Thursday, January 3, 2008

Five Little Loaves...

Not One...

Not Two...

Not Three...

Not Four...

But FIVE little loaves sit on my counter today!

Okay, so I didn't get the photo done before my family devoured almost all of loaf #5, but what remains of it is there. Who can resist fresh-from-the-oven banana pecan bread?!?!
Yesterday, my friend Rachel at Simplicity Soup was talking and asking about bread baking. Today was bread baking day at our house, so I thought I would post photos of all our efforts. I also e-mailed her a simple bread recipe and then decided I should share it with anyone else wanting a great, simple honey whole-wheat bread recipe. Enjoy!
Simple (Honest!) Honey Whole-Wheat Bread
yields: 3 delicious loaves
3 C warm water
2 pkgs active dry yeast (or about 5 tsp)
1/3 C honey
5 C bread flour
3 Tbsp butter, melted
1/3 C honey (yes, another 1/3 C)
1 Tbsp. salt
3 1/2 C whole wheat flour
2 Tbsp butter, melted (yes, another 2 T.)
In a large bowl, mix warm water and yeast with honey. Let sit to proof for 5 minutes. Stir in 5 C bread four. Cover with dish towel and let rise approx. 30 minutes or until large and bubbly (mine doesn't always look particularly bubbly). Mix in 3 Tbsp. melted butter, 1/3 C honey and salt. Stir in 2 C of whole wheat flour. Flour a flat surface and knead dough with an additional 1-2 C whole wheat flour until slightly sticky and beginning to pull away from surface. Place in a greased bowl and turn once to coat. Cover with dish towel and let rise until doubled.
Punch down and divide dough into 3 equal pieces. Shape into loaves (I like a rustic looking loaf) and place in greased 9X5 inch loaf pans. Let rise until dough rises 1 inch above pan. Bake at 350 degrees 25-30 minutes. Remove from pan and brush tops with melted butter to prevent crust from over hardening. Cool before cutting (if you can possibly resist!) Enjoy!


Ann said...

Yummy!! I'm pretty sure I've had this bread from you, and it's very good!! I'll have to try the proofing thing--I've never done a bread recipe that proofs with some of the flour first.

Jen said...

The actual "proofing" of yeast happens in the first 5-10 minutes that the yeast comes into contact with heat and sugar. The original recipe called to put the flour in at the very beginning, but I never feel comfortable doing that since it would such a waste of flour if the yeast is bad. I made it into 2 separate steps to be sure.

I think I gave you some of this bread, too, and you just might find some more at your doorstep later today!