Thank goodness I don’t have a gluten allergy! And, you won’t find me on a low-carb diet. I wouldn’t survive one day. I love breads. Breadmaking is my favorite way to use my wheat storage. I store hard white wheat and grind it at home with an electric wheat grinder. The white wheat has a mild flavor that everyone in the family can enjoy, while still maintaining good whole-grain nutrition. Great Harvest has been the inspiration for my latest kitchen experimentations. Here are some delicious recipes I’ve been cooking up.
I altered my favorite whole wheat bread recipe to make it more like a “harvest bread” with apples and pecans, and then added a brown sugar topping. Great Harvest makes a yummy Apple Crumble Bread, but it is only available on Thursdays at my local store, so I had to find a way to appease my cravings. This bread makes your house smell fabulous and is delicious toasted, plus it uses dried apples from storage. You can leave off the topping and it is totally healthy. It is a really simple recipe, but I’ve tried to include plenty of details for anyone new to breadmaking. I’m posting my basic whole wheat bread recipe first and then the alterations. This makes a nice big batch with enough to share a couple of loaves with neighbors and freeze some for later. My neighbors love breadmaking day!
DELICIOUS WHOLE WHEAT BREAD
2/3 c. oil (I use grapeseed or canola)
2/3 c. honey
2 tbsp. SAF instant yeast (you can use regular RED STAR yeast, just proof in water first)
2 tbsp. vital gluten powder
2 tbsp. dough enhancer
2 tbsp. salt
6 c. warm water
whole wheat flour
In a mixer, with dough hook attached, place SAF instant yeast, vital gluten, dough enhancer and 4 cups whole wheat flour. Pour in warm water and blend gently. Then add honey, oil and salt. Continue adding flour and blending until dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl. When the sides of the bowl stay clean, set a timer for 10 minutes and allow the mixer to knead the dough. This develops the gluten and negates the need to raise the dough so many times for a light bread. After 10 minutes, remove dough from bowl and divide into 7 or 8 smooth loaf shapes and place in greased 1-lb. loaf pans (I use Vegalene). Let bread rise until double (about 30 minutes). When dough has completed rising, place in a preheated 350 degree oven (or 325 degree convection) and cook for 35 minutes (until golden brown). When done, remove from oven, take bread out of pans and cool on a cooling rack. When bread has completely cooled, place into bread bags for storage. This recipe is really versatile. I usually add 2-4 Tbsp. potato flakes to make it even more tender and to rotate my potato flakes. You can use it for cinnamon pull-aparts, pizza crust, hamburger buns, etc. but I like it best just for bread.
KIM’S APPLE PECAN BREAD ALTERATIONS
After mixing in the initial 4 cups of flour, stir in the following:
4 cups dehydrated apple slices (break into smaller pieces and rehydrate with 2 cups hot water for 15 minutes. Drain excess water.)
2 cups chopped pecans
2 Tbsp. apple pie spice or cinnamon
Continue to add flour as in the recipe above. The dough is a little bit stickier with the apples but avoid the temptation to add too much flour. If the dough is pulling away from the sides of the bowl and you can handle the dough to mold it into loaves, you’ve added enough flour.
After you’ve placed the dough into the pans, you can mix up this crumbly topping and spread on top before baking.
BROWN SUGAR TOPPING
8 Tbsp. white flour
1/2 c. white sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
5 – 6 Tbsp. butter, melted
Raise until it is peaked nicely above the edge of the pan, then bake as directed above.
My next fun recipe is for a Cinnamon Chip Bread made healthier with part whole wheat flour and liquid eggs. You can make it as unhealthy as you’d like, but my family devoured it with the lower-fat alterations. Again, it makes the kitchen smell heavenly.
HEAVENLY CINNAMON CHIP BREAD
3 Tbsp. SAF instant yeast
1/2 C. sugar
1 c. liquid eggs, like Egg Beaters [Or, 4 whole eggs; or, 1/4 c. dehydrated egg powder + 1/2 c. water]
3 3/4 c. warm water
4 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. canola oil (or grapeseed)
2 1/2 c. cinnamon chips
10-12 cups flour (I used about 4 cups hard white wheat flour and 6 cups all-purpose white flour)
In mixing bowl, combine 4 cups flour, yeast, and sugar. Add water, eggs, and oil. Beat well until combined. Stir in salt, cinnamon drops, and more flour until dough pulls away from sides of bowl. Knead with mixer for about 5 minutes. Place dough in greased bowl, cover, and let rise for 1 hour. Shape dough into 4 loaves, and let rise again until doubled (about an hour) in pans. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes.