Saturday, May 5, 2012

Food Stamp Budget-Basic Bread Recipe

It’s Friday again, and that means Food Stamp Challenge recipe time.  For today I have a recipe for my go to bread.  I bake bread 2-4 times a week, depending on my menu.  Today’s recipe is my standard for whole wheat bread.  If you’re new to bread making, start with the standard recipe and then mix it up based on your own taste.
This recipe uses 100% whole wheat flour.  If your family isn’t used to eating whole wheat, substitute some of the wheat flour for white flour 1:1. 
Basic Whole Wheat Bread
Yields 1 loaf
Britt Huffman
3 c 100% Whole Wheat Flour
4 Tbsp Milled Flax Seed
1 Tbsp Sugar
3 tsp Dry Active Yeast
½ tsp Sea Salt
1 ½ c Warm Water (Around 120 degrees)

   1.      Mix sugar and yeast in 1 c water and let dissolve.  Allow the sugar and yeast to foam.  Set aside for about 5 minutes.  If it doesn’t foam toss it out and try again.  If a second time fails your yeast may be tired and need replacing.

   2.      Mix Flour and Flax seed together.  Add in the Sugar and Yeast and mix together.

   3.       Add in Salt and remaining water as needed.

   4.      Mix completely and turn out onto a floured surface.

   5.      Kneed bread until it forms a soft elastic dough ball.

   6.      Cover with plastic wrap and allow to double in size (about an hour)

   7.      Punch down, shape into a log and allow to rise in a loaf pan. (About an hour.)

   8.      Remove plastic wrap and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes.  The loaf should sound hollow.

   9.      After baking remove from the pan.  Coat the top with butter (this will ensure a soft and tasty crust) and allow to cool.

The amount of water you need will depend on the temperature and humidity.  You want a soft elastic dough ball.  Add water or flour as needed. 
There are infinite possibilities for flavoring this basic loaf. I like to add roasted garlic, onion, and peppers to this along with some cayenne powder and cinnamon for a southwestern flavor.  Try basil, oregano, garlic, and sundried tomatoes for an Italian bread. 
I wrote this recipe on the assumption readers do not have a bread machine or stand mixer.  Those things make it easier, but they are by no means a requirement.  If you have a stand mixer use the bread hook and kneed for about 5 minutes.  For a bread machine, add the ingredients according to your machine’s directions.

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