December 20, 2012

Honey-Wheat Bread

I'm a bread baker. I was before I became a cupcake maker. I prefer homemade bread over storebought bread any day. So when Recipe Girl shared a bread recipe, I added it to my baking list.

This bread turned out slightly chewier than I'm sure it would if I could have baked it normally. You see, I broke the heating coil in my oven (after a minor oven fire) while preheating the oven to bake this bread. After a few minutes of contemplation, I dug out my rarely used roaster oven and baked my two loaves of bread in the roaster oven. Turned out well all things considered.

Honey-Wheat Bread
2 cups whole wheat flour
4 to 5 cups Gold Medal® bread flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 packets active dry yeast (.25-ounce envelopes)
1/4 cup honey
1 2/3 cups water
2/3 cup milk
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
additional flour, as needed

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the the whole wheat flour, 4 cups bread flour, sugar, salt and yeast.
In a medium bowl, combine honey, milk, water and butter, and heat to between 105 and 110 degrees in the microwave. Stir the liquids to melt the butter and add, all at once, to the dry ingredients in the mixer bowl.
With the dough hook installed on your stand mixer, mix the dough. Add more bread flour by the Tablespoon, as needed, until the dough comes together and clears the bowl. Mix for 5 minutes with the dough hook and remove to a lightly floured counter surface.
Knead by hand until no longer sticky, adding flour as necessary. Form the dough into a large round and place in a large, greased bowl.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean dish towel, let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes (or until about doubled in size). Remove the dough from the bowl and divide it in half. Roll each half into a 10 x 12 rectangle and roll each up like a cigar. Pinch the seams. Roll on the counter-top to make a uniform log and place each roll in an oiled 9x5-inch bread pan seam-side up. Shake the roll to oil the bottom, turn the pan over, catch the dough and reinsert it into the pan, seam-side-down.
Return the pan to a warm place, cover lightly with a clean dishtowel and let rise an additional 30 minutes or until at least 1 inch above the pan top. Bake in a preheated 400°F. oven for 25 minutes, or until the center of the bread tests 190 to 200°F. Remove the bread from the pans and let them cool on a rack.

Makes 2 loaves.