December 29, 2009

Wheat Bread Recipe

I decided that I needed to add some recipes to my blog and I had one request for my wheat bread recipe. 

Honey Wheat Bread

Mix the following ingredients in a large bowl: 

3 cups whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons milled flax seed (can omit)
8 teaspoons vital wheat gluten (can omit)
1 1/2 tablespoons yeast
3 cups warm water
1 teaspoon honey (or brown sugar)
1 teaspoon salt

Then add:

1/4 cup honey and 1/4 cup sorghum (or molasses) OR 1/2 cup sorghum (or molasses) OR 1/2 cup honey.  Finally add 1/4 cup melted butter. 

Beat this well in a mixer or by hand.  I use my Kitchenaid mixer to accomplish this.  Then slowly add about 5 cups of white flour, a cup at a time.  Then the fun begins.  Knead it until smooth and elastic.  I knead the dough for about 5 to 7 minutes adding a little bit of flour as needed.  I always set my kitchen timer when I am doing this.  Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a cloth.  Put in a warm place and let it rise until doubled.  After it has doubled, punch the dough down and form it into two loaves.  Place these loaves into two greased loaf pans and let the loaves rise until doubled.  When this is done, bake your loaves at 375 degrees for anywhere between 30 and 40 minutes til golden.  Each oven is different so you will have to check on the bread.  Remove the baked loaves from the oven and loosen the loaves, remove from the pans and let cool on a wire rack.  I always take a stick of butter that I keep in the fridge and run one end of it over the hot top crusts of the loaf.  This creates a soft crust.  I keep this stick of butter in the fridge for this purpose.

Additional Comments:  I am not concerned about the use of butter in this recipe.  You can substitute canola oil if you would like.  I like adding flax seed to this recipe as it adds even more fiber.  I add the vital wheat gluten as it helps the bread to rise and creates a moist texture.  I have found that for the flax seed, the vital wheat gluten and the whole wheat I prefer the Hodgson Mill brand to all others.  I can find these products in my grocery store.  I know a lot of women grind their own wheat for bread.  At this point I cannot afford a wheat mill and have no plans to purchase one.

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