As a part of my health kick, I’ve been experimenting with breads. I did get the plain flour bread right (though a tad too soft), but I didn’t want that as my staple. I wanted whole wheat bread, so I would stop buying stuff from the supermarket. And making it yourself kinda cuts out the processed part of it!
Another new addition to my kitchen, other than the oven mentioned in the previous blog-post, was a Phillips Electric Whisk. This was of particular help as I didn’t need to knead the bread. And more of use when I realized that the oven was eating up a LOT of my counter-top space. So i now just put everything together in a mixing bowl and use the kneader hooks instead of the whisk. It sure gets done faster!! 😀
So researched a few blogs, took a course, and finally figured that you really have to work things out for yourself, and see what works. So this particular experiment worked the best for me. The inspiration for it came from here though! 😉
- Whole wheat – 3.5 cups
- luke-warm water – 1.25 cups and a bit more to spare
- Oil – 2 tbsp + 2 tbsp(spare)
- Sugar – 2 tbsp
- Fresh yeast – 2.5 tsp or proofed active-dry yeast – 1.25 tsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Milk – 2 tbsp
- In a big bowl mix flour, salt, sugar, milk. Add the oil, yeast and 1 cup of water. Mix and add more water if needed. The dough should be sticky.
- Knead for 8-10 mins, let it sit for a few mins and then get back to kneading for another 10 mins.
- Oil the dough lightly on all sides and let it sit in the bowl for 1-2 hours. Cover it with a moist towel to retain the heat.
- Once it has doubled, fold the dough onto itself to release the air from within. Shape into a log, tucking the edges.
- Place in a greased bread tin (or whichever you wish to use for the final baking). Oil over the top and let it sit for another 1-2 hours.
- Pre-heat the oven at 175 deg C.
- Bake for 30 mins, then loosely cover with foil to prevent the top from burning, and bake for another 30 mins. Check on the bread after 45 mins though.
- Once taken out of the oven, brush the top lightly with butter, and let it sit for 5 mins in the tin. Flip over and let the bread fall out of the tin. Cool on a wire rack.
- Proofing of active-dry yeast: Heat 1.5 tbsp water to luke-warm temp. The water should not increase in temp, else the yeast will die. Add in the yeast and let it sit until the yeast bubbles to the surface of the water.
- You may replace oil with olive oil or unsalted butter. The flavour of your bread will vary accordingly
- Whole wheat does not rise as much as plain flour breads.
- Avoid adding more water. If needed, add a bit of the additional 2 tbsp oil to keep the dough moist.
- Ensure you use a wire rack to cool off the bread. Keeping it on a solid base will cause the base to get wet and soften. This in turn will affect the taste and longevity of the bread.
Enjoy your home-made bread and stay healthy! 🙂