Whole Meal Bread
I found The Hay Day Country Markey Cookbook at a college book sale marked down to $6. I liked what I saw in the first flip-through and figured I could not go wrong for the price. This is also my first cookbook purchase since I caught the cooking bug about 3-4 months ago and started this blog. For new recipes I usually stalk the internet, hitting up epicurious.com and fellow food bloggers. I only recently stumbled across the vast community of food bloggers (floggers? –no, too s&m) via Kiplog – king of food blogrolls. There are a handful of food bloggers that I check in with daily – I love to see what they are up to and I marvel at their energy and dedication. Through these food blogs I followed the Plinko-path of internet clicks eventually winding up at Is My Blog Burning? where I found out about “Waiter there is something in my….”
This food blog event is in its fourth(?) manifestation and this month’s theme is BREAD. Fun. I’ve only made bread (with yeast) once before. The first bread I ever made was only so-so but I loved the odors and ritual that comes with making yeasted bread. I sat down with my new cookbook looking for a bread made with whole-wheat flour and decided on the “Whole-Meal Bread” which calls for two types of molasses and some major kneading. It sounded dense and yummy and it was! I thought the bread turned out amazing. But maybe I was just hungry after waiting so long to take my first bite. For third party opinions I took the second loaf to work. The second loaf did not bake as long as the first because I was running late to work so it came out a little doughy – but my work mates didn’t seem to mind. Read their reviews below. Maybe they were just being nice but that loaf did not last long on the community eats table. It took me over 4 hours from beginning to end to make this bread – sheesh. I should have started earlier and rented a movie. I did not end up using two types of molasses for my bread. I didn’t want to spend the extra money for the Blackstrap molasses – I just used the standard organic unsulfured variety and the bread turned out great. Someday I would like to try it with the Blackstrap as it is said to add another layer of flavor and give the bread a deep brown color.
From Hay Day Country Market Cookbook by Kim Rizk
1 cup milk
1 cup cold water
¼ cup safflower oil or unsalted butter
¼ cup blackstrap molasses *(see note below)
¼ cup unsulfured molasses
1 tablespoon coarse (kosher) salt
1 tablespoon active dry yeast (that equals one package plus ¾ teaspoon)
¼ cup hot water
2 cups whole-wheat flour
3 ½ to 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
* Note on molasses: The author says that you can sub regular molasses for the blackstrap molasses but not the other way around. If you use only black strap molasses you will inhibit the action of the yeast.
Step one: Combine milk, cold water, oil and the molasses and salt in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until melted and combined and remove from heat
Step two: In large mixing bowl stir the yeast into the hot water and let stand for about 5 minutes or until the yeast is nice and bubbly on top. Then add the contents of the saucepan to the bowl.
Step three: Gradually stir in all of the whole wheat flour and 3 ½ cups of the all-purpose flour. Add more all purpose flour if necessary.
Step four: Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until it is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes (My note: I found that I used quite a bit of flour to keep the bread from sticking, I was throwing it down by the handfuls) Place the dough in an oiled bowl and turn the dough to coat all surfaces. Cover with a towel and set aside in a warm spot until the dough has doubled in size. This should take 2 to 2 ½ hours. (Watch movie #1)
Step five: Lightly oil two bread pans (I only have one which was a pain in the ass time-wise)
Step six: Turn the dough out of the bowl, divide it in half, and shape the halves into loafs. Place into the bread pans and cover again with a towel until it doubles in size about 2 to 2 ½ hours. (Watch movie #2)
Step seven: Preheat the oven to 350F
Step eight: Bake the loaves for about 45 minutes until they are nicely browned. (The loaf that I had time to cook all the way seemed to take only 30 minutes) You can tell the bread is done by turning it out of the pan and tapping on the bottom of the loaf. If it sounds hollow it is done. Turn the loafs out of the pan when they are done and let them cool on a rack.
Follow these steps and you’ve got bread!
“Supper nummy. I even liked that it was just a little under-baked.
Because of the sweetness I can imagine it being the base for some top-notch French toast, but it would probably also make a damn fine turkey sandwich with cream cheese, lettuce, cranberry sauce and onions….yum.”
“It was delicious. Quite rich and almost sweet, it’s a great breakfast bread alone or with butter. The bread was a bit underdone, but as I love bread with a bit of doughiness left, it was great. “