Whole wheat bread can be made using 100% wheat flour or with the combination of whole wheat flour and refined flour. in this recipe I have made it using 100% wheat flour.
The bread came out nice and soft.
Breads can be made with fresh yeast, active dry yeast or instant dry yeast. So the proportions for different types of yeast to the yeast mentioned in the recipe goes this way – If the recipe says 1 tsp of instant dry yeast and if you have active dry yeast, then use 1/2 tbsp of it. If you want to use fresh yeast then you are required to use double of the active dry yeast, that is 1 tbsp of it.
Fresh yeast and the instant dry yeast can be added directly to the flour while kneading with the other ingredient. Dry active yeast needs to be activated by adding it in warm milk or water along with sugar for 15 mins before using it.
Be sure of the temperature of the water or milk before adding the active dry yeast. It should neither be too cold or too hot. It should be lukewarm. This will help in frothing the yeast. If milk or water is cold it won’t activate the yeast. If it is too hot it will kill the yeast and the mixture will not froth or will not become bubbly. So be sure and use only lukewarm water or milk.
I have used instant dry yeast. It saves the time of bread making and also yields nice, smooth and soft bread.
Bread making requires time.
- Knead the dough for 10 mins (if using active dry yeast activate it first prior to kneading and then add to the dough)
- 1st proving – It is generally for 1 hr ( here the kneaded dough is kept in the warm place for fermentation and rising). It is also known as first rise.
- 2nd proving- It is for 30-45 min . It is known as second rise.
The kneading process of the dough is really important. This helps to extract the gluten from the flour. Gluten is a kind of protein that helps to give elasticity to the dough and hence helps it to rise. According to wikipedia, if this dough is leavened with yeast, fermentation produces carbon dioxide bubbles, which, trapped by the gluten network, cause the dough to rise. So after the yeast is added to the dough, it is required to knead nicely . The more you knead the bread will get softness and it will be light.
Knead the dough on the platform directly by applying pressure with your palms. It should be stretched vertically first and then bring back the dough and again stretch it vertically. Do this for about 10 mins till the dough comes together.
You can also use the standing mixer or the beaters which have the attachment for kneading dough.
I still prefer using my hands for kneading the dough.
I have used milk powder to give little more softness to the bread. Generally the wheat bread if made by using 100% wheat flour will be a little dense compared to the refined flour bread. But it does not really matter when you want a home baked bread.
I have baked whole wheat bread without using milk powder and with milk powder. The one which was baked with the milk powder is really soft.
I have then divided the kneaded dough in three different portions. As I wanted to make pesto garlic bread for dinner, I wanted the slices of bread in small size. Thus I have baked a small size loaf and with the other dough I have made Nutella flower bread and the braided bread. I will share that in my next recipe.
So try making these whole wheat bread and you will want start preferring it over the supermarket bread. It is a healthy alternative to bread available in the market, especially for kids.
Whole Wheat Bread
- 4 cup whole wheat flour Use 3.5cups for kneading and 0.5 cups for dusting and further addition of dough if required for kneading.
- 2 tbsp milk powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 tsp instant dry yeast (two sachet of 7 gm)
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 cup water (luke warm)
- 3/4 cup milk lukewarm
- 4 tbsp oil and little more for greasing dough
- 1 tbsp butter brushing the bread loaf
- 1 tbsp extra milk brushing the bread loaf
- In a big bowl add 3.5 cups flour, milk powder, salt, sugar and instant dry yeast (or fresh yeast if using).
With active dry yeast - Take luke warm water or milk, put sugar and stir it. then add the yeast. Stir it well and cover and rest it in a warm place for 15 min. The mixture will become bubbly and frothy. Now make a well in the flour, add salt and pour the yeast mixture and mix all properly. Then add oil and follow the procedure from step 6 onwards)
- Mix all the dry ingredients and add oil.
- Luke warm the water.
- Add it to the flour mixture and mix well.
- Mix and knead it all together.
- Now put the mixed dough on the flour dusted worktop. (use the other 0.5 cups flour kept for dusting and kneading the flour)
- knead it in vertical direction with help of your palms and then bring it together and knead again in vertical direction for 10 min. The dough should be sticky. If it becomes too sticky add the extra flour gradually till all the dough comes together.
- After 10 min the dough will all come together and will look as shown.
- Put the dough in the greased bowl , brush it with little milk and cover it with a cling wrap or a damp cloth. Keep it in a warm place for 1st proving for 1 hour.
- After one hour the dough will double rise.
- Known slowly punch it down with fingers lightly.
- Remove from the bowl and lightly knead in a log shape.
- Put the log in the greased loaf tin. Press it down lightly to all the sides. Again cover the tin and keep it in a warm place for second rise or 2nd proving for 45 minutes.
- The dough will rise again. Make criss cross patterns with a knife and brush it again with milk.
- Now preheat the oven at 200 deg . Bake the loaf in the tin for 25 min or till golden.
- Remove the tin from the oven. Cool and unmould the loaf.
- This is upside down of the loaf.
- Now with a nice serrated knife cut the bread into slices . The bread looks so soft and has nice texture.
- Serve or use it for your recipe to be made.
- As I have mentioned above use luke warm water. Too hot water will deactivate the yeast and cold water will not allow the yeast to get activated.
- If after baking the loaf if the upper crust seems hard then you can cover it with a damp cloth for 1-2 hours and then use. The bread will become soft on cooling.
- Keep the bread in airtight container to prevent it from getting dry.
- Kneading is the important part in making bread. Try to knead it at least for 10 minutes.