Light Honey-Wheat Bread

This simple yeast bread is excellent for toasting. It makes good sandwiches, too, if you like them slightly sweet. I present the recipe first in baker’s percentages for those who wish to scale it easily. The quantities make four 500-gram loaves—my usual batch. As usual, I use gravimetric metric units when baking. Use the volumetric English measures at your peril—I cannot vouch for their absolute accuracy.  

Basic Recipe

Flour

100%

White bread flour

82%

Whole wheat flour

18%

Water

62%

Non-fat dry milk

5%

Honey

5%

Oil

3%

Salt

2%

Instant dry yeast

1%

Ingredients

 

Warm water

700 grams

3 cups + 2 Tablespoons

Dry milk powder

56 grams

Scant ½ cup

Honey

56 grams

2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons

Salt

23 grams

4 teaspoons

Instant dry or rapid rise yeast

11 grams

2 envelopes

Canola oil or melted unsalted butter

34 grams

2 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon

Whole wheat flour

200 grams

1⅔ cups

Unbleached white bread flour

929 grams

7¼ cups

Method

Put all the ingredients except the flour into the bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer. Stir to combine. Add the flours and knead on the recommended speed setting for your mixer for five to seven minutes. Scoop the dough onto a lightly floured surface and, with floured hands, knead lightly and form into a ball.

I like to weigh the dough at this point to make dividing into loaves easier. It should be close to 2000 grams.

Warm a large, heavy earthenware or glass bowl with hot water then dry and pour in enough oil to just cover the bottom. Place the ball of dough it in the bowl, and roll it around so that it is evenly coated with the oil. Put a piece of plastic wrap loosely directly on the dough, cover the bowl with a kitchen towel, and set aside to proof until doubled in size, about one to one and a half hours depending on the temperature.

At the end of proofing punch down the dough and divide it into four equal portions. Form the loaves and place them in the bread pans, lightly oiled unless non-stick. Cover with a towel and allow to rise again until the dough is about 2 cm (1 inch) above the sides of the pan.

Bake in a 190°C (375°F) oven to for about 35 minutes. The best way to determine doneness is with a thermometer; the center of the loaf should be between 90°C and 95°C (195°F and 200°F).

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