We discovered what we consider to be the best all-purpose bread recipe. We try other bread recipes, but we always return to this one.
The original recipe included walnuts and sunflower seeds, but after protests from certain parties, we omitted them. The recipe also called for over 1/4 cup of sweetener per loaf. This produces a very sweet loaf, so I reduced this amount to 2 tablespoons. I also added 2 tablespoons flax meal, which gives a more rustic look. For an extra special touch, I like to brush the top with milk and sprinkle with oatmeal.
:: 100% Whole Wheat Bread ::
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
Note: This recipe makes a very large loaf. I usually double the recipe and make three 9×5 inch loaves.
- 1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) lukewarm water
- 3 tablespoons melted butter, coconut oil or olive oil
- 2 tablespoons honey, molasses or maple syrup
- 3 1/2 cups (18 3/8 oz) Hard Red (traditional) or Hard White (17.5 oz) Whole Wheat Flour
- 1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten
- 2 tablespoons flax meal, optional
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
To prepare the dough:
(Hand Method) Combine all of the ingredients, and mix them till you have a shaggy dough. The dough will seem wet, but remember: wetter is better. Let the dough rest, covered, for 20 minutes, then knead till smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Allow the dough to rise, covered, for 1 to 2 hours, or until it’s puffy and nearly doubled in bulk.
(Mixer Method) In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine all ingredients and mix them till you have a shaggy dough. The dough will seem wet, but remember: wetter is better. Let the dough rest for 20 minutes, then knead by machine until fairly smooth, about 10 minutes. Allow dough to rise, covered, for 1 to 2 hours, or until it’s puffy and nearly doubled in bulk.
(Bread Machine Method) Place all ingredients in bread machine pan and set to dough cycle.
To Shape the Loaves
After the dough has risen, gently deflate the dough, shape it into a log, and place it in a lightly greased large (9×5 inch) bread pan or two small bread pans. Cover the pan with a towel or lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow it to rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes-1 hour, till it’s crowned about 2 inches over the rim of the pan. Preheat your oven to 350°F about halfway through the rising time.
To Bake the Loaves
If desired, brush top of loaf with milk or egg white and sprinkle with oatmeal, poppy seeds, nuts, etc. Bake the bread in a preheated 350°F oven for 45 minutes or until it turns a deep brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
Yield: 1 large or 2 small loaves.
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