Friday, May 04, 2007

Everyday bread

Dana (I'm not sure which Dana) asked a while back if I would share my everyday bread recipe.

It is absolutely nothing special, but we like it.

I grind my own wheat using hard white winter wheat berries. Since my mixer can handle enough dough for four large loaves at a time, I use about 12-14 cups of freshly ground flour.

Into my mixer bowl, measure 5 cups of hot tap water.

Then I shake (sorry about the "abouts" but I don't measure this) about 5 TBSP yeast.

Add about 2 TBSP salt, 3 TBSP sugar, and 1/4 cup oil.

Let this sit about 10 minutes until foamy.

Start mixer and gradually begin adding the flour. (I have to increase the speed as I add more flour. And I also will add plain old white store-bought flour after I've added about 12 cups of whole wheat flour. I think it is the gluten in the white flour that helps gives the whole wheat the stickiness it needs.)

After I get what I think is the right amount of flour, I set the timer on the mixer to knead the dough for about 10 minutes.

Then, I plop it onto the counter, hand-knead into a lump, and cut into four equal pieces. Each piece is kneaded smooth and placed in a bread pan that has a little bit of oil smeared around in it. I turn the dough so that most is coated with a little oil (it helps to keep it from sticking, even in a nonstick pan).

Cover the pans with a towel and let rise until a bit above the top of the pans. The time will vary with the weather temperature and humidity, but generally my loaves take about 30 minutes to rise.

Heat oven to 350. When the oven is hot, slide in bread pans carefully so risen dough does not fall.

Bake for 30-35 minutes.

Turn out of pans to cool.

Now is the best step. Cut a hunk of fresh bread, smear with butter and some jam and enjoy!

My bunch loves to walk in from work and school and smell fresh bread.

Addendum: Since I was asked, the mixer I use is the Magic Mill DXL 2000 by Electrolux. I just love this mixer. It was expensive but it far outperforms anything else. Not only is it a bread (and anything heavy and bulky) mixer, it has French whisk bowl and attachments, a great blender, and a shredder attachments.


Dana said...

What pretty loaves.

Although I have baked bread in the past, I am not currently in that mode.

I will save your recipe :)

Dana in GA

Seasonal Soundings said...

Thank you, Dana in GA!

Another Dana asked for the bread recipe in a comment last week, but I don't think she's either Dana that regularly comes here.

celticpole said...

What kind of mixer do you use? I'm doing research comparing Kitchen Aids (which I have now) with Bosch. I tried making whole wheat with store-bought flour and it just doesn't raise. A friend said it has to be fresh-ground wheat.

Seasonal Soundings said...

Celticpole, Since you asked :), I put an addendum in the post with a link!