Monday, June 28, 2010

Whole Wheat bread

This recipe is written with the understanding that you are using a kitchen aid, and that you've made bread before.

1/2 c warm water (temperate is about what you would hand wash dishes in)
2 Tbs yeast
1 Tbs sugar

2 cups warm water (same temp as above)
2 Tbs sugar
1 heaping Tbs salt (I pour it until it just starts to flow over the edge of the measuring spoon... so I wait to measure it until it is to be added)
1/3 c shortening
850 g whole wheat flour (I use red wheat)

Stir together 1/2 c water, yeast, and 1 Tbs sugar in small bowl (about 4 cup volume). Let the yeast activate. I usually give it about 10 mins (or less, depending on how warm your kitchen is; basically let it go until it fills the bowl).

In the kitchen aid bowl, add the remaining water, sugar, salt, shortening AND THEN about half of the flour (if you add the flour before shortening, then it can be difficult to work with). Mix on lowest setting with dough hook (for at least 5 mins).

Once the yeast has activated, add it to the kitchen aid bowl. I go ahead and add the remaining flour AFTER the yeast mixture (don't worry, it will all mix in. I usually babysit the kitchen aid though, just to make sure it doesn't kick some of the flour out). Turn on kitchen aid to low setting again. Mix it about 5-10 minutes. If the dough is still too sticky, then you can add some additional flour, as long as you have given it enough time to work all the original flour in.

Once the dough feels right (vague... I know... that's why this recipe isn't for novices :) pull it out of the bowl and lightly grease the bowl with shortening. Using the bowl, lightly grease the outside of your dough (this will help it to maintain it's moisture while rising); once dough is greased turn over dough and leave in the bowl. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rise until doubled (usually until just above rim of the 4 qt k-aid bowl... about 30 mins). Go ahead and preheat the oven to 350*.

Once risen, divide dough into halves, and shape loaves. (Do Not over work the dough here, or it may end up brittle!). Place loaves into lightly greased 9 in bread pans. Cover with plastic wrap, and let loaves rise until double in size, about 30 mins again.
Once risen, put into 350* preheated oven for 35 mins.

When done, remove loaves from pans, and place on cooling rack for at least 10 mins before cutting into. If you cut into these loaves while they are still warm, it's hard to do anything but cut thick slices. Enjoy!

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