Oatmeal Whole Wheat Bread
The Omnivore and I learned this weekend that Sundays are meant for staying on the farm doing chores (him) and baking bread (her). This is not because we need bread for sandwiches for the upcoming week’s lunches, although this recipe would be perfect for that. Sundays are meant for bread baking at home because try as we might this past Sunday, we were told again and again to just go home.
The first message came when we awoke, ambitious and bushy-tailed, ready to tackle all of the projects in our pastures. We made a list, jumped in the car, and drove to the city at 9am. Only when we noticed a distinct absence of cars on the road and vehicles parked in the lots did the light bulb come on: blue laws. No goods sold prior to 1:30pm.
So we headed home. And that’s when I picked out this recipe to bake. It is slightly sweet and perfect as a side to a hearty black bean chili or as a base for the old standby of PB&J. But after I threw this loaf in the mixer and set aside the dough to rise, I was itching to get started on Christmas baking. By this time it was after 2pm and so the ‘Vore and I ventured back into the city for the second time that day to pick up Christmas cookie tins, food coloring, and perhaps a nice bottle of wine to go with the dinner I was planning to make.
And then we realized we hadn’t learned our lesson in blue laws fully enough when the squeaky voiced, pimply faced teenager informed us that no alcohol is sold on Sundays. Duh. So we returned home. The dough was done rising so I placed it into my loaf pan to bake and got to work on more various chores.
And after a hard day’s work, we decided that we should just go out to our new favorite restaurant (and it is only our favorite because it is the only joint within a half hour drive of home) for dinner instead of eating at home. And as we pulled into the parking lot of the restaurant, it dawned on us: the restaurant is closed on Sundays.
Thank goodness we had this tender, delicious, wonderful bread awaiting us at home, where we should have been all along.
Whole Wheat Oatmeal Bread (adapted from KAF)
2 cups boiling water
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon instant yeast
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
4 cups whole wheat flour
5 T vital wheat gluten
In a large mixing bowl, combine the water, oats, sugar, honey, butter, and salt. Let cool to lukewarm.
Add the yeast and flours, stirring to form a rough dough. Knead (about 10 minutes by hand, 5 to 7 minutes by machine) until the dough is smooth and satiny. Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl with lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise for 1 hour.
Divide the dough in half, and shape each half into a loaf. Place the loaves in two greased 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch bread pans. Cover the pans with lightly greased plastic wrap and allow the loaves to rise till they’ve crowned about 1 inch over the rim of the pan, about 1 hour.
(I used a pan de mie loaf pan).
Bake the loaves in a preheated 360°F oven for 33 minutes.* Remove them from the oven when they’re golden brown, and the interior registers 190°F on an instant-read thermometer.
*If your oven can’t be set at 360°F, set it at 350°F and bake the bread for 35 to 40 minutes.
This post has been submitted to Yeastspotting.