Whole Wheat Bread
This loaf of wheat bread is another easy to make dough that you will add to your collection. Since Whole Wheat is higher in protein than bread flour, I did not use 100% whole wheat, because I didn’t want a very dense loaf. Approximately 33% of the flour called for is bread flour and the remainder whole wheat. Sweetened by a bit of honey, the sponge develops the flavor and the butter added gives it a softer crumb. This recipe makes one loaf, but can easily be doubled.
In a bowl, whisk together the “sponge”: 1 cup Bread Flour 1 Tabl. Active Dry yeast 2 Tabl. Honey 1-1/4 cups warm water (NOT HOT)
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft-free place for 1 hour.In mixer bowl (I use Kitchen-aid), place: 2-1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour 1 tsp. Salt 1/4 cup Butter, softened, cut into small cubes
Add the sponge into the mixer bowl and with a dough hook, mix on low speed until all the ingredients are “picked-up”. Then turn mixer to medium high spec and mix for 2-3 minutes until you hear the “thwack-thwacking sound” on the side of the bowl (you’ll know what I mean when you hear it). Turn the dough out onto the counter and give a quick knead to form a ball. Place the ball of dough into a greased bowl and cover with a greased piece of plastic wrap. Again, place the dough into a warm, draft-free place to double in size, approx. 1 hour.
Punch the dough down to release the gases. Allow to “rest” on the counter for 10 minutes. Now, press the dough out into a rectangle, and tightly roll it up to form a small loaf. Pinch the ends together to seal. Place the dough, seam side down into a greased loaf pan. Cover loosely with greased plastic wrap and again allow to rise until doubled 30-40 minutes. (I almost over-proofed mine!)
Bake in a pre-heated 375 degree oven for 25-30 minutes.