Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Favorite Wheat Bread

Nothing beats homemade wheat bread! It is absolutely divine. Not only is it delicious, it makes my house smell wonderful. 
I was telling a friend from my church how I like to make homemade wheat bread, but that I don't have a grinder to grind the wheat I have. She was so kind to lend me her grinder so that I could make a batch of bread. Thank you Cynthia!
 I have been craving this wheat bread that my wonderful and amazing friend Jody Noakes makes. This is her recipe, and call me bias but it is the best!! 
The hubby and I ate a half a loaf as soon as we could cut into it! I love fresh bread slathered with butter on it. Nothing tops that.
This recipe makes 4 loaves, I froze one since that is all my little freezer would allow to hold, ate one and gave 2 loaves away to some great people. 
To me this recipe is fairly quick, at least for making bread it is fairly quick. In all it took me about 3 to 4 hours from grinding the wheat to pulling those loaves out of the oven. I didn't really time myself so I am not 100% sure. The recipe looks overwhelming, don't worry it isn't hard, it is just very detailed so that even if you are a beginner at making bread you shouldn't have a problem following the recipe. 
Jody uses a Bosch mixer, and I have a large KitchenAid mixer, both handle this recipe well. 
For those looking for a good wheat bread recipe, look no further this one is perfect!

Favorite Wheat Bread

Step 1- Add in order: 4 1/4 cups very warm water
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup honey
6 rounded cups whole wheat flour, freshly ground
4 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. instant yeast

Turn machine on low and let mix for a minute or two to start the developing of the gluten. Scrape down the sides with a rubber scraper.

Step 2- Add 3 to 3 3/4 cups flour (or more if needed) until it "feels" right. (Dough will tend to pull away from the side of the bowl, and machine will sound a little bogged down. It will be sticky, but should feel "dry sticky", not "wet sticky".) 

Step 3- Spray lid with Pam and put on mixing bowl. Turn mixer on high and beat 8-10 minutes. 

Step 4- Scrape dough off lid, then scrape dough neatly down off sides and paddles. Let rise until dough lifts lid off the bowl 1-1 1/2 inches. (About 30 minutes.) (With the KitchenAid since the lid doesn't fully enclose the bowl I just covered mine with towel.)

Step 5- Remove lid and scrape off dough. Turn machine on low to "punch" bread down (about 15-20 seconds). Remove both paddles and scrape dough neatly down into bowl. Let "rest" for 20 minutes.

Step 6- Clean counter well. Get out 4 bread pans and wipe out with a paper towel then spray with Pam. Take bowl off machine.

Step 7- Pour about a 4 inch circle of oil onto the counter. Rub it around with your hand. With oiled hand and/or rubber scraper, pull dough out of bowl onto  the counter.

Step 8- Divide into 4 equal pieces. Form into loaves. Pat a little oil on top of each loaf as you form it and place into pan. Put pans in a warm place to rise until double in size. (About 30 minutes.) Set oven to preheat at 350 degrees.

Step 9- Bake at 350 degrees for 33 minutes. (I always check mine about 10 minutes before they are done just to make sure they are baking up nice and brown.) 

Step 10- Remove from oven and let cool in pans a minute or two. Give each pan a good shake to loosen and remove the bread. Place each loaf on a cooling rack. Do not stack pans until they are thoroughly cooled, as they will collect condensation, causing some pans to rust. If using often, DO NOT WASH THE PANS! Just wipe out with a paper towel. This will keep the pans well-seasoned. When loaves are thoroughly cooled, place in a plastic bag.

Congratulations!! You are a bread maker!!

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