It’s been months since I last posted in my occasional series to make better use of my grain mill (inspired by Trish of Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity). That’s how long it took to finally come up with a 100% whole wheat recipe that worked.
I’m not that picky about how high my bread rises. If I were, I wouldn’t be using a bread machine. But, week after week as I experimented with my recipe, I got flat-topped dense loaves. They tasted fine because the freshly ground flour has so much flavor. But the slices were too heavy for sandwiches. Most of the bread went into bread pudding.
I started with the recipe that I’ve been using for about a year with my grain mill and bread machine: Golden Sunshine Bread. But instead of using store-bought white bread flour, I ground soft white wheat berries. That’s the kind of wheat that you use when you want to make whole-wheat pastry flour. When that failed, I started making other changes. I took out the flax seeds thinking that they were adding to the weight and not helping my problem. I tried less liquid. I tried various combinations of high protein ingredients.
All of that helped a bit, but the real break-through came when I changed the setting on the grain mill. While I was using some commercially ground white flour in my loaf, I could get away with a very coarse grind of the whole wheat–the black dot indicator was all the way to the right. To make a 100% whole wheat loaf, things improved greatly when I turned the grind indicator left, to about the mid-point.
I have to say, I’m not sure that I’ve made a great leap in healthiness, here. The common wisdom is that one should go for 100% whole wheat. But if I had to grind it finer to make it work, are we really sure that’s better than 80% coarsely-ground flour and 20% white flour?
Anyway, here’s my 100% whole wheat version of Golden Sunshine Bread. I’ll keep making this version because it means that I can take bread flour off my grocery list.
Bread Machine Golden Sunshine Bread, 100% Whole Wheat
by Joy Weese Moll
1 cup whey, fat-free milk, or water
1/4 cup cottage cheese
2 Tablespoons sorghum
1 Tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon salt
1 pound hard red wheat berries, freshly-ground into fairly fine flour
6 ounces soft white wheat berries, freshly-ground into fairly fine flour
2 tablespoons garbanzo bean flour
2 tablespoons butter, cut into 6 or 8 pieces
2 teaspoons yeast
1. Mix the whey, cottage cheese, eggs, sorghum, honey, and salt.
2. Stir together the flours, and the butter.
3. Follow bread machine instructions for adding liquid and dry ingredients and the yeast.
4. Bake using the whole wheat bread setting.
Enjoy more Weekend Cooking posts today at Beth Fish Reads.