Thursday, December 6, 2012

Homemade Wheat Bread

By popular demand - here's a delicious wheat bread version of an everyday type bread that is delicious and easy. Wheat bread takes more ingredients and a little more time than white bread, but I find that the dough is also a bit easier to work with because it's almost never sticky (although you will have tired arms after kneading).

First off, the end result will be a little sweeter if you have a little helper. Mine comes complete with a vintage pink organdy apron and Buster Bronco hat (hat is optional).

Ingredients: Bread Flour, Whole Wheat Flour, Yeast, Salt, Water, Milk, Honey, Butter, Egg
First - In your mixing bowl combine 2 cups bread flour, 1 cup whole wheat flour, 2 Tbsps active dry yeast, and 1 Tbsp salt.

Second - In a small saucepan, heat 1 cup water, 1 cup milk, 1/2 cup honey and 3 Tbsps butter to 120-130 degrees. 
Add water mixture to dry mixture and beat just until moistened (during this process is when the picture was taken - it's quite crumbly).  Then add 1 egg and beat until smooth.  Finally, add 2 more cups bread flour and 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour to mixture so that it forms a stiff dough.

With a large capacity mixer, your KitchenAid could do the kneading with a dough hook, but my 5.5qt is too small, so I kneaded it by hand for 8 minutes. The dough was not sticky at all, so I didn't even flour my counter. 

Grease a bowl, place kneaded dough into bowl and spray top of dough ball with more cooking spray and cover with a light towel.  To facilitate the rising of the dough, I heat my oven to its lowest temp and then crack it open and set the bowl on top of the oven. 

After it's doubled (about one hour), punch dough down and let rest for ten minutes.  Then split into three parts.

I chose to make two standard loaves, and then I split my third section into four and put them in a mini-loaf pan.  They make great Christmas gifts, or are the perfect size for a school or extracurricular activity snack for three or four kids.  Simply shape the dough into roughly log shapes (no need to be overly precise - that's the fun of home baking!) and put into your greased loaf pans, spray the tops of the dough with cooking spray and cover with towels.  Allow them to raise on top of your warm oven for 45 minutes, then close the oven and preheat it to 350 degrees.  Pop them into the oven and bake for approximately 30 to 35 minutes.  If the tops brown too quickly, you can lay aluminum foil over them while they are baking.  After they are done, immediately turn them out and let them cool.

And you have traditional homemade wheat bread that is fluffy, light, and sure to impress.


Serena said...

Learning to make homemade bread may need to be one of my New Year's goals for 2013. Guess that I he'd better put a Kitchen Aid mixer on my Christmas wish list. :)

Serena said...

Oops. (Gotta love auto correct!)

The Merry Band of Fife said...

Serena - you most definitely need a KitchenAid for Christmas! We got ours as a wedding gift and it's been in heavy service since then. I dream of getting the bigger one (just a smidge smaller than a commercial one) some day. Well, well worth the money, that's for sure.

The Fifes said...

that bread looks amazing, your kids are so lucky to get some fresh every day. Love the size of the smaller loaves too.

Amanda said...

Thanks so much for posting this! I can't wait to give it a try once things settle down a little around here (does that ever happen?) and I can get the last of the ingredients. I don't have a Kitchen Aide mixer, but my mother-in-law does, so I'm sure she'll let me borrow it. Giving it back after falling in love with it will be a different story ☺.

The Merry Band of Fife said...

You absolutely will not one to return the mixer LOL. In fact, we had a mixer emergency yesterday - mine started leaking oil. Luckily James found a YouTube video about how to fix it, so he was able to do it (messy and a pain-in-the-bum), thankfully. The mixer I'm saving for is over $500, so we've still got at least another year of "enveloping" to afford that one LOL. Hopefully the recipe works well for you!