After being gluten-free for four months now and feeling much better, I am trying to slowly start adding gluten back into my diet. And what better way to start than with baking some 100% whole wheat bread??
My mother taught me the fine art of bread baking when I was 10 years old, and I say art because it IS an art form! If you've never baked bread before or have only tried a handful of times, it takes a lot of practice to get the "feel" for baking a perfect loaf of bread. And I am a fan of homemade bread! Not only is it yummier and super cheap, but without added preservatives and high fructose corn syrup, it is also much healthier than store-bought bread. It is especially healthy if you use 100% whole wheat. Remember, I am a big advocate of wheat as a health food. Luckily it is also really tasty. (Just imagine how hard it was for me to go without for months!)
So, I thought I'd share my recipe in case anyone out there is looking for a yummy whole wheat bread recipe......
4 c. warm water
2 Tbsp yeast
2/3 c. sugar (or you can use 2/3 c. honey--very yummy!)
1/3 c. extra virgin olive oil
4 tsp salt
8-10 c. whole wheat flour (this will all depend on altitude and humidity, so use as much as you need to make a firm but soft dough)
1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl and let sit 5-10 minutes or until yeast foams.
2. Mix in salt and slowly add wheat flour. Mix for 5 minutes, adding enough flour until dough is no longer falling and sticking to sides of bowl. (FYI: Although I use a super-old, super-awesome Kitchen Aid, you don't have to have a mixer to make bread! In college I didn't have a mixer so I used a little hand mixer to add half of the wheat flour, and then I added the rest of the flour in and hand-kneaded the dough. The bread still came out awesome.)
3. Grease sides of large bowl with dough inside, cover, and let rise for one hour.
4. Knead dough for a few minutes on a floured surface and divide and form into loaves (Makes about 3 medium-sized loaves.)
5. Place loaves in greased bread pans, cover, and let rise for 40 minutes.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until tops and sides of loaves are golden brown.