Saturday, September 29, 2007

Honey Cracked Wheat Bread

I tried Beth's Honey wheatBerry Bread recipe from the blog A Year in Bread, but I made several changes and I wanted to share my version. I can't compare it to the Orowheat version that Beth was imitating, but it made a tasty loaf even though I forgot the salt. The crumb is soft and the bread is perfect for sandwiches. I might even get Michael to try this as a sandwich bread to pack for work. He's opposed to homemade breads for packed lunches because he says they dry out to quickly.

The picture is Hannah's interpretation of the bread as a mermaid's head.

2 1/2 cups water, divided
3/4 cup cracked wheat
3/4 cup milk
4 cups whole wheat flour, divided (I used King Arthur)
3 1/2 cups unbleached white flour, divided (Gold Medal)
5 tsps gluten
1 Tbs instant yeast
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup butter
1 Tbs salt

Boil 2 cups of water and pour over cracked wheat to soak for 30 minutes to an hour.

Combine cracked wheat and liquid with milk, yeast, and 1 cup whole wheat flour. Mix, cover, and let rest until bubbly, 20-30 minutes.

Add Butter, honey, remaining 3 cups whole wheat flour, 2 1/2 cups white flour, 5 teaspoons gluten, and 1/2 cup water. Add more water or flour as needed. Dough will be rough. Mix for two minutes.

Add salt (don't forget!), then spread 1 cup white flour on clean surface and knead. Beth says 4-5 minutes, but I kneaded for about 15 minutes. I don't usually knead by hand, though, so I think my kneading was slower than most.

Roll the dough in flour, put in bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled; about an hour.

Shape into two loaves. Place in greased loaf pans (or bake free form on a stone like me) and let rise until doubled; about an hour again.

Bake in a preheated oven at 375 for 45 minutes.

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