The story of a young family choosing to think – and live – "outside the box."
Soaked Flour Whole Wheat Bread (Recipe!)
The reason why I soak my grains is explained in “Is Your Flour Wet?” a free e-book available from Kitchen Stewardship. I’m not going to take the time to re-write the whole explanation now. Suffice it to say that soaking your grains/flour begins the process of breaking them down so our bodies can better use the nutrients available in the grains.
When I make bread, I really make bread. I soak enough flour to make about 9-10 loaves at a time. My newest plan is soaking my flour, then separating 3 cup portions into individual loaf pans and freezing them. Before, I made the dough into loaves after the first rising and froze those loaves before the second rising. When I want bread, I thaw one portion per loaf on the counter. I allow it to come to room temperature, then proceed with adding the yeast mixture. I will first give the recipe that I follow. At the bottom of this post I will put a smaller recipe. The pictures show exactly how things should look. If you haven’t made bread before, DEFINITELY make the smaller recipe first!!!
To learn how to proof yeast, read “Yeast Breads: Not Scary!” To see a video on how to knead bread, go to “How to Knead Bread Dough.” If I’d never seen my mother making bread, I would have had no idea what “kneading” was. I’ll also post on how to make rolls, loaves, cinnamon rolls, and more.
Combine the whole wheat flour and salt in a large bowl. Place the butter and coconut oil in a small pan over medium heat; heat just until melted. If you don’t have buttermilk, combine 3 cups of milk and 3 tablespoons vinegar and allow to sit for 5 minutes. When the butter is melted, combine the butter/coconut oil mixture, buttermilk, 3 cups of warm water, and flour mixture. Stir until completely mixed. The dough should be slightly thinner than cookie dough, but not really stiff; you should be able to pinch a piece of the dough easily. It should be sticky! Do not knead the dough. Cover it and let it sit overnight on the counter. If you do not want to make bread in the morning, place the bowl in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. If you don’t want to make bread then, you should freeze the dough.
After the flour has been soaked at least overnight, combine 1/3 cup of warm water, the honey, and the yeast. When this mixture has begun to bubble, stir it GENTLY into 3 cups of the soaked flour mixture. They will not combine completely, but it does need to be mixed fairly well. If you have a stand mixer, use the dough hook on low setting. After it is combined, add 1 cup of UNBLEACHED all-purpose flour. Knead the dough with your hands, adding slight amounts of flour at a time until the dough is firm and elastic. Place into an oiled bowl, cover with a towel, and allow to rise until it has doubled. When the dough is twice it’s size, punch it down. Turn it out onto the counter or a bread board and form it into a loaf. Place the loaf into an oiled loaf pan. Cover with a towel and allow it to rise a second time. When almost doubled, pre-heat your oven to 350. Place the loaf in the oven after the oven has finished pre-heating. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the loaf sounds hollow when tapped. I usually cover my loaf with foil for the last 10 minutes of baking; otherwise it gets too brown.
This bread will have an excellent, light sourdough taste if you allow the flour to soak for 2-3 days. Store tightly covered.