If you've ever had a good piece of 100% whole wheat bread, you'll understand when I tell you there is really something really, well, good about it. So much more substantial that white bread, with a sweet, almost nutty taste, 100% whole wheat can be amazing. Unfortunately, so much of what passes for whole wheat in the grocery stores tastes like cardboard and can be used as sandpaper; it really is such a disappointment, keeping people from discovering 100% whole wheat bread.
Since I've been making all our bread for the past year and a half (save the occasional emergency run to the store), I've been working on getting a terrific 100% whole wheat recipe. My Azure Standard order finally arrived, so I have whole wheat again. This time, I got both Hard Red Winter Wheat and Hard White. I've only tried the Hard Red so far, so I'll let you know if there is something amazingly different about them - there is supposed to be. Anyway, the bread recipe I tried yesterday is pretty darned good, but I'll admit it was more complicated than the others I've tried. The taste was fabulous and it DID rise (something that is not guaranteed, it seems!). If you're curious, you should definitely put this on your "to try" list...
It comes from Crystal at Everyday Food Storage. (The Food Storage Network ladies are hosting Bread Month, so I'm looking forward to some more new bread recipes.) She also has a bread-making how-to video, if you're interested.
EZ 100% Whole Wheat Bread
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 Tblsp active dry yeast
1/4 cup honey or 1/3 cup sugar (I used honey)
2 3/4 cups whole wheat flour (I used Hard Red)
1/4 cup wheat gluten
1 tsp salt
2 Tblsp nonfat non instant dry milk
1 Tblsp butter/margarine/oil (I used oil)
1 Tblsp vinegar
1/4 cup potato flakes (NOT potato pearls)
Mix ingredients in order listed in mixing bowl of mixer with dough hook attachment (like kitchen-aid) for 12-15 minutes. Let rise until double, 1- 1 1/2 hours. Punch down, and shape into loaf or rolls. Let rise again until double and bake 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes until golden brown and sounds hollow when lightly tapped.
If you are making this recipe in a bread machine, follow your bread machine’s directions for wheat or whole grain selection and add the ingredients in the order listed for their recommendations. (I used my bread machine to do the dough because I was making the Sugar Doughnut Muffins at the same time.)