Saturday, January 30

Recipe of the week: Homemade wheat bread

We're tackling probably the most feared and misunderstood recipe today: your plain, everyday, ordinary loaf of wheat bread. I had many failed attempts at making bread before I got this amazing recipe from a childhood friend. It's never failed for me!

This is how the bread starts for me. With my Kitchenaid attachable wheat grinder. This handy dandy tool attaches onto my mixer and does the work of grinding for me. I would suggest that even before you start gathering and storing wheat, you get a wheat grinder. You could still cook your wheat and sprout your wheat, but having a grinder is what will enable you to make breads, etc. if you need it!

I grind 3 cups of wheat which equals 4 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour. I then add to the wheat flour:
1/3 c. sugar
1 T. salt
1 T. powdered egg (a real egg could be used also)

Then onto the liquid ingredients!

Add 5 1/2 cups of hot water

2/3 c. oil

1/3 c. honey (use the same measuring cup you used for the oil, the honey will just slip out!)

Run your mixer for about 30 seconds while adding an additional 1 1/2 cups white flour.

Then add 1/2 c. gluten flour (The most economical way I have found to buy this is in the Morning Moo's #10 can.)

Run the machine until the batter is smooth. Then add 2 T. Saf instant yeast. This is the yeast that is sold in a 1 lb. package. The cheapest I ever see this item is when they have it on sale at Macey's for $2.99. It feels like a little brick when you buy it! This is only because it is vacuumed packed, as soon as you cut it open, the whole package turns soft. So, don't let the packaging fool you!

Next, add white flour 2 cups at a time until the total amount of flour used is 12-14 cups. The sides and bottom of your bowl should be free from batter.

Run the machine an additional 5 minutes to knead the dough. I like to add a little bit of flour here and there to keep the dough from getting too sticky. About an additional cup is used here.

Pour the dough out onto an oiled surface, with oiled hands. Do not use flour!

Separate the dough in halves, then into half again for 4 loaves of bread.

Form into loaves and place into pans. Put the loaves into a 150 degree oven to rise for 30 minutes, or until the loaves double in size.

Beautiful! Turn the oven up to 350 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes.

Since I opened the oven to take a picture of the raised loaves, my finished loaves dipped a little in the center. But, this is a picture of the first attempt I had at making this recipe:
Oh, the pride! I hope you'll get ready to make your first loaf, too, if you haven't already. So, so yummy and so, so good!

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