Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Homemade Whole Wheat Bread

Our good friend came back to town for a few days right before we bought our house and while he was here, he showed me how to make a truly 100% whole wheat bread. However, I didn't remember it all so while he was here over the weekend he filled me in so I can now share the nitty-gritty with you! 

We used this flour:
White whole wheat flour is a lot easier to use than regular whole wheat flour.  I am not sure what exactly the differences are, but white whole wheat flour seems to taste more like the enriched stuff.  (However- if you want- you could use whole wheat pastry flour- that stuff is hardly discernible from regular enriched flour.)

The problem with the bread is that we didn't take exact measurements of the flour.  Apparently, even within any certain brand of flour each bag will have different moisture content, so instead of measuring, we must just work the until it fells right.  I am still not sure exactly when the dough "feels right" but I will try my best to express the process to you.

100% Whole Wheat Bread
From Ian

  • about 6 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 3 cup water

1. Add all ingredients together.
2. Stir up.
3. Add more flour until the wooden spoon stand up by itself (remember not to use any metal utensils with yeast- the metal will kill the yeast). Or until the dough forms a ball that you can pick up out of the bowl.
4. Wait.  8-12 hours.  Let the yeast do its work.  The next morning ours had escaped out of the bowl!
5. Take the risen dough and work it down back into a ball.  You could roll it out and shape it into a longer loaf if you like.
6. Let the bread rise again while you wait for the oven to preheat to 450 degrees (with the pan in the oven too).  Then bake until the crust is brown and the insides are done (about an hour).
I baked the bread in my green enamel-coated cast-iron dutch oven- however, my lid is only oven safe to 375 degrees so I had to bake without the lid.  If you have a lid that can bake at 450- use it!  A lid would help retain moisture and allow the bread to rise more before the outer crust gets done.


Della said...

Yummy! Bread was one of the first things I learned how to bake as a kid- and it's still one of my favorites! (But I am a sucker for Wonder Bread. Holy cow, I love that stuff.)

♥Queen B said...

That looks yummy!

My name is PJ. said...

You sound just like Chef Stu when you say it has to feel right. He says you only learn the right feel through experience.

There is nothing like homemade bread. Nothing.