Part of my re-vamping of this blog involved redoing the tags, during which I realized that the bread recipe I posted some time ago is no longer the recipe I use. It was good, but when we moved to a drier, higher-altitude environment the recipe quit working for me and no amount of tweaking on my part could seem to get it back to the loaf I’d become accustomed to. Thusly, I went searching for a new one. A friend of mine had good results with the following recipe and recommended it to me. I’ve been using it now for a couple years and the results have been very consistent. I love that it uses olive oil! I’m a fan of it and the flavor, while subtle, is very present in the bread.
Honey Whole Wheat Bread
(for pictures see this recent entry involving bread making)
Whisk together in a large bowl:
- 2 1/2 cups warm water
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1 Tablespoon dry active yeast
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
Let sit for 20 minutes or until frothy. Whisk in:
- 1 3/4 Tablespoons salt
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
Using a wooden spoon stir in:
- 2-3 cups whole wheat flour
When dough can be worked by hand, transfer to a lightly floured surface and start kneading, adding flour as needed. Knead until dough becomes smooth and elastic. It should be somewhat tacky but stick to itself and not to your fingers. Place dough into an oiled bowl and turn to coat all sides. Cover with a towel and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Punch down dough and divide in half. Working with one half at a time, form a ball and place on lightly floured surface. Roll out to a form a rectangle. Starting with a short end roll dough to form a loaf. Tuck ends underneath and place seam-side down into an oiled loaf pan. Repeat with second half of dough. Cover the loaves with a towel and allow to rise about 30 minutes.
Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Place loaves in oven and bake 25-35 minutes, until loaves are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. Remove loaves immediately from loaf pans and allow to cool completely on cooling racks.
This bread is awesome fresh out of the oven and once I made 4 loaves while extended family was with us and 2 loaves were GONE within 2 hours of them coming out. I should mention there were something like 8 of us in the house at the time, but still. 😛
I’ve had to adjust the time of the second rise and cooking time a little since the new oven, but I suspect that is do to the quirks of the new oven and so have left the adjustments out of the above recipe. Also, I realized a few weeks ago that at some point in recent years I stopped judging the done-ness of bread by feel in favor of how much steam is generated on my glasses when I open the door to check it. Is that weird? I think so. What I find more disturbing is the realization that I don’t know how long I’ve been doing this!