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Honey Wheat Bread


Is there anything better than the smell of freshly baked bread in the house?  It's so comforting and soothing.  It was an especially busy week this week and I needed a baking therapy session.  Since it was bread week on The Great British Baking Show, I decided to make a simple honey wheat bread.  I will admit I'm not the biggest fan of 100% whole wheat bread, so this recipe uses about half whole wheat flour, half all purpose flour.  (It appeases even my most fussy family members that way.)  You can absolutely make this with all wheat flour or all white flour if you choose to!

Ingredients:
  • 3 cups warm water (about 110 degrees)
  • 1-1/2 Tbsp instant yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter flavored shortening
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 Tbsp salt
  • 3 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3-4 cups all purpose flour (see recipe)
Instructions:
  1. Put the warm water in your mixer bowl and sprinkle the yeast and sugar over it and let sit for 5-10 minutes to activate the yeast.  
  2. Add the shortening, honey, salt, wheat flour and 3 cups of the all purpose flour.  
  3. Let the mixer knead on low speed for 2 minutes with the dough hook attachment.  If the dough is still sticky, add small amounts of flour, up to another cup, until it is the right consistency, (a soft dough that is easy to work with.)
  4. Cover the dough with saran wrap and a clean towel and set in a warm place to rise for 1 hour or until it has doubled in size.  (I like to turn the oven on at the lowest temperature for just 1 minute, then turn it off and put the mixing bowl in there.)
  5. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured pastry mat or counter, and knead for a minute, then divide the dough in two or three, (depending on how big you want your loaves.  I did three to get the above sized loaf.)  
  6. Roll out each piece of dough just slightly then fold over in thirds and place the bread with seams down in lightly greased bread pans.
  7. Let the loaves rise another hour.
  8. Preheat oven to 350.
  9. Bake the loaves at 350  for 30 minutes.  
  10. Carefully brush some melted butter on the top of each loaf and bake for an additional 2 minutes. 
  11. Remove from the oven and let cool 10 minutes before popping the loaves out of the pans.  
Try not to eat it all in one sitting!

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