So, I’m been doing a lot of menu planning prep work lately. I have a spread sheet I’m working on that lists prices for the food I buy, and then on another tab I’m using that information to calculate the cost of the recipes I use on a regular basis. This takes a LOT of time. I’ve spent MONTHS slowly working on it.
Anyway, my goal is for this week to have enough recipes organized to plan meals for the month of August and know about how much I’m going to be spending for most meals! I’ll probably be posting my menu plan for the month on Thursday (or Friday)!!
Until then, we’ll likely be eating our leftovers and coming up with creative meals using what ingredients we have.
Check out the giveaway going on right now!!! I’m giving away the very useful book: Your Grocery Budget Toolbox by Anne Simpson.
Whole Wheat Bread
Makes 6 loaves
First of all, I’m probably going to write a post in the future talking about where I get my wheat from and more about the NutriMill (which I use to grind my own whole wheat flour). I love it, but it was expensive.
Ingredients (cut in half if using a Kitchen Aid Mixer or kneading by hand):
– 7 cups hot water
– 1 cup oil
– 1 cup honey
– 2 Tbl. salt
– 4 cups oatmeal
– 6 cups whole wheat flour, freshly milled (has more nutrients)
– 1/3 cup vital wheat gluten (this makes the bread lighter, more elastic and less dense)**
– 2 Tbl. dough enhancer (this improves the texture of bread – makes it less crumbly)**
– 4 Tbl. fast acting yeast**
– 7-9 cups of additional Whole wheat flour
**The dough enhancer, wheat gluten and Saf yeast that I use can be purchased here, or I’ve heard that some health food stores will carry those ingredients.
I use a Bosch mixer (wedding gift from my husband) to knead the bread. This helps because the bread dough tends to be stickier and if you knead by hand you have the tendency to add too much flour. You don’t want to add more flour than the recipe calls for. If you try it by hand (I will someday and let you know how it goes), then spread oil on the counter and grease your hands with it so that you don’t add more flour.
If you have a Kitchen Aid mixer and dough hooks, you could use that. Most Kitchen Aid mixers would probably just knead 3 loaves at a time instead of the six.
**If you want to read more about the grain mill, bosch and other ingredients I list, check out Paula’s Bread.
Add the ingredients into the mixer in the order I have listed them. First add water, oil, & honey:
Then the rest with the yeast on top. Do not add the additional flour (last ingredient) yet.
Pulse the mixer to mix ingredients. Turn on to the lowest setting while you gradually add the additional flour. Only add until the dough cleans the sides of the bowl, no more.
Then knead on speed 2 for 3 minutes. The dough will be a little sticky and that’s okay.
Turn off machine. Grease your hands and the counter. Take out all of dough and slam the entire amount on your counter 7 times. Shape the dough into a round ball.
Using scissors, cut the dough into 6 equal pie pieces and let rise for 15 minutes.
For each loaf, slam it again on your counter 7 more times (to get out air bubbles) and shape into loaf size, then place into greased pan.
Let rise until doubled (or 1-2″ above bread pan).
Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Place on rack and spread a little butter on the tops of the bread.
And ta-da!! Your house smells wonderful and you have fresh loaves to cut!! I cut all the loaves into slices and them stick some in the freezer.