Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Whole Wheat Bread (Vegan)

I have an aunt-in-law that makes the best homemade bread you have ever had in your life. Incredible to the point that she even grinds her own wheat. While I totally prefer to have what we lovingly refer to as "Carla bread", it is not always available. So, I have somewhat managed to create a little bread magic of my own.
Bread baking doesn't have to be scary. In fact it's quite simple when you get your method down. 
What you'll need:
2 cups of 100% stone ground whole white wheat
1/4 cup of 10 grain or 7 grain cereal, flax seeds could also be used (the purpose of this step is add texture, however, it can be omitted, in that situation you would just use additional 1/4 cup of the white wheat)
1 cup of warm water
2 tbsp of sorghum, maple syrup, honey, agave, or any non artificial sweetener
2 tbsp of olive or coconut oil
1/4 cup of vital wheat gluten
1 tbsp of active dry yeast or one packet
1 healthy pinch of salt

To begin dissolve your sweetener into your warm water. Then stir in the yeast. Allow the yeast to bloom for about 5 minutes. It should be all bubbly like this...

In seperate bowl combine the white wheat flour, cereal/flax, vital wheat gluten, and salt. 

Pour the yeast water into the stand mixer bowl with the dough hook attachment. Then add the oil.

Turn the mixer on to the stir setting. Dump in the whole wheat mixture.

At first your bread will look like this.

But eventually it will come together like this.

Cover your bowl with a damp tea towel and place in a warm draft free place. I usually set my oven to 350 degrees for one minute then turn it off, and place my bowl in there. Allow the dough to rise for 45-60 minutes. It should double in size, like so...

Punch the dough down, and form it into a loaf shape. At this time I usually start preheating my oven to 350 degrees. Also, brush some coconut oil on your loaf pan. I use glass (little "Carla bread" secret). Place your bread in the oiled loaf pan.

Cover with your damp tea towel once more. Place in a warm draft free place. Not your oven this time, remember it should be preheating. Allow the bread to rise for about another 30 minutes. It should look like this...

To be honest, I got a crazy good rise out of this loaf. It doesn't always rise this much, and that's okay! I always bake mine regardless of the rise. Anything over the top of the loaf pan works for me. After your bread has risen place it in your 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until the outside is nicely golden.

Allow bread to cool completly before storing in an air tight bag. If you plan to eat this bread within the week it will be fine. If not I suggest freezing half the loaf, because due to its lack of preservatives it will mold quickly. 


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