Simple Whole Wheat Bread
3 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
1/3 cup honey
5 cups bread flour
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup honey
1 tablespoon salt
3 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Original recipe yield 3 loaves
1. In a large bowl, mix warm water, yeast, and 1/3 cup honey. Add 5 cups white bread flour, and stir to combine. Let set for 30 minutes, or until big and bubbly.
2. Mix in 3 tablespoons melted butter, 1/3 cup honey, and salt. Stir in 2 cups whole wheat flour. Flour a flat surface and knead with whole wheat flour until not real sticky - just pulling away from the counter, but still sticky to touch. This may take an additional 2 to 4 cups of whole wheat flour. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to coat the surface of the dough. Cover with a dishtowel. Let rise in a warm place until doubled.
3. Punch down and divide into 3 loaves. Place in greased 9x5 inch loaf pans, and allow to rise until dough has topped the pans by one inch.
4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 25 to 30 minutes; do not over bake. Lightly brush the tops of loaves with 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine when done to prevent crust from getting hard. Cool completely
This is a great recipe! It was pretty easy to put together and I think I have finally mastered the “warm water” concept. Ben and Sue came over for dinner and bread making and we had a great night in the kitchen. This bread is interesting because it calls for both white and wheat flour. Both Ben and I think that it does not require total wheat flour because there is not enough sugar added to the mix. Also, I thought it was interesting that you start with the white bread flour for the first rise and then add more liquid and then add the wheat flour. I am assuming that this provides a place and time for the glutton to develop before the sharp edges of the wheat flour cut into the delicate strands.
Ben, my identified "More Knowledgeable Other", and I had a great time kneading the bread and he did a great job modeling the correct way to knead. It was really helpful for me to watch the way he handled the dough and the amount of flour he used. I have realized that part of my fear about baking homemade bread was the idea of kneading. I’m not sure where this came from but its really not that difficult. Ben is a great teacher and provided helpful feedback throughout the process. Albert Bandura would have been pleased to know that Ben has successfully taught me how to knead bread through modeling. Go team!
Anyway, it took a lot longer for this bread to rise than I had anticipated, but I think that is due to the colder weather. Overall, I think this is easily another bread baking success. This recipe makes three loafs and they all ended up being different sizes. Next time, I will pay close attention to the amount of dough I put into each pan. Overall, another tasty success.