I’m really excited about this post, but I’m even more excited to wish my sister, Sarah, a very happy 26th birthday!!! She’s far away in Portland, OR, but I know my other sister and her friends will take good care of her and make sure she has the awesome birthday she deserves. And perhaps I’ll sneak in some time for a cocktail with her when I’m in town in August!! Happy Birthday, Sarah! I LOVE YOU!!
I don’t know what it is about baking that I find so soothing. Maybe I’m comforted by the exactness of the measurements. Maybe I just love having an excuse to relax with a good book while something is in the oven. I love making cupcakes, muffins, granola bars, and so much more. Goat cheese frosting? Yes please! Vegan banana bread? You bet! Plain old whole wheat bread? Panic! I have no idea why I’m so intimidated by regular bread recipes, but I’d never made regular bread until I stumbled upon this whole wheat flax bread recipe. Suddenly, the itchy nervous feeling I usually get when faced with long rise times and doctor appointments vanished. The pictures were lovely, the prose was friendly, and the recipe seemed manageable.
Whole-Wheat Flax Bread [makes 2 loaves]
- 2 3/4 cups very warm water
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup (wildflower) honey
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons dry active yeast
- 6-7 c. whole wheat flour (I used 6 cups, plus enough to dust the kneading surface)
- 1/2 c. golden flax meal
1. Place the oil, honey, and molasses in the mixer bowl. Add the salt, water and the yeast. Let it sit for a few minutes, until it looks like this.
2. Add two cups of the flour and the flaxmeal, mixing until well combined.
3. Gradually add more flour until the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Dough should be sticky, so don’t add too much flour. I used 6 cups total. Avoid overmixing.
4. Cover the mixer bowl and let it rise for 30-60 minutes depending on the warmth of your kitchen. It may not double, but it should be puffy. Mine more than doubled in 35 minutes, but it was a very warm day.
5. Spray two bread pans with non-stick spray.
6. Restart mixer to reduce dough size for several seconds.
7. Drop the dough on a floured counter or other surface. Divide the dough in half and form each one into a loaf shape. Do not use a rolling pin; folded with hands to create smooth top and sides.
8. Place the loaves in your bread pans and let them rise until almost doubled.
9 Bake in a preheated oven at 350 for 32-35 minutes, until the tops are golden and if you tap the bottom of the loaves, they sound hollow.
10. Remove from the pans and cool the loaves on a rack. Allow loaves to cool completely before slicing.
The bread should last about a week so you can either freeze one loaf, or make lots of PB&J sammies and devour two loaves in 8 days…not that I’ve done that, of course.
Thank you so much, Teri, for coming up with such a healthy, easy bread recipe and curing me of my “regular bread making” fears!!