Honey Oatmeal Whole Wheat Bread II

After eating store-bought white bread for two weeks, I was ready for a fresh batch of delicious homemade bread.  Despite my best intentions, however, I repeatedly forgot to make the fermented starter the night before I planned to make my standby honey oat bread recipe.  I figured that now might be a good time to find a non-fermented recipe to count on for weeks when I can’t seem to get my act together and plan ahead.

This recipe makes a really, really heavy dough.  At first sight, I was skeptical it would rise at all, but my yeast was up for the challenge.  My Kitchenaid mixer couldn’t handle kneading this dough, so I had to knead it by hand (which is kindof fun, anyway).  I made several tweaks to the original recipe out of necessity.  For example, I ran out of honey, so I used half honey, half brown sugar.  Also, I did not have the nonfat dry milk powder the original recipe called for, so I subbed some milk for some of the water.  Lastly, I doubled the recipe and made 3 8″x4″ loaves.

The finished bread smelled SO GOOD that I could barely wait the requisite 10-15 minutes for the loaves to cool before ripping into one.  When I could control my salivation no longer, I cut myself two small slices for taste-testing: one with butter, and one with strawberry jam.  As the dough was still warm, no toasting required.  So delicious!  This recipe makes a hearty bread that I have since used for toast, sandwiches, and bottom bits for poached eggs.  It’s a pretty easy recipe, and you can work out some stress kneading the incredibly dense dough.  Overall, I’d say it’s a keeper!

Honey Oat Wheat Bread II
Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker
Makes 3 8″x4″ loaves

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup water
2 cups old-fashioned oats
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 cups whole wheat flour
3 1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 packets quick-rise yeast
Directions:

Grease a large bowl, set aside.

In a small saucepan, heat milk and water to simmering (watch carefully to avoid boil-over!).  In the bowl of a standing mixer, stir together milk mixture, oats, butter, salt, honey, and sugar.  Set aside and let cool to room temperature.

In another bowl, whisk together the flours and the yeast.  Pour flour mixture all at once into mixer bowl with cooled oatmeal mixture.  Using the dough hook attachment, mix until a smooth dough forms.  If your mixer can’t manage this quantity of dough, mix until the dough comes together and then turn out onto a flour surface and knead until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Once dough is mixed (via mixer or by hand), knead an additional 5 minutes on a floured surface.  Place dough in greased bowl and turn to coat.  Cover and let rise until doubled, about one hour.  Meanwhile lightly grease and flour three 8″x4″ loaf pans.

Gently deflate dough.  Shape dough into loaves and place in prepared loaf pans.  Cover again and let rise until nearly doubled, about one hour.  During this rise, preheat the oven to 350F.  Bake loaves in preheated oven until golden brown, about 40-45 minutes.  Fully baked loaves will make a hollow sound when tapped on the bottom.

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