to rise for about 40-60 minutes, until doubled in size. Place in preheated 350 degree oven for 25-30 minutes, until loaf is lightly browned and bottom sounds like it’s empty when tapped. Remove from pans to cooling rack and allow to cool. 

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