Whole Wheat Bread

July 17, 2007

Yesterday I was trying out a terra cotta bread pan that I have, and used the Whole Wheat Bread recipe on the label. It was British, and called for one pound of flour – so I had to guess a little. Everything else was clear though: 2 tsp. salt, 1 ounce of olive oil, 2 Tbs. honey, 1 cup warm water (it actually said tepid, which I guess means lukewarm), and a package of yeast. I guessed that 2 cups was about a pound, and then kept adding it until it didn’t stick as I kneaded it.

The differences with this recipe from every other one I have seen is that you never punched down the dough, but just put it in the oven after it had doubled in size. I guess that is because it was whole wheat and really dense, so maybe the second rise would have taken forever. Also, it was a 450 degree oven. That is pretty hot.

All is well that ends well, though. The bread had a nice crust and was tasty. The only thing is that it was very dense, like all other whole wheat breads that I have found. They taste great after toasting with a little butter, or as an aside to soup or chili, but I would really like to find a way to make a fluffy, light whole wheat loaf. If anyone knows of a recipe that calls for all whole wheat, let me know.

I have one idea: mix the ingredients and then put them in the refrigerator in the morning to let it rise slowly all day, and then go from there. I think that the longer time would develop the flavor more and perhaps make it a little lighter. Who knows. Really though, does anyone have any ideas.?

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This is really awesome. This guy gives detailed instructions on how to make your own ginger ale, using backyard fruit, water, sugar and dried ginger. The idea is similar to making sourdough bread from scratch, something that I have *tried* a couple of times in the past. Most of the time my roommates would just throw out the starter after they smelled it and saw a bubbling mass of goop in the fridge. But this, this is awesome.

I don’t have any fruit in my backyard right now, but I bet organic grapes or something at the supermarket would work fine. It sounds like something that would take a while to try, but if it worked it would probably be worth it. If anybody tries this, let me know how it turns out. I may try it myself if I find the time.