Introduction: Whole Grain Wheat Bread
This whole wheat bread is easy to make and tastes absolutely wonderful! The flax seeds are essential as an egg and oil substitute. Using flax instead of eggs means that this bread lasts on the counter for up to a week. This bread can be frozen for months and tastes the same when thawed. Fun variants we have tried before include Cinnamon Raisin Bread and Whole Wheat Rolls.
Depending on the moisture content of your berries/flour, you may need 7 cups of water instead of 6 1/2 cups water. Try the recipe and adjust as necessary.
Make sure your mixer is strong enough to handle bread dough. Your kitchen aid won't work.
heavy duty mixer with bread hook (kitchen aid won't work)
measuring utensils in teaspoon and cup sizes
wheat grinder (if using berries)
coffee grinder (for flax)
metal spatula to cut dough into loaves
4 – 5 bread pans (depending on size)
non-stick cooking spray
9 1/3 cups Wheat Berries (or 14 cups flour) plus extra for kneading
6 1/2 cups Water
1 cup Flax Seed
½ cup Honey
4 tsp. Salt
4 tsp. Instant Yeast (3 3/4 if at high altitude)
Step 1: Berries / Flour
Grind 9 1/3 cups of wheat berries (if using berries). Otherwise, measure out 14 cups of flour into a bowl.
Step 2: Start Mixing
Put 6 1/2 cups of water into mixer bowl. Start mixer and add around 4 cups of wheat flour, a cup at a time.
Step 3: Flax Seed
Grind 1 cup flax seed, 1/2 cup at a time, in the coffee grinder and add to the flour and water in the mixing bowl.
Step 4: Honey
Add 1/2 cup honey to the mixer. It comes out easier if you grease the measuring cup.
Step 5: Salt and Yeast
Add 4 teaspoons of salt to the mixer.
Make sure that salt and honey are fully mixed in before adding the yeast. The salt can kill the yeast if the honey is not mixed in well.
If needed, add another cup of flour. then add 4 teaspoons of yeast. If you are at a high altitude and your bread tends to fall, try reducing the yeast by a quarter teaspoon.
Step 6: Knead Dough
Add the rest of the flour, a cup at a time, letting each cup mix in before adding the next. Let the mixer knead the dough for 12 minutes.
Step 7: First Rise
Remove the dough hook from the dough. Spray the bread dough while in the mixing bowl with non-stick vegetable spray. Turn the dough and spray it again, until covered.
Cover the bread dough with a clean towel, place it in a warm location, and let it rise until doubled in size, about thirty minutes. (You may use a very slightly warmed oven for rising). If it is not risen in thirty minutes, you can move it to a warmer location, or simply wait.
Step 8: Prep Kneading Area
Punch the dough down and let it rest while you grease the bread pans and prepare the work area.
Clean an area of counter at least 3 feet wide, and sprinkle lightly with flour. Some people find that oil works better than flower.
Step 9: Making Loaves
Dump the dough out of the bowl onto the counter. Round it into a large ball and cut into 4 or 5 pieces. For pans 4” x 8”, make 5 loaves. For larger pans, sized 5” x 8 1/2”, make only 4 loaves. Knead the dough and form into loaves.
To make the loaves, take each piece of dough and spread it with your hands into a thick rectangle about 6” by 10". Take a short side and roll the rectangle into a log and fold the ends under. Round it a little with your hands and drop it into a greased pan. Repeat for the other loaves.
Remember, the dough should always be slightly sticky. Make very sure not to add too much flour. A light dusting should suffice. If the dough is extremely sticky, something went wrong or you are over working the dough.
Step 10: Second Rise
Cover the loaves with a clean towel (you can reuse the one from the first rise) and let it rise in a warm location until doubled. As before, if it has not doubled in thirty minutes, move it to a warmer location or just be patient. When they are almost done rising, start the oven preheating to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 11: Bake
Put the loaves into the preheated oven (325 degrees Fahrenheit). Bake for 45 minutes or golden brown. They should sound hollow when thumped on bottom with a wooden spoon. Remove them from the pans within 5 minutes.
Step 12: Enjoy!
Let sit on a rack for 15 minutes before slicing. Enjoy with butter.
Let uneaten loaves cool on a rack until room temperature before storing. Makes great sandwiches and freezes well.
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Kitchen Skills Challenge