Hope everyone had a great Christmas, and is ready to hit the New Year running - some of us literally, but not me...yet...but I do need to get that 5 pounds off those cookies seem to have left on my scale.
I want to start this post by saying I love whole grain bread - for the most part. I love the flavor, I love the texture. There are so many varieties out there that I just love. However, I can't get the rest of my family to touch the stuff...
So, I got creative. After watching the America's Test Kitchen episode where they made bread, I thought I would try some of their tips and tricks. I wanted to try their recipe, but forgot and deleted the episode from my DVR.
I promptly forgot about my musings and inspiration until I was in the grocery store one day, and spotted some 10 grain hot cereal sitting next to the rye flour I was looking for...aahhh, yes, I remember now!
This bread is a bit different than what you may be used to for home made grain breads for a few reasons. Well, the first is obvious - I dropped mine on it's head when I was taking it out of the pan, so yours shouldn't look so, well, deformed...
I decided to use the 10 grain hot cereal based on that episode I saw. It's really a great idea! Since I don't make 10 grain bread all that often, buying one 10 grain cereal was a lot easier than buying each different grain individually.
The last difference is a bit more subtle. In an effort for this bread to be better received by my family, I designed this recipe so although it was at least part whole grain, it had extra vital wheat gluten added for texture and lift. AND, I added some vegetable oil so the bread would be softer. So, while some of you that prefer a heartier bread and texture may not like this, I was happy with the soft and fluffy version of my bread.
And, finally, before I talk a bit about how I made this bread, this is one of the things I made with it, and I recommend it! This is my new favorite grilled cheese - tillamook cheddar, gruyere, tomato, and jalapeno jelly. What a perfect combination. Grilled cheese is also great with onion jam - just saying!
10 grain bread
Makes 2 loaves
2/3 c. 10 grain hot cereal mix, mixed with 1 cup very hot water, let cool 15 minutes.
1/2 c. tepid water (just slightly above room temperature)
1/2 c. vegetable oil
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups unbleached flour (you may need more here)
1/3 c. vital wheat gluten
1/3 c. brown sugar or honey
2 T. or 2 packages instant yeast
1 t. salt
Oats or sunflower seeds, optional
In a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast over your 1/4 c. water. Sprinkle with a teaspoon of sugar and mix together. Wait to see if the yeast becomes bubbly. If it doesn't, discard and start again.
Once your yeast has bubbled, add to a large mixing bowl of a standing mixer the oil, whole wheat flour, wheat gluten, sugar or honey, cooled grain cereal mixture, and salt. Mix until just combined. Let rest 15 minutes.
Once mixture has rested, add 1 cup unbleached flour, and process with a dough hook. Add enough remaining flour to form a solid dough. Knead dough with a dough hook for approximately 5 minutes, or with your hands 10 minutes, adding flour a few tablespoons at a time. Your end result will be a non-sticky, cohesive dough. If you are using a dough hook, the dough should not stick to the bowl or your hands.
Place in a large oiled bowl, and let rise in a warm place until double, about 1-2 hours. Gently punch down and divide in 1/2. Shape loaves into the size of your loaf pan. I like to gently press my dough out into a rectangle, then roll it up and seal the edges. If desired, roll dough in oats or sunflower seeds.
Let rise again until double in size. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the bread has cooked completely (this is about 200 on an instant read thermometer). Take out of oven and let cool 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove from pan and let cool completely.