Back to Bread

One thing that really fell off while I was entrenched in my life and death struggle with morning sickness was my bread baking. Normally, I don’t buy any bread or bread products. I get wheat from a co-op, grind it myself (with my totally awesome grain-grinder), and bake whatever we need. But, for months, all I could do was lay on the couch and wish for the Second Coming, so we bought a lot of (garbage) bread from the store.

But, I am back, and here is the proof!

For anyone who is interested, I thought I could post the recipe. It is a conglomeration of several recipes, and it took me years to work out. Working with fresh ground wheat can be a bit tricky and I made many a brick before I landed on a formula that worked for me. So, here it is, in my  not very exact way of cooking.

Whole Wheat Bread

mix together in a large bowl –

  • 5 cups fresh ground wheat (I use hard white)
  • 1 large spoonful of yeast
  • 4 cups hot water

Let sit for about an hour.

When mixture is bubbly add:

  • 4 cups fresh ground flour
  • large spoonful of  wheat gluten
  • large spoonful of sucanat (or sugar, or honey)
  • about 1/3 cup oil (I use olive)
  • 1 heaping tsp salt

Knead well (I use a Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. LOVE it).

Put into large bowl and let rise till double, about an hour.

Punch down and put into two oiled bread pans (I use these cast iron ones- they give such a nice crust).

Preheat oven to 400. When dough is risen to about 1″ higher than sides of pan, put in oven and turn down to 375.

Let bake 45 min to one hour, or until top is golden brown and loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

Pull out of oven and smother top in butter. Let cool. Slice and enjoy.

 

Oh, and, of course –

Happy Valentines Day!

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8 thoughts on “Back to Bread

  1. Oh! I dream of baking our own bread….I thought about a breadmaker just because I didn’t think I could do it without one…hmmm….

    Do you think your recipe would work with not hand ground wheat… and…what do you mean by wheat…and flour… are those the same? or different (I must sound really dumb here)…

    perhaps I should google a beginners bread making recipe …..

    • No question is a dumb question! 🙂
      If you use store bought flour (which is wheat), you won’t need gluten, or the second rising, and you may need more flour for that much water. In short, I would look for a recipe that is written for the flour that you have. White flour or whole wheat flour or bread flour or fresh ground flour – all behave differently. This recipe is tweaked to work just right with the flour I get straight out of my grain grinder.
      There are some great bread recipes online. Let me know how it goes! 🙂

  2. Debbie – you don’t sound dumb to me. I have the same questions!

    So – a “big spoonful”? Like, the spoons you eat cereal with, or the bigger ones? Hahaha! (But I do want to know.)

    I have been toying with idea of bread making. Thanks for the recipe.

    • I know – “big spoonful” – sorry about that! I use a serving spoon. It is probably close to 1/3 cup (?). I don’t think that those ingredients that I measure that way are essential, so it doesn’t have to be exact.

  3. Gorgeous bread, Shelly! We much prefer the homemade stuff too 🙂 I’ve been using the Tassajara recipe for yeasted bread. I do about 1/3 wheat and 2/3 white… My favorite way to sweeten right now is with molasses but B gifted me with some “alternative” sweeteners this morning. (I’m trying to move away from so much refined white sugar in my baking.) I’m thinking of trying the barley malt next. Might be nice with the wheat?
    Oy… That was longer than I meant it to be!
    PS LOVE our KA too!♥

    • I don’t know why I always forget about molasses! I should use that, too. I don’t even buy white sugar (unless I am making kombucha) anymore. We love the sucanat, but use it sparingly. Honey is my first choice for sweet. Date sugar is pretty awesome, but way too expensive. Have not tried barley malt. I’d be curious if it was good.

  4. I’m pleased to hear you are back to making bread. Isn’t it so much better than store bought. I would love to visit soon. Josephine has kept up with her knitting when she is home with us. She knitted a scarf for the guinea pig that died. She buried it with the scarf on thinking it would keep it warm. Kids, love them.

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