Basic 100% Whole Wheat Bread (Bread Machine)

As I talked about in great detail in my post about why I love my bread machine, over the last few months I have learned that it is entirely possible to feed my family homemade bread without tons of effort – all I needed was a little help from a cumbersome but very useful appliance!  I am committed to having our daily bread be 100% whole grain, and so far I’ve found 2 recipes that are really nice.  This one is a pretty basic whole wheat – definitely a more dense choice, but really nicely textured and is even good toasted after several days sitting around.  This has full approval from the munchkin, and all of the grown-ups in my life seem to love it!  Although recently I have actually been lightening the loaf a bit by replacing 1 cup of the whole wheat flour with white whole wheat flour, and have been very happy with the results.

Most bread machines have a specific order that you need to add the ingredients – mine calls for liquids, then dry ingredients, and yeast last, so that’s how I’ve listed the ingredients here.  But please make sure you read the instructions for your specific machine!

 

 

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Basic 100% Whole Wheat Bread
adapted from The Bread Lover’s Bread Machine Cookbook

3/4 cup water
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup agave or honey
2 tablespoons oil

4 cups whole wheat flour (or 3 cups whole wheat plus 1 cup white whole wheat flour)
3 tablespoons vital wheat gluten*
1 3/4 teaspoons salt

1 tablespoon SAF instant or rapid rise yeast** (or 1 tablespoon + 1/2 teaspoon bread machine yeast)

Add all ingredients to bread machine as directed for your model.  Set for whole wheat cycle (on my machine with SAF yeast I use quick wheat).  When bread is done, remove from pan immediately and allow to cool completely on a rack before slicing (if you can wait that long!).

* I’m not sure if this is available at regular grocery stores, but you can definitely find it at Whole Foods or other health food stores.

** I have only used SAF instant yeast for bread making, which allows me to use the “quick” cycle on my machine. This cuts the process down from close to 4 hours to a little more than 2, which is great! But bread machine yeast will also work if that’s what you have or prefer.

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