Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday Recipe: Wholewheat Bread

Although I've been a breadmaker for years, only recently when Lee Valley arrived in Kingston did I break down and buy one of their hand-cranked dough mixers.

Bread Dough Mixer - Gardening 

This handy gadget allows me to mix and knead without any floury mess, plus the cleanup is a breeze. Like my spinning wheel, this is a great example of low tech brilliance. Here's what I put into the bucket to make our favourite 100% organic whole wheat bread. If you don't have a mixer, then do it by hand. Don't do this in a food processor with a dough hook; the quantity and heftiness of the flour will overwhelm the motor.

Whole Wheat Bread

2 c warm water (never use warm tap water; warm the water in the microwave or mix hot water from
      a kettle with cool) 
5 tsp rapid rise dry yeast
2 tbsp unsulphured blackstrap molasses
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp canola oil
5 c organic stoneground whole wheat flour

Mix the water, molasses, and yeast together and allow to sit for 5-10 min until the mixture is foamy. Add the remaining ingredients and knead until smooth and elastic. Place in an oiled bowl and cover with a damp tea towel for an hour or two. Punch down to remove air bubbles, and shape into one big or two small loaves. Spray or butter the bread pan(s). Don't use oil; it will cause the dough to weld to the pan(s). Place the loaves in the prepared pan(s) and cover with a damp tea towel. Allow to rise for about an hour until the top slopes above the pan(s). Near the end of this rising, preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the bread for 40 min (small loaves) to 45 min (large loaf) or until the top is golden and the loaves sound hollow when tapped. Turn out of the pan immediately and cool on a rack.

In the knitting department, the Wolfe Island Gansey, grey version, is almost done. 

About an hour ago, I finished the collar and tried the cardigan on to check the sleeve length. Perfect. Now I just need to do a little bit of tidying up before everything gets wet blocked. Don't be deceived by the uneven, lumpy texture of the knitting in the above photo. Blocking is transformative, as I am sure you know. Soon, all with be beautiful...

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